16-year Old Thompson Talks About LPGA Win

Lexi Thompson

Two days after becoming the youngest winner on the LPGA Tour, 16-year-old Lexi Thompson said she plans to petition for an exemption to the tour’s 18-year-old age requirement. Thompson won the Navistar LPGA Classic last weekend. (Sept. 20)

Lexi Thompson became the youngest winner in the 61-year history of the LPGA Tour by capturing a five-shot victory at the Navistar LPGA Classic. Thompson, who is 16 years, 7 months and 8 days old, shot a final round 2-under 70 to help secure her victory over Tiffany Joh, who finished in second at 12-under-par.

Lexi Thompson (navistarlpgaclassic.com)

Before Thompson’s win, Marlene Hagge had held the distinction as the youngest winner on the LPGA Tour. Hagge was 18 years, 14 days when she won the 1952 Sarasota Open, which was an 18-hole event. Hagge won two 18-hole events at the age of 18. The youngest winner of a multi-round event on the LPGA Tour had been Paula Creamer, who captured the 2005 Sybase Classic when she was 18 years, 9 months and 17 days.

Thompson is no stranger to breaking records. In 2007, she became the youngest person to qualify for the U.S. Women’s Open at the age of 12. That same year she won the Westerfield Junior PGA Championship to become the youngest winner in Junior PGA Championship history.

Golfing is a way of life in the Thompson family. Lexi’s oldest brother Nicholas, 28, is a member of the Nationwide Tour this season and spent the past three years on the PGA Tour. Her other brother Curtis, 18, is a freshman on the Louisiana State University men’s golf team and her father, Scott, was her caddie this week on the Senator Course at the Robert Trent Jones Capitol Hill.

“Just being there with my dad, he was like, Lexi, just enjoy that walk,” Thompson said of coming up the 18th to a huge ovation from the crowd. “He told me, ‘I am going off to the side because I might cry.’  You know, I definitely cried after I finished.  Just finishing that with my dad on the bag, it was the best experience.  I wouldn’t be out here without my dad ?? and my mom, of course.”

Thompson, who carried a five-stroke lead into Sunday’s final round, held steady for the majority the day on the course. She went through one tough stretch when she made two straight bogeys on No. 11 and 12. But the 16-year-old held her composure as her lead was cut to three shots thanks to four s, making back-to-back birdies on No. 16 and 17 to increase her lead back to five shots heading into the 18th hole. After just missing her birdie putt that would have given her four straight rounds in the 60s, Thompson tapped in her par putt to complete her impressive victory and during the trophy presentation, Thompson announced that she will donate $20,000 of her $195,000 first-prize check to the tournament’s official charity, The Wound Warrior Project.

Q.  You became the youngest winner in LPGA Tour history today.  Tell me your thoughts on that and what this whole experience has been like for you.
LEXI THOMPSON:  It’s been an amazing experience for me.  I can’t even describe the feelings that were going through my head this whole week.  I look forward to this tournament every year.  The course is in amazing shape for us, so this was the best experience.

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