|Virginie, her daughter, Victoria and husband, Seb
The 2010 Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open champion, Virginie Lagoutte-Clement from France, is one of 26 mothers on the Ladies European Tour. The three-time LET champion has combined a successful golfing career with raising her daughter, Victoria, who was born on 17th May 2008. Here she discusses how she manages her time.
How do you cope looking after your child on tour?
I plan to bring Victoria where I know I will be able to find somebody and where it is easy to travel. After that, I contact some agency, hotel or people around the tournament site to find a nanny for the week.
Who looks after your child when you play tournament golf and practice?
During tournament days, as it was my husband, Seb, who was on the bag during the last seven or eight years, Victoria is usually with the nanny we found for the week, but for practice, practice rounds and pro am, as it is a lot a money having a nanny, Seb usually takes care of Victoria during these days. Sometimes some players look after her and help us.
Who looks after your child when you are at home?
We don t have nanny at home, as Victoria is great when we are at the golf course. About the security, she is ok as she has grown up on the golf course from is birth and with a buggy, you can go on the course easily. She is well known in Montelimar where I am training. Since September she has been at school six hours per day on week days, so it gives me more time to work alone. And her grandma is often around some days.
To how many events do you bring your child?
Since May 2008, she has been to more than 65 events on the LET and seen more than 20 different countries. This year Victoria will probably come on half of the tournament scheduled.
How does the child feel about coming to a golf tournament and how do they stay occupied?
After eight years on tour, you know where to go to find a place to play! She is well known to all the players and she also knows how stay quiet when you need. A child can play with a stone or a tee for hours so you just have to be creative to attract her.
What is the most difficult thing about having a child as a professional golfer?
To be honest the most difficult thing is booking a nanny as we are informed of our tee times only two days before the day we need, and in case of thunderstorms, we never know when we will be finished. It is hard to understand for a regular nanny who needs fixed dates and times!
What is the most rewarding or the best part about being a professional golfer and a mum?
It is to be able to have success in both of your career and your family life, not to have made the choice to stop golf because you had a child and to not have a child because of your golf career.
Would you like your child to become a professional golfer and do they play golf already?
Victoria has been playing golf since she could walk and the future will tell us what she wants to do. It does not matter if she becomes a pro golfer or not, as I know it is a tough job and all the effort you have to make to do it. But for the moment she acts as a coach by giving advice during training or as a caddie by washing balls or drying clubs. It is pretty fun!