Q&A: Wyndham Clark
Get to know the Unviersity of Oregon alum and Web.com Tour rookie
March 13, 2018
By Stephen Andress, PGATOUR.COM
- Wyndham Clark plays his shot from the 13th tee during the first round of The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals Emerald Bay (Ryan Young/PGA TOUR).
You might say Wyndham Clark is a natural.
At three years old, his mom took him to the driving range for the first time. Lisa Clark remembered an elderly gentleman golfer asking how long young Wyndham had been playing the game. She replied 30 minutes, to which the man cheekily replied, “Don’t change his swing.”
At six years old, he made his first hole-in-one (more on that below).
At eight years old, he played in his first tournament. And then proceeded to win it.
Fast forward to college, and he was a champion there too at the University of Oregon.
A T23 finish at the Web.com Tour Qualifying Tournament in December earned him guaranteed starts on the Web.com Tour in his first season as a pro.
Oh, did we mention he had another ace there too? His first hole-in-one in competition and second on a regulation course to go along with "multiple" on par-3 courses.
So friends and family were concerned when this natural born golfer shot an 80 in the second round to miss the cut of his first Tour event at The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals Emerald Bay.
Clark admitted needing to adjust his mindset to the importance of making cuts and playing smarter, a foreign concept in college when all that mattered was winning. On Tour, cashing checks is vital in a format where the top 25 on the money list at the end of the season earn PGA TOUR cards.
He responded to that 80 by taking a 36-hole lead at the next event, The Bahamas Great Abaco Classic, before finishing in the top five.
But in the words of LL Cool J, don't call it a comeback. He's been here for years.
Since he was 3.
The raw talent is undeniable. It was enough for Clark to have already received three sponsors exemptions for PGA TOUR events this season, and he used one of those to finish in the top 20 of the Sanderson Farms Championship in October.
Prior to last week’s El Bosque Mexico Championship by Innova, Clark spent time with PGA TOUR Digital to help us get to know him a little better.
What is your first memory of playing golf?
I have two really important ones to me. One, the first time I ever went and played golf. I was three years old, and my mom took me to this local driving range that was right by our house. I never played golf. I hit a bucket of balls and asked to hit another bucket. I remember that vividly.
The other one I was six years old, and I made my first hole in one. Hit driver from 125 and made it. I actually got on the front page of the Denver Post. I have that framed. So, I remember that as well.
Best memory in golf?
This past year winning the PAC-12 championship with Oregon was pretty awesome. I’ve never won a championship that big. Not only did I do it individually, but we did it as a team, which was awesome. It was really fun to share, and we all had a blast doing it.
Best sports experience?
We did our retreat at Bandon Dunes. I had never played there, heard a lot about it. That was a lot of fun. We played pretty much every course. A lot of competition, and we got great weather.
Do you know what famous movie was shot at the University of Oregon?
Animal House! Easy question.
Proudest accomplishment off the golf course?
I would say graduating. It took me five years. I’m a good student, but I didn’t put 100 percent effort into it. When I did graduate, it definitely felt like I accomplished something. It’s nice to have my piece of paper, my degree.
Favorite pizza toppings?
Can’t have pizza. Can’t have dairy, but I do love pizza. I love the supreme with everything on it or barbecue chicken.
Best place or city to eat?
Portland, Oregon. Charleston, South Carolina, also had some really good food.
Longest road trip ever taken?
One day, 20 hours. I drove from Denver to Eugene, (Oregon). It was brutal. And the day before that I drove from Oklahoma to Denver, packed, then drove to Eugene.
Bucket list country you’d love to visit?
Easy. New Zealand. I love to fly fish. So, that’s basically the trout capital of the world. It’s some of the best river fishing you can have. The last four years it’s kind of been my favorite activity off the golf course.
Favorite golf course you’ve ever played?
My favorite is Royal County Downs in Ireland.
Biggest pet peeve?
Picky eaters. I am the least picky eater. I don’t mind if you don’t like something, but at least try it once.
Most annoying habit about yourself?
My perfectionism. I get too caught up in trying to do things perfect, rather than just letting my athleticism take over.
Player you’d like to duel on the back nine on a Sunday?
Tiger, especially Tiger in his prime. Childhood hero, and one of my favorite players.
Braveheart. Any war movie. Saving Private Ryan. The Patriot.
Last TV series you were watching?
The Ranch. It’s a comedy show with Ashton Kutcher and a lot of people from That ‘70s Show. It’s based in Colorado. It’s basically two brothers that work on a ranch. It’s really funny.
Mainly country. I really do listen to everything. I’m not into the new rap. Rock. Acoustic stuff. One of my favorite bands is Dave Matthews Band.