Some teens turn to Craigslist to look for a summer gig, but all 16-year-old Elias Francque had to do was tune into PGA TOUR pro Steven Bowditch’s Twitter account.
The 35-year-old from Australia with two PGA TOUR wins under his belt placed an “ad” on Twitter to find his caddie ahead of the John Deere Classic at TPC Deere Run in Illinois.
“Any local kids/college players in the Quad cities area that are interested in caddying in the tournament this week, this thread is for you. The best response/reason gets the job. 2pm Tues start, finish Friday. 1% chance Sunday. Payment: all leftover gloves and balls are yours,” he posted on July 9.
More than 200 people commented on the thread, but it was Francque’s response that caught Bowditch’s attention.
“I visit my grandparents farm nearby. I’ve played the course and loved it. Two of my uncles work for John Deere. I’m a caddie at my local country club and on the golf team. I turn 17 on Friday and helping you make the cut would be a great birthday present! I love Australia,” the teen wrote.
And with that, the job became his.
The duo kicked off their short-term partnership on Wednesday, and clearly Francque couldn’t be more excited.
— bowdo (@bowdo83) July 11, 2018
“Great to meet [Steven Bowditch] in person,” he posted on Twitter. “I appreciate the opportunity to be able to caddie for him this week. Thanks to everyone for the words of encouragement. Let’s get a W!”
According to PGATOUR.com, the gesture from Bowditch comes from wanting to “pay it forward” when he was offered the opportunity to caddie for John Senden as a teenager.
“It was something I’ve always wanted to do,” said Bowditch, “and I had a late entry, I got called Monday afternoon. I was struggling to find a caddie, and I thought about it, thought this was probably a good opportunity to make a kid smile for the week, and that’s all it was.”
And if Bowditch plays well this week? Who knows. Francque may just find himself a long-term position on the bag.