Transgender Golfer Bobbi Lancaster Hopes LPGA Dream Inspires Others

Bobbi Lancaster rediscovered passion for golf after gender reassignment surgery.

Jan. 1, 2014— -- At 63 years old, Dr. Bobbi Lancaster, a transgender golfer, said she knows she's not like the typical athlete hoping to make the Ladies Professional Golf Association tour.

"I think initially it was an oddity," she told "Here I am, there are a bunch of 19 to 24 year olds, very accomplished players, and here comes this 63-year-old odd looking tall person."

Lancaster, who as Robert Lancaster enjoyed amateur golf success, said she rekindled her passion for the game after she had gender-reassignment surgery to become Bobbi Lancaster in 2010.

That same year, after another transgender golfer filed a lawsuit against the LPGA, the organization voted to allow transgender athletes to compete.

For Lancaster, her journey on the golf course has never been about comparing herself to other players, she said, but instead about "finding out how good I could really get."

After her story was first reported by the Arizona Republic in 2013 and more spectators followed Lancaster's progress, she said she became nervous and didn't perform as well as she had hoped in tournaments.

"I felt I was being watched more," she said. "With that came the fear of failure, embarrassing myself. When I played for fun, I performed incredibly well but as soon as I teed up, it was a mess."

In August, Lancaster fell short to advance to the second stage of an LPGA qualifying tournament, however she said she performed well enough to qualify for the LPGA's developmental Symetra Tour in 2014.

After consulting with a sports psychologist, Lancaster said she feels "mentally tough" and is ready to give her game another swing in 2014.

"I really feel like I'm in a much better place emotionally now where I can bring my best game and compete," she said.