This isn’t exactly a new story. It’s actually the sixth time we’re seen this one play out. Following in the footsteps of Babe Didrikson Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley and Michelle Wie, Brittany Lincicome will become the sixth woman to play in a PGA Tour event at this week’s Barbasol Championship. But while we’ve seen this happen before, the feeling is different. Instead of the “I can’t believe she’s doing this!” vibe, it’s one of support and welcome.
“All the guys on the putting green, in the lunch room, everyone has been super supportive, which is great,” Lincicome said on Tuesday during a press conference at Keene Trace Golf Club outside of Lexington, Ky. “They’re all like, It’s great that you’re here. Thanks for coming. I was like, Thanks for having me,” said Lincicome.
Lincicome, who lost in a playoff on Sunday at the LPGA’s Marathon Classic, talked about her fellow LPGA players and how they were quick to cheer her on when the announcement of her playing in a PGA Tour event came out during the U.S. Women’s Open in June. She’s been receiving text messages from players this week and some are even flying out to the course to support her (the LPGA has a dark week on its schedule).
“Everyone on social media has been awesome as well. It’s great. You never know how they’ll handle it, but I haven’t had to block anybody and everybody has been very nice,” Lincicome joked.
Though the environment Lincicome has found at the Barbasol has been a positive one, that doesn’t mean it’s without pressure. Averaging 270 yards off the tee, the 32-year-old is not concerned about her driving distance or her ability to play a course set at PGA Tour-length. She’s more concerned with the mental side of things. Even after 14 years on the LPGA Tour, the eight-time winner says she gets nervous. In the playoff she was in last weekend, she said she was “shaking like a leaf.”
Now, teeing it up at a PGA Tour event for the first time—she goes off Thursday at 9:59 a.m. Eastern time in a threesome that includes Sam Ryder and Conrad Shindler—she expects nerves again. She said she may give Sorenstam a call before Thursday to ask her how she handled the pressure when she played against the men.
“The first three or four holes I’ll be a nervous wreck for sure,” said Lincicome