Who is Keith Mitchell’s Caddie? All You Need to Know About Pete Persolja

Published 10/17/2021, 4:40 AM EDT


For most golfers, their caddie is irreplaceable. They provide a player with the support and assistance they need, providing familiarity in an unfamiliar setting. Keith Mitchell, who turned professional in 2014, has Pete Persolja as his caddie.

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Over the past few years, Persolja has drawn attention for various reasons – including Mitchell’s first-ever PGA Tour win. Let’s take a look at what we know about Pete Persolja, who has been caddying with Mitchell for some time now.

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Who is Keith Mitchell’s caddie Pete Persolja?

Mitchell and his current caddie “Crunchy” Pete Persolja go a long way back. They have been working together for years, starting when Mitchell won the medalist honors at a U.S. Amateur qualifying tournament.

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They have grown together as Mitchell’s journey in the PGA Tour continues, sticking together all this time. Their first win together came during the Honda Classic in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida (2019). Mitchell beat Brooks Koepka and Rickie Fowler to win the trophy.

Persolja’s appearance on the course drew attention

Mitchell’s first PGA Tour win put him on the map for many fans. Of course, his caddie himself caught everyone’s eye with his long hair, beard, and a compass in his hand. Many Twitter users wondered what Persolja was using, wondering if the compass was illegal.

To clarify, using a compass is completely legal.

He also ended up earning the nickname ‘Crunchy Pete’. In his Twitter bio, he refers to himself as “the caddie version of Bear Grylls”. However, many people compared him to the caddie from ‘Happy Gilmore’.

Keith Mitchell’s caddie has a unique back story

According to reports, Persolja used a compass and a map because he does not have a GPS. While it may seem bizarre to many, it is what worked best for Mitchell’s caddie since 2016. “Pete’s gotta be the only human being in this country not using a GPS, but it works for him,” J.T. Poston said.  He added that Persolja is someone content with his life, not worried about money or anything else.

He dropped out of Bowling Green State University back in the 90s, living in a tent and working as a ski instructor and lift operator. His twin identical brother got him into whitewater rafting, which stuck with Persolja. “You never knew what the next day would be like,” he said. “You’d wake up and you didn’t know where the day is going to take you.”

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In the 2000s, he started caddying. He got paid well, providing him with all necessities. Years later, in 2015, Persolja found Mitchell, who was at the US Amateur qualifiers. The duo stuck together, Persolja continuing to live his life.

And yes, everything the caddie has said on Twitter is true. “Everything you read on my Twitter is 100 percent true,” Persolja said. “It just might not happen 100 percent of the time. Let that sink in.”

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Apr 30, 2021; Palm Harbor, Florida, USA; Keith Mitchell chips onto the green of the 5th hole during the second round of the Valspar Championship golf tournament. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

While he admits he has a better car and house now, nothing will change. Persolja remains his old self, looking to enjoy life as he continues caddying for Mitchell.

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Devika

450 articles

Devika Pawar is a Golf and NBA writer at Essentially Sports. A psychology graduate from KJ Somaiya, Devika has an experience with sportswriting at Republic World for around two years now. She loves NBA a little too much, and is a dedicated Golden State Warriors fan.

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