Definitions

Lorena_Ochoa

Lorena Ochoa

Lorena Ochoa

Personal Information
Birth Mexico
Height 5 ft 6.1 in (1.69 m)
Nationality
Residence Guadalajara, Jalisco
College University of Arizona
(two years)
Career
Turned Pro 2002
Current tour LPGA Tour (joined 2003)
Past tour Futures Tour (2002)
Professional wins 27 (LPGA Tour: 24, Futures Tour: 3)
Major Championships Top Finishes
Wins: 2
Kraft Nabisco Won 2008
LPGA Championship T3: 2008
U.S. Women's Open T2: 2007
Women's British Open Won 2007
Awards listed here

Lorena Ochoa (born in Guadalajara, Jalisco on 15 November 1981) is a Mexican golfer who plays on the U.S.-based LPGA Tour and is currently the number one ranked female golfer in the world. As the first Mexican golfer of either gender to be ranked number one in the world, she is considered the best Mexican golfer of all time.

Childhood and amateur career

Ochoa grew up next door to the Guadalajara Country Club and took up golf at the age of five. She won her first state event at the age of six and her first national event at seven. All told as a junior she captured 22 state events in Guadalajara and 44 national events in Mexico. She won five consecutive titles at the Junior World Golf Championships and in 2000 she enrolled at the University of Arizona in the United States on a golf scholarship. While a student, with regular tutoring she greatly improved her English by watching movies and reading magazines between practice and tournaments.

She was very successful in women's collegiate golf in the next two years, winning the NCAA Player of the Year Awards for 2001 and 2002, finishing runner-up at both the 2001 and 2002 NCAA National Championship and being named to the National Golf Coaches Association (NGCA) 2001 All-America First team. She won the 2001 Pac-10 Women's Golf Championships, was named PAC-10 Freshman/Newcomer of the Year 2001 and was All Pac-10 First team in 2001 and 2002.

In her sophomore year she had eight tournament wins in ten events she entered and set an NCAA record with seven consecutive victories in her first seven events. She won the Golfstat Cup in both 2001 and 2002. The Cup is given to the player who has the best scoring average versus par with at least 20 full rounds played during a season. setting the single-season NCAA scoring average record as a freshman at 71.33 and beating her own record the next year by just over a stroke per round with a 70.13 average.

In November 2001, Ochoa was presented with Mexico's National Sports Award by Mexican President Vicente Fox. She was the youngest person and first golfer to receive Mexico's highest sporting accolade. In 2006 she was named NCAA Division I Women’s Golf Most Outstanding Student Athlete, an award which was bestowed as part of the 25th Anniversary of Women’s Championships celebration, taking into account outstanding performances over the past 25 years. She was the recipient of the 2003 Nancy Lopez Award which is presented annually to the world's most outstanding female amateur golfer.

Professional career

Ochoa left university after her sophomore year to turn professional. She won three of ten events played on the 2002 Futures Tour, and topped the money list to earn membership on the LPGA Tour for the 2003 season. She was also Duramed FUTURES Tour Player of the Year.

In her rookie season on the LPGA Tour she gained eight top-10 finishes including runner-up finishes at the Wegmans Rochester and Michelob Light Open at Kingsmill ending the season as the Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of the Year and ninth on the LPGA official money list. In 2004 she won her first two LPGA Tour titles: the Franklin American Mortgage Championship (where she became the first Mexican born player to win on the LPGA Tour) and the Wachovia LPGA Classic. That same year she placed in the top ten in three of the four major championships.

In 2005, she won the Wegman's Rochester LPGA. In 2006, her first round score of 62 in the Kraft Nabisco Championship tied the record for lowest score ever by a golfer, male or female, in any major tournament. Her playoff loss to Karrie Webb marked her best finish until 2007 in an LPGA major. By the end of the year she won six tournaments, topped the money list and claimed her first LPGA Tour Player of the Year award which goes to the player who gains the most number of points throughout the season based on a formula in which points are awarded for top-10 finishes and are doubled at the LPGA's four major championships and at the season-ending ADT Championship. She also won the LPGA Vare Trophy for lowest scoring average on the LPGA Tour.

Her achievements were recognized outside the sport of golf when Ochoa won the 2006 Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year award and received the National Sports Prize for the second time.

In April 2007, Ochoa overtook Annika Sörenstam to become the world number one ranked golfer.

In August 2007, Ochoa won her first major championship at the historic home of golf, the Old Course at St. Andrews, with a wire-to-wire win by four shots at the Women's British Open. She won the next two LPGA events, the CN Canadian Women's Open and the Safeway Classic, the first to win three consecutive events since Annika Sörenstam in 2005.

Also in 2007, Ochoa became the first woman ever to earn more than $4,000,000 in a single season, surpassing Annika Sörenstam's previous record of $2,863,904.

In April 2008, Ochoa won her second major championship, this time at the Kraft Nabisco Championship, becoming the first golfer to win consecutive LPGA majors since Sörenstam in 2005. She celebrated this victory in the traditional fashion for the Kraft Nabisco by jumping into the pond on the 18th green. The following week, she won the Corona Championship in her home country by 11 strokes. This gave her the final tournament win she needed to qualify for the World Golf Hall of Fame, although she cannot be inducted until 2012, after she completes ten seasons on the LPGA Tour.

Ochoa is coached by Rafael Alarcon, a Mexican professional. Alarcon finished second in the 1976 Canadian Amateur Championship, won that title in 1979, then turned professional.

Tournament host

In November 2008, she will become the host of a new LPGA event, the Lorena Ochoa Invitational, to be held at her original home course, Guadalajara Country Club.

Professional wins (27)

Futures Tour (3)

LPGA Tour (24)

LPGA Majors are shown in bold.

Results in LPGA majors

Tournament 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008
Kraft Nabisco Championship DNP T21 8 3 T8 T35 2 T10 1
LPGA Championship DNP DNP DNP T20 T8 T5 T9 T6 T3
U.S. Women's Open CUT DNP WD T13 T44 T6 T20 T2 T31
Women's British Open DNP DNP DNP T24 4 CUT T4 1 T7

DNP = did not play
CUT = missed the half-way cut
WD = withdrew
"T" = tied
Green background for a win. Yellow background for a top-10 finish.

LPGA Tour career summary

Year # of
events
Cuts
made
Wins 2nd 3rd Top
10s
Earnings ($) Rank Scoring average
2003 24 23 0 2 3 8 823,740 9 70.97
2004 27 27 2 1 5 18 1,450,824 3 70.02
2005 23 20 1 4 0 10 1,201,786 4 71.39
2006 25 25 6 6 2 20 2,592,872 1 69.24
2007 25 25 8 5 2 21 4,364,994 1 69.68
2008* 18 18 7 0 2 16 2,655,111 1 69.28
*Official as of October 6, 2008.

Honors and awards

2001

  • Mexico National Sports Award (a)

2002

2003

2006

2007

2008

See also

Notes and references

External links

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