Jess Baker adds ANWA and Chevron experiences to her CV

Jess Baker added two more bucket list events to her CV with debuts in the 2023 Augusta National Women’s Amateur and The Chevron ahead of her US Women’s Open berth at Pebble Beach this summer.

Jess, who received an invitation to be part of the ANWA in the week before The Masters following her victory in last summer’s Women’s Amateur, posted rounds of 76 and 74 at Champions Retreat to finish the opening two rounds of the 54-hole tournament on six over-par and miss the cut by four shots.

“Playing ANWA for the first time was incredible,” said Jess. “They put on an amazing event, as you’d expect Augusta National to do, and it was faultless.

“On the course, my putter was a little cold, which meant my scores didn’t reflect how well I played from tee to green, but I’m not too bothered. Putting is one of my strengths and it was just one of those weeks where the ball wasn’t dropping as often as I’d like. The scores were so strong and I wasn’t a million miles off in a field made up of the very best amateurs in the world.”

While she wasn’t among the 31 players to make it to the final tournament day at Augusta National, Jess did get to play The Masters venue along with all 72 players.

“Playing Augusta was amazing,” she added. “It was one of those days where I just wanted to take everything in. Knowing I wasn’t preparing for the final round took all the pressure off and I could enjoy being out there on one of the most famous courses in the world. The slope on no.2 is insane and hitting a hybrid to that green was so tough. The moment you come over the hill on no.11 and see Amen Corner for the first time is unbelievable – it’s like looking at a painting, everything is just so perfect.”

Jess, who recently finished her third year at the University of Central Florida, also teed it up in the year’s first major – The Chevron Championship at The Club at Carlton Woods.

Having flew in on Wednesday night following her college conference tournament, Jess opened with a round of 82 before bouncing back with a one over-par 73 on day two.

“It was exciting for sure,” said Jess. “While I missed celebrating with the team after a second-place finish, being part of my third major was brilliant.

“Being back in the major mindset was a lot of fun. I’d prepared well in advance, but switching from Florida to Texas was tough on Thursday. I didn’t play as bad as the score suggests – just got caught out late in the round. On day two I settled down and played my best golf so far in a major – which gives me a lot of confidence going forward.”

Having returned home for a busy summer, including the defense of her Amateur title, Jess will be heading back to America in July for the Women’s US Open at Pebble Beach.

“It’s going to be a busy summer with events at home and in Sweden, and in the US with the US Open and US Women’s Amateur,” added Jess.

“The US Open is going to be amazing. It’ll be my first trip to the west coast and I love playing coastal golf courses so I’m looking forward to having a good week in conditions which suit my game.”