WEB.COM TOUR INSIDER
Wolfe fueled by wife's support, renewed perspective in Q-School quest
October 30, 2018
By Adam Stanley, PGATOUR.COM
- Jared Wolfe followed a medalist showing at First Stage with a victory on PGA TOUR Latinoamerica. (Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
Inspired by his wife’s unrelenting support and motivated by a slew of well-timed good play, Jared Wolfe has never been happier.
Wolfe, who turned 30 earlier this year, was medalist at First Stage of Web.com Tour Q-School (Nebraska site) in early October. He shot a 7-under-par 64 in the first round and never looked back.
Buoyed by that confidence – which showed up at a key time, after Wolfe finished 114th on the Web.com Tour Regular Season money list despite making 12 of 21 cuts – the Murray State University alum played the Volvo Abierto de Chile 2018 on PGA TOUR Latinoamerica the very next week, and won.
After finishing second on that circuit in 2017 to earn a Web.com Tour card, Wolfe seems to have picked up where he left off a year ago – he had six top-10s in 17 events, including a victory – and after just four events, he’s 17th on the money list.
But Wolfe is hunting for something bigger now, after acknowledging past scheduling errors and realizing there’s more to life than just golf.
Wolfe played nine consecutive weeks on the Web.com Tour to end the season (“a mistake,” he says). But once he managed to have (a slightly forced) break, he and his wife of five years, Kelsey, had a long chat about the future.
With disproportionate emphasis on golf-related outcomes, he had found himself tying his life’s importance to the game. He was engulfed in the pressure, and was feeling the effects both on the course and off.
“It’s easy to do,” he says. “The Web.com Tour and the PGA TOUR are both points and money-based. It’s success-based. It’s not based on if you are having some fun.”
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Wolfe says he managed to relax after that long talk, and took care of everything he needed to off the course. In turn, he found he was relaxing more on the course.
He’s eager to tee it up at his Second Stage site in Plantation, Florida, in early November. Twice, he has successfully navigated the site, as good vibes have produced good golf.
“There is so much going on throughout the world that needs more attention than just me playing good golf,” he says. “But I found myself hitting it a lot closer, and putts started to go in. I thought, ‘Huh. This is the way it’s supposed to be.’”
Wolfe waxes poetic about Kelsey, who travels about four weeks per year with him but otherwise holds things down at home in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, where she works as a nanny.
He says she supports him unconditionally, but doesn’t put pressure on – something he has seen happen to other players not just in golf, but also in life. She’s not afraid to call him out on things either, like when he gets overly frustrated.
“I’m fortunate to have Kelsey supporting me. Just like how I try a million different things with my swing to get it better, she has tried a million different ways to support and encourage me,” he says.
“We’re finding what I respond to best and how we can serve each other. That’s our marriage: we spend more time apart than we do together. We have to figure out how to invest and make that part work.”
Wolfe admits that as the year was nearing its conclusion, with only one Web.com Tour top-15 finish to his credit, thoughts of doubt crept into his head. It’s not uncommon, he says, for guys at a certain age and after a certain run of poor play to start thinking about life after golf.
He has a business marketing degree, is married, and is 30. He wants to eventually start a family.
“You can’t do that off 114th on the money list,” he says.
He and Kelsey had some talks about what life might look like post-golf. They tried to figure out different scenarios and what they would need to do to get things squared away, if that was indeed the path they were going to take.
“Thankfully we’re not having to dive into that yet,” he says with a laugh. “When I don’t feel like I’m improving or learning or getting better or having any fun, then it’s time to figure something else out. But these last few weeks have recharged all that, which is really nice.”