Northamptonshire teenage golfer Baylie Pyke had the opportunity to tap into the knowledge of Ladies European Tour pro Meghan MacLaren when the pair took part in a live Progress Junior Golf Podcast on US College Golf last week.
With Overstone Park’s Pyke set to go to Iowa Western College in August, the hour-long show gave the 17-year-old the opportunity to find out more about what to expect whilst studying and playing golf on the other side of the Atlantic.
The former County Girls champion said: “I’m so excited to go, and I’m really looking forward to the experience. But it’s a mixed of excitement and fear because my family is here in Northamptonshire and I will be 12 hours away – I will miss my cat.
“Iowa Western College did a tour of the place on Zoom, so I got a chance to see what everything will look like.
“The practice facilities was a big thing for me but they were about the same at most colleges that asked to speak to me, but the coach at Iowa made a real commitment to organise a bunch of meetings with me on Skype or Zoom – he even sent a Merry Christmas email, which was really nice.
“In comparison to the other coaches, who just had one call and that was it, that made a huge difference for me.”
Wellingborough’s MacLaren, who graduated with a degree in English from Florida International University before joining the professional ranks in 2016, even admitted being a little envious of Pyke’s new adventure.
She said: “It’s really cool to hear that Baylie’s so excited to go. Sometimes I wish I could go back and relive all that because, and it’s a bit of a cliché, it is some of the best years of your life.”