PARK RIDGE, Ill. (Feb. 20, 2020) – Park Ridge Country Club in Park Ridge, Illinois, will host the 2021 Women’s Western Amateur, the Women’s Western Golf Association and Western Golf Association have announced.
The 2021 Women’s Western Amateur is set to be played July 19-24. This will be the third WWGA championship to be hosted by Park Ridge C.C., which also was the site for the 1934 Women’s Western Junior and the 1944 Women’s Western Open (won by the legendary Babe Zaharias).
The Women’s Western Amateur Championship, held without interruption since inception in 1901, is among the oldest annual championships in women’s amateur golf and attracts many of the top amateur and collegiate golfers in the world.
“The Women’s Western Golf Association has a long history dating back to the early beginnings of competitive golf for women, with a tradition that rivals any in golf. We look forward to bringing our 121st Women’s Western Amateur to Park Ridge County Club,” said WWGA President Cece Durbin. “I believe our players will greatly enjoy Park Ridge’s golf course and also the countless attractions that the Chicagoland area has to offer.”
The Women’s Western Amateur features an international field of highly accomplished amateur golfers, with many competitors going on to enjoy successful collegiate and professional careers. The event is conducted annually in partnership by the WWGA and the WGA.
“We’re excited to be joining with the WWGA to conduct this prestigious championship at a club of Park Ridge’s stature,” said Vince Pellegrino, WGA Senior Vice President of Tournaments. “I’m sure the course will offer a fair and challenging test for the top amateur golfers who will be competing.”
Park Ridge’s hosting of the Women’s Western Amateur will extend the club’s rich tradition of supporting championship golf events at all levels, including 10 national competitions.
“Park Ridge is proud to host the 2021 Women’s Western Amateur. Our members, staff and the Board of Directors are excited for this opportunity to extend our golf course and facilities to this historic championship,” said Park Ridge C.C. President Steve Hands. “We look forward to watching the leading amateurs in women’s golf compete, and we’re honored to have an opportunity to play a role in their developing careers.”
Famed golf course architect Herbert J. Tweedie designed the original nine holes in 1906. In 1911, the club hired another legend, Tom Bendelow, to develop nine additional holes and incorporate 97 sand bunkers into the resulting 18-hole layout. An additional 20 acres adjacent to the course was purchased in 1915, and William B. Langford, a noted golf course architect of his time, was hired to rebuild the course. His work remains the dominant influence today.
The Women’s Western Amateur field will consist of 120 amateurs with a handicap of 5.4 or less. The event is one of the oldest annual championships in women’s amateur golf. The first and second day of competition will each consist of 18 holes stroke play. After the second day, the field will be reduced to the top 32 players for the match play portion of the championship.
Sarah Shipley, of Hastings, Michigan, won the 2019 Women’s Western Amateur at Royal Melbourne Country Club, Long Grove, Illinois. Past champions include current stars and legends of the LPGA TOUR, including Ariya Jutanugarn (2012), Stacy Lewis (2006), Brittany Lang (2003), Grace Park (1998), Cristie Kerr (1995), and Nancy Lopez (1976).
National Championships Hosted by Park Ridge Country Club
In addition to the 1934 Women's Western Junior and 1944 Women's Western Open, Park Ridge Country Club has hosted the following national golf championships:
1988 U.S. Women’s Open Qualifier
1979 U.S. Women’s Amateur Sectional Qualifier
1978 U.S. Women’s Amateur Sectional Qualifier
2017 Western Junior Championship
1993 U.S. Men’s Senior Open Qualifier
1986 U.S. Men’s Senior Open Qualifier
1972 U.S. Junior Qualifier
1927 U.S. Open Qualifier