Park In-bee likes to be challenged on the golf course. The LPGA Hall of Famer has enough faith in their game to thrive in challenging conditions where fewer golfers get stuck.
This approach is sure to come in handy this week in Scotland, where the LPGA Tour is holding its fifth and final major tournament of 2021 on a historic links course.
Carnoustie Golf Links will host the AIG Women’s Open starting Thursday. It has hosted eight men’s Open Championships, and this will be the second women’s open after the 2011 tournament.
With its numerous bunkers, narrow fairways and knee-high fescue rough, the course is so notorious that it is called “Carnasty” by golfers.
But Park believes the difficult conditions of the Links course will suit her well.
“Of course you have to control your ball very well under the wind and you have to avoid a lot of bunkers. It’s always tough to play under the wind, but somehow I manage to enjoy the wind and connect the golf course, ”she said during her pre-tournament press conference at Carnoustie Golf Links on Tuesday (local time). “We should get that in links golf. The ground is very firm because it is a links golf course and the ball is running. So the course doesn’t play too long. I’m not the long hitter so I think that really helps too.
“I really, really enjoy the style of links golf. We’ll probably only do it once or twice a year, and I always look forward to playing links golf,” added Park. “To be honest, if I had to play in these conditions every week I probably wouldn’t enjoy it that much. It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity and it’s a unique setup and I think that is” is the way how Golf should be played. “
Park shared seventh place at Carnoustie in 2011. She said she didn’t remember the course, “except that after 10th place I had a sausage roll.”
“I knew I was enjoying the golf course when I first played in 2011 and got good results,” said Park. “I don’t know what we’re going to get this week, of course, and it’s a really wind-dependent golf course, and when it’s windy this course can get very, very hard. If it’s not windy, it’s accurate.”
Another element that worked in Park’s favor this week was the cooler conditions in Scotland. The day’s high is unlikely to even reach 20 degrees Celsius during the tournament. Park went through some scorching conditions in South Korea and later in Japan for the recently completed Tokyo Olympics, with the mercury reaching over 35 degrees Celsius.
“Really excited to be here, finally in a little cooler weather after the Olympics in Korea,” said Park. “I can’t believe how fast the year has passed. Since this is the last major (of 2021), I really want to give everything I have.” (Yonhap)