Brooke Henderson Shines in 2023 LPGA Opener, Winning in Wire-to-Wire Fashion
Brooke Henderson started the 2023 LPGA season with a bang at the Hilton Grand Vacations Tournament of Champions, winning in wire-to-wire fashion for the third time in her career and the 13th time overall. The Canadian finished at 16-under 262, four strokes ahead of runner-ups Charley Hull and Maja Stark.
Henderson was coming off the back of a difficult season, having struggled with back pain and had wisdom teeth removed. She also made the switch from Ping — the equipment manufacturer she had used her entire career — to TaylorMade. Heading into the first round, there were questions surrounding how quickly she would adapt to her new clubs.
“Coming into this week I couldn't have asked for anything more. It was kind of the dream start, which is really exciting looking forward to the rest of 2023,” said Henderson.
Henderson, who is ranked seventh in the Rolex Rankings, birdied three of her first eight holes and added two more at Nos. 10 and 14 before recording her only hiccup on the afternoon with a bogey at the par-3 17th hole. She quickly recovered with a birdie on the par-4 18th, putting her at five-under 67 and taking the lead.
Nelly Korda finished in fourth, shooting a Sunday 72 and citing lackluster iron play as the main reason she wasn’t able to catch Henderson. Maja Stark and Charley Hull, who tied for second place, had much to ponder following the week's events.
Henderson expressed a desire to “keep the momentum going” as soon as possible, however the break will give her the opportunity to decide if any changes are necessary to be made to her new clubs. With the win behind her, Henderson is now free to dream about what might be next, and perhaps use this early season win as a springboard to take her career to the next level. Can she become world No. 1 for the first time in her career? Is a Rolex Player of the Year award a possibility for her at the conclusion of the season? Only time will tell.
0. “Brooke Henderson Storms to Victory at LPGA Tournament of Champions” Sports Illustrated, 22 Jan. 2023, https://www.si.com/golf/news/brooke-henderson-storms-to-victory-at-lpga-tournament-of-champions
1. “Canada’s Brooke Henderson wins Tournament of Champions, her 13th career LPGA Tour title” Toronto Star, 23 Jan. 2023, https://www.thestar.com/sports/golf/2023/01/22/canadas-brooke-henderson-wins-tournament-of-champions-her-13th-career-lpga-tour-title.html
2. “Brooke Henderson’s wire-to-wire win provides ‘dream start’ to 2023 LPGA season” Sportsnet.ca, 23 Jan. 2023, https://www.sportsnet.ca/golf/article/brooke-hendersons-wire-to-wire-win-provides-dream-start-to-2023-lpga-season/
3. “GOLF: Brooke Henderson dominates LPGA season-opener, wins by four” Toronto Sun, 22 Jan. 2023, https://torontosun.com/sports/golf/golf-brooke-henderson-dominates-lpga-season-opener-wins-by-four-2
4. “Dream Start For Brooke Henderson” LPGA, 23 Jan. 2023, https://www.lpga.com/news/2023/dream-start-for-brooke-henderson
5. “Henderson, Korda start strong at LPGA opener, shifting conversation away from locker debacle” GolfDigest.com, 19 Jan. 2023, https://www.golfdigest.com/story/brooke-henderson-nelly-korda-lpga-tournament-of-champions-opener-locker-debacle
6. “Brooke Henderson gets the 2023 LPGA season off to a hot start with a wire-to-wire four-shot victory” GolfDigest.com, 23 Jan. 2023, https://www.golfdigest.com/story/brooke-henderson-lpga-win-lake-nona-tournament-of-champions