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Youngest Golf Champion!

September 22nd, 2011

Photo credit: Kathy Willens/AP

Youngest Golf Champion!

September 22, 2011 — A 16-year old has become the youngest champion to win a professional women’s golf event! Lexi Thompson, a home-schooled, high-school senior from Florida, won the Navistar Ladies Professional Golf Association (L.P.G.A.) tournament on Sunday. Along with a piece of history, she earned $195,000!

Even Tiger Woods, golf’s most famous player, who started playing when he was two years old, didn’t win his first professional event until he was 20 (though he won a lot of amateur events).

Lexi’s father, Scott Thompson, is her caddy. A caddy is the person who helps the player decided which clubs to choose, and gives advice and strategy on how to play the course. It was an emotional moment for him, too, seeing his daughter win. He said, “It’s just awesome watching your kid do something like this, but it’s very nerve-wracking, though.” At one point he told his daughter he would have to go off to the side because he might cry.

Lexi also has two older brothers who play golf at a high-level. She attributes some of her maturity to them, and also explained that growing-up they would have golf contests where the person who lost would have to do chores like emptying the dishwasher. Incentive to get good for sure!

There is one complication, though. Despite her win, the L.P.G.A. rule is that you have to be 18-years old to be a member of the women’s professional tour. This makes it complicated for her to enter some of the very events she is winning. The Thompsons, and many other golf fans, are hoping they will make an exception for her based on this big win and her past results. We’ll see!

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