TRYON, N.C. -- White Oak Plantation has added Lorcan Morris to its stable of touring professionals for 2009.
Morris will represent White Oak Plantation along with PGA Tour star Padraig Harrington and Champions Tour veteran Des Smyth.
Morris, 27, is a third-year pro who won seven times last year on various mini tours. The White Oak sponsorship allows the former Wingate University star to play the Tarheel Tour full-time in 2009, with additional appearances on the Hooters Tour and Carolinas Pro Golf Tour.
"I've worked hard on my game the past two years and this is the chance of a lifetime," said Morris. "I finally have an opportunity to pursue my dream of playing the PGA Tour."
One could say that Morris' good fortune was partially the luck of the Irish. White Oak Plantation, which is Irish owned, learned about Morris via an article about the Dublin native in the Irish Independent newspaper.
"Seeing as he was an Irish kid, we thought it would be remiss to know about him and not help him out," said Patrick Kinsella, senior architect at White Oak. "Perseverance is a quality in all great efforts, and Lorcan is certainly determined to see how well he can do in golf. We think he will be a terrific ambassador for White Oak in the Carolinas."
Morris will move from Charlotte to the Tryon area in January to practice and work on his game at White Oak Plantation. White Oak is an Arnold Palmer design that opened nine holes last fall. The full course is expected to be open by late 2009.
"I'm really excited to be involved in something that guys from back home are involved in and Padraig Harrington is involved in," Morris said. "And the part that I'm most happy about is being able to provide for my family and my daughter's future."
In addition to wearing White Oak apparel and carrying a White Oak bag, Morris will represent the club at corporate functions and during business golf outings.
"There's a major Irish theme at White Oak. It's like you traveled through a time warp and went to Ireland," Morris said. "The golf course is unbelievable - one of the best I've played."
The sponsorship agreement is for one year, with the option for future years.
"It gives him the chance that he's always wanted and we'll see where it goes after the end of the year," Kinsella said. "He's a nice fellow and has all the things going for him for somebody who wants to make a serious effort at playing golf for a living."
For information on White Oak Plantation, visit www.whiteoaklife.com.