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NEWS: LPGA Announces 2018 Schedule

LPGA players got an early Christmas present with the release of the 2018 schedule Wednesday. While the first few events of the year and the dates for the majors were locked in, all remaining questions were officially answered, among them confirmation of the long-rumored return to beautiful Lake Merced Golf Club outside San Francisco.

Players considered Lake Merced, formerly the site of the Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic, one of the best non-major championship courses on the schedule so there figures to be plenty of enthusiasm for a return to the Bay Area. While the event, which will take place April 26-29, won’t have an official name until early 2018, it will be sponsored by the Korean skin-care company L&P Cosmetic.


Lake Merced will be the second new West Coast tournament in a row, following the HUGEL-JTBC Championship in Los Angeles from April 19-22. The course has yet to be announced.

“These two new events are perfect additions to our schedule,” LPGA Commissioner Mike Whan said in a statement. “We believe they will offer terrific playing opportunities in wonderful golf environments, and make it more enticing for our players by strengthening this West Coast swing. They create a great four-week stretch that starts in Hawaii and finishes in Texas with our always exciting Volunteers of America LPGA Texas Classic, which is now being played at a new venue, Old American Golf Club.”

The third new event takes place in Shanghai in October (again, a name and course will be announced early next year). That brings the total number of tournaments for 2018 to 34 in 14 countries. The total prize money will be a record $68.75 million.

Perhaps the biggest event of the year (and maybe the biggest in the history of women’s golf) will be the UL International Crown at the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club Korea, just outside Incheon. Last year, the KEB Hana Bank Championship, an annual event in Incheon, set attendance records for an LPGA event with more than 30,000 people on the ground on Sunday. The UL International Crown has exploded in popularity, especially in Seoul where giant billboards advertise logoed tournament merchandise for women … and men.

“Perhaps the most important aspect of our (2018) schedule is the consistency — continuing to deliver strong playing opportunities both in North America and around the world, while growing overall purse levels every year,” Whan said. “There is simply no better tour opportunity in the world when it comes to purses, global TV coverage or strength of field. It’s an exciting time in women’s golf with the best players from every corner of the globe competing against each other in virtually every event.”

2018 LPGA Schedule (bold = majors; italics = new event; ** = unofficial money)

Date Title Location Purse
Jan. 25-28 Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic Paradise Island, Bahamas $1.4M
Feb. 15-18 ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open Adelaide, Australia $1.3M
Feb. 21-24 Honda LPGA Thailand Chonburi, Thailand $1.6M
March 1-4 HSBC Women’s World Championship Singapore $1.5M
March 15-18 Bank of Hope Founders Cup Phoenix, Arizona $1.5M
March 22-25 Kia Classic Carlsbad, California $1.8M
March 29 – April 1 ANA Inspiration Rancho Mirage, California $2.8M
April 11-14 LOTTE Championship Kapolei, Oahu, Hawaii $2M
April 19-22 HUGEL-JTBC Championship Greater Los Angeles, California $1.5M
April 26-29 Name to be Announced San Francisco, California $1.5M
May 3-6 Volunteers of America LPGA Texas Classic The Colony, Texas $1.3M
May 17-20 Kingsmill Championship Williamsburg, Virginia $1.3M
May 24-27 LPGA Volvik Championship Ann Arbor, Michigan $1.3M
May 31 – June 3 U.S. Women’s Open Championship conducted by the USGA Shoal Creek, Alabama $5M
June 8-10 ShopRite LPGA Classic presented by Acer Galloway, New Jersey $1.75M
June 14-17 Meijer LPGA Classic for Simply Give Grand Rapids, Michigan $2M
June 22-24 Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G Rogers, Arkansas $2M
June 28 – July 1 KPMG Women’s PGA Championship Kildeer, Illinois $3.65M
July 5-8 Thornberry Creek LPGA Classic Oneida, Wisconsin $2M
July 12-15 Marathon Classic
presented by Owens-Corning and O-I
Sylvania, Ohio $1.6M
July 26-29 Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open East Lothian, Scotland $1.5M

 

Aug. 2-5 Ricoh Women’s British Open Lancashire, England $3.25M
Aug. 16-19 Indy Women in Tech Championship presented by Guggenheim Indianapolis, Indiana $2M
Aug. 23-26 CP Women’s Open Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada $2.25M
Aug. 30 – Sept. 2 Cambia Portland Classic Portland, Oregon $1.3M
Sept. 13-16 The Evian Championship Evian-les-Bains, France $3.85M
Sept. 27-30 Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia $1.8M
Oct. 4-7 UL International Crown Incheon, Korea $1.6M**
Oct. 11-14 LPGA KEB Hana Bank Championship Incheon, Korea $2M
Oct. 18-21 Name to be Announced Shanghai, China $2.1M
Oct. 25-28 Swinging Skirts LPGA Taiwan Championship New Taipei City, Chinese Taipei $2.2M
Nov. 2-4 TOTO Japan Classic Shiga, Japan $1.5M
Nov. 7-10 Blue Bay LPGA Hainan Island, China $2.1M
Nov. 15-18 CME Group Tour Championship Naples, Florida $2.5M

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