Some good news for the LPGA.
The tour announced Tuesday that it’s adding a new event, the Acapulco LPGA Classic in Mexico.
While it may not address the concerns of LPGA players wanting more United States’ based events, it’s a new playing opportunity, a plus in this difficult economic environment. The LPGA struck a two-year deal with Sports Management Group to hold the event beginning next year at Tres Vidas Golf Club on the shores of the Pacific Ocean in Acapulco. It’s scheduled as a full-field, 72-hole tournament with a $1.3 million purse.
The rise of Mexico’s Lorena Ochoa has significantly impacted the schedule. It’s the fourth event in Mexico added to the LPGA schedule since she joined the tour, though the Lorena Ochoa Invitational is the only other Mexican event committed to the 2010 schedule. Mexico’s MasterCard Classic and Corona Championship are among 15 events on the ’09 schedule in negotiations for renewal for next year. The new Acapulco event is among 14 events secured for next year.
There are 28 official events on this year’s schedule, down from 34 last year and 38 a decade ago.
“We’ve lost half a dozen tournaments this year for a variety of reasons, primarily due to the dramatic effect that the recession has had on the real estate, tourism and financial sectors,” LPGA acting commissioner Marty Evans said in a statement. “However, we are confident that the tournaments and title sponsors who have reaped the benefits of working with the LPGA in the past will continue to realize the value that we bring to their businesses and communities.”