He won the 1996 British Open, and has won three Champions Tour major championships.
He is also Bob Barry Jr.’s pick to win at this year’s U.S. Senior Open.
Tom Lehman is 55 years old, but he’s never played Oak Tree National in Edmond, site of this year’s U.S. Senior Open.
With practice rounds in full swing, Lehman is getting his first look at the course and figuring out what it will take to win his first U.S. Senior Open title.
In an interview with the USGA on Wednesday, Lehman said, “Well, I think the courses are very – set-up very much the same way in that par is oftentimes a good score. Occasionally maybe things or conditions are such that you get more aggressive but, for the most part, putting the ball in the fairway and putting it on the green and being happy with par works very well in U.S. Opens.”
Lehman says the heat will definitely play a role in this week’s tournament.
“The heat makes it more difficult. It’s tough enough when you’re 25 or 30. It’s even more difficult when you’re in your 50s,” said Lehman. “You know, that’s part of the reason, why I planned my week the way I did. I came here a week ago, spent a whole day here, got up early, came out early, spent the entire day on the golf course so I wouldn’t have to come here and spend three days of practice rounds in the heat, you know, so we got here yesterday and practiced in the afternoon again and now, today, just it’s all about conserving energy. You know, my opinion, again, at this stage of the game, this level, most guys’ swings aren’t going to go south on them, it’s more about mental fatigue and physical fatigue. And if you can keep yourself fresh you’re going to have a better chance.”
Lehman didn’t qualify for the 1988 PGA Championship at Oak Tree, and wasn’t old enough to play in the 2006 Senior PGA Championship there, so this is first chance to play Oak Tree, and he’s very impressed.