Juli Inkster is a two-time US Women’s Open winner (1999, 2002) who has played in the USGA’s signature women’s championship 35 times during her Hall of Fame career, the most recent in 2014. However, she’s hoping to make it 36.
The 60-year-old has signed up to compete in a 36-hole qualifier at Half Moon Bay Golf Links on April 26, in hopes of advancing to the US Women’s Open at the Olympic Club in June. The USGA confirmed Inkster’s entry, which was first reported by Golfweek. All entries for the championship close today.
“I’m probably an idiot for trying, but I think I would be disappointed in myself if I didn’t because it’s so close to home,” Inkster told Golfweek.
Inkster grew up in Santa Cruz, California, and currently resides in Los Altos, about 55 kilometres away from the Olympic Club in San Francisco, which will host the championship from June 3-6. Inkster has played the course numerous times, including in college at San Jose State University.
The seven-time Major champion played in the LPGA Tour’s Kia Classic last month, where she missed the cut. She is also in the field at next week’s Hugel-Air Premia LA Open, which concludes two days before the qualifier.
A 31-time LPGA Tour winner, Inkster made her last start in a Major championship at the 2019 ANA Inspiration, where she shared in the booth that it would be her final appearance at the Dinah Shore course.
Inkster finished 15th in her last US Women’s Open start at Pinehurst No.2 in 2014. If she gets through qualifying, it would be the sixth different decade in which she will have played the Women’s Open, her debut coming as an amateur in 1978 at the Country Club of Indianapolis.