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Golf Canada – News and notes from Magna Golf Club for Wednesday, August 21st –

AURORA, Ont. – Golf Canada’s CEO, Laurence Applebaum, is already thrilled with how tournament week has unfolded at Magna Golf Club and the 2019 CP Women’s Open hasn’t even officially begun.

On Wednesday, Applebaum and LPGA Tour commissioner Mike Whan spoke with media, and the pair were full of praise for Canadian golf fans and tournament partners, so far this week.

“This is a week we’ve been looking forward to for a long time,” said Applebaum. “Ever since Brooke (Henderson) hoisted our national championship trophy a year ago in Wascana, we knew we’d be coming to a spectacular golf club (this year), with an amazing turnout for the week ahead, and we couldn’t be more excited to watch Brooke as well as all our 15 Canadians who are in the draw along with 96 out of the top 100 LPGA Tour players. 

“We’re so thankful the LPGA Tour has made this such an important stop on their global tour.” 

Whan, who played in the Championship Pro-Am Wednesday alongside Applebaum in a group with Golf Canada Young Pro Squad member Maddie Szeryk and Augusta National Women’s Amateur Championship winner Jennifer Kupcho, said the experience at the CP Women’s Open this week at Magna Golf Club has been nothing short of spectacular.

“This is elite. It has been elite for a long time,” Whan said of the CP Women’s Open. “I can just tell you from flying up here with some players, it’s a different feeling. People are excited before they get here. A lot of it is just they know Golf Canada does it right, but what they do here in terms of how they treat the players, how they treat the caddies, how they treat the fans, it’s unique and it sets itself apart, and as a result we get the best of the best every year.”

Applebaum says the success of the week can be traced back to the relationship between Golf Canada at Magna Golf Club, located just 30 minutes north of Toronto. 

He calls the agreement one of the easiest in his tenure.

“This was the fastest, most efficient, most fun collaboration that I’ve had since I took the job for a new golf course to come on to the rotation,” said Applebaum. “Magna was always on our radar.”

Whan said he’s been impressed with Magna’s facilities, the tournament’s organization, and Canadian Pacific in particular.

“I haven’t been this excited to play in a Pro-Am in a long time,” Whan added. “It might be cool to be in Toronto (this week) but 170 countries will also be paying attention to what goes on here, so I really hope the fans come out and create the kind of atmosphere that Magna could really create.” 

SHARP TO EMBRACE CANADIAN SUPPORT
As one of 15 Canadians teeing it up this week at the CP Women’s Open, Alena Sharp knows she has a great opportunity to play well in front of throngs of Canadian fans.  But she doesn’t have to do anything special to make them proud of her.

“I always was so nervous,” Sharp said of her first few times playing the CP Women’s Open. “I just wanted to go play well so badly. It’s like when you try and force something it never really works out very well,” “The last few years after the Olympics I had my best finish and played decent last year. I just realized that everybody is here and they’re cheering for you and they recognize you, but they’re proud of you. You don’t have to make them proud. They’re already proud.”

Sharp’s best finish in 2019 came at the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational, a team event where she was paired with Brooke Henderson. The pair tied for that week and Sharp said while their relationship began as mentor-pupil, it has evolved into a nice friendship. 

“I’m not shy to ask her about advice on things about a shot or something. We had a great time playing the team event. It was just really cool,” said explained. “The four of us – Sara and Brittany as well – we all get long really well and have a good time together. So it’s nice to have that on Tour.” 

Sharp, who sits 50th on the 2019 Race to CME Globe, tees off at 9:05 a.m. on Thursday. Her best career CP Women’s Open result came at Priddis Greens Golf and Country Club in 2016, where she finished fourth. 

PAST CHAMPIONS RETURN TO THE CP WOMEN’S OPEN
Eight past CP Women’s Open champions are set to tee it up this week at Magna Golf Club, led by defending champion Brooke Henderson. 

