Lee Westwood has a chance to become the oldest winner of the game's oldest major in the modern era (Old Tom Morris was a couple weeks older when he won in 1867) this week at Royal Portrush. But he could also make a bit of history as the first golfer to claim the claret jug with a girlfriend as his caddie.
Helen Storey has become a big story during the 148th Open Championship with Westwood's surprising surge toward the top of the leader board. And this wouldn't be the first time she helped guide Westwood to a win. Last November, Storey—a consultant, according to The Sun—was on the bag when Westwood broke a four-year winless drought with his victory at the Nedbank Golf Challenge.
"Having Helen here makes it all the more special," an emotional Westwood said at the time.
The two could end an even longer drought this week and are certainly enjoying their time in Northern Ireland. They've been seen smiling throughout—even when Westwood was forced to take a penalty for an unplayable on Saturday—and the Portrush crowd has cheered their post-round kisses.
“Obviously I get on well with Helen,” Westwood told reporters after Friday's round. “She doesn’t know too much about golf but she knows a lot about the way my mind works. So she keeps me in a good frame of mind and focusing on the right things at the right time. There’s more to the caddying than carrying and getting the wind direction.”
And their discussions about non-golf topics keep the 46-year-old loose on the course.
“You’d be surprised the sort of things we talk about out there," Westwood added of Storey, who has pretty much been his full-time caddie since he split with longtime looper Billy Foster last year. "The favorite one was from Denmark the first week she caddied for me, and I took out a divot because it was big and soft and she’s walking back with the divot like this, and I said, ‘What’s wrong?’ She said, ‘I hope there’s not a worm in this.'”
Of course, significant others serving as caddies for top tour pros is nothing new. In fact, Steve Stricker has won two senior majors this year with his wife, Nicki, on the bag.
But a regular major? For a guy who has never won one before? You might just see a few more WAGs carrying golf bags next week.