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Local LPGA tournament turfed for 2018

Last Updated Dec 14, 2017 at 11:13 am EST

View of the 18th hole during Round 3 of the 2017 Manulife LPGA Classic. Photo: Blair Adams - 570 News

 

Some disappointing news for golf fans in Waterloo Region.

For the first time in six years, the LPGA won’t be back.

The local tournament is not on the 2018 schedule, which was released by the tour on Wednesday.

Manulife announced it would not be back as the title sponsor after the 2017 tournament in June. It was the title sponsor for all six years.

The Manulife LPGA Classic was played at Whistle Bear Golf Club for the past three years. For the first three, Waterloo’s Grey Silo was the host.

Greg Durocher with the Cambridge Chamber of Commerce says it’s an unfortunate announcement.

“It’s sad news for our whole region — it had a great economic impact on the entire region, we had a good run at it. It’s unfortunate that the organizers couldn’t find some sponsorship to keep the event excellent.”

It’s estimated that economic impact was north of $5-million each year.

Durocher says many in the community were hoping to keep the tournament local, but it is a big commitment.

“It takes a company with tremendous resources, and probably lends itself to a specialty type of sponsor that really wants international exposure, as it was featured on the Golf Channel around the world. I suppose there maybe just wasn’t enough interest locally from some of the companies to try and keep it here.”

The St. Mary’s General Hospital Foundation also benefited as the charity partner. Over $2-million was raised for the foundation in the last six years.