Diamond Resorts™, a global leader in the hospitality, vacation ownership and entertainment industries, announced today it has partnered with Insurance Office of America to name the full-service insurance agency the “Official Sponsor of the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions” and “Official Insurance Broker of the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions.”
New for 2019, the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions™ Presented by Insurance Office of America will be the LPGA Tour’s season opener and bring one of the LPGA’s strongest fields to Central Florida to compete Jan. 17-20, 2019 at Tranquilo Golf Club at Four Seasons Resort Orlando.
“We’re pleased to partner with Diamond Resorts and to sponsor the LPGA Tour’s Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions. This is our first LPGA event after years of sponsorship of the Symetra Tour in three different cities,” said IOA Chairman and co-founder John Ritenour. “Being part of an event where there is strong competition, camaraderie, fun, and support for the game aligns with IOA perfectly. We feel it’s important to invest in these promising young professional women players, and we look forward to seeing their growth and the growth of the event in the future.”
Only LPGA winners from the 2017 and 2018 seasons qualify to play in the tournament alongside a roster of invited sports and entertainment celebrities, including MVPs, Cy Young Awards winners, All-Stars and television actors. The LPGA champions will play 72 holes of stroke play with no cut and compete for $1.2 million in official prize money, while the celebrities compete utilizing a Modified Stableford format for their own $500,000 purse.
To date, 34 LPGA professionals have qualified to play in the inaugural event, including Brittany Lincicome, Brooke Henderson, In-Kyung Kim, Michelle Wie, Shanshan Feng, Inbee Park and Sung Hyun Park. For the full list of qualified LPGA players, visit DiamondLPGA.com/players. Hall of Famers Ray Allen, Brian Urlacher, Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez, John Smoltz and Marcus Allen; seven-time Cy Young Award Winner Roger Clemens; Chicago Cubs pitcher Jon Lester; Houston Astros pitcher Justin Verlander; former NASCAR champion Michael Waltrip; NHL star Jeremy Roenick; and actors Alfonso Ribeiro and Jack Wagner will be among the celebrities competing.
All four days of the unique event will be nationally televised live, with Thursday and Friday on Golf Channel, and Saturday and Sunday on NBC, with a one-hour Golf Channel lead-in. Spectator tickets will be available for purchase later this month.
“Insurance Office of America is an active supporter of women’s golf and we are excited to be partnering with them to take this incredible event to new levels,” said Mike Flaskey, Chief Executive Officer of Diamond Resorts. “The Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions Presented by Insurance Office of America has so many unique elements – an exclusive field of some of the LPGA’s strongest players, world-class celebrities and unparalleled entertainment – all in Orlando’s backyard. It will be an event no one will want to miss.”