Before the age most kids are toilet trained, Michael White was playing golf.
“I was two-and-a-half-years-old and I picked up a plastic golf club and I just loved it.”
This week the 17-year-old becomes the first golfer in the Princeton Golf Club’s 88 year history to compete in a national tournament.
What’s even more remarkable is that the Grade 12 student is only in his first year of tournament play.
“It feels awesome,” said White, in an interview Friday, on the eve of departing for Golf Canada’s Junior Boys Championship being held in St. John’s Newfoundland. “It’s really a great opportunity.”
White said he thought he would just “try to put the toes in the water” of tournament play this spring.
After a 14-event tour and an appearance at the BC provincial championships, he was invited to play at the national level.
He described his first year on the tour as being a little tense. “Yes. Personally I found it stressful. Being my first year these were the biggest tournaments I’d ever played in.”
In St. John’s he is competing against approximately 170 other golfers, most of whom have much more experience at top competitive play.
“I would be really happy if I make the cut after two days,” he said. “Anything after that happens, I’d be super happy with.”
White is the Princeton’s Junior Club reigning champion. “I play with my buddies a lot, and I play with my Dad and his friends as well.”
The follow up question triggered a pause before he answered: “Ya, I beat my dad quite a bit.”
White characterized his strengths on the course as being good off the tee. “I typically hit the ball a long ways.” He also excels at putting and chipping, but admitted: “I need to work at getting better from 100 to 200 yards.”
White said he recalls a time when he dreamed of professional golf, but that ambition gave way to the desire to go to school and study business or law.
“I would love to get a scholarship and support my education.”