Interview with Alexandra Armas, Executive Director of the Ladies European Tour…

Alexandra addresses the media at a press conference announcing the venue for The 2011 Solheim Cup

What are you most looking forward to this year and why?

It’s going to have to be The Solheim Cup. That is up there with the British Open returning to St Andrews. There is going to be a really big buzz about it and I know a lot of the players are really looking forward to it. The crowds are in for an absolutely amazing week at The Solheim Cup, which is such a unique tournament. There is really nothing like it. The atmosphere of team work, the enormous galleries… it’s the most exciting event in women’s team competition.

What do you think will be the most exciting stories in 2007?

Europe winning The Solheim Cup! (I’m just joking). Obviously The Solheim Cup will provide many interesting story lines. I’m sure the European team are going to battle to recover the Cup and I hope that will receive a lot of attention. There will be new winners, players from different nations and I’m sure there will be some debate about the women coming to St Andrews and the R&A. There could be more discussion about whether Michelle Wie will play in men’s events and how women’s golf has taken off.

Why do you think that women’s golf is receiving more attention now than in previous years?

I think that Annika has shown such commitment to the game and has done a lot for women’s golf. She has demonstrated the need for fitness and it’s become very competitive. The skill level has increased and that’s had an effect that is filtering through the pro ranks and therefore the amateur ranks. Now, when players turn professional they are ready to compete at the highest level and that is exciting to watch.

How happy are the Tour’s sponsors with its progression?

All of the sponsors have been really positive and our existing sponsors all want to continue their involvement with the Ladies European Tour. They are showing their commitment in a number of ways, be it through the Tour itself or through player sponsorships.

Which companies are involved with the LET and how do they support the Tour?

We have numerous companies involved from sponsors such as ecco, our shoes provider, to New Star Asset Management, who sponsor the Tour’s official money list, to Banque Barings Brothers Sturdza, who sponsor The 18 Finest competition. We also have a number of deals with companies such as Abacus who supply clothing, Antiqualha who supply trophies and so we are seeing more and more companies becoming involved with women’s golf generally.