I have been home for about 6 weeks now and so glad to have some time off. Traveling really wore me out! I have been catching up with friends and playing a little bit of golf. My season, unfortunately is over. There are two more events on the LET schedule, but highly unlikely that I will get into them. The one in India is only reserved for 45 LET members and the Dubai event is one of the best women’s events of the year, so basically everyone wants to play in that one. My rookie status just isn’t great enough to get into Dubai. After thinking about my year, I thought it was pretty poor in terms of my golf scores, but in terms of experience, my best year ever. To top it off I qualified for the Open, which was a huge goal of mine.
My plan and preparation is to go back to LET Final Stage Q-school. This starts January 15th and will be held at the same location as last year, La Manga, in southern Spain. I feel very confident in participating in the qualifier again and I hope to play in as many events out there as I can next year. This year I played a mere 10 events when I could have played in 17 out of the 26. Cost of traveling, qualifying for the US Open, and just knowledge factored into how many events I played. After meeting some people and getting more acquainted with people I already knew out there I don’t see any problem with me being able to stay over there more next year. I really love the LET and being a part of the tour. There are a lot of great competitors out there and I know the experience really helped my game this year.
The past couple of weeks I have been playing some with Rebecca Durham. She and I won the high school state championship together when I was a senior and she was a freshman. She just graduated from Stanford and will be playing in the Final Stage of LPGA Q-school the first week of December. She will also be playing in the LET Q-school in Spain in January. I wish her the best and looking forward to having some competition with her in the off-season to prepare for Q-school. Please watch out for her!
I am really happy that I already have a year of the LET under my belt, several of my friends that played on the LPGA this year are taking their golf play to Europe as well. They are phenomenal players, but unfortunately have lost status on the LPGA or are not happy with the amount of starts they are getting. Just to give you an idea, both of them were rookies on the LPGA and only were able to play in 10 events.
I am sorry but that is pretty sad that there are so few events for new players to participate in on the LPGA. I understand the economy is not great, but last week 33 players competed in the Lorena Ochoa Invitational and this week there are 66 players in the Titleholders event. Yes, these are special events, but at the same time I feel as if there should be more players allowed to play and less limited field events. I don’t know why it is getting to this.. Regardless, I think this is extremely affecting the future of women’s golf in the US. I don’t see how letting 20-50 more players into the field makes the tournament that much more expensive. Where is the justice for the future players? Paying $5,000 for an entry fee to attend LPGA Q-school to play in only 10 events for the following year does not seem like a fair play to me. I would like to attend LPGA Q-school next year, but I feel like it depends on how they plan to take care of rookies. How is being able to play in less than half events on the schedule fair?
Someone mentioned to me that in the past 4 years only 5 players have moved out of the top 50 on the LPGA. I have not researched to see how factual this is, but if you are in the top 50 on the LPGA, in the business world that’s what one would call job security. You are able to play in 90% of the events, some of which have no cut, so therefore just showing up puts you ahead on the money list. I know I keep going on and on about this, but I want my friends to understand what is really happening. This is one of the reasons why I am playing in Europe, and I will not be surprised if more Americans tend to go overseas.
The Japanese Tour is another tour that I would like to consider at some point if I can ever figure out the website! In 2011 they had 34 events scheduled with $36million in prize money. In 2010 the LPGA had 24 events with $32million in prize money. The LET in 2010 had 25 events with a prize fund of around $15million (all of this I received from Wikipedia). According to people I have spoken to about the Japanese Tour is that it is very expensive to go to Q-school and you must pay for a translator while you are there. I have tried to check out the website, but unfortunately it is all in Japanese! My point is not to bash the LPGA, of course I want to eventually be a part of that tour and represent my country, but what I question myself is how is it going to happen when you have a very small option to compete?
Becoming a great player can take some time and experience. I plan to play a full schedule on the LET next year. Gain some more experience and confidence out there and be fully prepared to go to LPGA Q-school next year, but only as long as I keep my LET card. If I can’t keep my LET card, then what is the point of trying to participate on the LPGA?
On a lighter note, I am looking forward to my favorite holiday next week: Thanksgiving. My mom and I are hosting around 25 people at our house for the day. I am hoping it will be a great day because we are planning on eating out on our porch outside. I have been busy at home trying to clean up the house. Last weekend we freshly painted some outside doors and I have a little bit of pressure washing and yard work to do early next week. I really enjoy doing these kinds of things, it is sort of a hobby for me.
I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving and I would like to say that I am thankful for all of my friends and family for their continued support and for our troops for keeping our country safe. I pray that they come home safely and SOON!