CASERAS, Spain — U.S. Solheim Cup captain Stacy Lewis summarized what could surely be transformed into a stirring speech to her players, one designed to get the blood flowing and the brains buzzing.
Asked if there was a special message or theme she would like to convey to her team, the former Women’s British Open champion was off and running. Most touchingly, she revealed the tributes the team will implicitly pay to the late Kathy Whitworth, the LPGA’s winningest player, and one of the LPGA’s 13 original founders Shirley Spork while out on the course.
“The theme is I want these girls to know what they’re playing for and what they’re becoming a part of,” said Lewis, herself a four-time Solheim Cup player. “So there’s a lot of things going on. On my hat there are 10 stars for the 10 times the U.S. has won the Solheim Cup. The golf bag has a pocket with 13 stars for our 13 past captains. It has another pocket with 62 stars for the, prior to this year, 62 Americans who have represented the U.S. at the Solheim Cup.”
“Our yardage book cover has the locations where we’ve won the 10 Solheim Cup,” Lewis continued. “I wanted these girls to know how special of a group they’re coming into. So they know what you’re playing for. If you don’t know what you’re playing for, you don’t know about the history. We lost Kathy and Shirley since we were together in Toledo [at the last Solheim Cup], so I wanted them to be a part of this week in some way. I put the rubber duck on the bottom of the bag for Shirley and the ‘88’ on the hats for Kathy’s most wins of any golfer, not just female, of all time. So that they are with us this week.”