Inbee Park is the most dominant force in the game, yet she’ll be an afterthought in many observers’ minds as she takes the tee at St. Andrews on Thursday to begin her quest for golf immortality.
Inbee Park could be the 1st LPGA golfer to win all four majors in a calendar year, amazing feat that probably no one cares about. #fb— David Collins (@David4242) July 31, 2013
A victory this week on the Old Course would make Park, the hands-down favorite to win the Ricoh Women’s British Open, the only golfer ever -- male or female -- to capture four professional major championships in a single season. No one, and that includes Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus, Annika Sorenstam, and every other legend of the links, has ever accomplished such a feat.
Yet, the unassuming 25-year-old from South Korea with three straight majors and six LPGA Tour wins already on her 2013 record, stands on the precipice of an historic achievement in such near obscurity that even the radio network of the PGA Tour was barely paying attention.
That she's running at a 4th straight? "@SiriusXMPGATOUR: Any thoughts about Inbee Park's run for a 3rd consecutive major ?"— Robert Lusetich (@RobertLusetich) July 31, 2013
Of course, with Woods and Phil Mickelson on deck for the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, despite the fact that the tilt will amount to little more than a tune-up for next week's final major of the men's season, a women's golf event across the Atlantic holds little interest for SiriusXMPGATOUR or its listeners. Now, if Eldrick or Lefty -- or any other male player -- were in the running for a true Grand Slam (not one, like Tiger’s or Mickey Wright’s, each of which spanned two seasons), it would be all-(fill-in-the-blank), all-the-time.
"It would be total chaos in the world of golf," World Golf Hall of Famer Pat Bradley, who is a member of an elite club of four LPGA golfers who have earned three majors in a season, told ESPNW.com’s Gene Wojciechowski. "It would be unbelievable."
Former No. 1, Stacy Lewis, the winner of the 2011 Kraft Nabisco Championship and one of the many in the field this week who hope to halt Park’s major winning streak at three, agreed.
"For what Inbee is doing right now, she's not getting the credit that she deserves," Lewis told reporters on Tuesday. "If somebody was doing this on the men's tour, it would be being talked over and over and over again for a month before the major, not just a couple days before this that it starts getting talked about.
"I don't think as a tour we've gotten the credibility that we have deserved," Lewis added, "and it's something that we are struggling to get."
If it were up to Ron Sirak, the golf world would wake up and hear the bagpipes. The Golf Digest, on-site at the home of golf to cover his 44th LPGA major, has undertaken a one-man Twitter campaign to alert the masses that something truly incredible could unfold in Scotland on Sunday.
The "Is it or isn't it a Grand Slam" talk is idiotic. If @InbeePark wins 4 majors in 1 year it's history. Never been done. Simple as that.— Ron Sirak (@ronsirak) July 30, 2013
Last I'll say on @InbeePark 4 pro majors in a row in same season is 4 in a row. Never been done. Call it what you want. I call it history.— Ron Sirak (@ronsirak) July 30, 2013
Call it a Grand Slam or Grand Piano or Slam Snead. All that matters is NO ONE was won 4 PRO golf majors in a season. No one. Nada. Zilch.— Ron Sirak (@ronsirak) July 31, 2013
Question: Who's won 4 PRO majors in a SINGLE season? Answer: NO ONE. What's hard about that? Not Tiger, not Bob Jones. Not the Babe. No One.— Ron Sirak (@ronsirak) July 31, 2013
So, with all due respect to Tiger, Phil, and the other heavyweights at Firestone, we’ll give Wojciechowski the last words: "People, wake up!"