During the pandemic shutdown in 2020, it was truly difficult for many Ladies European Tour players to find a way to make a living. PGA Tour star Justin Rose and his wife Kate Rose, along with LET Member Liz Young, saw an opportunity to give European-based female golfers a place to compete while the world was slowly reopening.
The Rose Ladies Series was a boon for so many players, but perhaps none more than Gemma Dryburgh. The native of Aberdeen, Scotland, won consecutive events in 2020, winning at the LET’s home course of Buckinghamshire Golf Club and then becoming the first female professional winner in the history of the famed Royal St George’s.
In early August, Dryburgh captured her third Rose Ladies Series win, this time at JCB Golf and Country Club. Dryburgh said the wind at JCB was very similar to what she’s experienced so far at Oregon Golf Club, so the success in England has provided even more inspiration.
“That gives you so much confidence. Just winning anywhere gives so you much confidence in your game,” said Dryburgh, who is looking to better her Tour-best finish of T6 at the 2020 LPGA Drive On Championship at Inverness Club. “Yeah, feeling really good with my swing and putting as well, so just going to take it into the weekend.”
ACE FOR KATHERINE KIRK
Australian Katherine Kirk made a hole-in-one on No. 12, hitting it in from 131 yards with a pitching wedge.
“It was fun actually because I hit it well, so that's obviously a bonus that it went in. But it was a good number and I put a good swing on it and landed about 2 feet short right of the hole and released in,” said Kirk. “I thought I hit it too hard but obviously it was enough. I was happy to see it go in and not have to putt.”
Kirk’s ace is the fourth of her LPGA Tour career and first since the first round of the 2017 Volunteers of America Classic. For the hole-in-one, CME Group will donate $20,000 to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, which is leading the way the world understands, treats, and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. The 2021 season has seen 13 aces for a total of $260,000 donated to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
“That's the highlight of the day right there. Obviously, they do great things at that hospital and heart goes out to those kids and their families. Yeah, the heroes are the doctors and the work they're doing,” said Kirk. “Happy to pitch in and nice to see. I guess it's CME that contributes that. So thanks to CME Group for doing that, because that's pretty awesome.”