ST. ANDREWS, Scotland – Mo Martin’s game goes to another level when she steps foot on a Ricoh Women’s British Open venue.
She won the championship at Royal Birkdale in 2014, and she tied for second at Woburn last year.
And now here she is again, running up the leaderboard at Kingsbarns.
With a 5-under-par 67 Friday, Martin moved just two shots off the lead through the morning wave.
“I’ve had friends predict that I would win this tournament, when I was just a scrappy kid playing on public golf courses,” Martin said.
“I love the creativity of it to be honest,” Martin said. “Just playing on a true links course. You’ve got to control your ball flight. You’ve got to know exactly where you’re hitting it and you’ve got to control the spin on your shots. I can hit draws and fades and hit it low.”
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Martin’s caddie, Craig Castrale, could see a difference in Martin when they arrived in Scotland.
“She just has a different bounce in her step,” Castrale said. “She is so confident over here. I told her, she just has to be this confident every week. The sky would be the limit.”
Castrale said conditions on links courses favor Martin’s strengths.
“When you get over here, with all the wind, ball striking is at a premium,” Castrale said. “Mo is the most consistent player I have ever seen. Her ball striking is exactly the same every single day.”
Martin is a short hitter, but she loves to work the ball. It allows her better control her ball in the winds on the links.
“I love the challenges,” Martin said.
Martin has more than another trophy at stake this week. The U.S. and European Solheim Cup teams will be finalized with Sunday’s finish of play.
Martin is 14th on the U.S. Solheim points list. She needs a victory to make the team on points, but she’s also fifth on the U.S. Solheim world rankings list. A strong finish could vault her among the top two that will automatically make the team.
Martin also makes a case for herself as a captain’s pick with strong play this week.