Top Storylines from the Reignwood LPGA Classic

Week of September 30, 2013
Reignwood LPGA Classic
Pine Valley Golf Club
Beijing, China

(Note: Beijing is 12 hours ahead of Eastern Time)

 

Top Storylines

Back in the ‘Swing’ of things
The LPGA Tour returns to action after a two-week break following its fifth and final major of the season at the Evian Championship in France. This week marks the first event of Golf’s Global Tour’s fall Asian swing and the world’s best female golfers will compete in an official LPGA Tour event in China for the first time at the Reignwood LPGA Classic. Eighty-one players will be competing for a $1.8 million purse at the Jack Nicklaus designed course at Pine Valley Golf Club in Beijing.

The Tour will make five stops in Asia this fall with the addition of the Reignwood LPGA Classic and close out the season in North America with the Lorena Ochoa Invitational in Mexico and the season-finale, CME Group Titleholders in Naples, Fla.

Remaining 2013 LPGA Tour Schedule
Date Event  Location
Oct. 3-6 Reignwood LPGA Classic Pine Valley Golf Club, Beijing, China
Oct. 10-13 Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Oct. 17-20 LPGA KEB HanaBank Champ. Sky 72 Golf Club, Incheon, South Korea
Oct. 24-27 Sunrise LPGA Taiwan Champ. Sunrise Golf & Country Club, Yang Mei, Taiwan
Nov. 7-10 Mizuno Classic Kintetsu Kashikojima, Shima-Shi, Mie, Japan
Nov. 14-17 Lorena Ochoa Invitational Guadalajara Country Club, Guadalajara, Mexico
Nov. 21-24 CME Group Titleholders Tiburon Golf Club, Naples, Fla.

                               

A lot on the line…
The level of competition throughout the 2013 season on the LPGA Tour has created worthy champions, exciting finishes and will provide tight title races for the remainder of the year. The Tour’s three major champions (Inbee Park, Stacy Lewis and Suzann Pettersen) have been the top performers so far in 2013 and find themselves in some heated battle for end of the year honors.

Inbee Park currently leads the Official Money list with $2,186,601 earnings this season thanks to her six victories but is by no means safe to finish in the top spot for the money title. After her victory at The Evian Championship, Suzann Pettersen increased her 2013 total to $1,721,342 and trails Park by $465,259. Stacy Lewis rounds out the top three and sits on Pettersen’s heels, only $172,543 back, at $1,548,799.

If Pettersen and Lewis are able to break the $2 million mark this year, it will be only the second time in LPGA Tour history to have two players earn $2 million in one season. Lorena Ochoa ($2,592,872) and Karrie Webb ($2,090,113) both earned $2 million in the 2006 season.

Official Money List Through The Evian Championship
Rank Player  Money Earned
1 Inbee Park $2,186,601
2 Suzann Pettersen $1,721,342
3 Stacy Lewis $1,548,799
4 So Yeon Ryu  $1,083,901
5 I.K. Kim  $1,056,507

 

Suzann Pettersen currently leads the Vare Trophy race for low scoring average but has no breathing room with Stacy Lewis trailing her by just a .016 margin. The Norwegian will not be in action in China this week and sets up Lewis and Inbee Park to make their moves. Park will be trying to defend her title after she won her first Vare Trophy last season when she finished with a 70.21 scoring average.

Scoring Average Through The Evian Championship
Rank  Player  Average
1 Suzann Pettersen 69.700
2 Stacy Lewis 69.716
3 Inbee Park  69.923
4 Na Yeon Choi 70.145
5 Paula Creamer 70.354

                

Stacy Lewis had been overshadowed by Inbee Park’s dominance the first half of the season, but the American has been making her mark with her consistency. Lewis currently leads the Tour with 14 top-10 finishes and is on pace to pick up her second-consecutive Kia Drive to the Top award. She won the inaugural title, which recognizes the player with the most top 10’s, in 2012 when she recorded 15 top-10 finishes in 22 starts.

Top 10 Finishes Through The Evian Championship
Rank Player Top 10’s  Events Played Percentage
1 Stacy Lewis 14 21 67%
2 Suzann Pettersen  11 18 61%
3 Inbee Park 8 18 44%
4 I.K. Kim 8 19 42%
5 Shanshan Feng 6 15 40%

 

Park tries to close out banner year on a high note
Inbee Park undoubtedly stole all the headlines on the LPGA Tour the first half of the 2013 season after notching six victories in her first 13 starts this year. After claiming her third-consecutive major of the year at the U.S. Women’s Open (Park also won the Kraft Nabisco Championship and Wegmans LPGA Championship), the South Korean has cooled off a bit from her hot streak.

Since her win at Sebonack, Park has not recorded a top-10 and best finish in her last four starts came at the CN Canadian Women’s Open where she tied for 13th. The top-ranked player in the world withdrew with flu-like symptoms a week later prior to the start of the Safeway Classic in Portland and is coming off a T67 at the Evian Championship two weeks ago.

But Park, who has earned celebrity status in her homeland of South Korea, has shown she’s comfortable playing in Asia. Out of the Tour’s four stops in the fall Asian swing last season, the 25-year old did not finish outside the top-17 and picked up a win (Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia) and a runner-up (Sunrise LPGA Taiwan Championship).

Inbee Park 2012 Results in Fall Asian Events
Finish Event
Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia
T15 LPGA KEB HanaBank Championship
2 Sunrise LPGA Taiwan Championship
T17 Mizuno Classic

 

Seven events left…all eyes on the Crown
With just seven events left on the LPGA Tour schedule, every finish can reward players with moves in the Rolex Rankings to secure spots in the inaugural International Crown. The new international team event will be played July 21-27, 2014 at Caves Valley Golf Club in Owings Mills, Md. outside of Baltimore. The event is a first-of-its-kind, global match play competition featuring teams from eight countries battling for the right to be “Crowned” the world’s best golf nation. Each of the countries will be represented by four players.

Eighteen players currently ranked in their respective top-8 countries’ rankings will be in action this week in China (see below in bold).

The field of eight countries will be set by the top four players’ ranks in the Rolex Rankings on Monday, November 25, 2013 following the LPGA Tour’s season-finale, CME Group Titleholders in Naples, Fla.

Once the country teams are set, players from those countries will still have a chance to fight for one of the final four spots on the team. The field of 32 players will be set the Monday of the 2014 Kraft Nabisco Championship. Below are the current standings for the top-8 teams with Rolex Rankings for each player and country total.

1) South Korea 20 2) United States  41 3) Japan 107
Inbee Park 1 Stacy Lewis 3 Ai Miyazato  14
So Yeon Ryu 5 Paula Creamer 11 Mika Miyazato 19
Na Yeon Choi 6 Cristie Kerr 12 Rikako Morita 36
I.K. Kim 8 Lizette Salas 15 Miki Saiki 38
           
4) Spain   255  5) Sweden 283 6) Australia  295
Beatriz Recari  18 Anna Nordqvist  24 Karrie Webb 7
Azahara Munoz 33 Caroline Hedwall 25 Katherine Hull-Kirk 91
Carlota Ciganda 35 Pernilla Lindberg 110 Stacey Keating 97
Belen Mozo 169 Karin Sjodin 124 Lindsey Wright 100
           
7) Thailand  322 8) Chinese Tapei  342    
Ariya Jutanugarn  23 Yani Tseng 20    
Pornanong Phatlum 57 Candie Kung 80    
Moriya Jutanugarn 101 Teresa Lu 81    
Onnarin Sattayabanphot 141 Hsuan Yu-Yao 161    

                                            

Quick facts
October 3- October 6
Reignwood LPGA Classic
Pine Valley Golf Club
Beijing, China

Field: 81 (76 professionals, 5 amateurs)
Par:  36-37, 73
Yardage: 6,596
Purse: $1,800,000
Winner:  $270,000
Format: 72-hole stroke play
Defending champion: First-year event

TV Times
Golf Channel
Oct 3    3:00 – 5:00 a.m.
Oct 4    4:00 – 6:00 a.m.
Oct 5    3:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Oct 6    3:00 – 6:00 p.m.
All times Eastern

***This week’s field information: Reignwood LPGA Classic***

2013 LPGA Tour rookies (4)
Austin Ernst                 
Moriya Jutanugarn
Caroline Masson                      
Lisa McCloskey            

Rolex Rankings
Top 7/10
Top 16/25

2013 LPGA Official Money List
Top 10: 6/10
Top 20: 13/20
Top 50: 36/50

Press conference schedule

Tuesday, October 1, 2:00 p.m.

Stacy Lewis, Rolex Rankings No. 3, top-ranked American with three wins in 2013
Shanshan Feng, Rolex Rankings No. 10, first Chinese player to win an LPGA major
Inbee Park, Rolex Rankings No. 1, six victories and three major championships in 2013
Yani Tseng, Rolex Rankings No. 20, 15-time LPGA Tour winner
Michelle Wie, Rolex Rankings No. 85, two-time LPGA Tour winner

*Times are local in Beijing

Topics: Reignwood LPGA Classic, Storylines

Andrews Sports MedicineArpin Van LinesFloridas NaturalMedjet AssistMichelob ULTRAPrudentialSmuckers