Michelle Wie will be returning to Canada this summer to compete in the Manulife Financial Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) Classic. The annual tournament will take place in Waterloo, Ontario at the Grey Silo Golf Course from June 4, 2014 to June 8, 2014. Last year’s event featured 144 of the best female professional golfers in the world, with over 61,000 spectators in attendance. 2014 will be the third year the tournament has taken place.
Wie was born in Honolulu, Hawaii on October 11, 1989, and started playing golf when she was four years old. Since then her amateur career highlights include countless records where she is one of the youngest players, and/or one of the first females to qualify and compete in golf tournaments. At the age of 10, Wie was the youngest to qualify for the USGA Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship. At 11, she was the youngest female to qualify for match play at the Manoa Cup Hawaii State Amateur Match Play Championship. The following year she was the first and youngest player to move forward to the second round at the Manoa Cup Hawaii State Amateur Match Play Championship. In 2001, she was the youngest player to win both the Jennie K. Wilson Invitational, and the Hawaii State Women’s Stroke Play Championship. The following year Wie was the youngest, and first female to advance to the second round of the Manoa Cup Hawaii State Amateur Match Play Championship.
In addition to the Manoa Cup Hawaii State Amateur Match Play Championship, Wie was the youngest junior medalist at the Trans National Amateur Championship, and the youngest player to move on to the semi-finals at the USGA Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship. She was the youngest player to Monday qualify (a stroke play qualifying tournament held on the Monday prior to the professional golf tournament, which awards a handful of top finishers entry into the professional tournament) for her first LPGA tournament at the LPGA Takefuji Classic. She was the youngest United States Golf Association (USGA) winner at 13-years-old when she won the USGA Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship. Also when she was 13, she was the youngest player to compete in the Kraft Nabisco Championship LPGA tournament. She proudly played for the United States at the Curtis Cup at 14, and was the youngest player in the tournament’s history. Wie helped the U.S. beat Great Britain & Ireland by winning in both her singles matches.
Wie has also been the first female to play against men in major tournaments. She’s proving that women can play just as well as men, and with her talent and skills she’s beating them. In her native Hawaii, she was the first female to contend in the Hawaii Pearl Open, and the youngest and first female to make the cut (to get an equal or higher required score to avoid elimination from the last two rounds of a four-round tournament) for the Hawaii State Amateur Stroke Play Championship. She earned one of two spots at the U.S. Amateur Public Links, and was the first female to qualify for a male U.S. Golf Association championship.
It was a matter of time before she would turn professional. In October 2005 she became professional, and has been getting Top 5 placings at tournaments such as the Fields Open, Kraft Nabisco Championship, U.S. Women’s Open, McDonald’s LPGA Championship Presented by Coca-Cola, HSBC Women’s World Match Play Championship, Evian Championship, P&G NW Arkansas Championship Presented by Walmart, Tres Marias Championship, Sybase Match Play Championship, CN Canadian Women’s Open, and the Honda LPGA Thailand. Wie won the Lorena Ochoa Invitational Presented by Banamex and Corona Light in 2009, and the CN Canadian Women’s Open in 2010.
Not only is she accomplished in professional golf, she graduated from Leland Stanford Junior University a.k.a. Stanford University in 2012 with a major in Communications studies. Stanford is an elite school, and one of the best universities in the United States. Golf legend, Tiger Woods started his professional career at Stanford.
Last week at the Kraft Nabisco Championship in California, Wie finished in second place to Lexie Thompson. Her next tournament will be in Hawaii where she will be playing at the LPGA Lotte Championship from April 16, 2014 to April 19, 2014.
Currently, her Rolex Ranking is 23, and she is sponsored by major companies such as Nike, McDonald’s, Kia Motors America, Omega, Sime Darby and Zengyro. This year she was appointed an official ambassador for the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games. The pairing couldn’t have been more perfect, as golf will be making its way back on the sports programme after being gone for 100 years.
Tickets and volunteer opportunities are still available for the Manulife Financial LPGA Classic. More information can be found here: http://www.manulifeclassic.ca/index.php.