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LPGA announces new South Korean event

Apr 1, 2018; Rancho Mirage, CA, USA; Ariya Jutanugarn reacts after her putt on the 18th hole during the final round of the ANA Inspiration women’s golf tournament at Mission Hills CC – Dinah Shore Tournament Course. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

The LPGA will add a new South Korean tournament next year, the U.S.-based tour announced Wednesday.

BMW Group Korea will be the sponsor of the $2 million event to be held at LPGA International Busan in October 2019 in Busan Metropolitan City. The LPGA-accredited facility is the tour’s first outside of the United States.

LPGA commissioner Mike Whan said in a statement, “We are so excited to partner with BMW, and to bring the LPGA to the wonderful city of Busan, Korea. This tournament has all the ingredients of a world class event — great brand, great city, great golf course, and the best female golfers on the planet.”

The new event will be the fourth golf tournament sponsored by BMW, joining the PGA Tour’s BMW Championship and the European Tour’s BMW PGA Championship and BMW International Open.

The LPGA’s South Korean swing this year, in October, will consist of the UL International Crown at Jack Nicklaus Golf Club Korea and the LPGA KEB Hana Bank Championship at Sky 72 Golf Club, both in Incheon.

Other international LPGA events are held in the Bahamas, Australia, Thailand, Singapore, Great Britain, Canada, France, Malaysia, China and Japan.

Last year, South Korean players won 15 of the 33 LPGA events, and South Koreans have four victories in 12 tournaments this year.

The current top 10 in the world rankings include five South Koreans: No. 1 Inbee Park, No. 4 Sung Hyun Park, No. 6 So Yeon Ryu, No. 7 Hye Jin Choi and No. 8 I.K. Kim. Those five are among the 20 South Koreans rated in the world’s top 50.

–Field Level Media

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