Brooke Henderson waited six years between her first major championship and her second a couple of weeks ago at the Amundi Evian Championship. She says she can wait a few more days for her next one.
“I’d definitely love to win another major championship, maybe end of this week,” she said this week at Muirfield, where she’s been preparing for the AIG Women’s Open. The final major of the season gets underway on Thursday.
Maybe is the operative word. As competitive and talented as Henderson is, she also knows a lot can happen, both good and bad, between now and Sunday, especially on a golf course such as Muirfield.
“I’m just trying to get better all the time. It’s so fun to be able to compete against the best in the world and be in contention in those final groups on the weekend. I love that,” said Henderson, whose first major championship came in 2016 at the KPMG Women’s PGA.
“Seeing your name at the top of the leaderboard and just when the pressure is on, being able to hit golf shots and being able to climb the leaderboard, that makes me really excited,” she said.
“Hopefully Thursday, Friday, I can put myself in good positions and then kind of make that charge come the weekend this week, but long term, of course, I would love to continue to get my world ranking in a better spot,” said Henderson, who starts this week as No. 5 in the world.
The Women’s Open hasn’t been the kindest major to Henderson. Last year, she tied for 13th and her best finish was a tie for 11th in 2018 at Royal Lytham and St Annes.
This week at Muirfield is expected to be a classic test of links golf, with rain expected on Thursday, temperatures not above 20 C and wind strong enough to knock golf balls off course.
“Links golf is very different and definitely a big challenge for me coming from courses that were nothing like this growing up, so it is a big change, but every year, I feel like I get a little bit more comfortable with the different shots and the different style of play that you need to use,” said Henderson.
After winning at the Evian, Henderson elected not to play last week’s Scottish Open, took a few days off and played some links golf at Carnoustie before first seeing Muirfield last Sunday when she played nine holes to start her preparation.
“It’s a very challenging golf course, but there’s a lot of different options off tees and it’s just a great feel here, so I look forward to playing four days of competition,” she said.
“I love it here at Muirfield. I think it’s maybe my favourite links that I’ve ever played. It’s definitely going to be a great test, very challenging, especially if it it’s as windy as it is right now. I think it’s beautiful views walking around and it’s a beautiful golf course,” said Henderson, who says her prep is enhanced by her sister/caddie Brittany.
“She’s really analytical and takes a lot of notes and spends a lot of time studying the book and also just taking in the whole golf course. I always really value her opinion and kind of what she sees and feels,” said Henderson.
“I’m very much just a feel player, so coming in, I like to see the golf course and kind of feel my way around. I feel like we make a really good team that way. The two methods kind of fit really well together,” she said.
“It is tough when you only have three days to learn a golf course, especially a challenging golf course like this one, but we just try to do our best, prepare and then when it comes time to tee it up on Thursday, we are just trying to hit good shots and try to make the best decisions that we can,” added Henderson.