It didn’t take long for Mick Smith to leave his mark on the senior ranks of Wisconsin golf. The Australian would make his first appearance in a major PGA Tour Champions event by qualifying for the U.S. Senior Open earlier this summer.

After a great learning experience in early July, the 50-year-old set his sights on his first major senior event for the Wisconsin PGA. Smith along with thirty-four other PGA Professionals were in the field as the Wisconsin Senior PGA Professional Championship visited Meadowbrook Country Club in Racine the last few days.

The field was greeted with two beautiful days for golf, which provided ideal scoring conditions.

Taking advantage of those conditions the best on day one was Brad Lanning and Mark Voeller. The duo would play together and feed off each other’s play throughout the day. They’d combine to make seven birdies en route to sharing the round one lead at 1-under-par 70.

Although the twosome played well, they were unable to separate themselves from the pack. Nine other individuals sat within four shots of the lead. Included in that pack were recent former champions, Doug Cheever, Kurt Mantyla, Jim Schuman and Eddie Terasa.

The group also included Smith and 2022 WPGA Senior Player of the Year, Michael Crowley.

With morning tee times on day two, it would be a quick turnaround for the over-50 crowd. From start to finish the 36-hole event played out over the course of about 24 hours.

Playing in the third to last group, Smith would have the ability to post a low number and put the pressure on the leaders to match him. A bogey-free front nine, which included two birdies, was exactly what he needed to insert himself into the conversation.

“I was thinking about it this morning,” Smith said. “There in the commanding position, all I could do was to play as good as I could and see what happened.”

While Smith was gradually making his move, Lanning would assume the solo lead with a run of three straight birdies on no. 3, 4 and 5, and an additional birdie on the par-5 8th. However, his hot play would be offset with bogeys on no. 2, 6 and 9. He would make the turn at 2-under-par overall.

At that point the lead for Lanning would stand at three over Smith, Mantyla and Crowley.

Lanning’s lead would quick vanish though early in the back-nine. Smith would apply the pressure right off the bat with a birdie on reachable par-5 10th and then by hitting it 4 feet on the 162-yard par-3 11th.

While Smith was putting up birdies, Lanning was unfortunately headed in the wrong direction. After back-to-back bogeys on no. 11 and 12, the former college golf coach would find himself one shot back of Smith.

With six holes to play both Lanning and Crowley would trail Smith by one shot.

The drama down the stretch would be kept in check as each time Crowley and Lanning would throw a birdie at Smith, he would match. Smith would negate their efforts by knocking approach shots to 8 feet on no. 14 and two feet on no. 16.

“I struck it very well and hit a lot of good iron shots today.” Smith said. “My chipping and putting was there too. Everything was better than Monday.”

With two closing pars and some bogeys out of his pursuers, Smith was able to secure a comfortable three-shot win over Lanning and Crowley. He’d card the low round of the tournament with his 5-under-par 66 on Tuesday, which gave him a 2-under-par 140 total. The only 36-hole total under-par for the event.

Finishing in a tie for fourth was Mantyla and Voeller at 2-over-par overall.

All was not lost for Lanning and Crowley, as they will join Smith at the National Senior PGA Professional Championship in late October at PGA Golf Club in Florida. One thing is for sure, after getting a taste of competition on the PGA Tour Champions, Smith has his eyes on a top 35 finish and an invitation to the 2024 Senior PGA Championship.

“I love it, I’m looking forward to doing it,” Smith said. “I’ll work as hard as I can to give myself an opportunity to compete on that level again.”


The WPGA would like to thank Cadillac, Hornung’s Golf Products, The PGA Tour, and The Golf Channel for their great support of the Wisconsin Senior PGA Professional Championship.

The WPGA would also like to recognize and thank Meadowbrook CC for graciously hosting both the senior and assistant championships the past few days.

Wisconsin Senior PGA Professional Championship Results Summary