Nearly 40 golfers missed their Women’s British Open practice rounds Monday, all because Lexi Thompson’s misplaced passport bizarrely delayed the arrival of their clubs.
Thompson’s clubs had been packed into a van along with bags belonging to others for the nearly 12-hour drive from France, where the Evian Championship took place last week, to Woburn Golf Club outside London. Ian Wright, the former caddie for the late Seve Ballesteros, was about 45 minutes out of Geneva when he received a call shortly after 8 p.m. Sunday informing him that Thompson’s passport, which she needed to fly from Geneva, was in her bag. The solution was for him to wait for her caddie, Benji Thompson, who was taking a cab to rendezvous with Wright.
“I think I might have screamed,” Wright told the Golf Channel, explaining that he unpacked about half the vehicle. “That van was packed to the hilt. A mouse couldn’t have found room to live in there.” The blunder caused a three-hour delay that forced Wright to drive all night and miss a ferry to England. Caught in morning traffic near London, he arrived at the course at about 5 p.m., too late because club officials wanted to work on the course.
“Forgetting her passport, that was an honest mistake,” Thompson’s agent, Bobby Kreusler, said. “And she had no idea retrieving it would cause the delay it did, or that it would impact other players the way it did. She would never have wanted that.”
Thompson missed practice, too; a British Airways strike caused a cancellation of her flight and she didn’t arrive as she’d planned on Monday.
— Cindy Boren, The Washington Post