Many people see the way to success in golf as a pretty linear line: you go to a major golf school, qualify for the mini-tours, make your way to the Korn Ferry, and finally grab a spot on the PGA Tour. There are some players, like Viktor Hovland and Matthew Wollf who skip some steps, but in the end most American players take this route.
The same cannot be said for John Catlin. After playing at the University of New Mexico, John spent time on the Mackenzie Tour up in Canada. Instead of going to the Korn Ferry (then the Web.com Tour), John went overseas to play on the Asian Development Tour. He moved up to the Asian Tour in 2018, winning 4 times over 2 years. These results gained him access to the European Tour for the 2019 season.
His first season on the European Tour was a bit of a Rocky year, finishing 155th in the Race to Dubai. However, this year he has he got his first European Tour top 10 at the Austrian Masters, and he’s been on a rocket ship since. He finished T6 at the Celtic Classic before breaking through for his first victory at the Andalusia Masters. He followed this with an 8th place finish at the Portugal Masters, followed by a victory this week at Glengoram Castle. With his career taking off, he has shot up in the OWGR, going from 196th to 84th.
It’s always great to see golfers taking a different path and succeeding, and John has done exactly that. He heads into the Scottish Open this week ranked 14th in the Race to Dubai, and hopes to build upon his impressive European Tour season. Hopefully, we get to see Catlin stateside soon on the PGA Tour!