Industry News

Annika Foundation prepares for European event

ANNIKA Invitational Europe, ANNIKA Cup to be Played at Sweden’s Hamlstad Golf Club

(ORLANDO, Fla.) The ANNIKA Foundation – golf Hall-of-Famer Annika Sorenstam’s charitable organization – is preparing to return to Sweden for the European portion of its junior golf tournament schedule.

The sixth-annual ANNIKA Invitational Europe will take place June 19-22 at Halmstad Golf Club, host of the 2007 Solheim Cup. Defending champion Beatrice Wallin will return to battle 78 top junior girls hailing from 20 different countries – a tournament record. The field will feature the 10 leaders in PING Jr. Solheim Cup points. This group includes 2016 Ladies’ British Open Amateur champion, Julia Engstrom; Linn Grant, who currently leads the PING Jr. Solheim Cup standings; and Frida Kinhult, winner of the 2017 Spanish Ladies’ Amateur Championship.

The ANNIKA Cup will also be held at Halmstad from June 18-20. The team match play event features 12 of Sweden’s top amateur girls ages 13-15. For many, the ANNIKA Cup serves as a stepping stone to future play in the ANNIKA Invitational Europe.

Exemplifying the Foundation’s “More than Golf” mantra, on-course competition will be complemented by off-course seminars about fitness, nutrition, the mental game and more. Annika will be onsite for both events, taking in play and helping to lead these sessions.

“The Foundation team and Swedish Golf Federation continue to do an exceptional job growing the ANNIKA Invitational Europe into one of the continent’s ‘must play’ junior tournaments for girls,” says Annika, the 2017 Solheim Cup captain for Team Europe. “There’s no doubt in my mind that there are competitors in this year’s event who will form the backbone of future Solheim Cup teams.”

Past winners of the ANNIKA Invitational Europe are Wallin (2016, Sweden), Ana Pelaez (2015, Spain), Marion Veysseyre (2014, France), Marlene Krobell Hansen (2013, Denmark) and Linnea Strom (2012, Sweden). All were heavily recruited by American universities, with Palaez (South Carolina), Veysseyre (South Carolina), Krobell Hansen (Coastal Carolina) and Strom (Arizona State) playing in the U.S.

The ANNIKA Foundation hosts three other junior tournaments annually – the AJGA ANNIKA Invitational in Orlando, Fla.; ANNIKA Invitational at Mission Hills in China; and, in association with The R&A, the ANNIKA Invitational Latin America in Argentina.

For more information: www.annikasorenstam.com/foundation

About the ANNIKA Foundation

Annika created the ANNIKA Foundation (www.annikasorenstam.com/foundation) as a way to teach children the importance of living a healthy, active lifestyle through fitness and nutrition, and offer aspiring junior golfers opportunities to pursue their dreams. The Foundation has partnered with key organizations to promote healthy, active lifestyles for children, including SPARK, Florida Hospital for Children in support of its Healthy 100 Kids initiative and The First Tee in development of the Nine Healthy Habits curriculum for children.

It annually conducts five major golf events for aspiring junior girls: the AJGA ANNIKA Invitational in Orlando, Fla.; ANNIKA Invitational at Mission Hills in China; ANNIKA Invitational Europe and ANNIKA Cup in Sweden; and, in association with The R&A, the ANNIKA Invitational Latin America in Argentina. In 2013, the Foundation’s reach extended to the collegiate ranks with the ANNIKA Award Presented by 3M (awarded to most outstanding female NCAA Division I golfer) and ANNIKA Intercollegiate Presented by 3M (12-team, 54-hole event at Reunion Resort). SPARK grants to schools, financial support of Healthy 100 Kids, endowing an AJGA ACE Grant, ANNIKA Junior Day and scholarships for aspiring Swedish juniors are other important initiatives.

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