This has been bugging me since I read it in Monday’s Toronto Star:

“…the 26-year-old Arizona resident broke his tour maiden at Glen Abbey yesterday.”

Shades of 13th-century virgins being despoiled!

I suppose the reporter was trying (with a little too much effort, in my opinion) to link Chez Reavie’s win at the Canadian Open, his first, to his upcoming wedding.

“Maidenhead” is a 13th century term for virginity. “Maiden” itself is often used in the sense of new/fresh/a first attempt or occurrence, such as in a “maiden voyage.” I dug around a bit and found “broke his (or her) maiden” to be a fairly common term in horse racing wins. So maybe the reporter’s usual beat is the track.

Really, I found it a distasteful reference, and one more likely than not to alienate a female reader. The reporter no doubt felt that hearty male readers were his target audience, and they would hardly notice the term.