We speak to Bunker Mentality ambassador Marcus Mohr about his path into the professional game
Marcus Mohr only started playing the game when he was 15, by the following year he was down to 12 and had high hopes of becoming a tour pro and at 18 he was down to scratch. We spoke to him in the middle of an Alps Tour event in Spain where he will divide his time between there and the Challenge Tour. To say he’s driven is probably an understatement..
How did you find the lockdown?
I chose to try and make the most of it. I had a net in my back garden and I came out technically better than ever. We’re all different, some players didn’t touch a club but I wouldn’t be good like that - I’m not super talented so I have to put the work in. I had my tripod with my camera and I would FaceTime my coach, Liam James, who works with Matt Wallace. And we tried to change my ball flight and make it more repeatable. I started working with Liam at the end of last year, I had just shot +9 so I was out of it and we spoke and the next day I went round in -3 and he said that was all he needed to see from me.
I play at Eaton in Cheshire which is one of the best in the area. I’ve had an affiliation there for about 10 years, I get on with the pro Bill Tye there and at the end of last year they said I could have an attachment which was amazing.
What were your early years like as a pro?
I played a lot of amateur golf throughout the UK and among my proudest of achievements were playing for Cheshire for three years and winning the Royal St George’s Gold Challenge Cup which got my name on the same board in the clubhouse as Jack Nicklaus!
I turned pro in 2016 and qualified to play on the Alps Tour which is played all over Europe, Egypt and one in the Caribbean. My 2017 season was a massive learning curve and I managed to finish 37th on the money list and the following year I really got going when I finished 2nd in the third event in Portugal and was then 7th in Austria. The highlight of the year was when I won in Guadeloupe by three shots. This put me top of the Order of Merit where I stayed for several weeks. By the end of 2018 I had gained a spot on the Challenge Tour by finishing inside the top five.
Some people say starting late as a pro is a disadvantage but I don’t see it that way. For me it was an advantage because I had to find a way to work harder and play smarter to catch the players ahead of me. Finding this formula for success has served me well on the tour and is evident in my steep progression to the Challenge Tour after two seasons.
There isn’t a lot of money on the lower-tiered tours, how do you fund yourself?
I’ve done labouring, worked in retail shops, nightclubs, looked after dogs at home and cared for an autistic adult. In 2019 I set up a share programme which was an inside the ropes look at life on tour through a WhatsApp group chat. Going forward I’ll focus on promoting my social media accounts to make more people aware of what it is really like to try and gain your European Tour status.
Who’s been a big help along the way?
My membership at Bromborough was due and it was the same amount as my Q School entry and I could only get together about £500. So I had to give Q School a go, and I got my card, but I had nowhere to practise and I was having sleepless nights. I discussed my problems with the owner of the gym that I attend, Pete Howell of Prime Health and Fitness, and he offered me the use of his gym at any time if I could obtain a golf net and mat. I had a game at Padeswood and Buckley and after a quick chat they had dug up a mat for me and Net World helped me out. The owner gave me my own key to his gym and I could now practise inside whenever I wanted and when he wasn’t running any fitness classes. I thought I’d hit the lottery. I’d got an indoor facility where I could practise my swing and also work out whenever I needed.