manufacturing,” he says. “I think blacks will have to realize these are growth industries in golf and that there is a viable employment industry in golf for minorities.”
Despite the qualms of some who are quick to slam Woods for his unease at being labeled into any particular ethnic group, he has clearly paid homage to the African American golfers who’ve come before him. “There’s no doubt that I arrived at the right time. When you look at the accomplishments of a Lee Elder or Charlie Sifford, you realize that if I had come along in the `60s or `70s I wouldn’t have had a chance,” says Tiger. “Those guys have knocked down the doors for me to play. And I plan to take full advantage of it.”
Tiger Tiger Burning Bright
- Won the 1997 Masters tournament with a record score of 270, 18 under par at Augusta National Golf Club by a record margin 12 strokes.
- At the age of 21 years, three months and 14 days, became the youngest Masters champion ever and the first major champion of African or Asian heritage.
- Set record with six PGA Tour victories in his first 17 events.
- Achieved $2 million in PGA Tour career earnings in a record 17 events (the previous record was 50 events).
- Achieved No. 1 world ranking in his 42nd week as a professional and became the youngest No. 1 golfer at 21 years, 24 weeks.
- Won six USGA national championships plus the NCAA title before turning professional on August 27, 1996.
- Won three consecutive U.S. Amateur Championships.