Transgender golfer eyes LPGA Tour card at Stage I of Qualifying School


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Transgender golfer Hailey Davidson is attempting to become the first transgender woman to earn an LPGA Tour card after two rounds in the first stage of this weekend’s 2022 LPGA and Epson Tour Qualifying School. 

Davidson, who was born in Scotland but lives in Florida, shot a 70 in the first round at the Shadow Ridge Golf Club in Palm Desert, California, Thursday, finishing tied for 59th. Davidson shot a 76 the following day after bogeying on holes 6, 8, 13, 15, and 17. 

The LPGA Professionals flag on the 18th green during round three of the 2020 LPGA Drive On Championship at Reynolds Lake Oconee Oct. 24, 2020, in Greensboro, Ga. 
(Mike Comer/Getty Images)

According to the LPGA Tour’s rules for the event, any player with a score of 88 or higher in any of the first three rounds will automatically be dropped from the qualifiers and ineligible to receive Tour status for 2023. 

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Those who shoot under 88 on all three rounds “will earn 2023 Epson Tour Status,” the official qualifying tour of the LPGA Tour. The top 100 players will then move on to Stage II beginning Oct. 18. 

LPGA tee markers during the final round of the LPGA Qualifying Tournament at LPGA International Dec. 4, 2005, in Daytona Beach, Fla.  

LPGA tee markers during the final round of the LPGA Qualifying Tournament at LPGA International Dec. 4, 2005, in Daytona Beach, Fla.  
(Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

The final stage will be held during the first two weeks of December. 

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According to the LPGA website, more than 600 Epson Tour alumnae have earned LPGA Tour membership since its start in 1999. 

A flag on the 16th green during the fourth round of the LPGA Qualifying School at LPGA International Dec. 6, 2008, in Daytona Beach, Fla.  

A flag on the 16th green during the fourth round of the LPGA Qualifying School at LPGA International Dec. 6, 2008, in Daytona Beach, Fla.  
(Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

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Davidson began hormone therapy treatments in 2015 and underwent gender reassignment surgery in 2021, Golfweek reported in May 2021. According to the outlet, Davidson last competed as a male at U.S. Open local qualifying in 2015 at Admiral’s Cove in Jupiter, Florida. 

The LPGA Tour removed its “female at birth” requirement in 2010, according to an ESPN report at the time.

 



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