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Nick Bachem hoping new mindset reaps rewards after struggling to match unrealistic expectations

Nick Bachem hoping new mindset reaps rewards after struggling to match unrealistic expectations

After a remarkable rise through the golfing ranks, it was perhaps only inevitable expectations might become unrealistic for Nick Bachem. Now in his second season on the DP World Tour, the German believes a growing maturity will help him perform to his best on a consistent basis.

Nick Bachem-1836960472
Nick Bachem was a member of Germany's winning squad at the European Amateur Team Championship in 2020

A winner on three occasions while still an amateur on the Pro Golf Tour, Bachem narrowly missed out on a card via the European Challenge Tour in his rookie season before coming through the Qualifying School towards the end of 2022.

Things were to get better still as he went on to win his first DP World Tour title at the Jonsson Workwear Open in just his 12th event to become the fastest German winner in the Tour’s history.

Two further top tens followed in the Czech Republic and Ireland in the summer, before he fell just short of qualifying for the season-ending DP World Tour Championship. 

"After the win the expectations were a bit too high – when you do it, it’s not easy, but you can feel like ‘why can’t you do it every week?’" he reflected.

"So, the expectations were a bit higher for the first couple of weeks after.

"Then it was nice to play all the cool tournaments and choose where I can play. It’s just playing golf and enjoying it."

Now, despite mixed fortunes over his first seven events of the 2024 Race to Dubai, Bachem believes in the long run he will benefit from adopting a more relaxed mindset.

"For me it’s just keeping it as simple as possible," added the 24-year-old whose best finish of the season to date is a tie for 17th at the Investec South African Championship last December.

"When you feel like it’s a big challenge, in the end it’s just golf and you hit a golf ball. It’s just breaking it down, keep it as simple as possible.

"It’s nice this year that I can select my schedule a bit better, knowing I can get into tournaments and take it a little easier.

"Last year I played too much, I was hyped to be on Tour, playing every event, knowing all the tournaments from seeing them on television.

"I’m going to keep it a bit calmer this year, have more time off to practice and be fresh going into events.

"I just want to improve in every part. Improve off the golf course, keep my mindset and my workouts in balance. Contending for more tournaments, finish inside the top ten a few more times and see what happens.

While the positive memories have far outweighed the challenges he has faced in his professional career, Bachem admits one of the biggest lessons he has learned came at last year's Magical Kenya Open.

After a strong first two rounds at Muthaiga Golf Club, his challenge faded over the weekend. But two weeks later when he was in contention at the Jonsson Workwear Open there was no such repeat as a flawless eight-under-par 64 saw him claim a four-shot victory in Johannesburg.

Fresh from a two-week break from competitive action, Bachem is hoping he can replicate that level of performance on Kenyan soil at Muthaiga Golf Club and become a multiple winner on the DP World Tour.

"It was cool for me at the start of the season and my career on the Tour to know I can contend after two days, then I was a bit nervous in a new situation over the weekend," he said.

"I’m definitely looking forward to this week and playing four good rounds."

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