United States Women's Open Championship (golf)
|Location||Shoal Creek, Alabama|
|Established||1946, 73 years ago|
|Course(s)||Shoal Creek Golf and Country Club in 2018|
|Par||72 (in 2018)|
|Length||6,693 yd (6,120 m) in 2018|
|Organized by||USGA (since 1953)|
|Prize fund||$5.0 million in 2018|
|Month played||May/June in 2018|
|Tournament record score|
|Aggregate||272 Annika Sörenstam (1996)|
272 Juli Inkster (1999)
272 Chun In-gee (2015)
|To par||–16 Juli Inkster (1999)|
|2018 U.S. Women's Open Golf Championship|
The United States Women's Open Golf Championship, one of thirteen national championships conducted by the United States Golf Association (USGA), is the oldest of the LPGA Tour's five major championships, which includes the ANA Inspiration, Women's PGA Championship, Women's British Open, and The Evian Championship.
Established 73 years ago in 1946, the U.S. Women's Open is the only event to have been recognized as a major by the LPGA since the group's founding in 1950. Originally operated by the Women's Professional Golfers Association (WPGA) for its first three years and the LPGA for the next four, it became a USGA event in 1953. Usually held in early July, the U.S. Women's Open is the third major of the LPGA season and has the highest purse in women's golf, at $5.0 million in 2017.
Unlike the U.S. Open, the U.S. Women's Open is not globally recognized as a major championship. The Ladies European Tour does not sanction any of the three majors held in the United States, and the LPGA of Japan Tour has its own set of majors. The significance of this is limited, as the LPGA Tour is the dominant tour in women's golf.
The 2012 championship, won by Choi Na-yeon, was played July 5–8 at Blackwolf Run in Kohler, Wisconsin, which previously hosted the event in 1998, won by Pak Se-ri in a Monday playoff that extended to 20 holes. The Original Championship Course for 2012 played just under 7,000 yards (6,400 m), over 500 yards (460 m) longer than in 1998.
Beginning in 2018, the U.S. Women's Open will be held prior to its men's counterpart (rather than following it and the U.S. Senior Open), in order to "provide optimum playing conditions for the world's best players across a broader variety of the country's finest golf courses."
The playoff format was modified in 2018, reduced from three to two aggregate holes, followed by sudden death. The last 18-hole playoff was in 2006; the three-hole playoff was introduced the following year and used in 2011 and 2016.
The U.S. Women's Open is open to any professional or amateur female golfer. Amateurs must have an up-to-date USGA Handicap Index not exceeding 2.4, lowered in 2014 from 4.4 in 2013. Players may obtain a place by being exempt or by competing successfully in qualifying.
In 2002, a two-stage method of qualification was introduced: 18 holes for local qualifying and 36 holes for sectional qualifying. In 2010, the qualification process reverted to a single sectional stage of 36 holes played on a single day.
The criteria for exemption from qualifying has changed through the years. In 2010, there were eleven exemption categories, including winners of the U.S. Women's Open for the last ten years, winners of the other three majors for the last five years, the top 50 from the previous year's LPGA Tour money list, the top five from the previous year's Japan LPGA Tour, Korea LPGA Tour, and Ladies European Tour money lists, and official winners of LPGA co-sponsored events for the 52-week period prior to the U.S. Women's Open.
Winners of major amateur tournaments are also exempt. Currently, winners of the U.S. Girls' Junior, U.S. Women's Amateur (and finalist), and U.S. Women's Mid-Amateur (all USGA events) are exempt provided they did not turn professional beforehand. Winners of the Augusta National Women's Amateur Championship will qualify effective with the inaugural tournament in 2019.
The number following some winners' names indicates the cumulative number of U.S. Women's Open wins for that player.
- The club is located in a portion of the Duluth postal area that became part of the newly incorporated city of Johns Creek in 2006. Although the club is still served by the Duluth post office, it now lists its mailing address as Johns Creek.
This table lists the golfers who have won more than one U.S. Women's Open.
|Deceased golfer †|
|Grand Slam winners ‡|
|Betsy Rawls||United States||4||1951, 1953, 1957, 1960|
|Mickey Wright ‡||United States||4||1958, 1959, 1961, 1964|
|Babe Zaharias †||United States||3||1948, 1950, 1954|
|Susie Berning||United States||3||1968, 1972, 1973|
|Hollis Stacy||United States||3||1977, 1978, 1984|
|Annika Sörenstam ‡||Sweden||3||1995, 1996, 2006|
|Louise Suggs ‡||United States||2||1949, 1952|
|Donna Caponi||United States||2||1969, 1970|
|JoAnne Carner||United States||2||1971, 1976|
|Betsy King||United States||2||1989, 1990|
|Patty Sheehan||United States||2||1992, 1994|
|Karrie Webb ‡||Australia||2||2000, 2001|
|Juli Inkster ‡||United States||2||1999, 2002|
|Meg Mallon||United States||2||1991, 2004|
|Inbee Park||South Korea||2||2008, 2013|
The defending champion has retained the title on seven occasions, most recently 18 years ago in 2001:
- 2001 - Karrie Webb
- 1996 - Annika Sörenstam
- 1990 - Betsy King
- 1978 - Hollis Stacy
- 1973 - Susie Berning
- 1970 - Donna Caponi
- 1959 - Mickey Wright
Through 2018, three consecutive championships has not been achieved.
Champions by nationality
This table lists the total number of titles won by golfers of each nationality.
|2019||Country Club of Charleston||Charleston, South Carolina||May 30 – June 2|
|2020||Champions Golf Club, Cypress Creek Course||Houston, Texas||June 4–7|
|2021||The Olympic Club, Lake Course||San Francisco, California||June 3–6|
|2022||Pine Needles Lodge and Golf Club||Southern Pines, North Carolina||June 2–5|
|2023||Pebble Beach Golf Links||Pebble Beach, California||June 1–4|
|2024||Lancaster Country Club||Lancaster, Pennsylvania||May 30 – June 2|
- "U.S. Women's Open: History". USGA. 2013. Retrieved June 23, 2013.
- "U.S. Women's Open Notebook". PGA Tour. Associated Press. June 26, 2007. Retrieved March 6, 2013.
- Clarke, Liz (July 7, 1998). "Pak wins Open on 92nd hole". Spokesman-Review. p. C1. Retrieved March 6, 2013.
- "2012 U.S. Women's Open: Fact Sheet". USGA. Retrieved March 6, 2013.
- "Shoal Creek to Host 2018 U.S. Women's Open". USGA. May 26, 2014. Retrieved July 16, 2017.
- "U.S. Open abandons 18 holes for 2-hole playoff". ESPN. Associated Press. February 26, 2018. Retrieved June 7, 2018.
- "U.S. Women's Open sectional qualifying complete". USGA. June 4, 2014. Archived from the original on June 6, 2014. Retrieved June 19, 2014.
- "2013 Women's Open Fact Sheet". USGA. 2013. Retrieved June 19, 2014.
- "2010 U.S. Open Qualifying". Archived from the original on June 12, 2009.
- "Lucy Li, 11, qualifies for U.S. Open". ESPN. Retrieved May 20, 2014.
- Dixon, Peter (June 30, 2007). "Thompson proves that youngsters can have fun". The Times. London. Retrieved April 24, 2008.
- "1946-2010 - US Women's Open - history - purses & winners' shares" (PDF). LPGA. Retrieved July 31, 2011.
- "Lancaster Country Club to Host 2024 US Womens Open Championship". LPGA. Retrieved 27 November 2018.