Park Won Happiness Above All

Mid-summer there was no way you would have guessed that Inbee Park’s best moment would come off the golf course. How could it? By early July, Park had become only the sixth person in history to win three professional majors in a single season. The others were Ben Hogan and Tiger Woods on the men’s side and Babe Zaharias, Mickey Wright and Pat Bradley on the women’s, all Hall of Famers. And when you narrow the list down to those who won the first three majors in succession, you end up with Zaharias in 1950, Hogan in 1953 and Park, who won the Kraft Nabisco Championship, the LPGA Championship and the U.S. Women’s Open in 2013. That’s about as exclusive a club as you can ind in our game. Park won three more events – the LPGA Thailand, the North Texas LPGA Shootout and the Northwest Arkansas Championship – all before the Fourth of July. But as stupendous as a six-win, three-major season is, her crowning moment came much later. It was November in Naples, Fla., at the annual Rolex Awards ceremony where Park was named LPGA Player of the Year, an honor she didn’t lock up until the penultimate week of the season because of the late charge by Suzann Pettersen. In her acceptance speech, her voice almost breaking, Park let the world see her at her finest.


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