The Chevron Championship is officially headed to Houston. The LPGA, Chevron and IMG have announced the Jack Nicklaus Signature Course at The Club at Carlton Woods as the new home of the LPGA’s first major. Next year’s event will be held April 20-23 next year. The Masters Tournament is slated for April 6-9.
Jennifer Kupcho won this year’s Chevron, taking the final dip into Poppie’s Pond at the Dinah Shore Tournament Course at Mission Hills. The tournament had been held in Rancho Mirage, California, since it began in 1972.
Stacy Lewis grew up at The Woodlands but has only played Carlton Woods a couple of times over the years because the private course was a separate membership.
“I do think they can make it a major championship test,” said Lewis. “The greens have some runoffs to them. Get the rough up. The greens can be pretty firm and tricky.”
With so many Chevron employees living in the area and having memberships at The Woodlands, Lewis sees them taking ownership of the tournament. She also loves that many juniors play in the area. The Club at Carlton Woods has a flourishing junior membership that is split 50/50 between male and female. The course has hosted the 2014 U.S. Junior Amateur Championship and numerous USGA qualifiers.
“When I was in school our girls golf team had 30 people on it, and that was almost 20 years ago now,” said Lewis. “Now there’s two high schools and tons of kids playing. I just think of being a kid growing up there and what that would’ve been like for me to be around that.”
In its inaugural year as title sponsor, Chevron increased the purse from $3.1 million to $5 million. This year, Chevron donated more than $2 million to diversity and inclusion non-profit partners.
“Bringing The Chevron Championship to Houston will allow us to showcase our valued partnerships, promote programs in STEM education, and help advance women’s excellence,” said Al Williams, Vice President Corporate Affairs at Chevron in a release. “We look forward to working with the community, our employees, and partners to help create meaningful experiences, both on and off the course.”
The PGA Tour Champions Insperity Invitational will take place April 28-30 at The Woodlands Country Club, the week after the LPGA’s first major.