As an 18-year-old playing on an exemption in a PGA Tour event, Charlie Reiter so impressed Jon Rahm with his clubhead speed that the Spaniard said he expected the lanky teen to hit it by him.
“He hits it far and when I mean far, I mean really far, like he can easily get it past me,” said Rahm, then the third-ranked player in the world, who was a member with Reiter at Bighorn Golf Club in Palm Desert, California. “He reminds me of Brandon Hagy (a Cal product and another TrackMan marvel); they’re both similar build, not the biggest guys, but they’re just fit and have a lot of power.”
During the second round of the 2018 CareerBuilder Challenge (now the American Express) Reiter averaged 348.5 yards off the tee in the second round on PGA West’s Nicklaus Tournament Course, where he pounded two of the three longest drives recorded during the event’s first 54 holes. In the third round, he averaged 332.5 yards on a windy day around PGA West’s Stadium Course.
Reiter started consistently hitting the ball more than 300 yards during his freshman year of high school, when he was just 14 years old. And the prodigy’s golf story begins in infancy. His father, Mike, a skilled golfer who played on the mini-tours, used to put plastic clubs in Charlie’s crib. By age 4, Reiter won his first tournament.
Trophies began to pile up. When Reiter was 10 he competed in the Golf Channel Amateur Tour National Championship at PGA West.