Exciting season-long challenge will highlight player decision-making and performance on the most strategically challenging holes
(DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. and LONDON, Jan. 9, 2019) - The Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) and Aon plc (NYSE: AON), a leading global professional services firm providing a broad range of risk, retirement and health solutions, today announced the hole designations and scoring system on the LPGA Tour for the Aon Risk Reward Challenge, an exciting new performance-based program that serves as Aon’s opening chapter of a multi-year partnership with both the LPGA and PGA TOUR.
The season-long Aon Risk Reward Challenge will highlight the world’s best professional golfers as they tackle the most strategically challenging holes across both the LPGA and PGA TOUR. The player from each Tour on top of the Aon leaderboard at the end of the regular season will each receive a $1 million prize.
Each week, Aon will bring golf fans an in-depth look at the carefully selected tournament challenge hole by providing an overview of the opportunity it presents, unique insights derived from data and analysis of past performances and recommended strategic approaches to provide an advantage. Fans will now be able to understand how players weigh the risk/reward decisions they face as they take on each hole and try to execute their desired game plan.
Aon Risk Reward Challenge on the LPGA Tour
As an example, the first of the LPGA Tour’s five major championships - the ANA Inspiration - is played each year at Mission Hills Country Club in Rancho Mirage, Calif., and the designated Aon Risk Reward Challenge hole for 2019 is the 11th. This hole is a reachable par 5 as long as players can find the narrow fairway off the tee. Multiple pin placements vary the risk analysis on a green that is slightly elevated and surrounded by bunkers. Accuracy allied to a bold game plan and strategic insight is rewarded highly on this hole.
“Whether on the tee or reading the green, golfers are constantly looking for insights that give them an edge over the competition. We see clear parallels in how Aon advises clients, as our solutions are rooted in data and analytics that help them minimize volatility and maximize performance,” said Andy Weitz, Chief Marketing Officer, Aon. “The same concept applies in golf, and we are excited to see how players develop strategies that help them understand the risk and realize the reward on each of the Aon Risk Reward Challenge holes.”
"We worked diligently to create a strong stable of holes which would test the player’s ability to think strategically each week," said Heather Daly-Donofrio, the LPGA's Chief Tour Operations Officer. "The line-up includes a wonderful mix of par-three, par-four and par-five holes, all with their own unique elements and challenges. We are excited to bring these holes to life for our fans and to see how the players navigate through them, particularly down the home stretch where four of the last five risk reward holes are par fives. The player who wins the first-place prize of $1 million will be the one who best factors all the elements and successfully executes her plan after weighing carefully whether the risk is worth the reward."
“I know that I speak for all the players at the LPGA when I say how excited we are for the opportunity to compete in the Aon Risk Reward Challenge this year and how proud we are that the prize for both the LPGA and PGA TOUR winner is an equal $1 million,” said LPGA Tour Player, Lizette Salas. “Now that the scoring system and holes have been revealed, I am looking forward to analyzing them with my team to determine our optimal game plan!”
Aon Risk Reward Challenge Scoring System
The scoring system, identical on both the LPGA and PGA TOUR, is intuitive and produces a compelling risk/reward narrative throughout the season. The Aon Risk Reward Challenge takes the best two scores from every participating event a player competes in, ensuring that all play is counted and providing a small advantage to those that make the cut with the winner having the best average score to par across the season. Players must play a minimum of 40 rounds throughout the season. At the LPGA Tour’s season-ending CME Group Championship, the winner will be awarded the prestigious Aon Trophy and a $1 million prize.
The Challenge will be run across regular season tournaments (36 PGA TOUR; 29 LPGA), with CBS Sports and The Golf Channel as official broadcast partners. The Aon Risk Reward Challenge will be brought to life through feature segments including weekly Challenge hole profiles and insights, player interviews and on-air commentary.