Epson Tour Championship reveals 10 ladies to earn LPGA tour card4 min read

The Epson Tour is the official qualifying tour of the LPGA. Just like the Korn Ferry Tour for the PGA Tour, they assist ladies get to the following degree.

This season, there’s a ‘Race for the Card’ the place the top-10 cash winners earn LPGA Tour memberships. What began out as three gamers after which 5, since 2008, the highest 10 gamers have superior to the following degree. During the last 23 years, the Epson Tour has despatched 182 gamers to the LPGA.

Gamers ranked Nos. 11-35 are awarded an exemption into the LPGA Q-series because the Seiko Epson Company can pay their entry charges.

To shut out their season, the younger ladies are in Daytona Seaside, Fla., for the Epson Tour Championship.

Gabriela Ruffels, Natasha Andrea Oon and Jiwon Jeon are the highest three on the ‘Race for the Card’ checklist and have clinched their LPGA playing cards. That left seven spots up for grabs on Sunday.

Epson Tour Championship

Auston Kim steamrolled her competitors to win her first Epson Tour title and the season finale by two strokes. She went 71-64-65-65 to complete at 23-under. This victory earned her $37,500 which places her No. 3 on the cash checklist at $119,882, securing her LPGA card.

The previous Vanderbilt Commodore was No. 15 coming into this occasion and now she has full LPGA standing for subsequent season.

Minji Kang jumped from No. 7 to No. 5 after a T4 end. Jeon fell from No. 3 to No. 4 since Kim gained. Agathe Laisne missed the minimize, however her winnings saved her inside the highest 10 at No. 6.

9 of the ten ladies who earned their playing cards on Sunday recorded over $100,000 in earnings on the season.

Right here is the Race to the Card high 10 and their earnings:

  1. Gabriela Ruffels ($159,926)
  2. Natasha Andrea Oon ($149,670)
  3. Auston Kim ($119,882)
  4. Jiwon Jeon ($115,772)
  5. Minji Kang ($112,342)
  6. Agathe Laisne ($109,060)
  7. Jenny Coleman ($106,137)
  8. Roberta Liti ($103,913)
  9. Isabella Fierro ($103,290)
  10. Kristen Gillman ($95,701)

Rising the Girls’s Recreation

Jody Brothers, the brand new Epson Tour chief enterprise and operations officer has been on the job since January. Previous to taking this job, Brothers served because the Vice President of Enterprise Growth and held varied management roles throughout his 16 years with the PGA Tour.

In his first 9 months on the job, Brothers has elevated a lot with the Epson Tour, together with growing the prize cash awarded at sure occasions.

He has been bullish about the way forward for the Epson Tour as a result of he’s keen about rising the ladies’s recreation.

Whether or not it’s bigger purses or ensuring the tour supplies a strong proving floor for girls making an attempt to play golf for a dwelling, they’re on target.

Sunday was the primary time he witnessed these younger ladies’s arduous work repay to attain their desires. Brothers stated that he can be holding again tears as he introduced these 10 names, in an unique with Taking part in By way of.

“It’s most likely the best factor I’ve skilled in my almost 40 years within the golf enterprise,” Brothers stated. “To see it culminate over a whole season, to get to know the athletes — I’m pleased with them as a result of I see how arduous they labored. They achieved a lifelong dream of enjoying on the LPGA, and for some, it’ll be returning to the LPGA.”

Tuscaloosa News, Epson Tour, Amelia Garvey

Gary Cosby Jr.-Tuscaloosa Information / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Epson Tour is likely one of the solely nationwide feminine developmental excursions. There are regional mini-tours, however this tour has the biggest impression altering younger ladies’s lives.

“I feel it checks them and it offers the athletes a chance to make sufficient cash to maintain their progress towards the final word aim of enjoying on the LPGA,” he stated. “I feel the Epson Tour is a crucial step for some athletes to have the ability to play on the subsequent degree.”

He acknowledged that some gamers come out of school prepared for the LPGA, itemizing Rose Zhang for instance. Nonetheless, there are much more women who want time to regulate to enjoying at this degree. It’s completely different enjoying in entrance of crowds with cameras on them consistently, together with every part else that comes with skilled golf.

“We attempt to simulate the LPGA expertise as a lot as doable and that’s why I feel it’s such an necessary tour,” Brothers stated.

The ladies’s recreation is shifting in the precise path and the Epson Tour has a big hand in that.

Savannah Leigh Richardson is a golf employees author for SB Nation’s Taking part in By way of. You possibly can observe her on Twitter @SportsGirlSL and Instagram @savannah_leigh_sports for extra golf protection. Remember to take a look at @_PlayingThrough too.

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