Canadians Brittany Marchand and Maddie Szeryk eager to be back on Symetra Tour

Canadians Brittany Marchand and Maddie Szeryk eager to be back on Symetra Tour

Canadians Brittany Marchand and Maddie Szeryk eager to be back on Symetra Tour

Brittany Marchand felt like her career was on an upswing after tying for eighth at the Florida’s Natural Charity Classic in early March. It was the first tournament of the Symetra Tour season and was Marchand’s best finish in more than a year after she muddled through the 2019 LPGA Tour schedule.

A week later and the Symetra Tour, like the rest of North America’s professional sports, was on indefinite hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Let’s just say it was 100 per cent a momentum killer if I’ve ever seen one,” Marchand said with a laugh. “I’d already had quite a long off-season and then to have another off-season, essentially, it was like ‘OK, I’ve already worked on everything I wanted to. I’m ready to go.’”

Marchand, from Orangeville, Ont., is one of four Canadians in the field at this week’s FireKeepers Casino Hotel Championship in Battle Creek, Mich., a three-round tournament that tees off Friday morning. She’s still eighth in the tour’s rankings thanks to that strong finish in March.

“Little did I know that that finish at the beginning was actually going to be a huge help,” said Marchand. “Normally that would have been great but it wouldn’t have determined much of anything over the course of a season.”

It’s the first tournament to be played by the LPGA Tour family following the three-month hiatus. The shortened Symetra Tour schedule is now 10 events.

The Symetra Tour will still award LPGA Tour membership to the top players on the money list at the end of the year. However, five cards with partial status will be available instead of the 10 that have been distributed each year since 2008.

“A full LPGA card is off the table,” said Marchand, who added that in some ways it creates a pressure-free situation. “I have to wrap my head around the fact that I won’t be starting next year on the LPGA, no matter what, even if I finish at the top of the money list.”

Maddie Szeryk of London, Ont., is also eager to get back to work at the FireKeepers. Her only competition during the pandemic break was a 16th place finish at the Texas Women’s Open and playing with her sister Ellie, a Texas A&M prospect.

Like Marchand, Szeryk said she’s pleased to be playing competitive golf again but has mixed feelings about the limited exemptions available for the next LPGA Tour season.

“It’s a bummer that you don’t even really have a chance this year,” said Szeryk, who is No. 41 on the tour’s money list. “There’s nothing we can do about it so I just have to look at is as a growing experience and I’m really going to be ready for (the LPGA) when I get up there.”

Josee Doyon of St-Georges, Que., and Samantha Richdale of Kelowna, B.C., round out the Canadian contingent at the FireKeepers Casino Hotel Championship.

The LPGA Tour resumes its schedule next week with the Drive On Championship, which Hamilton’s Alena Sharp has already declared she will play in.

PGA TOUR — Calgary’s Aaron Crawford earned his way into the 3M Open as a Monday qualifier. Roger Sloan of Merritt, B.C., David Hearn of Brantford, Ont., and Michael Gligic of Burlington, Ont., will also be teeing off at TPC Twin Cities in Blaine, Minn., on Thursday.

KORN FERRY TOUR — Adam Svensson of Surrey, B.C., is ranked 37th on the Korn Ferry Tour and will be in the field at this week’s Price Cutter Charity Championship at Highland Springs Country Club in Springfield, Mo. He’ll be joined by Vancouver’s Stuart Macdonald and Ben Silverman of Thornhill, Ont. Taylor Pendrith of Richmond Hill, Ont., is third in the second-tier circuit’s standings but is taking the week off.

EUROPEAN TOUR — Aaron Cockerill of Stony Mountain, Man., was tied for fifth at 5 under after the first round of the British Masters at Close House Golf Club in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, England. Scotland’s David Law was the leader at 7 under.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 22, 2020.

___

John Chidley Hill’s weekly golf notebook is published on Wednesdays.

Follow @jchidleyhill on Twitter

John Chidley-Hill, The Canadian Press

Golf

Just Posted

Alberta is now below 3,000 active cases of COVID-19, as the province reported 2,639 Wednesday. (NIAID-RML via AP)
Red Deer below 100 active COVID-19 cases for first time since March

69.7 per cent of Albertans 12 and over have at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine

Premier Jason Kenney says the provincial government is doing everything it can to encourage Albertans to get vaccinated. (Photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Travel prizes added to Alberta’s vaccine lottery

More than 40 travel rewards available for those who are fully vaccinated

Three calves were recently shot dead in Lacombe County near Mirror. (Photo from Facebook)
Calves shot and left for dead in central Alberta

Bashaw RCMP investigating three shootings

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

The Calgary skyline is seen on Friday, Sept. 15, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
2 deaths from COVID-19 Delta variant in Alberta, 1 patient was fully immunized

Kerry Williamson with Alberta Health Services says the patients likely acquired the virus in the hospital

A vial containing the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is shown at a vaccination site in Marcq en Baroeul, outside Lille, northern France, Saturday, March 20, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Michel Spingler
mRNA vaccines ‘preferred’ for all Canadians, including as 2nd dose after AstraZeneca: NACI

New recommendations prioritizes Pfizer, Moderna in almost all cases

House Majority Whip James Clyburn, D-S.C., center left, reaches over to Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., joined by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., center, and members of the Congressional Black Caucus as they celebrate the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act that creates a new federal holiday to commemorate June 19, 1865, when Union soldiers brought the news of freedom to enslaved Black people after the Civil War, at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, June 17, 2021. It’s the first new federal holiday since Martin Luther King Jr. Day was created in 1983. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Biden to sign bill making Juneteenth a federal holiday

New American stat marks the nation’s end of slavery

A screenshot of the First Peoples Cultural Councils First Peoples’ Map. (First Peoples Cultural Council)
Online resource blends B.C.-Alberta’s Indigenous languages, art and culture

Advisor says initiative supports the urgent need to preserve Indigenous languages

A plane is silhouetted as it takes off from Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C., May 13, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Report calls for airlines to refund passengers for flights halted due to COVID-19

Conclusion: federal help should be on the condition airlines immediately refund Canadian travellers

Green party Leader Annamie Paul speaks during a news conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, June 15, 2021. Paul has survived another day of party strife after a planned ouster shifted course, leaving her with a tenuous grip on power ahead of a likely federal election this year. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Green Leader Annamie Paul blasts ‘racist,’ ‘sexist’ party execs who sought ouster

Fallout has continued, with two of the federal council’s members resigning

Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, and U.S President Joe Biden shake hands during their meeting at the ‘Villa la Grange’ in Geneva, Switzerland in Geneva, Switzerland, Wednesday, June 16, 2021. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko, Pool)
Biden says meeting with Putin not a ‘kumbaya moment’

But U.S. president asserted Russian leader is interested in improved relations, averting a Cold War

Most Read