LPGA will not make stop in Bay Area this year; Sponsorship issues CVS not returning

January 26, 2017


Haru Nomura, of Japan, poses with her trophy on the 18th green of the Lake Merced Golf Club after winning the Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic golf tournament Sunday, April 24, 2016, in Daly City, Calif. Nomura shot a 1-over-par 73 to finish at total 9-under-par. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

By Jeremy Harness

SAN FRANCISCO–When looking at the LPGA Tour schedule for the 2017 season, one event was visibly absent from the list. Unfortunately, it is the event that has been held in Northern California over the past three years.

The Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic debuted in 2004 and had been held at Lake Merced Golf Club in Daly City, with Lydia Ko taking the title, as well as the title in the very next year as well. However, the tournament, which has grown in popularity since its debut, has been shifted to another area.

In fact, it has gone to another continent, and at another time of the year as well.

This year, the tournament will be played in Taiwan, and will be called the Swinging Skirts LPGA Taiwan Championship, from Oct. 19 until Oct. 22.

Swinging Skirts, in fact, is a nonprofit organization based in Taiwan, and the group signed a three-year contract in 2013 to have the tournament played at Lake Merced. However, that deal ended last year.

In order for the tournament – which has customarily been played in April – to be kept local, a new sponsor was needed to step in and take over the reins, before the new LPGA tournament schedule was to be released.

However, the schedule was announced this past November, and no sponsor came through to keep the event at Lake Merced. As a result, it is heading to Asia.

According to reports, most Bay Area-based organizations have been very reluctant to sponsor an LPGA event, which does not bode well for the future of women’s pro golf in this region of the country.



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