What We Learned: Park confides in mother


Each week, GolfChannel.com offers thoughts on 'what we learned' from the world of golf. In this edition, our writers weigh in on Inbee Park's remarkable run –  winning the first three majors of the season, Paul Casey's break through at the Irish Open and a 19-year-old rookie who looks wise beyond his years on the PGA Tour.

It doesn’t matter how old you are, there’s nothing like mom’s tender counsel.

Inbee Park seems to play with this unshakeable sense of peace. It has to rattle her opponents, how she never looks rattled, but she can be as fragile as anyone else, she just doesn’t show it. We learned that Sunday night.

Park, on the eve of her U.S. Women’s Open victory, needed some motherly help. She confided to her mother that she couldn’t sleep, that she was nervous, that she didn’t’ want to let down family, friends and the South Korean people in Sunday's finish.

Park’s mom, Sung Kim, reassured her, telling Inbee it didn’t matter if she won or lost, that she made her family very happy. Park went to sleep, and then she won her third consecutive major championship – Randall Mell

Paul Casey is the second coming of Lee Westwood. That used to be a good thing … then it wasn’t for a while … and now it is again. Just as Westwood went from a top-10 player to one who struggled mightily with his game only to regain that top-10 status, Casey is following a similar career path. Injuries and personal issues led to a demise that found the former Ryder Cup team member in a lengthy malaise. Through it, though, he remained one of the game’s better interviews – a guy quick with a smile even when he didn’t have much to smile about. And so it’s easy to feel good for him now that he’s back on the right career path with a win at The Irish Open on Sunday, his first in nearly two-and-a-half years. What’s next? Well, he’s already qualified for the Open Championship, but this is more of a big picture thing for Casey. Expect a continued climb up the rankings – and expect his resurgence to be an intriguing subplot over the long haul. – Jason Sobel

During both weekend rounds at the AT&T National, Jordan Spieth started hot and moved into a share of the lead, only to fade late. That suggests there are still lessons to be learned for this 19-year-old, but with his sixth-place finish at Congressional, it’s safe to assume this uber-prospect is closing in on his first pro title. Spieth has now surpassed $1 million in season earnings, which is even more impressive when you consider that after he turned pro last December, he had no status on any major tour. The former Texas star made the most of his sponsor exemptions and now has locked up his Tour card for 2014, when expectations will consist of him not just keeping his status on the big tour, but breaking through for his first win. A learning curve, forever accelerated. – Ryan Lavner