World Rank 912
Born Harare, Zimbabwe
Distinction Chitengwa, 61st on the Buy.com tour money list, is the only black African-born player on a major U.S. tour.
How did you get into golf? My parents are from the Shona tribe. My dad, Lewis Sr., caddied at a private club in Harare. He wasn't allowed to play the course because of his color, so in the '60s he and some other caddies built a nine-hole course with sand greens. My father had jobs working in an electrical plant and a bar until 1982, when he became an administrator at another private club called Wingate. That's where I started to shag balls for my dad and learned to play." Who taught you? My father, who is now the head pro at Wingate, has been my only teacher, and I swing like him. He taught me not to rely on coaches, but to stick with my natural swing.
What was it like growing up in Harare? I had it harder than most American kids, and that makes me more determined. I walked four miles to school, but some cousins out in the country walked 14 miles. They had no running water or electricity, and I realized how much more I had in comparison. When I think about that, I feel incredibly fortunate.
How is it being a black man in golf? I haven't felt oppressed because of my skin color. The only time it made a big difference was when I traveled to South Africa in '93 for the South African Amateur. I had to convince a club employee that I was a player, not a caddie. A lot of blacks came out to support me. When I won, the people picked me up and threw me in the air. I was the first black man to win that event."
How did you meet Tiger Woods? I met Tiger when we played in the final group at the 1992 Orange Bowl, which I won. We've never talked about being a role model for minority and disadvantaged kids, but it is something I would look forward to. When I visit Zimbabwe, the first thing the kids ask me is if I know Tiger Woods. It's inspiring to see how much influence he has had.
Is Nick Price a good mentor? Nick, also from Zimbabwe, has been wonderful to me. He encouraged me to accept a scholarship to Virginia before turning pro, which I did. Nick and I speak three times a month. He's always telling me I'm going to have to carry the Zim flag because he's too old.