Transgender golfer moves one step closer to ‘dream’ LPGA tour

Hailey Davidson has moved one step closer to competing in the LPGA (Getty Images)
Hailey Davidson has moved one step closer to competing in the LPGA (Getty Images)

A Scottish transgender golfer has announced her dream to earn a tour card for the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) following victory at a tournament in Florida.

Hailey Davidson claimed the top spot at the NXXT Women’s Classic at Howey-in-the-Hills. The NXXT has a relationship with the Epson tour, a developmental feeder for the LPGA.

Davidson became the first trans woman to win a professional women’s event three years ago and said on social media that she has received criticism for her exploits.

“It’s always interesting how no one gets angry until there is any form of success,” Davidson said on Instagram.

“While this win was amazing, unlike every article is saying, I am so incredibly far from the LPGA Tour with a lot of work to be done to possibly earn my way there one day. I will never allow hate to win, especially when based in some misinformation.”

The top five earners on the NCCT points list should earn two exemptions into Epson Tour fields, the NXXT fields are short a minimum stipulation that 10 events must have an average of 40 players.

The golfer, who has said previously she wants to “make Scotland proud”, beat 24 players in the event which ended on 17 January.

Davidson last competed in male categories in 2015, the year she began undergoing transition, and since has become eligible to compete through the USGA and LPGA Tour.

She has previously been criticised by some high-profile figures including Judy Murray, the mother of former world tennis No 1 Andy, but has been backed by Britain’s most successful female golfer Dame Laura Davies.

Should she reach the LPGA, she would not be the first trans woman golfer to play in the top tours after Mianne Bagger qualified for the Ladies European Tour in 2004.