LPGA unveils consolidated schedule for 2010
After exhausting all potential financial avenues, the LPGA managed to come up with just 23 full-field events for the 2010 season. The current number — which is down from 27 last season — only adds to the general consensus that former tour commissioner Carolyn Bivens was one of the biggest factors in the new schedule.
Golf World’s Ron Sirak reported that “a mix of a bad economy and bad blood among tournament owners left over the Carolyn Bivens commissionership. Many of the tournaments acting commissioner Marty Evans was able to lure back returned at lower purses.”
Bivens’ polarizing personality left the tour between a rock and a hard place, forcing former acting tour commissioner Marty Evans to play fireman and put out the flames. In the end, I guess 23 tournaments isn’t such a bad thing. It just means players will be playing more golf this season — something that should be a big positive for tournament officials. However, if there’s one thing that’s going to hurt the tour this year, it’s the news regarding long layoff between the first event of the season and the first event on U.S. soil.
Fans of the LPGA based here in the States won’t get the chance to see the women play until the last week of March. That means there’s more than a full month between the Honda LPGA Championship in Thailand and the J Classic in La Costa, Calif.
While the tour may be worrying about the money coming in, they do have other aspects to look forward to. Namely, Michelle Wie, who appears to be playing at the top of her game at the moment. Assuming she can consistently perform at a high level with the likes of Paula Creamer, Morgan Pressel and Lorena Ochoa, there’s no reason why the tour can’t turn this situation into a financial springboard for 2011.