PGA TOURLeaderboardWatch + ListenNewsFedExCupSchedulePlayersStatsGolfbetSignature EventsComcast Business TOUR TOP 10Aon Better DecisionsDP World Tour Eligibility RankingsHow It WorksPGA TOUR TrainingTicketsShopPGA TOURPGA TOUR ChampionsKorn Ferry TourPGA TOUR AmericasLPGA TOURDP World TourPGA TOUR University

Charlie Woods competes in first PGA TOUR pre-qualifier

4 Min Read



Woods’ first taste of TOUR pathways proves educational and entertaining

    Written by Jimmy Reinman

    HOBE SOUND, Fla. - Charlie Woods competed Thursday at the Cognizant Classic in The Palm Beaches' pre-qualifier, his first attempt at qualifying for a PGA TOUR event, and the first step in a lifelong journey into the world of professional golf.

    Woods, son of 82-time PGA TOUR winner Tiger Woods, has competed alongside his dad in the past four PNC Championships, but never as an individual in an event tied to TOUR-sanctioned competition.

    Charlie Woods prior to pre-qualifier for the Cognizant Classic in The Palm Beaches at Lost Lake Golf Club. (Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images)

    Charlie Woods prior to pre-qualifier for the Cognizant Classic in The Palm Beaches at Lost Lake Golf Club. (Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images)

    And while Woods did not advance from the pre-qualifier, his presence was notable. Uncharacteristically large crowds followed a laid-back Woods play the 18-hole qualifier at Lost Lake Golf Club. Woods was warm and jovial for the majority of the chilly morning, often laughing with his caddie for the day, J.J. Kutner, a close friend of near the same age as Woods, and playing partner Olin Browne Jr., a longtime mini-tour pro and son of three-time TOUR winner Olin Browne.

    Charlie Woods tees off at Cognizant Classic pre-qualifier

    “It was great. Charlie is a great kid and it was great playing with him,” said Browne Jr. “It’s definitely the most people I’ve ever seen at a pre-qualifier. Charlie’s got a beautiful golf game. It’s tough to come out here and play a professional event at 15 years old. I think he conducted himself beautifully. He didn’t have his best stuff today, but he hit some high-quality shots.”

    Flanked with support from his mom, Elin and team members, Woods appeared to relish the experience of competing in a TOUR pre-qualifier for the first time. He was the first player on the putting green as dawn broke over the palm trees. Sporting a blue Greyson pullover, black pants, black cap and a white Sun Day Red glove, Woods teed off at 7:39 a.m. in front of excited onlookers. Multiple local and national media outlets followed along, as did dozens of Hobe Sound locals. Club members, local homeowners and curious fans packed the small parking lot at Lost Lake. The atmosphere was unique. A gallery of around 50, mostly retirement age, walked beside the Woods group, weaving in and out of the un-roped fairways.

    A look at Charlie Woods' bag prior to pre-qualifier for the Cognizant Classic in The Palm Beaches at Lost Lake Golf Club. (Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images)

    A look at Charlie Woods' bag prior to pre-qualifier for the Cognizant Classic in The Palm Beaches at Lost Lake Golf Club. (Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images)

    “I just came down here four weeks ago, it's my first snowbird season,” said Tom Brennan, a retired firefighter from the Bronx. “This is just the best, being out here. He’s such a star.”

    Backyards along the course’s residential route featured more fans looking on in lawn chairs with cocktails in hand, seemingly tailgating the experience.

    “I live just up the street, I heard he was playing here so I figured I would come by,” said Hobe Sound resident Randy Eng, who followed Woods group by bicycle on the front nine. “I play the gold tees here, and my drives usually end up way behind his.”

    The fan presence didn’t quite evoke the same feeling the swelling galleries of TPC Sawgrass on Sunday of THE PLAYERS Championship, but if the goal for Woods was to get professional reps under enhanced pressure, then Thursday’s round was an undoubted success.

    While Woods will not advance into the Monday Qualifier, entering the pre-qualifier provided an experience that Woods can build from as he heads into his next season of high school golf. Woods team at the Benjamin School will look to defend their state championship when the season starts in March. Woods added an invaluable building block as he hones his game in pursuit of facing the test of TOUR qualification again.


    The top five and ties at Woods' pre-qualifying site, Lost Lake Golf Club in Hobe Sound, Florida, will advance to Monday's open qualifier (Lost Lake is one of four pre-qualifying sites). The top four from the Monday qualifier will advance to the Cognizant Classic in The Palm Beaches, contested next Feb. 29-March 3 at PGA National's Champion Course in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.

    Two of the four pre-qualifying sites were contested Wednesday. Advancing from Park Ridge Golf Club: Beau Titsworth, Austin Lemieux, Bryce Emory, Ryan Quinn, Larry Blatt and Keith Greene. Advancing from the Boca Lago site: Griffin Barela, Andrew Garner, Chris Wilson, Jake Hibbert, Chris Francoeur, Logan Perkins, Trevor Johnson, Julius Boros, Maximilien Sturdza, Parker Gillam and Nicholas Cummings.

    Click here for a list of players currently registered for the Cognizant Classic's Monday qualifier.

    Jimmy Reinman is a member of the PGA TOUR's digital content team. A native of Florida’s Space Coast, he is passionate about golf’s most emboldened characters and bizarre lore. He dreams of one day making center-face contact with a long iron.

    Privacy PolicyTerms of UseAccessibility StatementDo Not Sell or Share My Personal InformationCookie ChoicesSitemap

    Copyright © 2024 PGA TOUR, Inc. All rights reserved.

    PGA TOUR, PGA TOUR Champions, and the Swinging Golfer design are registered trademarks. The Korn Ferry trademark is also a registered trademark, and is used in the Korn Ferry Tour logo with permission.