PORTLAND, OREGON (NEW YORK TIMES) - Ko Jin-young's bogey-free run ended on Thursday (Aug 29) at 114 holes, but not before she passed Tiger Woods, whose 110 consecutive holes of par or better from the 2000 season was the longest known bogey-free streak in professional golf.
The category was not tracked until the advent of ShotLink technology in 2003. Ko's South Korean compatriot Park In-bee strung together 93 holes without a bogey in 2015 for what was considered the longest women's streak. Ko eclipsed that total on her way to winning last week's CP Women's Open in Canada.
The 24-year-old, who was making her first appearance at the Portland Classic, played the first eight holes at Columbia Edgewater Country Club in four under, including an eagle on the par-five fifth that moved her past Woods.
On the ninth, she three-putted for her first bogey in LPGA Tour competition since Aug 1, during the Women's British Open. After her par attempt of less than three feet rolled past the hole, she pressed her neck as if to release tension and stared in disbelief at her ball for several seconds.
Ko smiles easily and carries a golf bag with "Love God, Love People" stitched on it. But she acknowledged that the bogey-free streak had been exhausting, especially after it reached triple digits and commandeered the attention of the golf world.
"Now it's done and my mind is more free," she said after signing for a four-under 68.
With the streak over, Ko can concentrate on trying to gain her fifth LPGA victory of 2019. She is four strokes behind the leaders, Hur Mi-jung and Hannah Green.
"I can focus more on my shot and don't even think about, 'Oh, bogey, bogey, no'," Ko said.
She was intent on surpassing Woods, who played bogey-free golf for the final 51 holes of the 2000 Canadian Open and through the first 59 holes of the National Car Rental Classic at Disney World. She knew she needed no worse than par on the fourth hole to equal his mark.
After finding the left rough with her drive, Ko could not reach the green with her second shot. She salvaged par by chipping to three feet and making the putt.
"A great up and down," she said, adding, "It's cool, especially since I did a new record."
After the bogey, Ko reset her goals as she walked to the 10th tee. "I want to do it again - 115 holes bogey-free," she said.
Her new streak is at nine holes - and counting.