Lexus Cup 2005
Singapore, September 13, 2005 – Toyota Motor Asia Pacific and IMG, the world’s largest sports and lifestyle management agency, announced today that they will jointly stage the inaugural Lexus Cup in Singapore this December 2005.
This prestigious ladies team event will pit 12 international players, captained by Annika Sorenstam of Sweden, against 12 leading players from Asia, led by Grace Park of Korea. The President’s Cup-style match (with players competing in better ball, foursome and singles matches) will tee-off from December 9-11, 2005, at the Tanah Merah Golf and Country Club, providing local and worldwide fans the opportunity to support their favorites and cheer for their respective teams. Leading players from Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, USA, and Europe have confirmed that they will be playing.
“With the increasing interest in women’s golf in recent years and the emergence of strong Asian players on the world golf stage, there has been interest in staging a team event that puts the best of Asia head-to-head with the best of the rest of the world,” said Robbie Henchman, senior vice president of IMG.
“We are very pleased that so many top international and Asian players will be competing in this unique ladies golf event. We are certain the Lexus Cup will receive huge coverage and interest,” said M. Takemoto, President of Toyota Motor Asia Pacific.
“We are committed to providing a world-class event that caters to the spectators at the venue and the international audience through high quality television coverage. Audiences from all over the world will be able to share the excitement of this spectacular event live.”
The appointed captains will select the team members guided by an agreed qualification criteria and ‘captain’s picks,’ which will be based on the player’s experience, personality and charisma for team play.
Park will captain the Asia Team at the Lexus Cup. The 26 year-old from Seoul crossed the US$4 million mark in her career earnings last year and ranked second on the LPGA Tour money list. She received the Vare Trophy for lowest scoring average (69.99) during the 2004 season, when she also won her first major championship (the Kraft Nabisco Championship).
Park said: “I am honored and excited to be selected as the captain for the Asia Team at the Lexus Cup. I hope that with my experience and knowledge I can lead the team to victory.”
Sorenstam will lead the International Team. The 35 year-old Swede has an extensive list of achievements and awards. She started this year with flying colors by winning six of the eight tournaments in which she played.
She is currently leading the LPGA Tour money list after earning over US$1 million in prize money, was the winner of last season’s money list and earned her 7th Rolex Player of the year award.
The Lexus Cup is providing such a positive development in ladies golf and in particular in Asia. “I am looking forward to selecting my team and it’ll be a great challenge to meet the girls from Asia,” said Sorenstam.
The event is supported by the Singapore Sports Council and will form part of Singapore’s growing international sporting calendar.
“The Singapore Sports Council is proud to support this inaugural tournament and welcomes Lexus’ initiative to promote golf among women on an international level. The Lexus Cup is a major event that serves to promote the Sporting Singapore vision as it offers invaluable exposure for our local professionals to the world’s best women's golfers and it inspires many budding talents to take on the sport seriously,” said Oon Jin Teik, Chief Executive Officer of Singapore Sports Council.
“From a sports industry perspective, having the tournament tee off here is testament to Singapore having the capability and structure to host sports events with prestige and of international stature,” added Oon.
Henchman added, “as the organizers of the event, we are pleased to have this opportunity to work with Lexus and are confident that the Lexus Cup will provide a showcase for international ladies golf to all Asian golf fans. It will surely be a catalyst for the further development of the ladies’ game in this region, at all levels.”
About Lexus Cup 2005
Format – Friday (December 9) will consist of six four ball better ball matches, followed by six foursomes matches on Saturday (December 10),
and on Sunday (December 11) will be 12 singles matches
Prize money – US$720,000 (US$40,000 for each member of the winning team, US$20,000 for the members of the other team)
Teams – Asia vs. International
Captains – Grace Park – Asia team, Annika Sorenstam – International team
Contact: Jennifer Wolfe/Linda Dozoretz
Linda Dozoretz Communications