15-year-old qualifies for PGA Tour event

October 20, 2023

Courtney Culbreath

A 15-year-old has qualified to play in the PGA Tour’s Butterfield Bermuda Championship.

Oliver Betschart turned in a three-over performance in Bermuda’s local 54-hole qualifier, earning one of three open spots for the tour event. Betschart had missed out on qualifying for last year’s Bermuda Championship by a shot. However, Betschart posted a final-round 68 in this year’s qualifier and survived another competitor’s birdie try at the final hole to gain entry.

“This has been my goal for the whole year,” Betschart told The Royal Gazette. “And now it’s finally true and it’s hard to accept it but I am really excited. … Last year I was up here working with the tournament staff and seeing all the work that goes on and I am really happy to be a part of it this year.”

Betschart will become the second 15-year-old to compete in the Bermuda; in 2019, Kenny Leseur qualified, although Leseur was six months older. Betschart is the youngest player to play in a PGA Tour sanctioned event in almost a decade, after Tianlang Guan, played in a handful of events as a 14-year-old during the 2013 season. Guan made the cut at the 2013 Masters and 2013 Zurich Classic of New Orleans.

Along with Guan, only Michelle Wie West, Andy Zhang and Lorens Chan were younger than Betschart to make a start on the PGA Tour this century.

The Bermuda Championship begins Nov. 9. Seamus Power is the defending champ.