Nobody can claim Kurt Kitayama earned his maiden PGA Tour win the easy way. Check out Kurt Kitayama Arnold Palmer Invitational.
Kurt Kitayama : Arnold Palmer Invitational | net worth
Kitayama was born in Chico, California, some 87 miles north of Sacramento, and graduated from Chico High School in 2011.
Although his height was just 5–6, he was the Senior co-captain and starting point guard on the basketball team, while leading the Panthers to a 27–2 record and the 2011 California Northern Section Title.
In the Championship Game, he scored 31 points and had 6 assists as Chico beat city-rival Pleasant Valley High School by a score of 67–54.
Kitayama’s older brother Daniel played golf 2007–2008 at the University of Hawaii at Hilo and later came to work as a professional caddie.
Kurt Kitayama Arnold Palmer Invitational
Kurt Kitayama kept his cool in a nerve-shredding final round to clinch the first PGA Tour victory of his much-travelled career at the Arnold Palmer Invitational in Orlando on Sunday.
The 30-year-old journeyman, who led by one at the start of the final round, held off a ferocious challenge from some of the biggest names in world golf to card an even-par 72 and complete a one-shot victory.
Kitayama’s hopes of a maiden win appeared to have faded after a disastrous end to the front nine when he took a triple-bogey seven to relinquish the lead.
But the 46th-ranked Californian steadied the ship to stay in the hunt down the stretch, reeling off seven straight pars before sinking a 13-foot birdie putt at the 17th to reclaim the top spot on the leaderboard on nine under.
Until that point, it looked as if the tournament was destined for a playoff, with big guns Rory McIlroy and Scottie Scheffler both firmly in the hunt for the title.
No fewer than five players shared the lead at one stage with just a few holes remaining.
There was no denying victory to Kitayama, however, who approached the 18th knowing that a par would be enough to hang on to his slender advantage — and pocket a winner’s cheque of $3.6 million.
His tee shot flew into the thick rough down the left-hand side of the fairway on 18, but he blasted a second safely onto the green to leave himself two putts for victory.
He almost sealed it with his first putt, rolling a 47-footer to the very lip of the cup to roars from the packed galleries before eventually tapping in for par.
Kurt Kitayama Net worth
Today, Kurt Kitayama has a net worth of $2 million and has a salary of $276,460.
Apart from his career earnings from golf, Kurt also earns brand promotion and endorsements.
As an amateur, Kurt Kitayama was often called selfish and competitive in his rights. However, he is not afraid to be tough on anyone that befalls him.
As often, Kitayama’s former coach Kevin Wilkerson would state, “Kurt can rub people the wrong way because he’s so competitive.” Apart from it, Kurt has avid confidence in himself.
In addition to that, during his college days, Kurt even gained a weird nickname, ‘The Project.’
Indeed, it was not a flattering name back then. As he revealed the secret behind the nickname, Kurt struggled a lot during his freshman year.
To put it in simple words, he wasn’t a good golfer and, thus, would only try and work hard on his games.
That was when the director of golf at Southern Highlands Golf Club (in Las Vegas) gave him that nickname.
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