Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Ginn Open Preview

The Ginn Open (henceforth referred to as Ginn #1 – Ginn #2 is the “Tribute Hosted by Annika” at the end of May) gets underway Thursday at Reunion Resort & Club in Reunion, Florida just outside of Orlando. Mi Hyun Kim is the defending champion. The Golf Channel will provide TV coverage Thursday and Friday while CBS takes over for the weekend. While I’m not sure he knows very much about women’s golf, Verne Lundquist can’t call enough LPGA events to suit me. After years of calling the action at holes 16 and 17 at Augusta, Verne has the perfect cadence and demeanor for a golf commentator. And after a few weeks of Grant Boone, it’s actually kinda nice hearing someone talk about the game who doesn’t have Annika Sorenstam’s life history memorized.

The course is par-72, just over 6500 yards. The winner will earn automatic entry into the ADT Championship. Oddly enough, this is the first of only two stops the Tour makes in Florida – the ADT is the second. You would think they might try to work out a “Florida swing” like the men’s tour does, especially with the two open weeks that surround this one. Sponsorship is everything, I guess. A month or two ago, the Caddy Corner mentioned a rumor of a Tour-sponsored event being discussed for Daytona Beach (the LPGA home office is there) but I guess there wasn’t time to throw that together.

Anyway, back to this REAL tournament… One positive by-product of all the off-weeks we’ve had this season is, the top players keep showing up to keep their games in sync. We lose Hee-Won Han for a few months now, but 18 of my newly-released Top 20 are in action at Ginn #1. Even though she didn’t win that first major two weekends ago, I’m going to pick Lorena Ochoa to win this one. She finished tied for second here last year and the only player on a hotter streak than her is Pressel. I’m not even going to pick Morgan as a CYA – major winners, especially first-timers, don’t often win that next event. Meg Mallon won the 2004 US Open and then won the next week, and Annika won the next event after winning the 2001 KNC - that’s only 2 for 28 since 2000. I’ll take Shi Hyun Ahn and Annika Sorenstam as CYAs.

Stats: Winners 0-5, Top Tens 7-15.

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