FRENCH LICK, Ind. –
The final round of the LPGA Legends Championship was impacted by weather
for the second straight year Sunday, and this time it prevented a ball
from being struck.
problems, Legends officials scheduled a 7:30 a.m. start of play off both
the Nos. 1 and 10 tees, but a night of rain left the course too wet for
play to begin on Sunday morning. Consideration was given to starting
play five hours later, perhaps in a shotgun format, but the rain became
stronger and fog made visibility difficult. A car accident on the road
leading in to the course also was a factor in the decision to shorten
the tournament to 36 holes.
That meant that
Laurie Rinker, the leader after Saturday’s second round, was declared
the champion and the winner of the $60,000 first-place check. She
accepted the trophy to a standing ovation in the Dye Course pavilion and
had words of wisdom for her brother Lee, a golf professional who will be
playing in the Senior PGA Championship on the course next May.
"I texted my brother a picture of the trophy because he’ll be here next
year," said Rinker. "Maybe I can give him a tip or two." She might also
advise Lee to hire her caddie. Caleb Powers, a local bag-toter who was
on her bag for both her tournaments on the Dye Course. "He’s the best,’’
said Rinker. "He knows the course better than anybody. He told me where
to hit it, and this week I could do it. French Lick’s a very special
place. I’ve told people how beautiful it is, and the course is in
Rinker, who shot 66
in the second round, posted a winning total of 7-under-par 137. It was
her third win on the Legends circuit.
Sherri Steinhauer was
within one stroke of Rinker after 36 holes thanks to a blistering
9-under-par 63 on Saturday. Steinhauer’s round is believed to be the
lowest in the Legends’ 14-year history, two better than the 65 Kane shot
in the Wendy’s Charity Challenge in 2011.
also meant the six-player Super Seniors event was cut from 36 to 18
holes. It ended in a three-way tie for the title based on the 77s shot
by Shelley Hamlin, Jane Blalock and Judy Dickinson on Saturday. Each
pocketed $750. Blalock, CEO of the Legends Tour, also was inducted into
the Legends Hall of Fame as part of the pre-tournament festivities.
(contributed by Len Ziehm)
MORE ON THE THE
LEGENDS CHAMPIONSHIP >>