Jin Young Ko is making her 2020 debut on the LPGA Tour this week at the Pelican Women’s Championship presented by DEX Imagining and Konica Minolta. Ko had originally planned to return after the Tour’s Australian swing, but the COVID-19 pandemic altered other ideas.
I’m doing great and then I have been maybe eight or nine months in Korea, so I had a lot of things, cooking class or practice, everything,” said Ko, who mentioned cooking Korean food as her newfound hobby during quarantine.
Ko didn’t rest on her laurels overseas. As much as she missed playing on the LPGA Tour, she turned to the KLPGA in her home country to keep her competitive edge. Ko finished 14th on the KLPGA Money List, earning three top-10 finishes across six starts. She was even joined recently by regular caddie David Brooker, as they prepped for their time at Pelican Golf Club. “He like family right now because he stayed at my home for two weeks,” Ko said. “Then my mom always cooked for him. Every meal, three meals a day. So he said, he told me, he gained weight.”
As of now, the six-time LPGA Tour winner is not exempt into the season-ending CME Group Tour Championship, but her goal, starting in Belleair, Fla., is to play her way in after making a few changes to her swing over the last few weeks.
“It’s so much different as last year, because last year I had a lot of tournaments, maybe over 20 events, but this year I have just five events. So I need to find feeling on the course. It is tough, but it’s getting better, better and better. And then I want to do more consistency under 100 meters,” said Ko. “I play 17 years, over 17 years, so it’s tough to change the swing. It’s easy to change small amounts, but changing in a big amount can be difficult. So I trying to be better under 100 meters, short game.”