SBD/Issue 37/Leagues & Governing Bodies

LPGA, Wegmans Extend Deal For LPGA Championship Near Rochester

Wegmans Increases The Purse For The LPGA
Championship To $2.5M For '11, Up $250,000

The LPGA and Wegmans Food Markets announced that "they’ve agreed to stage the Wegmans LPGA Championship -- one of the tour’s four major tournaments -- for two more years at Locust Hill Country Club" outside of Rochester, N.Y., according to Jeff DiVeronica of the ROCHESTER DEMOCRAT & CHRONICLE. The grocery store chain has increased the purse for the event, scheduled for June 23-26 next year, to $2.5M, up $250,000 from this season. Only the U.S. Women's Open and Evian Masters, both $3.25M, "had larger payouts" this year. Wegmans assumed the title sponsorship "last year after McDonald’s ended its 16-year sponsorship and the LPGA struggled to find a replacement." Tournament officials "pitched a six-year deal to host the event but the LPGA agreed on a two-year extension" (ROCHESTER DEMOCRAT & CHRONICLE, 10/30).

EVERY SEASON, TURN, TURN, TURN: In New York, John Pitarresi reported the PGA Tour and Turning Stone Resort on Friday announced that the event in Verona, N.Y., "will not return in 2011." Oneida Indian Nation CEO Ray Halbritter said that the "decision not to extend the Nation’s contract with the PGA Tour was based strictly on the inability to secure a preferred date." Halbritter: "We were given some dates that were possible, but those dates were not within the parameters that had been given to the PGA." Pitarresi noted the Turning Stone Resort Championship, played in October as part of the Tour's Fall Series "in its first three years, was troubled by severe weather, including cold, rain and hail in 2008 and 2009." It was held Aug. 5-8 this year, "opposite the Bridgestone Invitational, which involved the top players on Tour." Halbritter said that one date the Tour offered was "opposite the British Open, but he couldn’t recall the other." The event had been asking for a "date two weeks before or two weeks after a major tournament" (Utica OBSERVER-DISPATCH, 10/30). Golf Channel's Scott Walker said, "The event was well received by the players and provided a launching pad for past winners ... but the resort wanted its own date in the FedExCup schedule" ("Golf Central," Golf Channel, 10/29).

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