Jake Bolton – 20 Questions

10th June 2021

Name – JAKE BOLTON

Age – 22 (d.o.b. 31st July 1998)

Hometown – Swindon

Golf Club – Ogbourne Downs GC, Wiltshire, England.

Equipment – Taylor Made woods, irons and ball. Scotty Cameron putter. Adidas apparel.

Current WHS Handicap Index = -6.8

Highest Amateur Rankings – SPWAR #13 / WAGR #51

Turned Pro – 10th June 2021

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Jake Bolton With The Scottish Open Amateur Trophy In August 2019 (Photo: Scottish Golf)

1 How did you get into golf ?

My father. I was given a cut down 7-iron when I was 7 years old. I hit some shots in the park behind our house and soon realised it was what I wanted to do. I joined Ogbourne Downs when I was 10 and started playing in competitions from 12.

2 Describe your progression to the top of the amateur game ?

I just got better each year as I started playing in competitions, moving up through the junior, county, national and international levels. 2016 was my breakthrough year where I had top 10s in the Henry Cooper and Carris Trophy. Playing against the best players in Great Britain and also internationally is something you need to do to improve and I’m thankful I’ve been given those opportunities.

3 Did you consider going to a US College ?

Yes, I had a few offers. Ole Miss being one of the big ones where Braden Thornberry, who was World No. 1 at the time, was playing. Unfortunately it didn’t work out with the NCAA and I couldn’t get clearance despite getting my SATs. It was tough at the time because I didn’t know what level I could get to over here as I hadn’t been selected for a national squad at that time. Ole Miss still follow my progress today which is nice.

4 How have you funded your amateur career ?

The hardest bit about amateur golf is the financial part for almost every player. Luckily I have a supportive family, some club members have helped out and for most of my amateur career I was part of Golfing4Life. They were incredible with their support and thank you isn’t enough for those people. Hopefully I can give back to them somewhere along the line.

5 Who is your current coach and what other support have you received over the years ?

I have worked with Russell Covey since 2018 who has been very influential in my progress. He’s not just helped me technically and physically but also psychologically too. Obviously being part of the England Golf set up in recent years has been helpful too. Practicing alongside people you compete against and attending warm weather training camps drives you forwards. Graham Walker and Mike Kanski have been great in terms of understanding the short game and putting and where and how I need to improve.

6 What have been the highlights of your career to date ?

I have three main highlights. Winning the 2019 Scottish Open Amateur after being left out of the England team for the Men’s Home internationals, which was being played the following week. Also going to South Africa in early 2020 was an amazing experience. Finally, playing in the 2021 Walker Cup at Seminole was an incredible week which I’ll never forget.

Jake Bolton Holes A Great Putt On The 17th Hole In The Day 1 Foursomes

7 What would you consider to be your biggest failure and how did you respond to it ?

In golf success only happens when you win, so failure is a common thing. I have simply tried to use these failures to improve. My biggest failure was not being part of the final 10 for the Walker Cup, a huge disappointment. Fortunately I ended up getting the chance to play in the Saturday morning foursomes [after alternates were called upon after a sickness bug disrupted both teams’ preparations] and did what was asked of me delivering a winning point alongside Angus Flanagan.

Jake Bolton Hits A Clutch 5-Iron Onto The 18th Green In The Day 1 Foursomes

8 What are your strengths and weaknesses and how are you managing them ?

My strengths are putting and iron play. I wouldn’t say I have a particular weakness as such. However, I didn’t drive the ball as well as I would have liked last year so that’s the main area I’m working on.

9 What’s the best golf or mental tip you have ever received ?

Ben Hogan’s “The most important shot in golf is the next one.” I often say it to myself when I am playing. It seems to calm me down and help with my focus.

10 What advice would you give a junior golfer starting out today ?

Work hard, believe in yourself and enjoy it.

11 Which other player has impressed you the most ?

Matty Lamb for his all round improvement in the last year or so. Internationally, Casey Jarvis, whose aggressive play, like all the South Africans, was an eye opener for me. They often seem to play on scorable courses over there which helps with that mindset I guess.

12 Tell us about your recent Walker Cup experience ?

The Walker Cup was an unbelievable experience even with the COVID-19 restrictions in place. It probably helped that it was in the USA just because the restrictions aren’t as severe over there. The USGA, R&A and Seminole did a brilliant job in keeping us safe all week. The whole team was supportive of each other and I have memories that will be with me for the rest of my life. We met some of the all time greats like Jack Nicklaus who was really nice. Obviously it doesn’t get much better than playing; the buzz was incredible and I can’t wait to feel the energy from spectators again.

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Jack Nicklaus and Jake Bolton At Seminole In May 2021

13 Why are you turning Pro ?

I feel now is the time that I have to make the transition. I feel ready with a great team behind me and I feel I have enough experience to go and compete against the world’s best players.

14 Who have you chosen to represent you and what have they offered you ?

I have chosen Hambric Sports to represent me. I had to make some extremely difficult decisions over the course of the winter and they affected me mentally for a short period [most of the Golfing4Life players joined Trinifold Sports run by Jimmy Byers]. I chose Hambric because of their experience as a team. They represent some of the worlds best players too.

15 What are your goals for the next 5 years ?

I see golf as being like a ladder. I have been at the top of the ladder in the amateur game but when I start playing with the pros I’m going to be on the first step of the ladder again and I know I will have to work my way up to the top step again. I don’t set long term goals but obviously in five years time I would like to be on the European or PGA Tour. In the short to medium term I will be working towards a Challenge Tour card which will put me on the second or third step of the ladder.

16 Which professional do you admire the most and why ?

I admire Tiger Woods and always have done. His ability and the way he approaches the game mentally is what I’m trying to achieve.

17 What’s your favourite course and why ?

This is a tough one, I’d probably say Royal Birkdale or maybe Medalist G.C. in Florida. Birkdale because of its history and it’s a course I just love playing. Medalist because of its location and the precision it requires to play it.

18 Which course is top of your ‘wish list’ and why ?

I have three – Royal Melbourne, Pebble Beach and Augusta National.

19 What other interests away from golf do you have ?

I don’t have many other interests away from golf. I like to relax and spend time with family and friends. I enjoy the PlayStation playing Warzone – it gets me away from golf for a short while.

20 Is there anything else you’d like to get off your chest ?

There is nothing else I’d like to get off my chest apart from hair !

ME.

Copyright © 2014-2021, Mark Eley. All rights reserved.

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