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Jake Knapp Player Profile And What's In The Bag

By: | Mon 26 Feb 2024

Jake Knapp, who spent time working as a nightclub bouncer, won his first PGA Tour event on only his ninth start as he took the Mexico Open by two shots.

Knapp, 29, went into the final round four shots clear but saw his lead disappear over the first seven holes. However, he fought back on the back nine and his round of 71 was good enough to finish on 19 under, with Finland's Sami Valimaki second on 17 under.

“I didn't necessarily have my best stuff today, that's for sure," Knapp said. "Knew it was going to be nerve-wracking. Knew it was going to be tough," the American rookie added.

"But I was super pumped on how I played the finishing stretch.”

The win comes just three years after Knapp failed to win a tour card and took a bar job at a restaurant which turned into a nightclub in the evenings.

"They needed a security guy and I was like, 'I don't know if I'm big enough, but I can stand there and look tough'," he said.

Scotland's Robert MacIntyre was part of the chasing pack and finished six shots behind Knapp, while England's Matt Wallace went from sharing the half-way lead with Knapp and Valimaki to ending on eight under par overall.

Player Profile

Jake Knapp

Jake Knapp was born in Costa Mesa, California on May 31, 1994. His earliest golf memory is watching Tiger Woods beat Stephen Ames, 9&8, at the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship and having Woods' caddie, Steve Williams, toss him one of the balls Woods used during the match. The ball still sits displayed on his desk.

His grandparents lived in Palm Springs, California, and he grew up going to the golf course with them and loved running around the fairways as a child, until driving the golf cart became his favourite thing to do.

When he was a junior in high school, he shot 58 at Costa Mesa Country Club’s Mesa Linda Course. He started bogey-birdie-birdie-bogey and played 12 under on the par-70 layout from there. As a senior in high school, Knapp shot 61 in a local qualifier for the US Open in Newport Beach, California. 

He turned pro in 2016 but struggled to make a living from the game and in a bid to make ends meet, he spent nine months as a security guard at a nightclub from autumn 2021 until the spring of 2022.

He gained his place on the PGA Tour after finishing in the top 30 ion the 2023 Korn Ferry Tour Points List. He has three wins on the Mackenzie Tour-PGA Tour Canada - the Canada Life Open, which he won twice, and the 2022 CRMC Championship. 

He finished 13th on the 2023 Korn Ferry Tour Points List, in what was his second season on the tour. He enjoyed 10 top-10 finishes and made 20 out of 22 cuts. He secured his place in the top 15 with three top-10s in his final five starts, including a fifth place at the Nationwide Children's Hospital Championship and T10 at the season-ending Korn Ferry Tour Championship. Prior to the 2023 season, he had one top-10 and 16 made cuts in 36 career starts on the Korn Ferry Tour.

In four PGA Tour starts this season ahead of the Mexico Open he had a best finish of tied third at the Farmers Insurance Open. He started the week in 53rd place in the FedEx Cup standings and has climbed to eighth. The win is worth $1.5m and earns him a place in the Players Championship and the remaining PGA Tour signature events.

He loves to work out and says that if he didn't play golf, he would pursue a career in the fitness industry.

Last 10 Events

Mexico Open at Vidanta - 1st

WM Phoenix Open - T28th

Farmers Insurance Open - T3rd

The American Express - CUT

Sony Open in Hawaii - T70th

Korn Ferry Tour Championship - T10th

Nationwide Children's Hospital Championship - 5th

Simmons Bank Open For The Snedeker Foundation - CUT

Albertsons Boise Open - T13th

Pinnacle Bank Championship - T5th

Key Stats

Driving Distance - 304 Yards

Driving Accuracy - 47%

Greens in Regulation - 71.30%

Sand Saves - 76.92%

Putts Per Round - 29.33

Scoring Average - 69.87

End of Year World Ranking Position

2020: 601

2021: 1184

2022: 503

2023: 174

What's in Jake Knapp's Golf Bag?

Driver: Ping G425 LST (9 Degrees)

Mini Driver: TaylorMade BRNR Mini Driver (13.5 Degrees)

Irons: Srixon ZU85 (2), PXG 0211 ST (4-PW)

Wedges: PXG 0311 Sugar Daddy II (52), Titleist Vokey Design SM9 (56-10S), WedgeWorks (60-T)

Putter: TaylorMade Spider Tour Double Bend

Ball: Titleist Pro V1 Left Dot

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Tags: WITB Tour Pro player profile in the bag

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