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LPGA rolls out new Qualifying Series exemptions for top collegiate players

As the NCAA postseason heats up, there are new bonuses on the line for the best in college golf.

But first, the LPGA has rebranded its three qualifying stages to “LPGA Qualifying Series.” What was once known as Stage I of LPGA Q-School is now “Pre-Qualifying.” That will take place Aug. 22-25 at Mission Hills Country Club in Rancho Mirage, California.

Going forward, Stage II (Oct. 15-18) will be known simply as “Qualifying,” and LPGA Q-Series will be called “Final Qualifying,” held Dec. 5-9. Final Qualifying will now be staged over five rounds rather than six and be played at Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail, Magnolia Grove Golf Course (Falls and Crossings courses). The top 25 and ties at Final Qualifying will earn Category 14 status.

2024 Augusta National Women's Amateur
2024 Augusta National Women's Amateur

Ingrid Lindblad of Sweden plays from a bunker on the second hole during the final round of the Augusta National Women’s Amateur at Augusta National Golf Club on April 06, 2024 in Augusta, Georgia. (Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images)

Beginning this season, the winner of this year’s Annika Award will receive an exemption into “Qualifying” (Stage II) as will those ranked in the top 10 of the World Amateur Golf Ranking (that’s up from five last year). The No. 1 player in WAGR is still exempt to Final Qualifying.

In addition, the top five players in the NCAA Division I National Collegiate Golf Rankings as published on Scoreboard Powered by Clippd will be exempt into the second stage.

It’s also worth noting that this year, players who do not advance from Pre-Qualifying (Stage I) will not earn Epson Tour status for 2025.

Story originally appeared on GolfWeek