It was an early wake up call in Orlando today as I catch an early flight to Hawaii. As usual, my off week seemed busier than my event weeks. I can’t complain when the cause is getting up at 5 am to go to the Masters, though. I’ve had some ups and downs these past three weeks but one of the things I love most about Masters week is that even for LPGA players it provides a lot of motivation! I am more than ready to get to Hawaii and compete next week.
I played three weeks in a row starting with Phoenix and was pumped to notch my first top ten of the season. With an 18 under total I think it’s a new personal low scoring record. So many good things going on that week but most importantly I had tons of family and friends there to enjoy the great week with. I think Phoenix will become one of those pivotal weeks in my season every year. I like the conditions, I like the course, and I go there with such good vibes. I put a new Callaway XR driver and a new “A” wedge in the bag and needless to say they earned a permanent spot. I also did some work with my Vision54 coaches as they got to watch me play in competition for the first time. The more I work with them the more I realize how truly great they are at their craft and how thankful I am to have them on my team. Just one or two small suggestions can make a world of difference. I’m so excited to continue my mental training with them and to see where it can lead.
Even though I played some great golf I continued to work on a few swing and putting changes with Todd that I’ve been working on for awhile. The hardest thing to do when playing well is to not become complacent. After watching the Masters this week we should all know that golf is a funny game. A 68 one day can easily be a 78 the next! The score doesn’t determine how well the process is going, only you can decide that.
We played the Kia Championship after Phoenix and I made a conscience effort to get out and see a little more of the San Diego area this year. When I got there on Monday I went out with Audrey and some friends and hiked Torrey Pines. My GPS was obviously confused because it took me straight to Torrey Pines Golf Club instead; but even us die hards need a change of pace from time to time. It was a beautiful hike and a great way to reset after a long week in Phoenix. I also checked out the town of Carslbad a bit and if you ever get the chance be sure to go. It’s the perfect sea side village, a Coldstone included.
I have a love-hate relationship with Aviara Golf Club, the course we play the Kia Championship on. I think it sets up well to my eye, has plenty of birdie opportunities, and is a beautiful walk. However, I have found myself hovering at the cut line both years I have played. It’s funny how you can go from the excitement of being in contention and finishing top ten the week before to the excitement of finishing birdie-par to make the cut on the number. A two putt par doesn’t usually receive such a celebration. Needless to say, I was happy to get two more rounds in and salvage a solid event. I think Aviara is a course that you have to play enough times to figure out. I am up for the challenge, though, and look forward to getting better there every year.
I drove up to Palm Springs on Monday feeling great about the first major of the year. I was hitting it well, putting well, and was just generally excited to keep playing. Unfortunately, I had a lot of negative thoughts about the course after my experience last year and played very scared on Thursday. It was the first time this year I really feel that I took a couple steps backwards. After Thursday’s roundI reassessed some of the things I was doing out there and made some Vision54 changes for Friday. I saw the benefit in my putting but still just didn’t get the ball in the hole. I left early on Saturday morning and if nothing else I at least new that next year I must rethink how I approach this event and this course and will call in the help of Vision54 to retrain my brain on how I think about this event. I actually believe this course sets up well for my game, I just have to retrain my mind to fully commit to what I believe.
Per tradition I drove straight to Georgia when I got home and spent a couple of days at the happiest place on Earth: Augusta National Golf Club. My friend, Emily, and I are quickly becoming expert patrons. We are thinking of publishing a spectator assistance pamphlet. Best parking, best chair placement spots, when to shop, when to eat, what to eat- we really are nailing this thing down. This year a good friend of mine was back at Augusta as a caddie manager so we were extremely lucky to hang out with him and learn so much about the property and the tournament. We even hung out in the caddie house to the right of the range. My goal for the week was to meet Smylie Kaufman (no, there’s no relation). I did one better when he just happened to be sitting there with his caddie and family as I was taking his caddie bib out to take a picture. Needless to say I was caught red handed but he was more than happy to chat and get in on the pic with me. It made for a great story and I think I brought him some luck. Cheering hard from 30,000 feet today for Team Kaufman!
Well my plane is boarding soon and I think I’ve been rambling long enough. Game feels good, I’m ready to compete after a nice break, and Hawaii is calling my name!
Until next time,
Sat between 11 and 12 for a long time on Tuesday. Watched Paul Casey make a hole in one!
These flowers… 🙂
So great to catch up with good friend and great caddie, Brodie Large. Hope we can make this part of our Masters tradition.
My Masters partner in crime.. couldn’t imagine attending with anybody else!
Little Phil and Webb action on the putting green.
Jack playing his final Par 3. Was trying to keep the Ohio State grad from storming the fairway at this point. 😉
Team Kaufman finally united. Probably my favorite pic from the week!
Bri and Ashley down in Phoenix. Been awhile since this group has been together. 🙂
Hiking Torrey Pines with some of my faves!
Had to get a little yoga action in with these views. 😉
Surprise of the week at the Kia. Former college teammates Alex and Deb surprising me on the range on Friday! Miss these two a lot!
Love when my best friend come and spends the week. So many good times with Elin at the ANA and can’t wait for her to be on the LPGA full time.