LPGA star Brittany Lincicome became the sixth woman to play on the PGA Tour when she teed it up at the Barbasol Championship.
Lincicome, 32, accepted a sponsor's exemption into the opposite-field event, which is being played the same days as the Open Championship. She shot a 6-over 78 in the first round.
Lincicome has 57 career top-ten finishes to go with eight career victories on the LPGA Tour. She is known for being one of the longest drivers in the women's game and currently ranks 10th in driving distance at 269.5 yards. Lincicome is coming off a second-place finish July 15 at the Marathon Classic where she lost in a playoff to Thidapa Suwannapura.
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This isn't the first time Lincicome has played with the guys, either. Her high school didn't offer a women's golf team, so she played with the boys. Lincicome credits that experience with helping her improve quickly growing up.
Here is what Lincicome wrote in The Players' Tribune on her decision to play this week.
"The more I thought about whether to play in this event, the more I kept coming back to all the younger girls who I might be able to connect with and inspire by doing this. I thought about how an opportunity like this might be able to make a difference in how people think about our sport in the future.
"A few weeks ago, I met a dad and his young daughter at the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship in Illinois, and the little girl was so excited about me playing this week on the men’s tour. It was really cool to see how happy she was. And since that time, I’ve talked to many other young girls who are looking forward to seeing what I can do out there against the men."
Linicome is the first female to participate in a PGA Tour event since Michelle Wie in 2008.
Suzy Whaley, who played in the Greater Hartford Open on the PGA Tour in 2003 and is set to become the PGA of America president this fall, told LPGA.com's Adam Stanley, "I’m wishing her the very best. I think she wants to play great and I hope she does. I will be front and center cheering her on."
Lincicome tees off at 1:39 p.m. Eastern on Friday for round two at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Kentucky.
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