LPGA introduces season points race for $1 million
Mexico: The LPGA Tour announced a new season-long points race on Wednesday that will feature a $1 million (735,000 euros) payoff at the season-ending Tour Championship.
The inaugural "Race to the CME Globe" begins later this month at the season-opening Bahamas LPGA Classic and runs to the Lorena Ochoa Invitational in Mexico in November.
The top 72 players in the points standings, plus any event winners not otherwise qualified, will advance to the $2 million CME Group Tour Championship, where points will be reset to ensure the season champion is decided at the final tournament.
Points from the Tour Championship will be added to the season points to determine the winner of the $1 million bonus prize, giving the season-long top performers an edge but no guarantee of taking the largest payoff in women`s golf.
"I was so honored to win the LPGA money title in 2013 and now I have something even bigger to play for as I look to make it two in a row," said world number one Park In-bee of South Korea. "Nothing is guaranteed with this new system so this new race is going to make everyone on our tour work a little bit harder because the payoff is so big."
The five LPGA major championships will carry 25 percent more point values than typical tour events, major winners taking 625 points compared to 500 for other events. Only LPGA Tour members accumulate points.
Points will be awarded to all players who make the cut at LPGA events. In events with no cut, points will go to the top 40 and level. At the Ochoa Invitational, points go to the top 20 and level.
"The addition of this concept fundamentally connects every event on our tour and promises big things in 2014 and beyond," said LPGA Tour commissioner Michael Whan. "The stakes have risen dramatically and the excitement level goes up for our players and each of our tournaments."