She always shows up on time, keeps up on the course and knows
when to shut up. She also cooks, drives, irons, shops and does
the laundry. Yes, Jane Storm, who made history last week by
becoming the first mother to caddie for her son in the Masters,
has solid credentials as a looper and as a parent. But that's not
why Jane's 22-year-old son, Graeme, the reigning British Amateur
champ from Westpool, England, asked her to carry for him in the
biggest tournament of his life. "Mum works for free," says
Graeme, "and she's my best friend."
Not many guys call their 46-year-old mother their best friend,
"but Graeme and Jane have a truly special relationship," says
Sara Mullender, Graeme's girlfriend, and golf has long been a
core component. Graeme grew up a soccer fanatic but turned to
golf when he was 11. Under the tutelage of Jane's father, William
Trueman, a single-digit handicapper, Graeme became one of Great
Britain's top junior players in only a few years. At 15 he was
playing in 20 events a year throughout Europe, subsidized by his
father, Ray, who owns a decorating business. Jane, a part-time
hairdresser, chaperoned her son to the tournaments.
Graeme, who has a 19-year-old sister, Angela, first asked his
mother to caddie for him in 1995, and since then she has been on
his bag at every important tournament, more than 100 in all. Jane
sticks to the basics--carrying the bag, tending the pin, raking
bunkers and replacing divots--and leaves calculating yardages and
selecting clubs to Graeme. "Having Mum at my side gives me lots
of confidence," he says. Jane shepherded her son to the British
Amateur title, which qualified him for the Masters, at Royal
County Down in Northern Ireland last July. In September she
worked for him at the Walker Cup in Nairn, Scotland, where he
scored the clinching point for Great Britain and Ireland in its
15-9 win over the U.S.
Originally Graeme told his mother that she would work only the
par-3 tournament at Augusta and that he would hire a club caddie
for the main event. Then he started having second thoughts. He
decided that her years of sacrifice deserved some sort of a
reward, so he gave her the best Christmas present she has ever
April 16, 2000
Conspicuously absent in Augusta was Ray, who has been separated
from his wife for six months. He stayed home in England to try to
keep the breakup off Graeme's mind. "Despite our troubles Ray has
continued to support Graeme's career," says Jane. "Without him,
Graeme wouldn't be where he is today."
To get in shape for Augusta's hills, Jane, 5'2" and 134 pounds,
spent several months doing aerobic exercises and lifting weights.
The training paid off, as Jane never lagged behind, despite
lugging a 55-pound bag that's almost as tall as she is. "We are
impressed," says Fred Bennett, the National's caddie master.
"She's one heck of a strong lady."
There was nothing Jane could do, however, to prepare herself for
the overwhelming aura of the Masters. "I'm a nervous wreck," Jane
said while sitting on the edge of a chair in the clubhouse last
Wednesday afternoon. "This place makes me prickle. A couple days
ago Graeme and I were in Amen Corner. Oh, my gosh. You know the
Hogan Bridge, it's soft with padding, like walking on air. This
estate is perfect, a dream."
Once the tournament began, Graeme was the Storm most affected by
nerves. Playing with Brent Geiberger and Mark O'Meara, and just
ahead of the Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Gary Player trio,
Graeme double-bogeyed the 1st hole on Thursday and shot a
depressing 11-over 83. Though he rebounded on Friday with three
birdies and shot a 76, he missed the cut.
Immediately after Friday's round, Graeme turned pro and accepted
sponsor's exemptions to two pro events, the May 26-29 Memorial on
the PGA Tour and the June 1-4 Hyundai Masters in Seoul, Korea, on
the Asian tour. In the next few weeks Jane will go back to
working full time as a hairdresser and Graeme will hire a
Mothers know when it's time to let go, but not sons. "Mum will
always be Mum," says Graeme. "She still gets to cook and do the