Swapping a career in engineering for golf is paying off for Wynyard-based pro James Harper.
So much so that, when Harper completed his PGA Foundation degree, he earned a £1,500 bonus by finishing third in the Titleist PGA Assistant of the Year Awards.
Harper was presented with the cheque by Jeremy Tomlinson, managing director Acushnet EMEA and PGA Master Professional Denis Pugh, the guest of honour at the PGA Graduation Ceremony held at the University of Birmingham.
It’s a world away from Harper’s five-year stint in industry before he opted for a career in golf.
He said: “My golf had improved and when I won the Durham strokeplay and matchplay championships I had a plus-three handicap. I turned professional in 2006 and apart from playing I started doing repairs and custom fitting so joined a clubmaking course.”
Harper is no stranger to being among the prizes since he began his PGA training programme in 2014.
“I was second in the first year and second in the next,” he recalled. “The money I’ve won this time will come in very handy. I’m 39 and it’s encouraging to see older players joining The PGA. I think they bring something different to the organisation through their various experiences.”
Harper describes himself as “just one of the team” at Wynyard. “I head up the custom fitting department so I’ve got lots to do with lofts and lies and shafts in addition to selling and making equipment,” he added.