British No.1, Charley Hull, 2009 champion Catriona Matthew and Solheim Cup star Mel Reid gathered at Woburn Golf Club today to launch the 2016 Ricoh Women’s British Open Championship, held 28 to 31 July, 2016.
The 40th Ricoh Women’s British Open will be played on the Marquess Course for the first time and the world’s best women will compete for a prize fund of UK £2,072,253 (US $3 million). The Championship is played at Woburn for the 10th time having first been played there in 1984 when Ayako Okamoto became the first and only Japanese winner of the event.
Fresh from finishing in second place at last month’s ANA Inspiration – her best Major finish to date – 20-year-old Hull is looking for her first Major win. With this year’s Championship taking place at her home club, she is excited at the prospect of contesting a Major in front of the Woburn membership. She explained, “Everyone at Woburn is looking forward to having the Ricoh Women’s British Open back at the Club and obviously I am probably the most excited of everyone! I haven’t actually played too many rounds on the Marquess Course so that won’t give me as much of a home advantage as having so many of my friends and family there to support me.”
World No.2 and winner of the 2015 Championship at Turnberry, Inbee Park, has confirmed she will also be attending, commenting, “Winning the title last year meant so much to me as I had been dreaming about it for so long. I just wanted to enjoy being the Ricoh Women’s Open Champion before setting new goals. Now, I have new goals in mind, which include focussing on successfully defending my title and I can’t wait to get to Woburn.”
Joining Hull to celebrate the 2016 Ricoh Women’s Open launch were Solheim Cup stars Catriona Matthew and Mel Reid who enjoyed an early view of the Marquess Course ahead of the Championship in July.
Jake Yamashita, Director, Corporate Executive Vice President, Ricoh Company, Ltd. concluded, “We are proud that 2016 is our 10th anniversary of partnering with the LGU and IMG for the Ricoh Women’s British Open. We are very thankful to Charley, our own Ricoh ambassador, and to Catriona and Mel for helping us launch what we hope will be our best Championship yet celebrating a decade of being associated with one of the best events in golf.”
The Ricoh Women’s British Open was founded by the LGU in 1976 and is staged in conjunction with IMG, the world’s largest sports marketing company, since 1984. The event has been co-sanctioned by the LPGA and LET since 1994 and gained Major status in 2001.
Ricoh, a global technology company specialising in office imaging equipment, production print solutions, document management systems and IT services, has been the title sponsor of the Ricoh Women’s British Open since 2007.