LPGA announces 2017 schedule, U.S. Women's Open will feature largest purse ever
The LPGA will feature a slightly busier schedule in 2017. But its total prize pool will get a big bump, thanks in large part to a hefty raise at the U.S. Women's Open.
On Wednesday, the LPGA released details of the changes for next year. There will be 35 official events (up from 34 in 2016), including the Solheim Cup at Des Moines Golf & Country Club in August, and the total amount of prize money is up to $67.35 million from $63 million this past season.
Purses at four of the five majors increased, but none more so than the U.S. Women's Open. The USGA added $500,000 to the pot, raising it to $5 million, the largest purse in LPGA history. The 2017 tournament will be played July 10-16 at Trump National Bedminster.
Three U.S. events (Yokohama Tire LPGA Classic, Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic, and Coates Golf Championship) will not be on the schedule in 2017. However, four new tournaments (Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Ladies Open, McKayson New Zealand Women’s Open, Indy Women in Tech, and Thornberry Creek Classic) have been added. New Zealand citizen and World No. 1 Lydia Ko, was on hand for the announcement of the New Zealand Open earlier this month.
One other notable schedule tweak involves the Lorena Ochoa Invitational. The event will turn into a 64-player match play event and will be played in May instead of November. This will be the first match play tournament on the LPGA since 2012.
“I’m excited about the opportunities our 2017 tournament schedule provides to our players with increased purses, tremendous television exposure and our biggest events elevating to new heights,” said Mike Whan, who is entering his eighth year as LPGA Commissioner, in a statement. “While we receive credit for being a global tour, we’re just as proud that we’ve added more events in North America since 2011 then we have abroad. It’s an exciting time for our organization and we cannot wait to start another great season in January.”