Phil Mickelson might have started himself a new tradition Tuesday at Augusta National Golf Club.
Should the 41-year-old be seen celebrating his fourth Masters Tournament victory Sunday, he can say the momentum started by winning a glass of lemonade Tuesday.
Mickelson and Mike Weir teamed against Kyle Stanley and Brendan Steele. The Mickelson-Weir team, a pair of left-handed Masters champions, came away with the win.
“Winning the lemonade meant a lot to the both of them,” said Mickelson’s longtime caddie, Jim “Bones” Mackay.
“Phil is smart in that he played a competitive round,” Mackay said. “I think it’s good to get the competitive juices flowing. Nobody wants to lose a lemonade to anybody.”
Mickelson spoke to the media after his practice round. The questioning included the major story line hanging over this Masters: Rory vs. Tiger.
“I’m cool with it,” Mickelson said. “I don’t have a problem with it. I am where I am and I’m fine with it.”
“This is going to be a really exciting Masters because so many of the top players are really playing well,” he said. “This course has a history of bringing out the best players. The fact the best players are playing well, everyone could be on the top of the board.”
Mickelson said the winner must take advantage of a hot hand and get on a run of red numbers.
“You don’t know when it’s going to happen, you just know it has to happen,” he said. “When it does, you just kind of cherish it all. … there are enough birdie holes out here where those runs will happen. You just don’t want to make mistakes where you hurt yourself.”
Mackay said he saw Mickelson ready to make a run during Tuesday’s practice round.
“I liked everything I saw in Phil,” he said. “Obviously, he has spent a tremendous amount of time out here last Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. He knows this course very well. There are slight changes to 8 and 16, and he has analyzed every thing potentially that can go on there.”
Mackay said Mickelson’s previous Masters success – winning in 2004, 2006 and 2010 – will serve him well.
“The reality is that when Phil comes to this tournament he has had a lot of success,” Mackay said. “So it’s not a bad idea for me to say to him remember the time when you – dot, dot, dot, dot. So you talk about cool things that have happened here. Like peering through the trees at 13 and taking a little look-see there.
“You just get that good mojo going. He has good mojo here.”
And one free lemonade.