DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., Nov. 21, 2022 – In every week that noticed the announcement of a 2023 schedule that boasts a record-setting $101.4 million whole purse, the LPGA Tour celebrated a 2022 season that noticed 11 Rolex First-Time Winners, quite a few purse will increase and the continued progress of the world’s longest-running ladies’s skilled sports activities group.
Lydia Ko recorded a clear sweep of the season’s main awards, beginning together with her win on the CME Group Tour Championship and incomes the $2 million winner’s test, the most important single prize within the historical past of girls’s golf. She additionally earned Rolex Participant of the 12 months honors, turning into the fifteenth totally different participant to win the award at the very least twice, and earned her second consecutive Vare Trophy for the season’s low scoring common at 68.988. She is the twelfth participant in LPGA Tour historical past to win the award in consecutive seasons and the fifteenth participant to win the trophy greater than as soon as. Her season-long scoring common is the second-lowest Vare Trophy-winning scoring common in Tour historical past, behind Annika Sorenstam’s 68.70 in 2002.
“This yr has been an unimaginable yr. I actually may by no means ask for extra to win so early within the season after which to have received in Korea after which win the final occasion of the yr,” stated Ko, who is because of be married in a couple of weeks. “I could not have drawn it up any higher. There was so many thrilling issues in my life that is been happening. Will probably be my final win as a single woman. So I wished to do that for my household. This has been one of the vital constant and stable years I’ve had.”
The annual LPGA Rolex Awards, held Thursday on the Ritz Carlton Naples, acknowledged one of the best and brightest stars and moments of the 2022 LPGA Tour season. Atthaya Thitikul, who took victories on the JTBC Traditional offered by Barbasol and the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship offered by P&G, and who was No. 1 within the Rolex Girls’s World Golf Rankings for 2 weeks in November, received the 2022 Louise Suggs Rookie of the 12 months award. Thitikul turned skilled in 2020 after a stellar newbie profession that noticed her develop into the youngest individual ever to win knowledgeable match on the 2017 Girls European Thailand Championship at 14 years, 4 months and 19 days. Previous to becoming a member of the LPGA Tour, Thitikul received the Race to Costa del Sol, Rookie of the 12 months and Participant of the 12 months honors in 2021 on the Girls European Tour.
Thitikul is the second consecutive participant from Thailand to earn Rookie of the 12 months honors and third total, becoming a member of Patty Tavatanakit (2021) and Moriya Jutanugarn (2013).
“It’s an honor to obtain the Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of the 12 months,” stated Thitikul in her acceptance speech. “I’m just a bit woman who all the time had a dream to compete on the LPGA Tour. However to be on this stage right here, in entrance of you guys, is a dream come true.”
Minjee Lee earned two elite honors throughout the 2022 season, highlighted by the Aon Danger Reward Problem and its $1 million prize. The competitors, which measured the efficiency of LPGA Tour and PGA TOUR golfers on a collection of holes throughout a number of tournaments, examined gamers’ means to research threat, make the most of data-driven insights to determine alternatives and maximize efficiency within the moments that matter most. Lee joined PGA TOUR winner Scottie Scheffler in taking the Aon title, with each gamers receiving equal prize cash.
“Over the course of the yr there are Aon holes on each single occasion that we play,” stated Lee, who received twice on Tour in 2022, together with taking her second profession main title on the U.S. Girls’s Open offered by ProMedica. “So I feel to have the ability to play aggressively on these holes and to play with confidence and clearly be making the appropriate resolution on these holes, I feel it actually helped me to clearly win at Founders and in addition the U.S. Open this yr. I feel, yeah, it is actually unbelievable.”
Lee additionally received the 2022 Rolex ANNIKA Main Award, which acknowledges the participant who has essentially the most excellent file in all 5 main championships throughout the LPGA Tour season. Alongside together with her victory on the U.S. Girls’s Open, Lee tied for second on the KPMG Girls’s PGA Championship, was twelfth at The Chevron Championship, tied for forty third on the Amundi Evian Championship and tied for fourth on the AIG Girls’s Open.
Elizabeth Nagel obtained the Heather Farr Perseverance Award, which honors an LPGA participant who, by her exhausting work, dedication and love of the sport of golf, has demonstrated willpower, perseverance and spirit in fulfilling her objectives as a participant. In November 2012 whereas a junior at Michigan State College, Nagel was identified with thyroid most cancers. After present process surgical procedure, Nagel was deemed cancer-free however nonetheless offers with the each day points that come up from dwelling and not using a thyroid.
Established in 1994, the Heather Farr Perseverance Award celebrates the LPGA Tour participant who died on Nov. 20, 1993, following a four-and-a-half-year battle with breast most cancers. Earlier winners of this award embrace Heather Farr, Lorie Kane, Nancy Scranton, Brandi Burton, Kris Tschetter, Kim Williams, Beth Daniel, Se Ri Pak, Leta Lindley, Sophie Gustafson, Lisa Ferrero, Stephanie Meadow, Ariya Jutanugarn, Jessica Korda, Suzann Pettersen and Madelene Sagstrom.
