To say it’s been a hell of a year for Wyndham Clark would be an understatement. It would also be an understatement to say that Clark’s rise last year was a quick one. He finished 2022 ranked 169th in the world. Going back through 2019, Clark recorded just one top-three performance, a second-place result at the 2020 Bermuda Championship. His form ticked up to start 2023, including a fifth-place finish at the Valspar and a sixth in the Dominican Republic, but when he won the Wells Fargo in May, he pretty much never looked back.

Bryan Curtis and David Shoemaker of The Ringer’s Press Box Pod like to poke fun at various phrases that you only see in journalism, especially sports journalism.

Clark’s arc certainly attracts the kinds of niche cliches they enjoy pointing out. I can’t tell you how tempting it’s been to be me, a writer tasked with describing the last 365 days of Wyndham Clark’s golfing life, to use the word “meteoric” here. I’m battling hard against that instinct.

It was a true breakout campaign, though. Clark is already 30; this isn’t the case of a player going straight from the amateur ranks to world domination. It’s not that he came out of nowhere; Clark had an excellent amateur career and kept his card after he got it. That’s not nothing. It’s just that Clark went from the anonymous Tour morass of twentysomethings who hit the ball far to winning at Quail Hollow, from which he springboarded to winning the U.S. Open at LACC. Tacking on a third at the gross Tour Championship and another win this year at Pebble, and Clark is truly an example of the floodgates opening. (Sorry, Bryan and David, I couldn’t hold all of these back.) 

Here’s the best way to sum it up: Clark showed up at Quail Hollow last year ranked 80th in the world. This year? He’s ranked third, and has displayed no signs of slowing down. In a golf world that has understandably had its focus on a variety of other places over the last year, it’s worth reflecting on just how amazing it’s been for Wyndham Clark.

This piece originally appeared in the Fried Egg Golf newsletter. Subscribe for free and receive golf news and insight every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.