ROCHESTER, NEW YORK |
for the LPGA Championship remains
very much a work in progress, though
the tournament’s return to Locust Hill
Country Club in 2011 may well be the
LPGA Tour’s best option at the moment.
The Wegmans grocery chain came
to the Tour’s rescue when McDonald’s
dropped its sponsorship of the event
held the last five years at Bulle Rock
in Maryland and forced the Tour, which
now owns the event, to look elsewhere.
Rochester has been the home for a
regular Tour event from 1977 to 2009,
and the tournament always was one of
the more popular stops on the circuit,
with big crowds and a challenging golf
course. Wegmans is now in negotia-
tions with the LPGA Tour about continu-
ing as a long-term sponsor, but the
Tour is also looking at other options,
including the possibility of moving the
event around to other parts of the coun-
try, perhaps even going abroad every
now and then.
“Keeping it there (in Rochester) is an
option and a pretty good option based
on what we’ve seen this week,” said
, the Tour’s chief com-
munications officer. “It’s safe to say the
incumbent tends to have an advantage
in the short term, and time is definitely
on their side. One idea that’s also been
floated is to take Wegmans and see
if there could be a regional rotation.
We’re looking at everything.”
Higdon said he expected a decision
by the end of the summer on next year’s
event, and perhaps even beyond that.
The tournament got off to a
memorable start Thursday when Hall
, one of the six
inaugural inductees in 1967 and winner
of 55 LPGA events, struck a ceremonial
Rawls, now 82, said she still plays two
or three times a week, and made solid
contact with her drive off the first tee.
“I felt very important marching
behind the bagpipes,” she said of the
opening ceremonies. “I had one chance
to hit a drive and I did it. I hope it be-
comes a tradition and I’m honored that
they picked me.”
By the way, Rawls career winnings
were $302,664. This week, Kerr’s
champion’s check was $337,500.
back on the bag with
a two-year hiatus. Though he caddied
for her when she won the 2007 U.S.
Women’s Open, Kerr fired him after
that season before deciding to hire him
back this year.
Why the initial pink slip?
“We were both very immature and
butting heads,” Kerr said. “We had a lot
of success early in our career together
and it was just kind of we got on each
other’s nerves, I think. It was never his
performance as a caddie, or me as a
player playing. It was just sort of a per-
sonality thing and we split up.”
So why the make up after the break up?
“I probably maybe fired him a little
hastily,” she said. “But I have matured
a lot in the last couple of years, and so
has he, and it was just time for us to get
Gilroyed is delighted by the reunion
and said Kerr’s victory this week was
hardly surprising to him.
was making her
second appearance in a tournament
since undergoing surgery on her left
thumb March 30.
A week ago, she
finished seventh at
the ShopRite Clas-
sic in New Jersey
and played in the
final group Sunday,
what she describes
as “pretty neat”
considering her long layoff.
“It was incredibly hard,” Creamer
said of her first extended time off since
she joined the Tour six years ago. “It
was probably one of the hardest things
I’ve ever had to go through. Just after
Thailand (the Honda event in mid-Feb-
ruary), it was so many ups and downs
emotionally. It was very, very difficult.
Once I finally had the surgery, you look
forward. But those first couple of weeks
when I got back, it was very difficult.”
Still, there were a few good times.
“I got to go to some neat places,”
she said. “I went to The Masters, did
some neat outings, went to Winged
Foot and did some things I wouldn’t
have been able to do if I didn’t have the
There was some confusion in the
galleries when the name M Miyazato
was up on leaderboards all around.
Shouldn’t that have been A Miyazato,
, the No. 1 player in the world
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