‘Mom golfer’ Park Joo-young (33) is back in the hunt for her first career win at the Celltrion Queens Masters on the Korean Ladies Professional Golf Association (KLPGA) Tour, with a total purse of 1.2 billion won.
Park carded five birdies without a bogey in the second round of the tournament on Tuesday at Seorhaewon The Legend Course (Par 72) in Yangyang-gun, Gangwon Province, to finish with a 10-under-par 134 total and a share of the lead.
Park, who finished first in the morning group, is tied for the afternoon lead with Park Min-ji (25), who is five strokes back through 16 holes. With Minjee Park leading with two holes to play, lightning struck near the venue and play was postponed to the next day.
Park, who has dropped five strokes in back-to-back days, is the younger sister of Park Hee-young, 36, who plays on the U.S. Women’s Professional Golf (LPGA) Tour, making them “sister golfers.
In the 14 years between 2010 and this year, Park has played in 265 tournaments with four runner-up finishes, but no wins. She will be looking for her first win in her 266th event. If Park wins the final three rounds on Nov. 11, she will break the KLPGA Tour record for the most career victories. The previous record was held by Ahn Song-i, 33, who won her first title in 237 events at the 2019 ADT Caps Championship.
Park went on maternity leave after the Doosan Match Play Championship in May last year and gave birth to a son in September. She returned to the tour in April this year and will attempt to win as a ‘mom golfer’. Previous mommy winners on the KLPGA Tour include Ahn Si-hyun (2016 Korean Women’s Open) and Hong Jin-ju (2016 Phantom Classic).
After her second round, Park said, “I try to think of the final round as the same day as the first and second rounds. I’m not going to focus on the outcome, but on each play,” Park said after the second round.
“People around me tell me to be ambitious. I’m secretly ambitious and I’m very greedy. Tomorrow, I’ll try to use all the energy I have left,” he said.
Park, who is looking to win her third consecutive title at the same event, was five strokes down by the 16th hole before lightning interrupted play, forcing her to play the final two holes of her final round at 6:30 a.m. on Nov. 11.
If Park, who is tied for the lead, wins the event again this year, she will become the first player to win three consecutive KLPGA Tour events in a single year since Kim Hae-rim (34) at the 2018 Gyochon Honey Ladies Open 메이저놀이터.
Only four players on the KLPGA Tour have ever won three consecutive events in a single year: the late Koo Ok-hee (1982), Park Se-ri (1997), Kang Soo-yeon (2002) and Kim Hae-rim (2018).
Jung Yun-ji (23), who shot an impressive 8-under-par on the day, is tied for third (7-under 137) with Kim Soo-ji (27) and Lee Ye-won (20).
Bang Shin-sil (19), who emerged as a “rising star” after winning the E1 Charity Open, dropped three strokes in the second round and slipped to a tie for 51st place (1-over par 145).