The 2015 Ricoh Women’s British Open champion Inbee Park made a massive move up the leader board on Saturday morning with a third round of 64 in fine conditions at Kingsbarns Golf Links, which equalled the women’s course set by Michelle Wie in the first round.
Park, the current world number 10, made eight birdies and signed for a 54-hole total of 10-under-par just before the leaders teed off at 2.45pm in a light rain shower.
The gold medallist at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, Park wasn’t aware that her 30-foot birdie chance on the 18th green was to break the course record.
She enjoyed playing at a fast pace with her good friend Stacy Lewis, the 2013 champion at St Andrews, who shot a 65 to end her round at nine-under-par.
“I’m very happy with the round today. Barely made the cut yesterday and trying to play some good golf out there. Today, this morning, it was perfect conditions this morning for scoring. Not much wind. It was pretty warm and the greens were quicker than the last two days,” said Park, who won the championship in horrendous weather conditions at Turnberry. “It was actually better to have the faster greens because the greens were really slow the last couple days and I really struggled with the putter. I putted great and hit the ball great. That’s something I have been really struggling for the last month or so, but yesterday and today were great ball-striking days.”
Lewis also rediscovered her form with the putter and said afterwards: “I really putted pretty poorly the first two days, and you know, worked on some things yesterday. My mom told me I needed to take my putter straighter back. Mom apparently was right. I hate to give her credit but she was right.”
Lewis had nine birdies and two bogeys in her round and continued: “When the weather is good, you have to take advantage of it. And I think Inbee and I both knew that, playing these things over the years. You just knew you had to go out there with a good score in the weather.”