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Grace Park seeking second LPGA Major title

Grace Park doesn't need a world ranking, a money list or another statistic to tell where she is on the LPGA Tour landscape.

"I just know there's one person ahead of me," she said Wednesday.

Park knows what it's like to be No. 2 behind Annika Sorenstam, on paper and on the golf course.

A year ago, she found herself in contention at a major for the first time in the LPGA Championship, closing with a 67 at DuPont Country Club to force a playoff with the best player in women's golf. Park played a safe but short tee shot, then tried to pound a 4-iron up the hill and came up short in thick rough, making bogey to lose to Sorenstam.

"This is the best finish in a major for me so far, so I'll always remember this -- but you won't," Park told reporters that day. "Nobody will. Nobody remembers second."

A year later, Park can look back at that bitter loss as a turning point in her career.

Second on the money list and in the Player of the Year standings, Park comes into the LPGA Championship with another "No. 2" in mind -- trying to capture the second leg of the Grand Slam.

Three months ago, she holed a 6-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole at Mission Hills to win the Kraft Nabisco Championship, the first major of her career and a clear sign that the awesome potential she showed as an amateur is ready to come to fruition.

"Finishing second here last year makes me want to win this more," she said. "Winning the first major of the year makes me crave my second major. I really want to do it. Since winning Kraft Nabisco, I've kind of slowed down, and I think it's finally time for me to step up again.

"This is the week to do it."

The challenge for Park is to not get too far ahead of herself. Having won the first major, she is the only one capable of winning the Grand Slam this year, and many believe that's realistic.

"My goal this year was to win one major, and after winning the first, I changed it to winning two major championships," Park said. "And if I'm fortunate to win this one, I'll switch it to three and go from there."

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