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Seri Pak returns to LPGA in 2024 as tournament host in California

Seri Pak returns to LPGA in 2024 as tournament host in California

LPGA pioneer Seri Pak will return to the tour in 2024, joining Annika Sorenstam and Michelle Wie West as tournament hosts. The South Korean will host the newly renamed Fir Hills Seri Pak Championship at Palos Verdes Golf Club in suburban Los Angeles. (Pak, who went by Se Ri during her LPGA career, is now going by Seri.)

Last year the Palos Verdes event, won by Ruoning Yin, was called the DIO Implant LA Open.

The 2024 Fir Hills Seri Pak Championship, set for March 21-24, will feature a field of 144 players and a purse of $2 million, up $250,000 from last season.

Pak, 46, retired from the LPGA in 2016 following a career that transformed the women’s game. As an LPGA rookie, Pak won two majors in 1998, including the U.S. Women’s Open at Blackwolf Run that inspired generations of South Koreans to follow in her footsteps. She won 25 times on the LPGA and amassed 39 titles worldwide.

Seri Pak was the only Korean player on the LPGA Tour in 1998. When she retired in 2016, there were more than 40 Korean LPGA Tour regulars. Pak’s spectacular win in the 1998 U.S. Women’s Open inspired many Korean women to take up golf. (Getty Images)

When Pak joined the LPGA in 1998, she was the only South Korean on tour. When she retired eight years ago, 34 South Koreans were competing full-time on the LPGA, and among those, 27 had secured an LPGA win. Pak’s victory didn’t just inspire South Koreans to pursue the game, but to dominate it.

“In America, you would say it’s Tiger Woods,” major winner Hyo Joo Kim once said. “In Korea, it’s Seri Pak.”

Pak left the game with $12,583,713 in career earnings and 123 career top 10s. She became the first South Korean inducted into the LPGA Hall of Fame.

“It is an honor to return to the LPGA Tour as host for the Fir Hills Seri Pak Championship at Palos Verdes Golf Club,” Pak said in a release. “Mentoring the next generation of golfers and giving back to the game I love is at the core of everything I do. I’m excited to kick off this new partnership and elevate this tournament to new heights on the LPGA Tour.”

Fir Hills, a Silicon Valley-based investment firm, has entered a multi-year agreement with the LPGA as a tournament sponsor.


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