Three-time winner Lydia Ko (2012, 2013, 2015) is in search of her record fourth title and first win of the season. Other past champions confirmed include Sung Hyun Park (2017), Ariya Jutanugarn (2016), So Yeon Ryu (2014), Suzann Pettersen (2009), Katherine Kirk (2008), and Cristie Kerr (2006). 

Juli Inkster (who won in 1984) was in the field but withdrew Wednesday citing a sore back. 

This year marks the 10th anniversary of Pettersen’s victory. She is also playing for just the third time this season, as she gave birth to her first child in August of 2018.

“Obviously Canada has always been very kind to me in my golf game and I’ve had some great success,” said Pettersen of her return. “When I was thinking of how I can possibly prepare the best I can for (the Solheim Cup), playing here was very obvious choice, so I’m happy to be here.”

Henderson said, too, it’s always special to defend a title. 

She’s become a bit of an expert playing well at events she had success at – she’s won the same event twice three times in her career. 

“To be able to win on the LPGA Tour once is really cool. To come back next year and defend your title is really special I think and pretty unique. It doesn’t happen very often with these courses,” Henderson said. “I felt like I had a great game plan and I felt very confident; whereas this tournament we have moved around the courses ever single year, so that is a little bit different feeling coming into this week. But I think you still carry over a lot of positive energy and momentum from last year.”

LEVELWEAR AND GOLF CANADA ANNOUNCE PARTNERSHIP EXTENSION
Golf Canada and LEVELWEAR announced an agreement that will see LEVELWEAR extend their official apparel partnership with the National Sport Federation for golf through 2022.

The multi-year extension will continue LEVELWEAR’s support as Official Headwear and Apparel provider across a multitude of Golf Canada properties and championships. The LEVELWEAR brand will continue as the official headwear and apparel as well as the official volunteer uniform for several of Golf Canada’s properties including the RBC Canadian Open, the Canadian Pacific Women’s Open, Canadian Amateur Golf Championships and the World Junior Girls Championship. 

The partnership will also extend across Golf Canada’s digital network of web, social and golfer engagement platforms. 

“LEVELWEAR has become one of our most engaged partners and we are pleased to extend their meaningful commitment to Canadian golf across so many foundational pillars of our organization,” said Golf Canada CEO Laurence Applebaum. “The LEVELWEAR brand represents the highest quality performance for both serious and recreational golfers. Our robust partnership touches many levels of Canadian golf, from amateur to professional, and we are excited to continue working with their talented team.”

For LEVELWEAR, extending and deepening their brand alignment with Golf Canada was a natural evolution to grow a partnership that began in 2017. 

“We are proud to be extending our partnership with Golf Canada and their many world-class golf programs, championships and golfer engagement platforms,” said LEVELWEAR President & CEO Hilton Ngo . “Supporting golf at all levels in Canada is a key priority and our collaboration with Golf Canada has done a tremendous job in elevating our brand with Canadian golfers nationally.”

PAIRING AND START TIMES
Pairings for the 2019 CP Women’s Open are available here.

INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTS, AUDIO FILES AND VIDEO
Interview transcripts, audio MP3 files, as well as downloadable royalty-free images and broadcast quality videos for all media interviews and scrums are available online here.

MEDIA GUIDE & PLAYER PERFORMANCE
Download the 2019 CP Women’s Open Media Guide by clicking here and the Player Performance Guide by clicking here. 

CANADIANS IN THE FIELD
The following 15 Canadians are set to compete in the 2019 CP Women’s Open:

Céleste Dao *
Brooke Henderson
Lorie Kane
Maude-Aimee Leblanc
Michelle Liu *
Brittany Marchand
Megan Osland
Mary Parsons *
Alena Sharp
Maddie Szeryk
Anne-Catherine Tanguay
Valérie Tanguay
Brigitte Thibault *
Casey Ward
Emily Zhu *

* denotes amateur

A full field list of players confirmed to compete in the 2019 CP Women’s Open is available by clicking here.

