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LPGA Championship Moving On

PITTSFORD, NEW YORK | Shortly after finishing her pro-am round at the Wegmans LPGA Championship last Wednesday, Laura Davies was strolling near the clubhouse at Monroe Golf Club when spectator Debi Combs spotted her.
Well past middle age and bedecked in pink, Combs rushed toward the 50-year-old Englishwoman like a tween girl to a Jonas brother. Taking her eyes off her smartphone, Davies stopped and graciously indulged Combs’ request for a photo, chatting for a few moments before continuing on her way.
The encounter symbolized the love affair that has developed between the LPGA and the greater Rochester, N.Y., community for the past 38 years. But its denouement also echoed the culmination of that long-standing relationship, which occurred when the last putt dropped on Sunday.
As the 1970s rock group Supertramp once sang:
And I really have enjoyed my stay/ But I must be moving on
Or perhaps more aptly, the LPGA is making like television’s The Jeffersons and movin’ on up.
As was announced in June, the LPGA’s fourth major will become the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship in 2015. Slated for next June at Westchester Country Club, a former PGA Tour venue in suburban New York City, the event will boast a fatter purse ($3.5 million vs. this year’s $2.25 million) and figures to garner substantially more exposure thanks to a weekend TV broadcast on NBC, its location in the Gotham media market and the marketing heft of the PGA of America, with whom the LPGA has partnered to “elevate” the major.


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