American golfer Justin Thomas is only 24 years old and has been impressive during the 2017 U.S. Open after a great start to the 2017 PTA Tour season. On August 13, he won the PGA Championship, his first victory at a Major tournament.
On the third day of the U.S. Open, Thomas set the record with 9-under 63, the lowest ever in relation to par.
Thomas was born in Louisville, Kentucky and turned pro in 2013, but he’s been swinging a golf club since he was two years old. He already has four PGA Tour wins on his resume, as well as a Web.com Tour win. You can follow Thomas on Twitter and Instagram. According to Thomas’ Yahoo Sports profile, he’s earned $11,980,092 in his career.
Here’s a look at Thomas’ life and career.
1. He’s Dating Jillian Wisniewski
They also attended the Kentucky Derby together.
In 2015, Thomas’ single status was the butt of a joke on the PGA Tour’s Buy a Mulligan with Ammanda Balionis. He told the host that he was still single at the time, but was doing well with the ladies.
2. Thomas’ Father & Grandfather Also Play Golf
Golf runs in the Thomas family. PGATour.com noted in a 2015 profile that there are home videos of Justin hitting a ball with his dog and parents, Mike and Jani Thomas, following him in a golf cart. When he was seven years old, he was taken to the 2000 PGA Championship and got Jack Nicklaus’ autograph.
“Just a typical golf nut, from a golf family, would say that,” Thomas said of himself in 2015.
Mike Thomas was on the PGA of America national board from 2008 to 2010, and represented the PGA at the 2010 Ryder Cup in Wales when Thomas was competing in the Junior Ryder Cup. He’s also been head pro at Harmony Landing in Kentucky since 1990.
“Every member and guest who comes into Harmony Landing wants to hear Justin stories,” Mike told PGATour.com.
Thomas’ grandfather Paul was the head professional at the Zanesville Country Club in Ohio for over 25 years and worked with Arnold Palmer for a Champions Tour event.
“Mike gave him a … love of playing. He didn’t make him a lover of golf swings,” Jay Seawell, Thomas’ coach at Alabama, told PGATour.com. “Mike did a great job of making Justin love Nos. 1-18. He was always on the golf course, playing with his dad. I think the more you play, the more you value the score.”
3. Thomas & Jordan Spieth Have Known Each Other Since They Were 14 Years Old
As Jordan Spieth notes on his website, he has known Thomas since they were 14 years old. Although they were both born in 1993, Spieth turned pro a year before Thomas. Spith also has the distinction of winning both the U.S. Open and Masters in 2015.
As Golf.com notes, the two have been good friends since they represented the U.S. in the 2007 Evian Junior Masters. Speith also beat Thomas at the 2012 NCAA Championship.
“JT just pretty unbelievable what he’s doing right now,” Spieth told the Telegraph in January 2017, after Thomas won the Sony Open in Hawaii. “He’s got full control of his game, full confidence, and he’s executing under pressure. that myself and a lot of our peers have seen going back, I mean, almost 10 years now. He’s just showing the world what he’s capable of.”
4. Thomas Now Lives in Jupiter, Florida
A few weeks after moving in, Thomas had to open his doors to golfer Tom Lovelady, who roomed with Thomas during their freshman year at Alabama. On November 30, Thomas let Lovelady move into his house, PGATour.com notes.
“I kept getting Snapchats of how great the weather was, how great the courses were,” Lovelady told PGATour.com. “He said he’d love to have me and it would be a good opportunity, and you’ve got to take advantage of it.”
5. Thomas’ Goal Is to be Ranked No. 1 in the World & Make the Ryder Cup Team
In a 2017 interview with Today’s Golfer, Thomas said that he has two big goals, outside of finally winning a Major. He wants to be the top-ranked golfer in the world and to make the U.S. Ryder Cup team. Entering the U.S. Open, Thomas is ranked No. 13.
“Like I said about the Majors, you don’t know when it will happen, or if it will happen, but that’s why I play and I hope to be there at some point,” Thomas said.” And hopefully sooner rather than later. All I can keep worrying about though is what I’m doing that week in that tournament, and focus on my preparations.”
Thomas also told the magazine that he loves being in the hunt at major championships. The experience of his three-plus years as a pro golfer has also taught him that he needs to be smart on the course.
“Now I’m becoming a smarter golfer, giving myself more chances and when I get into trouble I’m looking to just get it out and make par, generally accepting things more,” Thomas said. “I realize I don’t need to play my best to win – I just need to play smart.”