These Events Look Like Majors – Armas Heralds Return Of The Aramco Team Series
Last year, the Ladies European Tour saw the introduction of the Aramco Team Series, which included four events with a $1 million purse in London, Sotogrande in Spain, New York and Jeddah. Now he’s back with a new location – Bangkok, Thailand.
There were some big twists in the play format of last year’s series. Thirty-six teams of four, including three professionals and one amateur, competed over 54 holes. Each team captain chose a player in a pre-tournament draft, and another pro was randomly selected. Finally, an amateur completed each team.
The teams played each other Thursday and Friday in four-ball, with the two lowest scores per hole recorded and the lowest total score winning. Then the amateur had the chance to sink the putts contributing to the team’s prize. The innovations immediately captured the imagination of some of the biggest names in women’s football, including Georgia Hall, Charley Hull and Lexi Thompson, who took part.
This year, when it launches in Bankgok on May 12, there will be two days of team competition and then an individual battle only in the final round. There is also an additional $1 million in the purse for each tournament.
Ladies European Tour CEO Alexandra Armas is delighted the series is returning with the tournament in Thailand. She said: “As we come out of the pandemic, the addition of Aramco Team Series – Bangkok has really helped us elevate the Tour by increasing prize funds. Players enjoy playing in the team format and the organization around each of the series’ events, from the quality of the courses to the construction, facilities and hospitality around them, raises the standards at all levels. For many of our members, these events feel like Majors – and they’re almost as excited to play them.
The Aramco Team Series also drives innovation in other areas. The NFL-style draft is a game, but players can also choose their ride music. Other breaks with tradition include live DJs on the course and ice cream – moves that Armas says will appeal to the younger generation:
“In designing the concept for the Aramco Team Series events, we wanted to innovate and do something different. The LET is looking for ways to engage with our fan base to get them hooked on watching golf more regularly. New creative ideas and different ways of doing things can help with that.Aramco Team Series events attract established golf fans and the next generation entering the game.
Majed al Sorour, vice president and CEO of one of the series’ major backers, Golf Saudi, also points to the growth of the women’s game as a big part of the organization’s involvement. He said: “Expanding the series into new territory with our Thailand event for 2022 is a hugely exciting next step. We look forward to being a part of it and seeing the role the five events continue to play in advancing women’s golf.
2022 Aramco Team Series Schedule
- May 12-14 – Thai Country Club, Bangkok, Thailand
- June 16-18 – Centurion Club, London, England
- August 18-20 – La Reserva Club De Sotogrande, Sotogrande, Spain
- October 13-15 – Location TBA, New York, USA
- November 9-11 – Royal Greens Golf & Country Club, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia