England Golf is backing the launch of a new tournament on the Ladies European Tour Access Series (LETAS).
The WPGA International Challenge, supported by the Professional Golfers’ Association, will be played at Stoke by Nayland Hotel Golf & Spa (pictured) on September 26-28 – and the field will include 20 elite amateurs.
Nigel Edwards, the England Golf performance director has praised the opportunity for England’s leading women amateurs to gain valuable experience.
He said: “England Golf is delighted to be a partner with the LET Access Tour. The Access Series provides a valuable opportunity for our top players as they progress from their amateur career by providing entry to competitive professional events.
“Stoke by Nayland will provide a challenging venue and we know the team there will bring experience from their previous support of the European Challenge Tour and Senior Tour and deliver an excellent event for players and spectators alike.”
The 54-hole tournament, which is the only UK event on the LETAS schedule, will have a prize fund of €25,000 and total field of 120 players. It will include 20 WPGA members, including the winners of six events and the leading players on a qualifying order of merit.
Di Barnard, Tour Director LET Access Series, said: “We are delighted to announce the addition of the WPGA International Challenge to the 2013 LETAS schedule. There is a very strong golfing community in the UK and a large representation of players from this region on both the LET and LETAS."
The PGA’s chief executive, Sandy Jones, commented: “I am very pleased to say that we are presenting the event at Stoke by Nayland, a venue that is well known to us and has partnered the PGA on many past occasions to stage great golf events.
“Being within the UK it presents for our elite level women golfers a great chance to progress their tournament careers and I take this opportunity to wish them all good luck and success. "
Situated in a stunning “Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty” on the Suffolk/Essex border, Stoke by Nayland has the experience of staging European Challenge Tour, European Senior Tour and PGA Europro events.
Susanna Rendall, managing director of the family-owned Stoke by Nayland Hotel, Golf & Spa, said: “We feel honoured and privileged to have been selected as the first venue in the UK to hold this prestigious event and very much look forward to welcoming these talented golfers here from all over the world – and to playing our part in helping to promote women’s international golf.”