Caddie Picks: 2019 AIG Women’s British Open

Ariya Jutanugarn
Ariya Jutanugarn won her first major at Woburn in 2016. Can she win her third major there this week? Our caddie inside thinks so. Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

The AIG Women’s British Open – the fifth and final major of the LPGA season – takes place this week in Milton Keynes, England.

Here’s a dispatch sent into us by a veteran LPGA caddie (who will remain anonymous to protect the caddie’s identity), looping this week in the tournament:

Often as caddies, we forget where we are when we wake up some mornings because the LPGA is such a global tour.

Two weeks ago: Midland, Michigan.

Last week: Evian, France.

This week: Milton Keynes, England, outside of London, Woburn Golf Club.

Or so I thought.

Because when I started walking the course, I didn’t see any penal pot bunkers, tall fescue, gnarly gorse, double greens, Barry Burns, or Swilken Bridges.

TCN EXCLUSIVE: Caddie Benji Thompson details mad dash to retrieve Lexi Thompson’s passport

Instead, I saw tree-lined fairways that were lush and green; playable bunkers and rough, where you could actually find your ball; fast, slopey greens; and extreme elevation changes.

So, for a moment I thought I was back in America, walking a parkland course.

But although I only had five hours of sleep (didn’t get to my Airbnb until 2 a.m., after my flight from Geneva, Switzerland to Luton, England was delayed), I still don’t know how I’m alive from driving for the first time in Europe, at night for that matter (at least there were less cars I could hit). It’s one thing to have to drive in the right side of the car on the left side of the road, but the constant roundabouts are so confusing, making driving more stressful than pulling the right club for your player coming down the stretch of a tournament… the yardage book does indeed say, “AIG WOMEN’S BRITISH OPEN, 2019, Woburn.”

It turns out I am in the right place after all!

With that said, who do I fancy this week?

Favorite: Ariya Jutanugarn

Not only did she win her first major here in 2016, but she is coming into form of late, finishing second at Green Bay, tied for third at the Dow team event with big sis, Moriya, and fifth last week at Evian in her last three starts.

Additionally, with the recent rain at Woburn, as well as with more forecasted, the course will favor a longer player off the tee who hits her irons high to soft greens.

Advantage, Ariya.

Sleepers: Charlie Hull and Angel Yin

While Hull has not had a great season by her standards, with just one top 10, she is a touring pro member at Woburn. And along with her caddie, Joe Miller, who practices with Hull at Woburn during her off weeks, they have plenty of local knowledge.

Yin, still seeking her first LPGA win (she’s won on the LET), tied for second at the U.S. Women’s Open and has the power to dominate this course like Ariya, who won by three strokes at 16-under par.

Don’t Pick: Georgia Hall

Despite her breakthrough win last year at Royal Lytham, defending champion Hall has not had a top 10 in her past five majors.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.