LPGA introduces new points race

The LPGA is introducing a points race in 2014, which will culminate with the season-ending CME Group Tour Championship.

Similar to the FedEx Cup on the PGA Tour and the European Tour’s Race to Dubai, 2014 will see the introduction of a new system where players earn points at each of the 31 tournaments on the schedule.

The race then culminates with the CME Group Tour Championship, where the top 72 in the standings compete for an additional $1m bonus.

Majors will have 625 points on offer while standard tournaments just 500.

In a bit of a departure from how the men’s tours operate their respective races, however, points earned during the season would be partially reset for the season finale, thus ensuring the CME Globe winner is not already decided.

“Reset Points will give top yearly performers an advantage but not guarantee victory. The points that a player earns at the CME Group Tour Championship will be added to her Reset Points, and the player with the highest points total will be named the winner of the Race to the CME Globe,” reads a statement on the LPGA website.

With the addition of events in San Francisco, Michigan and the International Crown, where players compete for their nations, Tour commissioner Mike Whan believes this year will be a great year for ladies golf.

“CME Group has made quite an impact on the LPGA Tour during our three years together,” said Whan.

“The addition of this concept fundamentally connects every event on our Tour and promises big things in 2014 and beyond.

“The stakes have risen dramatically and the excitement level goes up for our players and each of our tournaments.”

Should the points system have be applied to the 2013 season, South Korea’s Inbee Park would have emerged victorious following three tour titles and three major victories.

“I was so honoured to win the LPGA money title in 2013 and now I have something even bigger to play for,” said the 25-year-old.

“Nothing is guaranteed with the new system, so this new race is going to make everyone on tour work a little bit harder because the payoff is so big.”