“I symbolize the each day struggles all of us face. Mine are issues like adjusting to temperature and feeling somewhat bit foggy, however actually, I symbolize all the members of this Tour as a result of we’re all persevering by one thing. And our struggles don’t outline us, however they do present how sturdy we’re,” stated Nagel, who, like Farr, was identified with most cancers in her early 20s. “I’m honored to now additionally symbolize Heather as a result of I’m fortunate sufficient to nonetheless be right here and inform our tales and to comply with my tales on and off the golf course, one thing that was taken from her that we should always by no means take as a right.
My story could also be most cancers whenever you have a look at the quilt. However similar to each girl on this Tour, whenever you learn somewhat additional, the issues we overcome and are enduring on daily basis to play on the LPGA are really unimaginable. Our tales are all of energy and perseverance and spirit. I’ve by no means been extra proud to say I play on the LPGA.”
In Gee Chun obtained the 2022 Founders Award, which is given to an LPGA Member who, within the opinion of her enjoying friends, finest exemplifies the spirit, beliefs and values of the LPGA by her conduct and deeds. The award has been given out since 1986, with a listing of earlier recipients that features Kathy Whitworth, Nancy Lopez, Pat Bradley, Betsy King, Juli Inkster, Lorena Ochoa, Chella Choi, Juli Inkster, Karrie Webb, So Yeon Ryu, Brooke Henderson and Lydia Ko.
“To obtain any award as a participant on the LPGA is particular. However this one is much more particular as a result of it’s from the LPGA gamers who I’ve nice respect and admiration for. After I was younger, I wished to play on the LPGA and to be on TV. After my desires got here true, I’ve had a fantastic expertise on the Tour, whereas making good mates and assembly followers from everywhere in the world,” stated Chun, the 2022 KPMG Girls’s PGA Championship winner. “As a lot as I’m grateful, I feel I additionally maintain a way of duty as knowledgeable golfer. Sooner or later, I believed to myself that my phrases and actions have an affect on these round me. So I wished to indicate good power and optimistic ideas with as many individuals as I may. I need to proceed to share good power with extra folks on this second and sooner or later.”
LPGA Commissioner Mollie Marcoux Samaan chosen Volunteers of America nationwide president and CEO Mike King, who has spearheaded title sponsorship of the Tour’s cease in Dallas since 2015, because the recipient of the Commissioner’s Award. The award, launched in 1991, honors an individual or group that has contributed uniquely to the LPGA and its Members, furthered the reason for ladies’s golf, and possesses character and requirements of the best order. Previous recipients embrace KPMG, Jamie Farr, Rolex, the J.M. Smucker Firm, Golf Channel and Judy Rankin.
“(Thanks) to everybody who’s concerned indirectly with the LPGA. Your collective efforts on behalf of girls’s fairness on the planet really injects extra optimistic power and love again into the world,” stated King, who accepted his award through video after testing optimistic for Covid-19 earlier within the week. “This actually makes the world a greater place. That’s the actual affect that’s had right here. That’s the true mission of the LPGA and Volunteers of America and we’re each aligned in that mission – actually making the world a greater place. I actually imagine that’s the ultimate outcome and that’s the collective outcome.”
Carol Preisinger, an LPGA Grasp Skilled and Lead Instructing Skilled at The Landings Membership in Savannah, Ga., was honored because the recipient of the 2022 Ellen Griffin Rolex Award, which honors the best-known girl golf instructor in U.S. historical past. The award acknowledges a person, male or feminine, who has made a significant contribution to the educating of golf and who has demonstrated by educating Griffin’s spirit, love and dedication to the golf pupil, educating abilities and sport of golf. Preisinger opened her speech with a remembrance of the one lesson she obtained from Griffin whereas a student-athlete on the College of Georgia.
“She made time for me. She didn’t know who I used to be, however she made time for me. And to make time is to craft, to construct, to create, to develop into,” stated Preisinger. “And who knew I might be standing right here tonight, turning into half the instructor Ellen Griffin was and to be right here in her honor.”
The Rolex LPGA Awards additionally celebrated Rolex First-Time Winners Ashleigh Buhai (AIG Girls’s Open), Gemma Dryburgh (TOTO Japan Traditional), Ayaka Furue (Belief Golf Girls’s Scottish Open), Nanna Koerstz Madsen (Honda LPGA Thailand), Jennifer Kupcho (The Chevron Championship), Andrea Lee (Portland Traditional), Leona Maguire (LPGA Drive On Championship at Crown Colony), Paula Reto (CP Girls’s Open), Jodi Ewart Shadoff (LPGA MEDIHEAL Championship), Maja Stark (ISPS Handa World Invitational offered by AVIV Clinics) and Thitikul (JTBC Traditional offered by Barbasol). This season’s 11 whole Rolex First-Time Winners joins the 1995 season for essentially the most first-time winners in a single season.
On Friday, the LPGA Tour introduced its 2023 schedule will comprise 33 official occasions, with a complete official prize fund of $101.4 million, together with the biennial playings of the Solheim Cup and the Hanwha LIFEPLUS Worldwide Crown.