The 30 strong contingent of Ladies European Tour Members in this week’s U.S. Women’s Open Conducted by the USGA will be looking to contend for a Major title over the weekend at CordeValle in San Martin, California.
The third of five women’s Major Championships in 2016, the U.S. Women’s Open offers a massive prize fund of $4,500,000, which is the biggest purse in women’s golf and there is sure to be a great battle over the challenging 6,752 yard, par 72 layout, which is hosting the championship for the first time.
All 30 of the LET Members competing this week have shown some great form in 2016.
Native Californian Beth Allen (above), who leads the LET Order of Merit, recorded a third place finish at the Buick Championship in China and tied for fourth in the ISPS HANDA Women’s Australian Open.
Hannah Burke from England (below) started the year with a tie for 24th in New Zealand and earned a late call-up as the first reserve from the European Sectional Qualifier at The Buckinghamshire.
Ssu-Chia Cheng, from Chinese Taipei, had a season best tie for fifth at the RACV Ladies Masters in February. Meanwhile, Spanish Solheim Cup star Carlota Ciganda recently finished second at the Meijer LPGA Classic for Simply Give and tied for 10th in the Cambia Portland Classic. LET Rookie Olivia Cowan from Germany (below right) will make her event debut after coming through European Sectional Qualifying. After earning three titles on the LET Access Series in 2015, she enjoyed a fantastic start to her career on the LET with a tie for 10th in New Zealand. Valentine Derrey from France also qualified at The Buckinghamshire and began her season with a tie for 10th place at the ISPS HANDA New Zealand Women’s Open.
China’s Shanshan Feng is always a threat and her standout performance so far in 2016 was a play-off victory at home in the Buick Championship. Sandra Gal from Germany recently posted a season-best tie for fourth in the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G. England’s Charley Hull will be looking to go one better after her runner-up place in the ANA Inspiration, which was the season’s first Major Championship. Paula Hurtado from Colombia has qualified for her US Women’s Open debut. Meanwhile, French Solheim Cup star Karine Icher will be targeting her first Major title after a season-best of third in the ShopRite LPGA Classic.
Nicole Broch Larsen from Denmark and Sweden’s Camilla Lennarth both recorded season-best ties for third in the RACV Ladies Masters, while fellow Scandinavian Pernilla Lindberg from Sweden will be looking to improve on a season-best tie for 10th at the LOTTE Championship presented by HERSHEY. Caroline Masson from Germany finished tied for sixth in the season’s first Major: the ANA Inspiration. Catriona Matthew of Scotland has had a consistent year highlighted by her fourth place finish in the Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic.
Maria McBride from Sweden will be looking to improve on her season-best tie for 67th, while Azahara Muñoz of Spain has recorded two top 10 finishes on the LPGA this season. Brazilian Miriam Nagl’s season includes a tie for 10th in the LET’s season-opening ISPS HANDA New Zealand Women’s Open. Frenchwoman Gwladys Nocera began the year with a tie for 24th in New Zealand while fellow European Solheim Cup player Anna Nordqvist of Sweden (below) recorded her sixth victory at the recent ShopRite LPGA Classic presented by Acer.
Australian Su Oh finished second at the Kingsmill Championship, while South African Lee-Anne Pace was second at the Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic Presented by CTBC. Suzann Pettersen from Norway has posted four top 10s this season, including third at the Cambia Portland Classic. Sophia Popov from Germany has played on the Symetra Tour in the USA so far this season, with her best result second at the Chico’s Patty Berg Memorial.
Pamela Pretswell from Scotland (above) was a qualifier from Europe who is in a rich vein of form after a tie for second at the Tipsport Golf Masters in the Czech Republic. Beatriz Recari from Spain is joined in the field by fellow former Solheim Cup player Melissa Reid from England, who tied for eighth in the Buick Championship. Jade Schaeffer from France came through European Sectional Qualifying to make her championship debut in California. Meanwhile, South African Ashleigh Simon (below) will be looking to improve on her season-best tie for 18th at the RACV Ladies Masters in Australia.
They are part of a field of competitors including the 2015 champion In Gee Chun, who won in 2015 at Lancaster Country Club. She made birdie on three of her last four holes to card a final round 66 and finish at eight-under par, one stroke ahead of fellow Korean Amy Yang.
CordeValle, nestled in the rolling foothills just south of San Jose, is hosting the 71st U.S. Women’s Open Championship. This will be the third time the U.S. Women’s Open has been conducted in California and the first in more than three decades. The championship was held at San Diego Country Club in Chula Vista in 1964, and Sacramento’s Del Paso Country Club hosted the event in 1982. CordeValle has hosted top tier championships in years prior, including the PGA Tour’s Frys.com Open from 2010-2013, as well as the 2011 and 2015 PGA Cups, and the U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur Championship in 2013.