Charlotte during the ISPS HANDA Ladies European Masters Media Day
We met Charlotte Thompson, our rookie from Essex, England, during the Ladies Italian Open in Perugia. Charlotte turned professional last year in September and is currently one of the players leading the Driving Distance rankings with an average of 275 yards. Charlotte earned LET membership in category 8a in December last year where finished tied for 27th at the Lalla Aicha Tour School Final Qualifying. We chatted about her experiences so far and her goals for this season.
Find Charlotte’s latest results and stats here
Tell us about your experiences and where do you normally practice…
After the Qualifying School in Morocco last year, I decided to travel on my own to New Zealand in January, which was an unbelievable experience. I just got into one of the three events at the beginning of the year, the ISPS Handa New Zealand Open hosted by Christchurch. This was my first time in New Zealand and I stayed with a lovely couple, they were very generous and I felt like I was their granddaughter. Then, I had a little bit of a break and worked on my game. I practice most of the time in Little Channels, but sometime I go to other golf courses like the Buckinghamshire Golf Club, The Grove and different courses around the area.
Tell us about your other experiences.
Morocco: it was my third time there after the Qualifying School, but my first time in Agadir. I really enjoyed the course and played quite steady, made the cut and got my first cheque, which was nice. There were many positives to take and learned things to work on, so, that was good. We had a nice welcome party and also, we went to one on the last night. It is nice to mingle with all the girls and relax with no golf clubs.
In May, Turkey was brilliant. I travelled with Georgina Simpson and shared with her. My mum and step dad came down together with my sister and her boyfriend. That was really good to see her, as it was a long time since we had seen each other. I normally travel by myself, I do not have a fixed person that I travel with normally. When I was an amateur, I used to travel with Holly (Clyburn) a lot, but I met Georgina in New Zealand and we spoke about sharing in Morocco and carried on. I made my second cut in Turkey, I played well there although it was not really a course to suit me or my game. Lovely golf course and lovely people, again. Really pleased to be there.
Then we went to Amsterdam, where I did not play my best golf. My older sister came there with her boyfriend. The courses we have been playing are fantastic. I did not make the cut in Amsterdam, so I decided to do some tourism and had a bit of a cycle around and then Slovakia: I did not play well in Slovakia!
Tell us about your game and how it has changed since beginning of the year.
I have improved more mentally, learning more about the actual game and course management. My golf game in general has obviously improved, my short game, but other than that it is more learning how to be patient and those kind of things.
I knew that I had the game, enough to play on this tour, but also that there were many parts that I needed to improve. I am still learning. I love my putting, so that’s not the one, it is around 30 putts average. Regarding my driving, I hit it long and sometimes I miss some fairways, not many. I would need it to improve this part, but not much and make it more narrow. My greens in regulation stats are quite good, so I would just need to hit it closer to the pin. Sometimes, I can see that I have more putts, but I have not actually putted badly, it is just that I would need to have shorter putts. I have just not given myself a chance for a makeable putt. I hit it long, but I do not take much advantage of it. I would need to be more precise with the irons.
Tell us about something strange that happened to you on your travels!
I thought I would be lonely and I enjoy it more than I thought I would do. I love golf now more than in the past. When I came to New Zealand, I had to wait for an hour, because I did not have a flight out from New Zealand, so I got questioned and had to prove that I had enough money to leave the country, but other than that, touch wood, nothing else has happened. Everything has been normal.
What are your plans this summer?
In August it is my birthday, so I will go and celebrate it with my boyfriend. He plays golf too, on the Challenge Tour. So we might go away in the first week and then practice the other two weeks and I will try to play in Scotland, as it is a limited field and I am not currently in.
What are your goals this year?
I would like to keep my card this year and possibly next year win a tournament.
Follow Charlotte in Twitter @chartgolf