Lee Westwood’s Masters 2011 week got off to a frightening start on Sunday. As the world’s No. 2 ranked golfer was departing Houston for Augusta in a private plane along with caddies, his manager and fellow golfer Ross Fisher, the pilots were forced to turn around after takeoff and make an emergency landing back in Houston. The issue? A fire in the cockpit.
Westwood talked about the ordeal with The Telegraph:
“We were a couple of minutes out of the airport. It was a bit scary. It never looks good when you can smell smoke and you turn round and see the pilots have put the masks on.
“The plane came down in a bit of a nosedive because you obviously have to get down as quick as you can. There had been a small fire somewhere in the instruments, and we had the three fire tenders chasing us down the runaway, but I think that’s just a precaution.”
All involved made it to Augusta safely in time to play their Masters practice rounds leading up to the start of the tournament on Thursday. Westwood looks to supplant Martin Kaymer as the No. 1 golfer in the world with a win this week.