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LPGA lose Florida Swing in 2002

The LPGA Tour is dispensing with the 'Florida Swing' tournament which opened the 2001 season and will not begin the new season until February 28, commissioner Ty Votaw has announced.
Instead, the 2002 women's professional golf circuit will open in Hawaii at the Waikoloa Beach Resort with the Takefuji Classic.

It will then move to Arizona for a pair of events before the season's first major, the Nabisco Championship, at Rancho Mirage, California.

The 2001 season opened on January 12 in Orlando, Florida, and continued with events in Naples and Miami. Sponsorship problems led to the scrubbing of the first two events, while the Office Depot tournament has been shifted to California to be played in April.

"The decision to take the month of January off was part strategic and part the realities that we face at each of the individual tournaments," Votaw said.

The only 2002 tournament in Florida, headquarters of the LPGA, will be the season-ending Tyco/ADT Championship at West Palm Beach starting November 21.

LPGA commissioner Ty Votaw said the tour will not have a "Florida Swing" again until it can find quality sponsors and a community able to support an event on a long-term basis.

Votaw said the schedule is comprised of 34 official events representing an average purse of $1.19 million -- the highest in the tour's 51-year history.

There will be a tournament in Chicago for the first time since 1994 with the inaugural Kellogg-Keebler Classic, scheduled for May 30-June 2 at Stonebridge Country Club.

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