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Johnson's  World Tour Stops In Eugene

By Rebecca Calderara, USGA

Eugene, Ore. – You couldn’t blame Jennifer Johnson if she didn’t know where she was this week.

On the road for more than a month, the 17-year-old Johnson of La Quinta, Calif., has traveled through 17 time zones and more than 20,000 miles to compete in championships this summer.

Following her victory at the 2008 AJGA Rolex Tournament of Champions in Newburgh, Ind., Johnson left for China to compete in the inaugural China-USA Youth Team Golf Championships in Langfang City, China, thereby passing up the chance to play in the U.S. Girls Junior at Hartford Golf Club in West Hartford, Conn.

“You can’t go to China every day,” said Johnson when asked why she chose to forgo the U.S. Girls Junior. “It’s a rare opportunity.”

Johnson was one of four junior girls to represent the USA team at the championship, which was conducted by the USGA and the China Golf Association. Sydney Burlison, also playing in the U.S. Women’s Amateur, played on the USA team with Johnson. Serving as both an ambassador for the United States as well as a team member, Johnson described the competition as the most exciting golf event of her career.

From China, Johnson flew to Connecticut to play a practice round for the 2008 Canon Cup, a Ryder Cup-style event run by the American Junior Golf Association, at The Stanwich Club in Greenwich the following day. Last Friday following the Canon Cup, she flew back across the country to Oregon for the U.S. Women’s Amateur.

“It’s been pretty hectic, but it’s been really fun,” said Johnson about her summer.

Her father, Mike Johnson, travels with Johnson during the summer. He has been away from home traveling for more than a month in order to chaperone his daughter.

“I put more than 9,000 miles on my car last summer and 7,000 this month alone,” said Mike Johnson.

While the travel schedule has brought Johnson around the world, she is looking forward to spending time with family at home after the U.S. Women’s Amateur.

“It’s been fun,” she said, “but I’m kind of ready to go home.”

Something that will have to wait at least one more day. In her first Women’s Amateur, Johnson recorded scores of 76-73 to advance to Wednesday’s first round of match play.

Rebecca Calderara is a first-year Fellow in the USGA in the USGA Grants Initiative program. She can be reached at



Championship Facts

U.S. Women's Amateur

HISTORY: The U.S. Women’s Amateur is one of the United States Golf Association’s original three championships. It was first conducted in 1895, shortly after the inaugural U.S. Amateur and U.S. Open. The Women’s Amateur has since been conducted every year except 1917-18, when it was temporarily suspended because of World War I, and 1942-45, when it was suspended because of World War II.

PAR & YARDAGE: Yardage for the Eugene Country Club will be set at 6,484 (stroke play) / 6,516 (match play) yards, par 72.

ARCHITECT: Opened in 1926, the course was designed by H. Chandler Egan. In 1967, Robert Trent Jones Sr. reversed the routing of the original Egan design (i.e., No. 18 tee essentially became the first tee, etc.).

Fairways – Cut to ˝ inch
Tees and collars of greens – Cut to 3/8 inch
Putting greens – Prepared to be firm and fast to measure approximately 11 to 11 1/2 feet on the USGA Stimpmeter
Intermediate rough – Cut to 1 ˝ inches, approximately 6 feet wide along fairways
Primary rough – Cut to 2 ˝ to 3 inches
Player courtesy walks – Cut to 1 ˝ inches, approximately 6 feet wide
The championship setup results in a USGA Course Rating™ of 78.1 and a Slope Rating® of 144

FORMAT: The Women’s Amateur is conducted with 36 holes of stroke-play qualifying. The low 64 scorers then advance to match play, with the champion determined by a 36-hole match-play final.

WHO CAN ENTER: The championship is open to female amateurs who have USGA handicap indexes not exceeding 5.4.

ENTRIES: Entries for the 2008 U.S. Women’s Amateur closed on June 18. There were 960 entries received for the 2008 championship, just shy of the record 969 entries received for the 2006 U.S. Women’s Amateur.



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