Charley Hull: Pressure is on at local course Woburn
Having a Major at the course where you’ve been a member of since you were nine is pretty cool. There could be a bit more pressure than a regular week – there’s a picture of me at the entrance where I have the weirdest look on my face (see below) and I am also sponsored by Ricoh.
But I will be flying in from America on the Monday so won’t be at the course until the pro-am on the Tuesday before playing nine on the Wednesday.
The plan will be to get in, do my work and get out. As much as I’d like to stay and chat with friends it’s a big tournament week and obviously a Major. I live about 45 minutes away.
I will stay locally in case of traffic but can still go home if I want to. I haven’t played the Marquess anywhere near as much as the Duke’s or the Duchess, if only because it’s the widest of the three and I like tight courses, but I’ve still played it at least 50 times so I should know it pretty well.
Hopefully not being too familiar with the course will keep me focused for the week. I’m not even sure what my best score is on the Marquess.
I remember one round, when I was 14 and playing off the back tees so it was over 7,000 yards, being two under walking up the 14th and it kind of hit me what I was doing and then finishing one over. Otherwise I think I’ve been six under on the Duchess and eight under on the Duke’s. I love it at Woburn.
When I haven’t got a tournament I will still be there six days out of seven, even if I just go there for a few hours to see friends if I’m not really playing or practising.
Even better, the new short-game area is incredible and my dad loves to walk our new dog around the place. Growing up I think I only played once in the club championship, which I won, as I always wanted my handicap to come down through playing in open tournaments elsewhere as that seemed to be a truer reflection of where your game was at.
These days most of the golf I play at the club is with a group of lads, who are all pros, and we have a nice bit of banter as they are from Essex so I can take the mickey out of their accents. It’s also good because we play off scratch and I’m not very good at giving people shots!
Otherwise the rest of July and August is going to be pretty busy. We’ve got the US Open, another LPGA event the week before Woburn and then it’s off to Rio for the Olympics!
I finished in the top 20 in the PGA Championship, the second Major of the year, where Brooke Henderson beat Lydia in a play-off.
Brooke is a very exciting player to watch as she is so talented and takes on some amazing shots whereas Lydia is so solid and textbook. I’m only 20 so it’s strange to think that the two Major winners, Brooke and Lydia, are both younger than me.
The course at Sahalee was also incredible and I love Major weeks and the challenges that it throws up. I’ve learned a lot this year and am trying new things. I’ve just completed four weeks on the trot which I’ve never done and am travelling on my own.
I’ve been in the gym at 6am every morning on tour and that has been helping me loads with my energy and strength levels. Otherwise I tend to hang out with the caddies quite a bit and a couple of friends like Holly Clyburn and Jaye Marie Green who I’ve known since I was 14.
Then it’s off to Rio which I hope is going to be great for the sport. It’s a strange one for golfers as I’ve not grown up imagining myself winning a gold medal as golf was never in the Games but I can’t wait to get there, stay in the village and represent Team GB. It should be a great summer.