Rahm’s road to world number one

Bernie McGuire

Jon Rahm with host Jack Nicklaus after winning The Memorial Tournament. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

With his three-shot victory at The Memorial, Jon Rahm fulfilled a long-standing ambition to reach the pinnacle of the game of golf. Was there a point he dreamed up finding his name at the summit?

“Yeah, yeah, there was a time,” Rahm said after seeing off the field at Muirfield Village.

“I heard an interview with my golf coach back in Spain when I was younger, Eduardo Celles. He was saying how we were coming back from practice somewhere, we were playing somewhere, and he asked me about my ambitions. I just started with him, I think I was 13, 14, around that age, and I said straight up, I want to be the best player in the world.

“I made that deal with myself very young, I believe at 13 or 14 I started working towards that goal, and everything I’ve done golf-wise has been to become No. 1 in the world and become the best player I can be.

“It’s pretty surreal to think it’s happened this quickly, right, in less than 10 years. I mean, how many people get to achieve a lifelong team, a short lifelong dream, in their mid-20s? It’s incredible. To be a Spaniard, the second Spaniard to ever do it, given there’s not many Europeans that have gotten to this spot, it’s a pretty unique feeling, so I’m going to enjoy it for a while.”

Rahm’s journey to the top of the world:

  • Born 10th November, 1994 in Barrika on the Bay of Biscay, Spain.
  • Turned pro 2016 – Ends year as World No. 137
  • Captured a first PGA Tour victory winning 2017 Farmers Insurance Open winning by three shots.
  • Won a first European Tour victory four months later at the 2017 Irish Open winning by six shots at Portstewart & won the event again in 2019 at Lahinch.
  • Career and a present high of 5th in 2017 on the PGA Tour FedEx Cup standings.
  • Wins European Tour DP World Tour Championship & third overall on the Race to Dubai. Ends year as World No. 4
  • Reaches No. 2 in the world late January, 2018
  • Won back-to-back Spanish Open crowns in 2018 and 2019.
  • Played a first Ryder Cup in September 2018 as a member of the victorious European Ryder Cup team.
  • Ends 2018 season winning Hero World Challenge. Ends year as World No. 6
  • Became European Tour No. 1 in capturing the 2019 DP World Tour Championship. Ends year as World No. 3
  • Weds university sweetheart in December, 2019
  • Wins Memorial and a third ‘individual’ PGA Title to move to World No. 1. Only the second Spaniard after childhood hero, Seve Ballesteros, to be World No. 1 since the inauguration of the World Ranking in April, 1986.

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