CP HAS HEART IN SUPPORT OF SICKKIDS FOUNDATION
Canadian Pacific will continue its history of making a substantial donation to the host community through its CP Has Heart community investment program. In the five years of CP’s title sponsorship of the CP Women’s Open, $8.5 million has been raised to support children’s heart health in communities across Canada. This year, the campaign will benefit SickKids Foundation, the primary charity partner for the 2019 Canadian Pacific Women’s Open, as well as Southlake Regional Health Centre in Newmarket, Ont. For more information on CP Has Heart, visit www.cphasheart.com.

BIRDIES FOR HEART
You can help fundraise for an upgraded Cardiac Operating Suite at SickKids by pledging a donation amount or per birdie for 2019 CP Women’s Open tournament play. Whenever a LPGA Tour player sinks a birdie on the 17th hole, your chosen dollar amount is donated to SickKids Foundation. For all donations made through Birdies For Heart, spectator support will be matched by CP. To participate, please click here. 

TELEVISION COVERAGE…
Thursday, August 22 – Golf Channel/TSN/RDS – 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Friday, August 23 – Golf Channel/TSN/RDS – 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Saturday, August 24 – Golf Channel/TSN/RDS – 2:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Sunday, August 25 – Golf Channel/TSN/RDS – 1:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.

* All times local.

2019 CP WOMEN’S OPEN TICKETS
One of Canada’s premier annual sporting events, the CP Women’s Open features miles of front row seating for golf fans to experience Canada’s lone stop on the LPGA Tour and cheer on Canadian sensation and CP Ambassador Brooke Henderson as she defends her national title on home soil.

General admission tickets provide access to the grounds to get an up-close look at the stars of the LPGA Tour. Tournament rounds for Thursday, Friday and Saturday are just $65; a Sunday final-round ticket is $80; and a weeklong, fully transferable badge is $150.

A specially priced youth ticket (13-17 years old) is also available while juniors aged 12-and-under gain FREE grounds admission all week long.

In addition to general admission tickets, a limited number of upgraded spectator viewing experiences are still available. A full list of ticket packages and pricing is available online at www.cpwomensopen.com/tickets.

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ABOUT THE 2019 CP WOMEN’S OPEN
The stars of the LPGA Tour will challenge for the CP Women’s Open from August 19-25, 2019 at Magna Golf Club in Aurora, Ont. The CP Women’s Open is proud to name the SickKids Foundation as the official tournament charity for 2019. Funds raised will be dedicated to pediatric cardiology space as well as specialized equipment and are being matched by CP through its CP Has Heart community program. The CP Women’s Open, Canada’s Women’s Open Golf Championship, is proudly sponsored by CP, Audi, RBC, Steam Whistle, Levelwear, Golf Town, Sheraton Parkway Toronto North Hotel & Suites, Coca-Cola, the Government of Canada and the Government of Ontario. For information on volunteer opportunities, tickets or corporate hospitality, visit www.cpwomensopen.com, or call 1-866-571-5742.

ABOUT CANADIAN PACIFIC
Canadian Pacific is a transcontinental railway in Canada and the United States with direct links to major ports on the west and east coasts. CP provides North American customers a competitive rail service with access to key markets in every corner of the globe. CP is growing with its customers, offering a suite of freight transportation services, logistics solutions and supply chain expertise. Visit cpr.ca to see the rail advantages of CP.

ABOUT GOLF CANADA
Golf Canada is the National Sports Federation and governing body for golf in Canada representing 319,000 golfers and 1,400 member clubs across the country. A proud member of the Canadian Olympic Committee, Golf Canada’s mission is to increase Canadian participation and excellence in golf. By investing in the growth of the sport and introducing more participants of all ages to the game, our vision is to be a world leader in golf. For more information about what Golf Canada is doing to support golf in your community, visit www.golfcanada.ca.

Media Contacts:
Dan Pino | Director, Media and Public Relations, Golf Canada | 416-434-5525 | dpino@golfcanada.ca

Salem Woodrow | Advisor, Media Relations, Canadian Pacific | 204-934-4255 |  Salem_Woodrow@cpr.ca