BEHIND the meteoric rise of golf’s newest megastar stands a humble Victorian who has fast become the world’s hottest swing coach.
But it wasn’t meant to be this way.
When Cameron McCormick left Australian shores as a teenager and enrolled in Texas Tech University on a golf scholarship, he didn’t quite expect his career to go down the coaching path.
Nor did he expect a confident 12-year-old Jordan Spieth to walk into his office, years later, at Brook Hollow Golf Club and declare, “I want to win the Masters.”
He achieved that childhood dream. And after Spieth set a host of records with his emphatic, four-shot victory at Augusta in April, he became the youngest US Open winner in 92 years with his one-shot triumph over Dustin Johnson and Louis Oosthuizen at Chambers Bay.
— U.S. Open (USGA) (@usopengolf) June 23, 2015
Speaking from his Dallas base, McCormick gave Australian Golf Digest a touching tribute to his star student, who has blossomed from a child prodigy into a golfer with the first chance at winning golf’s elusive Grand Slam (all four Major titles in one year) since Tiger Woods won the first two Majors of 2002.
“I’ve had a front row seat to the evolution of a superstar,” says McCormick.
“This achievement is the culmination of over a decade of dreaming and working on his part and I’m overjoyed to have shared this journey with him. I hope to share many more in the years to come.”
As the world reacts to the Texan’s second Major victory, McCormick is modest describing his role in Spieth’s ascension to the world stage. Rather, he believes it is himself who “indebted” to Spieth.
“I’m a caring confidant, a compass to his training and development and sometimes a fire extinguisher when he gets off track and needs a fast correction,” says McCormick.
“But I’m never a crutch – he doesn’t rely on me, as he’s developed his own knowledge of what works for him and how he best competes and conquers all his goals.
“He’s provided me challenge to grow my knowledge base as fast as he’s grown his skills and for that, and more, I’m forever indebted to Jordan.”
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) June 22, 2015
Asked about the 21-year old’s records to date – the lowest 36 and 54-hole totals at the Masters, first golfer to reach 19-under par at Augusta, youngest US Open champion since Bobby Jones in 1923, youngest golfer to win two career majors since Gene Sarazen in 1922 – McCormick insists Spieth’s impact on the greater game is far more important.
“No record stands out more than the record of those his achievement influences indirectly; those he inspires,” says McCormick.
“So of course I’m amazed and excited about the scoring records … but to see so many other people excited about our sport because of his achievement – that’s what make me proud of him. He’s moving the inspiration needle.”
— Cameron McCormick (@CMcCormickGolf) June 14, 2015
McCormick is excited to bring Spieth back Down Under to defend his career-defining 2014 Australian Open title. Part of Spieth’s preparation this year includes several rounds on the Melbourne Sandbelt prior to The Australian Golf Club in November.
“I’ll surely be back down there with him for the Aussie Open and hopefully a few friendly matches on some sand belt courses the week before.”