Shaughnessy Excited About Welcoming LPGA Tour’s CP Women’s Open Next Summer

Shaughnessy Golf & Country Club Head Professional And Director of Golf, Ashley Zibrik, Happily Addressed Those On Hand For The Announcement Her Club Would Be Hosting The 2020 CP Women's Open - Image Credit Bryan Outram/BC Golf

By Brad Ziemer, British Columbia Golf

Shaughnessy Golf & Country Club got rave reviews from PGA TOUR players and proved to be a stiff test when it played host to the Canadian Open back in 2005 and 2011. 

Ashley Zibrik, Shaughnessy’s new Head Professional and Director of Golf, expects more of the same when a collection of the world’s best female players gather at the classic Southwest Marine Drive layout late next summer.

Shaughnessy was officially announced as the site of the LPGA Tour’s 2020 CP Women’s Open on Thursday. The tournament will be played over the Labour Day weekend, Sept. 3-6.

Shaughnessy, a par 73 for members, was set up as a par 70 for the Canadian Open in 2005 and 2011. The winning score was five-under in 2005, when Mark Calcavecchia won, and four-under in 2011, when Sean O’Hair triumphed.

“It will be interesting to see how they set it up,” said Zibrik, who recently became the first female head professional in Shaughnessy’s 108-year history. “Obviously, the men’s was set up as a par 70. So we’ll see what they do for the women. But it’s a true test. It’s not an easy golf course. . . It wouldn’t surprise me to see the winning score in single digits. It would surprise me to see double digits.”

With the clock ticking on its lease with the Musqueam Indian band and expiring in 2033, Shaughnessy is delighted to have another big championship event back at its course. “We are just so proud,” Zibrik said. “Our membership has a lot of pride in Shaughnessy. I think the brand of Shaughnessy is known across Canada and to be able to host a CP Women’s Open after hosting the RBC Canadian Open in 2005 and 2011, we are just so happy to bring championship golf back to Shaughnessy.”

The CP Women’s Open is no stranger to the Metro Vancouver area. Vancouver Golf Club in Coquitlam played host to the event in 2012 and 2015. Both of those events were won by Lydia Ko of New Zealand. Beth Daniel won the event in 2003, when it was played at Shaughnessy’s neighbour, Point Grey Golf & Country Club.

Golf Canada chief executive officer Laurence Applebaum said bringing the event back to Shaughnessy was an easy decision. “I think there are few golf courses in the country that have the reputation that Shaughnessy has,” Applebaum said. “We have had our eye on Shaughnessy for a long time. We have a history here. We played at Point Grey and we have played at Vancouver Golf Club. The LPGA Tour players have a great feel for the area and Shaughnessy for a long time has wanted to bring a big event, a championship event, to the club again.”

image credit Bryan Outram/BC Golf

Posing With The CP Women's Open Trophy Are From L-R: Vancouver City Deputy-Mayor Melissa De Genova , CP Women's Open Tournament Director Ryan Paul, CP Railway VP (Strategic Planning & Transportation Services) James Clements, Golf Canada CEO Laurence Applebaum (Back row), Canadian LPGA Pro Jaclyn Lee (Front row), Shaughnessy G&CC Head Pro and Director of Golf Ashley Zibrik, Shaughnessy G&CC GM Brian Mossop

The CP Women’s Open offers one of the LPGA Tour’s larger purses at $2.25 million US and always attracts a stellar field. This year’s event is being held Aug. 22-25 at Magna Golf Club in Aurora, Ont. “This year it looks like we are going to have 94 or 95 of the top 100 and that is where we have averaged the last few years,” Applebaum said. “Basically, the strength of CP has allowed us to put together a wonderful event for the players, it is a signature event. They love this event. . . Having that field, having the world’s best coming into our event every year is such a coup and it is going to continue at Shaughnessy in 2020.”

The star of next summer’s show will undoubtedly be 21-year-old Canadian Brooke Henderson, who won last year’s CP Women’s Open in Regina. “Brooke is one of the rare athletes who is as great as she appears to be,” Applebaum said. “She has great values, a wonderful family, works hard, she is five-foot-four and an absolute competitive killer. She is really a special, special young woman and a special golfer. . .She is thrilled to come out here and we are thrilled to be part of that whole Henderson spectacle that is happening right now.”

Henderson and her LPGA cohorts will face a Shaughnessy course that will test every part of their games. “As a player, I think Shaughnessy is a true test of championship golf,” Zibrik said. “We have small greens, subtle but also substantial slope. They are quick, they are always in great condition. If you hit it in the wrong places, it’s definitely challenging to make your up and down. I just think it demands precision. You have to be in the right places to post a number.”

Zibrik has one piece of early advice for the players. “I have experienced our Shaughnessy rough,” she said. “It is nasty. Stay out of the rough. The short grass is your friend, for sure.”

CHIP SHOT: The tournament is being played later than normal next summer to accommodate a break in the LPGA schedule during the Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo.