Inside Europe’s Ryder Cup party as celebrations last into early hours in Rome

The European team partied hard into the night after an emphatic victory at Marco Simone Golf Club to reclaim the cup

Jack Rathborn
Marco Simone Golf Club
Monday 02 October 2023 08:56 BST
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Rory McIlroy and Shane Lowry drink from Ryder Cup trophy

Europe’s Ryder Cup celebrations lasted long into the night with Luke Donald’s team seen in full song on their bus away from Marco Simone Golf Club to a party in Rome.

Rory McIlroy led the team, belting out a version of “Europe’s on fire, USA is terrified!” The scenes were in stark contrast to two years ago at Whistling Straits when a tearful McIlroy pleaded “to get another shot at this” after a humbling defeat to the USA.

Scotland’s Robert MacIntyre gave a rendition of the Proclaimers’ I wanna be (500 miles), while waving his European cap in reference to Hatgate, after Patrick Cantlay’s rumoured statement surrounding his dissatisfaction at players not being paid to play in the event.

And the legend of Viktor Hovland grows larger, after the Norwegian’s interview mid-celebrations with a US broadcaster, fending off a Europe team member ready to drown him in champagne and breaking into hysterical laughter.

While the last men standing were Tyrrell Hatton, posing in Team Europe pyjamas and bright sunglasses at 3am local time, and Irishman Shane Lowry.

The Irishman, who was surrounded by the trophy and empty bottles of champagne and Peroni, had earlier declared how he would “have to do all the work” had McIlroy’s carpark altercation with caddie Jim ‘Bones’ Mackay, following bad blood with Patrick Cantlay’s caddie Joe LaCava, escalated further on Saturday.

Lowry and McIlroy had earlier drank champagne from the Ryder Cup before handing over the trophy to captain Donald for a swig.

Vice-captain Francesco Molinari was seen performing a dance resembling a penguin, paying tribute to his ‘Moliwood’ partner Tommy Fleetwood, who had earlier clinched the cup for Europe after moving 2UP against Rickie Fowler in the penultimate match.

Loud cries of “Tommy, Tommy, Tommy” were heard ringing around the team bus as Europe celebrated each team member.

While Donald kept it simple with his own song, screaming out Queen’s We are the champions to his adoring players.

Attention will now turn to Bethpage Black in New York in 2025, where Europe will attempt to achieve “one of the biggest accomplishments in golf right now,” in the words of McIlroy.

Rory McIlroy celebrates after Europe regained the Ryder Cup (Zac Goodwin/PA)

And the question over the European captaincy will begin, with many calling for Donald to make a rare move and retain the leadership and become the first away winners in the Ryder Cup since Europe at Medinah in 2012.

“I think everyone sitting here would be very happy to have him again,” McIlroy said.

While Donald remained coy on his future: “Listen, guys, I want to enjoy this moment right now with these guys. I haven't been asked yet.”

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