Poulter finishes adding "Best Wishes" to the flags and reflects on a disappointing Masters; he shot 76--75 for his first missed cut on any tour since September 2011. "I drove it poorly, simple as that," he says. At the 18th tee on Friday he gave his misbehaving driver to a kid standing nearby. Katie has another explanation: "I think he was too excited. He wants so badly to play well in the big events, sometimes it affects him."
The short week at the Masters was especially disappointing because Poulter had a few special guests on hand. One was Andy Day, a Leighton Buzzard member who once staked the aspiring pro with £1,500. As an enduring thank you, Poulter has invited Day to each of the nine Masters he has played in. This year he also imported Abbott, his old mate from the pro shop, who says he was "chuffed to bits" by the invitation. "That's Ian," he adds. "He's never changed. His lifestyle surely has, but he remains the same down-to-earth person he always was. He hasn't forgotten where he comes from."
Having finished the last of the photos, Poulter is back on his laptop. He checks Twitter again, then goes to his favorite website, Ferrari.com. As he explains, there are five Ferrari supercars prized by the most avid of collectors. He owns three of the models: a 288 GTO, from 1984 (in fact, it was the first one built); a '90 F40 (with exactly 1,283 miles); and a 2002 Enzo. Poulter is pursuing a '96 F50, and he's on the waiting list for the soon-to-be-released LaFerrari, a 963-horsepower beast that has created a frenzy in the car world. It will carry an estimated selling price of $1.5 million.
Poulter loves his toys like a kid with a Matchbox car, but he can also cite reams of data that collectible Ferraris are appreciating in value faster than almost any other commodity. "You can buy a Fabergé egg, and it just sits there on a shelf," he says. "These cars are just as beautiful, but you can have fun with them and they get more valuable every day. They're a passion of mine for sure, but also an important investment."
Poulter skips up his steel and glass staircase to change clothes for a trip to the driving range. To walk into his closet is to experience sensory overload. Throbbing rock music is playing through hidden speakers. There are three large drawers just for belts, which he matches to the color of his sunglass frames. A glass case displays 42 watches, many of them bejeweled. Clothes of every imaginable style and fabric hang on IJP logo hangers, each uniformly spaced, a tic that drives Katie crazy. "He definitely has some OCD," she says, "and it comes out with the clothes."
Poulter is milling around his "golf studio," which occupies two of his six garage bays. "It's like a tour van without wheels," he says. There is an indoor hitting area with cameras and a launch monitor, a grinding wheel to work on his wedges, and various other contraptions for tuning his clubs. Three dozen large leather golf bags are stuffed with old clubs, and some 40 putters sit in an adjacent cubby. "This room gives me an advantage over most of the other guys," Poulter says. Even if that's not true, he believes it, which is just as important.