Lee Westwood is Dreaming of Creating Masters History
Lee Westwood will be the oldest champion in Masters history if he manages to win this week, eclipsing the great Jack Nicklaus. The Golden Bear was 46 when he won in such dramatic fashion in 1986. Westwood will be 48 on April 24 and has arrived at Augusta playing some of the best golf of his life.
"Jack has always been an inspiration," said Westwood, who played with Nicklaus during his first Masters in 1997. This will be his 20th Masters. "It would be great to break his record. I saw him a few weeks ago and I still remember the first time I played this tournament in 1997, I played the final round with Jack.
"I went out on the Saturday night and bought the iconic picture where he's following the ball into the hole on the 17th with his putter. After we played on the Sunday, I said to Jack, ‘Would you mind signing this picture for me?’ I still have it. He wrote 'To Lee, enjoyed our round, best wishes, Jack Nicklaus'. There are very few people you would do that with, he is a legend and arguably the greatest player to ever play the game.
"I always enjoy picking his brains and just being in his company, so to have a chance to break one of his records would be very special."
Nicklaus had his son, Jackie, on the bag when he won his final Masters title and Westwood will also have his son, Sam, caddying for him this week. "It's amazing that I am old enough to have my son on the bag and still be competing in these tournaments," said Westwood. "Having Sam here to enjoy the experience with me, I have to close his mouth every now and again when we're going round, he loves it so much."
Westwood finished runner-up to Bryson DeChambeau at the Arnold Palmer Invitational in March and the following week was second to Justin Thomas at the Players Championship.
He then took Sam to play 54 holes at Augusta National for the first time.
Westwood finished second at Augusta in 2010 and 2016 and has made the cut 16 times in 19 appearances. "I have always loved this course. I still remember the first time I came here like it was yesterday,” he said. "It is such a special place, the traditions, you feel fortunate to drive down Magnolia Lane. It is always special the walk over the 11th, down the hill, seeing the 12th in the distance.
"I came here three weeks ago, and it still sends chills down my spine just to see Amen Corner in the distance."
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