TRUCKEE, Calif. (KGPE) – Former Clovis West and BYU standout golfer Peter Kuest will make his fifth start on the PGA Tour this week, when he tees it up on a sponsor’s exemption in the Barracuda Championship at the Tahoe Mountain Club in Truckee, California.
Kuest was one of the top college golfers in the country this year as a BYU senior, and after the COVID-19 pandemic struck, he decided to turn pro. The early transition to professional golf this summer though, has been a little frustrating.
Getting in on sponsor’s exemptions, Kuest has played in four of the last five PGA Tour events over the last month or so, but has yet to make a cut. He’s staying positive though, calling the chance to play this summer on Tour “a treat.”
“You’ve just got to make a lot of birdies out here, and I haven’t been able to do that,” said Kuest. “But hopefully this week changes. Knowing you’re out here competing with the best. It’s a really good experience, and I’m just trying to learn each and every day.”
This week might be Peter’s best chance to make that first cut though. After playing in Connecticut (Travelers Championship), Michigan (Rocket Mortgage Classic), Ohio (Memorial Tournament) and Minnesota (3M Open) in those four previous events, Kuest gets a west coast start this week, not too far from where he starred in high school. The Old Greenwood course near Lake Tahoe is only about a four hour drive from Fresno, although Peter says he doesn’t have any previous experience on the layout.
“I’ve only been through Tahoe just driving from Utah to Fresno,” said Kuest. “So I’ve never really stopped up here. But this place looks awesome. Should be fun.”
Another reason Kuest should be optimistic this week — the Barracuda Championship is an opposite field event on the PGA Tour, which means the field won’t be as strong as it’s been in those other four events. The World Golf Championships-FedEx St. Jude Invitational is taking place at the same time this week, and will include a majority of the top 50-ranked golfers in the world.
Last year for example, rookie Collin Morikawa captured his first PGA Tour title at the Barracuda Championship, which is serving as motivation for Kuest.
“Yeah, definitely. It was really cool to watch him win, especially a couple weeks ago (at the Workday Charity Open),” said Kuest Tuesday. “I got to play a practice round with him, so it was cool to hang out with him. It’s cool to see all the young guys doing that, and it’s a big motivator for sure, knowing you’re able to do that as well.”
This will likely be his last chance to play on the PGA Tour until the new season begins in the fall (and he seeks more sponsor’s exemptions). Of course, that would all change if Peter could win this week, which would open up all kinds of new doors for him.
Realistically though, Peter saying Tuesday a top 20 finish would be a success this week, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t shooting for more.
“You don’t play for top 20s,” said Kuest. “You just try to win and do everything you can to do that.”