Jack Thompson's drive to succeed
Ever since Jack Thompson was two-years-old, he has lived and breathed golf.
Jack was inspired to be just like his Mum who has always been heavily involved in the sport.
21 years later, after a slight delay due to COVID-19, Jack turned pro at the beginning of 2021.
“It feels great being able to play golf for a living now and to say I am a professional golfer,” Thompson said.
When asked what he loves about golf, Jack said he loves that it focuses on the individual.
“I’ve played team sports before and it’s nice, but I like being in control.
“In golf, everything that you’ve done is you and everything you might stuff up is you, so it keeps me accountable, and I like that.”
The 23-year-old recently returned from the New Zealand PGA Championship where he managed to finish 7th out of 96 golfers, and he raved about the experience.
“It was awesome.
“I’d never been to New Zealand, but I’d always heard good things.
“I feel very grateful that I could go overseas and play again given the circumstances.”
In March this year, Jack competed at the New South Wales Open and finished an impressive 2nd place out of 144 golfers.
“Finishing second has really kickstarted my career.
“I ended up getting an Aussie card from it, meaning I am now entered into all golfing events in Australia.
“It was a surreal feeling, obviously disappointing not to win but it meant a lot in terms of going forward.”
The Grange Golf Member’s tournament schedule quietens down now with the golfing season over in Australia, but he is looking to potentially head to the United States and work towards pre-qualifying for events.
Despite the conclusion of the season, Jack isn’t taking his foot off the pedal, where he’s committed to a full training schedule.
“You can always get better, and if you’re not getting better then you’re not going forward.
“There’s a lot I can improve on, so I’m just trying to work on all elements of my game.”
Jack is currently on a high-performance scholarship in the South Australian Sports Institute’s (SASI’s) Individual Athlete Program for the second year running, where he receives financial assistance and performance support.
“Having access to the gym, the physio, the nutritionist - it definitely makes it easier having a good support base around you.
“My relationship with SASI is great and I look forward to continuing on with it and using it to my advantage me.
“I think I’m the first golfer that’s been in the program, so I’m honored and flattered to be a part of SASI.”
At this point in his career, Jack’s proudest achievements are competing for Australia in China back in 2019 and finishing second in the 2021 NSW Open earlier this year.
“It’s always nice to say you’ve represented your country, but it would be hard to look past the NSW Open result.
“I had to finish in the top five of 144 players to get my card, and I finished 2nd, so it was very satisfying knowing I needed to do it, and then doing it.”
Jack’s golfing role model is Jason Day, as they share similar backgrounds and he’s always looked up to Jason as someone he wants to be like on the course.
“If I could become half as good as Jason, I’d be happy.”
Looking ahead, Jack has some lofty goals he will be working towards achieving in the years to come.
“I’d like to be on the PGA Tour and now that golf is back in the Olympics, it would be great to say that I’m an Olympic athlete and represent Australia; so that’s definitely front of mind.”
He says there are two key attributes to have if you are an aspiring golfer: willingness to work hard and self-motivation.
“You have to make sure you want to pursue golf and no one else is pushing you, because at the end of the day you’re the one doing the training.
“If you are self-motivated and work hard, you can do anything.”
Jack’s pro golf career has only just begun, but there is no denying the future is bright for this young SASI athlete.