The Amundi Evian Championship in France, which starts on Thursday, wasn’t a significant in 2003 when it was called the Evian Masters. It wouldn’t be awarded that distinction by the LPGA Tour until a full decade later, but was still a vital victory for Juli Inkster, among the finest female golfers of all time.
Inkster, 62, who won 31 tournaments on the tour, including seven majors, got off to an exquisite start that week with a six-under 66. After a 72 on the second day, she closed with rounds of 64 and 65, and finished 21 under par, establishing a tournament record on the time.
She reflected recently on that triumph and her distinguished profession. The next conversation has been edited and condensed.
What are your memories of that week?
I had the entire family and rented a house by the course. I got up early Monday and played a practice round, after which Tuesday we went river rafting.
You went river rafting the day before the tournament?
All of us went. We had the perfect time. Brian, my husband, fell out of the boat and my caddie had to select him up by the vest and throw him back within the boat. That was a little bit bit scary.
What did you like concerning the Evian?
They [Evian Resort Golf Club in Évian-les-Bains, France] do a very good job of hosting us. They put lots of money in attempting to make the golf course higher. It’s on the side of a hill, so there’s not much you may do, but so far as beauty and scenery and things to do, we like it over there.
Did you get essentially the most out of your profession?
I definitely got essentially the most out of it. I used to be never the perfect at anything. I used to be just good at lots of things and I used to be a grinder. I just about had three careers: one before kids, one during kids and one when the children were a little bit older and traveling with me. Between 1990 and 1995, my golf wasn’t excellent because I used to be having kids, but after that, I actually played well.
What’s your No. 1 moment?
Probably winning america Women’s Open. I didn’t win it until I used to be 38, so it took me an extended time. But I won at 38 and 42. That was one I all the time desired to win but was having trouble doing it. So it was a giant relief to do this.
What’s the present state of the LPGA Tour?
It’s great. These big corporations really get behind the L.P.G.A. and consider in what we’re doing. We’re attending to play these iconic golf courses that we were never in a position to play before. The purses are getting larger.
Were you glad to be in your era, or wish you might play now?
I actually enjoyed playing in my era simply because all of us went to school. All of us played in college against one another, and all of us turned pro. There was lots of camaraderie on the market. Now it’s more of a business. They’ve their coaches and their parents and their agents. They still do stuff together, but not like we used to.
Do you’re thinking that you’ll have been a greater golfer with a team?
I don’t know. I like doing my very own thing. I don’t like having lots of people around. I did it the best way I desired to do it.
How do you’re feeling concerning the tour moving the Chevron Championship out of Palm Springs next 12 months?
I hated to depart that area, but I believe Chevron goes to take it to the following level. They will make it major-worthy. The golf course [at the Club at Carlton Woods] we’re going to is an excellent course. It’s in a very good area in Houston.
Will you play in america Senior Women’s Open in August?
Yes. It’s one I haven’t won. I finished second twice. I might like to win it. I’m not getting any younger. I’ve just got to have considered one of those Evian moments where all the pieces comes together. Perhaps I should go river rafting before.