New course gains tour player, picks up LPGA tie

Wednesday, March 27, 2002

The area's newest golf course has an even newer affiliation.

Officials with Dalhousie Golf Club announced the course's affiliation with LPGA tour player Karen Stupples on Tuesday.

Stupples, in her fourth year on the tour, was introduced at an informal luncheon as the club's touring professional.

"What we've done, having a tour player on staff, is not very typical for this part of the country," said Cord Dombrowksi, a partner in the Prestwick Group, the golf complex's management team.

The British-born Stupples, a Florida State University graduate, happened upon the Dalhousie deal purely by chance.

A casual pairing at a pro-am event in St. Louis with Jennifer Coad of Cape Girardeau led to a friendship between Stupples, husband and manager Paul Stodart and Tim Coad, Jennifer's husband.

When Dombrowski mentioned to the Coads that he would like to find someone on the tour to represent Dalhousie, the Coads referred Stupples.

"They said, 'we know a girl' and I was that girl," Stupples said.

Stupples will spend at least five weeks each year at Dalhousie, which she said is as tough as anything we play on tour, playing with members and helping them hone their games. She will be receive an undisclosed reimbursement with incentives, Dombrowski said.

Stupples has exempt status on the LPGA tour this season by finishing in the top 90 on the money list in 2001.

"I feel like the first three years on tour were a good learning experience," she said, "and now I'm ready to make a move and get some top ten finishes."

Her contacts within the LPGA could prove invaluable to Dalhousie, as well, should they seek to bring a tour event to the course.

"If Cord and the investors ever wanted to pursue that," Stupples said, "I would definitely be able to give them an inside track there and point them in the right direction.

"The course is of such a good standard that they really shouldn't have too much of a problem with that."

llewis@semissourian.com

(573) 335-6611, extension 171

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