Oban’s Robert MacIntyre has set his sights on playing in next year’s Ryder Cup after being crowned the European Tour’s rookie of the year.
The 23-year-old finished tied 14th on six under at the season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai with his closest challenger America Kurt Kitayama finishing eight over par.
MacIntyre’s stunning debut season on the European Tour has included three runner-up finishes at Made in Denmark, the British Masters and the BMW International.
He also finished tied sixth at The Open at Royal Portrush in his first appearance in a major.
The left-hander hopes he can keep the momentum going next season and force his way into Padraig Harrington’s team for the biennial tussle against the United States in Whistling Straits.
MacIntyre said: “There are going to be goals that are beyond what I thought I could achieve early on.
“If we can keep improving then Ryder Cups and top 50 are all achievable.
“I’ve been shooting at the top-50 in the world for the last four or five weeks.
“We’ve fallen just short, but the season’s opened up doors for me.
“It’s opened up WGC events, and I was going to be playing another few events this year if I was in the position that I’ve actually found myself in, but I’m calling it a day this year.
“I’ve played enough golf.
“Next year, if I keep continue to do what I’m doing on the golf course, then in my own head, it’s a matter of time.”
MacIntyre said he was thrilled to become the 13th Scot to be crowned rookie of the year and the first since Marc Warren in 2006.
He also collected the tour’s ‘Graduate of the Year’ for being the most successful player to have made the step up from the Challenge Tour.
He said: “I’m absolutely delighted.
“Halfway through the season when it became on the radar that we could win both awards, it was something that we set out to do.
“Today we finally can go to ease that we’ve finally achieved it, and now I’m absolutely over the moon.
“I’ve played with Kurt the last three weeks. It’s obviously been set up to do it.
“But this week we fell into playing two rounds.
“I’ve enjoyed the battle.
“The last few weeks have been hard, because I’ve been looking over my shoulder until last week when I got overtaken.
“I could only control what I can control and that was putting some good golf shots on display, and I finally managed to putt in two good rounds this week to seal it off.”