After finishing in a tie for second behind Korean Na Yeon Choi at the season-opening Coates Golf Championship in January, LPGA pro Jessica Korda hasn’t cracked the top ten in her last five events.
But, after signing on with new coach David Leadbetter and completely overhauling her swing, a slow start might have been expected.
The 22-year-old Korda, with three career wins and nearly $2 million in earnings under her belt, has been hard at work fine-tuning her game as the meat of the LPGA season approaches, including the year’s first major, the ANA Inspiration at Mission Hills next week.
I caught up with Korda as she prepped for this week’s Kia Classic at the Park Hyatt Aviara Resort in Carlsbad, Calif.
JL: What impact has David Leadbetter had on your game?
JK: He has helped develop my confidence and improve my ball striking to be much more consistent.
JL: What has to happen to make this season a success?
JK: To improve from last year. I always try to get better each year.
JL: How are you feeling about your game right now?
JK: Pretty solid, it needs a little more tweaking but I am working hard and feel confident in the direction I am going.
JL: What’s your practice routine like?
JK: I follow a schedule but if needed I alter my schedule. It all depends on what I am working on and how I played the previous week. I like to try and play more than I practice in off weeks.
JL: What music are you listening to?
JL: What do you do to relax?
JK: I enjoy reading.
JL: What’s something very few people know about you?
JK: I am an open book.
JL: With the Olympics approaching, what would it mean for you to compete for your country?
JK: It would mean everything to me! Representing your country is the best feeling.
JL: Who is your favorite golfer?
JK: Tiger Woods because of his dominance.
JL: Who is filling out your dream foursome?
JK: Dad (tennis pro Petr Korda), sister (acclaimed amateur Nelly), Ben Hogan
JL: The LPGA has certainly been riding a nice wave of popularity and momentum. To what do you attribute this?
JK: A lot of young guns have stepped up and played great golf which seems to bring some excitement.