2020, it’s the start of an Olympic year

Here we go! A new season begins for the international golf champions (the 70th for the LPGA Tour!) A season a little different from the others, because in addition to the 5 Major championships, the Olympic Games add an extra touch of spice and adrenaline.
This year’s The Evian Championship, held from 23 to 26 July will give an indication, two weeks before the departure for Japan (5-8 August).

The US Tour players are back on the course this Thursday with the 1st round of the Diamonds Resorts Tournament of Champions in Florida, an event that brings together LPGA tournament winners from the past 2 years. And there’s no mistaking the signs. The goal of the Olympic Games and well and truly on the players’ minds. Korea’s Inbee Park, who is proud of her gold medal won at the Rio Games in 2016, is already ready in the starting blocks. She admits that the Olympic Games are her priority. But as things currently stand, Inbee Park is not sure to qualify. The verdict will be known on 29 June after the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship. The Top 15 will be eligible to compete, with no more than 4 players per country. And Park, the world n°16, is currently “only” the 6th top Korean!

Her compatriots are “going all out".
Jin Young Ko is no doubt in a less risky position, at the top of the world rankings after a staggering 2019. Aged 24, the player who received the Rolex Rookie of the Year title in 2018, got her crown back thanks to her win at The Evian Championship. A 2nd Major championship to add to 2019 victories, in addition to the ANA Inspiration.
The stats speak for themselves: 4 wins including 2 Majors, 12 Top 10 finishes, the highest scoring average (69.06), world n°1, n°1 on the Money List...
The young Korean played 114 bogey-free holes in succession, beating Tiger Wood’s record by 4 holes.
And that’s not all! Rolex Player of the Year 2019, she received the Rolex Annika Major Award that rewards the top-performing player in the Majors, and was also crowned player of the year 2019 by the Golf Writers Association of America.

The players just behind her in the world rankings, in particular Sung Hyun Park and Nelly Korda, respectively n°2 and n°3, will have a tough job taking the top spot from her.

For Céline Boutier, currently ranked n°57 in the world, getting even closer to this elite group and representing France in the Olympic Games will do doubt be her main goals this season. The French number 1, who is based Texas, already embarked along this path in 2019  with an LPGA Tour win in Australia, a 5th place in the US Women's Open, 6th at British Women's Open and full marks at the Solheim Cup (4 points in 4 matches) to finish in the Top 30 on the US Money List.

 

Another French player in the spotlight is an amateur, and for the moment, the top amateur! Thanks to a fantastic season, Pauline Roussin-Bouchard is the world’s leading amateur. The first French player since Céline Boutier.  A wonderful sign for the player who is the perfect embodiment of the values of The Evian Championship Galaxy, who after competing in the Haribo Kids Cup (U12), the Evian Juniors Cup (U14), the Evian U18, won her place for the 2019 Evian Championship by finishing 2nd in the Jabra Ladies Open/European Qualifiers.

 

Eyes are also on another ambassador of The Evian Championship's ecosystem, Albane Valenzuela. The brilliant Swiss amateur has chosen to write a new chapter in her golfing career by turning pro after receiving LPGA Tour status for 2020.

2020 definitely promises to be a joyful and thrilling year with more than 50 tournaments on both sides of the Atlantic. Indeed, the agreement signed between the LET and LPGA, which will run the tour as a 50-50 joint venture, is a contributing factor. This will give a new breath of life to the European Tour which should schedule over 20 events this year, with a sponsored order of merit, the “Race to Costa del Sol”.

 

2020 Calendar - Major championships and leading events:

 

2 - 5 April
ANA Inspiration 
Mission Hills CC, Rancho Mirage, California – USA

 

4 - 7 June 
U.S. Women’s Open 
Champions Golf Course, Houston, Texas – USA

 

25 -28 June 
KPMG Women’s PGA Championship 
Aronimink C, Newtown Square, Pennsylvania- USA

 

23 - 26 July
The Evian Championship 
Evian Resort GC, Evian-les-Bains – France

 

5 - 8 August 
Olympic Games 
Kasumigaseki CC, Tokyo – Japan

 

20 - 23 August 
AIG Women’s British Open 
Royal Troon GC, Troon – Scotland

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