With the season’s fourth Major up for grabs at Royal Lytham and St Annes this weekend, here are five things you need to know about the 2018 Ricoh Women’s British Open.
By Charlotte Hope
Fourth Time Lucky for Lancashire
This weekend’s Ricoh Women’s British Open will mark the fourth time that the Major has been held at Lancashire club, Royal Lytham and St Annes, since becoming a Major on the LPGA Tour and Ladies European Tour in 2001.
The club is also part of the rota for The Open Championship, with notable past winners including Bobby Jones in 1926, Gary Player in 1974, Seve Ballesteros in 1979 and 1988, and Ernie Els in 2012.
Strongest Field in History
Nineteen out of the current top twenty on the Rolex World Ranking will be part of the 144-strong field in this year’s Ricoh Women’s British Open. Fresh from her victory at last week’s Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open, World number one and 2018 US Open Champion one Ariya Jutanugarn will look to repeat her 2016 success, whilst last year’s winner In-Kyung Kim will look to defend her title this weekend.
2015 winner, Inbee Park, will also make an appearance alongside all of the year’s Major winners. Pernilla Lindberg, the 2018 ANA Inspiration winner, and Sung Hyun Park, the 2018 KPMG Women’s PGA Champion, are joined by a host of former champions including Mo Martin, Yani Tseng, Karrie Webb and local favourite and 2009 Champion, Catriona Matthew.
Charley Hull is the top-ranked British player in the field at No.27 in the world. Her Major form in 2018 will lead to high hopes for spectators looking for a home player to follow in Matthew’s footsteps at Lytham having finished in the top 10 in all three of the Majors this year.
Jutanugarn starts her first round at 11.54am on Thursday morning and will be playing with England’s Georgia Hall and Korea’s In Gee Chun. Kim is out two groups later at 12.16pm alongside home favourite Charley Hull and Japan’s Eri Okayama.
2018 Rolex ANNIKA Major Award
This weekend’s winner will be eligible to win the 2018 Rolex ANNIKA Major Award. The prestigious award is presented to the player with the season’s most outstanding Major championship performance. Decided following the season’s final Major, The Evian Championship, players in the running this year are Pernilla Lindberg, Ariya Jutanugarn, and Sung Hyun Park. Past winners include Michelle Wie, Inbee Park, Lydia Ko, and So Yeon Ryu.
Event Week Schedule
Gates open for spectators from 6am on Thursday, with the first round of the Championship kicking off at 6.30am. Tee times start at 6.30am on Friday, and 7am on Saturday and Sunday. You can find out Thursday’s pairings here.
Spectator Village & Ricoh Golf Zone
For when you need to take a break from the links, the Spectator Village has a number of food and beverage options and dedicated kids play area, plus there’s a giant TV screen to make sure that you don’t miss any of the golf.
Don’t forget to also check out the Ricoh Golf Zone with lots of different family activities including golf lessons, a chipping challenge, and putting green.
Image credit: www.ricohwomensbritishopen.com
You can find out more information about the Ricoh Women’s British Open, including ticketing information, getting there, and parking, by visiting www.ricohwomensbritishopen.com.
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