DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., Nov. 26, 2012 – Solheim Cup stars Melissa Reid and Christina Kim highlight a field of 122 players hoping to earn a spot on the 2013 LPGA Tour at this week’s LPGA Final Qualifying Tournament. The Champions and Legends courses at LPGA International in Daytona Beach, Florida play host to the five-round tournament that begins Wednesday.
The top-20 qualifiers on Sunday will earn Category 12 status on the 2013 Tour while players who finish 21st through 45 and ties will earn membership in Category 17. The final stage will cut to the low 70 players and ties after 72 holes. Those players making the cut will compete in the final round on the Champions Course.
Qualifiers from Stages I and II will be joined at the final stage of Q-school by current LPGA Tour members attempting to improve their status for 2013, along with players finishing Nos. 11-20 on the 2012 Symetra Tour money list (who do not already have LPGA status).
Headlining this year's field will be:
- Four-time LET winner and 2011 European Solheim Cup Team member Melissa Reid of Derby, England
- Two-time LPGA Tour winner and three-time U.S. Solheim Cup Team member Christina Kim
- Chattanooga, Tenn. native and U.S. Curtis Cup Team member Brooke Pancake, who won the NCAA National Championship with her University of Alabama squad in 2012 and was individual runner-up
- No. 19 in the Rolex Women’s World Golf Rankings and current JLPGA member Chie Arimura of Kumamoto, Japan
- No. 50 in the Rolex Rankings Caroline Masson of Gladbeck, Germany who won the 2012 South African Women’s Open on the LET
Medalists of the first two qualifying stages hope to continue their march through the final stage. They are Bangkok, Thailand native Moriya Jutanugarn, who won First Stage in September at LPGA International and former University of South Carolina standout Katie Burnett of Brunswick, Ga., who won Second Stage by six strokes at Plantation Golf & Country Club in Venice, Fla.
Burnett is a current member of the Symetra Tour and is one of the 71 Symetra Tour members in the field. A total of five amateurs are in the tournament field.
This year's field is well represented on a global scale and is comprised of players from 25 countries. Behind the U.S. which has 66 players, South Korea and Canada bring the most players to the event with eight contestants respectively, followed by France and Japan with five players each.
Ten different European countries will be represented this week, while three South American players from Chile, Ecuador and Brazil will be playing for a spot on the LPGA Tour next year. Of players in the event from the United States, Florida has the most contestants with 14 players, followed by nine players from California.
The top 20 players at the conclusion of the event will earn Priority in Category 12. Players finishing in the 21st-45th spots will earn Priority in Category 17. In the event of a tie for 20th place, the 20th position will be determined by a playoff. All other ties will be broken on the basis of the lowest, most recent round at the Final Qualifying Tournament.
To follow scores of these and other contestants throughout the week, visit LPGA.com.