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LPGA returns to Augusta in 2001

Daytona Beach, FL (Sports Network) - The LPGA Tour will return to the Augusta, Georgia area for the first time in 35 years for the inaugural Augusta International Championship, a 72-hole event to be held September 20-23 at Mount Vintage Plantation Golf Club in North Augusta.

The tournament will feature a $1.2 million purse, the seventh- highest purse on the LPGA Tour's 41-event schedule, with a first prize of $180,000.

"We celebrated our 50th anniversary last year," said LPGA Commissioner Ty Votaw in a recent news conference. "Part of that history is here in Augusta. We're thrilled to come back to a place that is such a rich part of our history."

The Titleholders Championship, a designated major held from 1937-66, was the last LPGA event to be played in Augusta. Hall of Famer Kathy Whitworth collected $1,500 for winning the 1966 tournament.

Votaw confirmed that a multiyear agreement had been signed with the Mount Vintage club.

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