Women’s British Open braces for Trump visit
Lizette Salas should be midway through her first round at the Women’s British Open on Thursday morning when Donald Trump arrives via helicopter to expected fanfare at his Turnberry resort.
Salas, a U.S golfer with Mexican heritage, likely won’t pay much attention.
Not because she holds a grudge at Trump’s derogatory remarks about Mexicans that have dominated the pre-tournament chatter at the fourth major of the year. Quite simply, Salas will have more important things on her mind.
“He can say what he wants,” the 26-year-old Salas said Wednesday. “It does not change the way I feel about myself, about my heritage. I’m very proud of my parents and where my grandparents are from.
“Regardless of what he said, that’s my goal — to hold up that trophy.”
There are a number of compelling story lines at the Women’s British Open in western Scotland this week: Inbee Park resuming her quest for the career Grand Slam; 18-year-old prodigy Lydia Ko seeking that elusive first major; Michelle Wie going for victory with an injured left foot.
Yet, they are all being overshadowed, for now at least, by the scheduled presence of Trump and the staging of the event at a course he owns.
Trump is rarely out of the headlines lately because of comments he is making during his U.S. presidential campaign. In one particular remark, the Republican contender said some Mexican immigrants bring drugs and crime to the U.S., and some are rapists. He brought golf into the issue by saying the sport’s governing bodies support his opinions because “they know I’m right.”
Suddenly, golf was stuck in a difficult position, in the face of a figure who has poured so much money into the sport and has 18 courses in his portfolio, including Turnberry since last year.
The PGA Tour, LPGA Tour, U.S. Golf Association and PGA of America said Trump’s comments were “inconsistent with our strong commitment to an inclusive and welcoming environment.” Players mostly have kept their thoughts about Trump to themselves. Significant fallout has been limited to the PGA of America moving October’s Grand Slam of Golf from Trump’s golf course in Los Angeles.
A helicopter owned by Donald Trump departs from the Turnberry golf course in Turnberry, Scotland, Wednesday.