My internet screen name is bangkokbobby for a reason. I was born in Bangkok to a Thai mother and African-American father. As such, I’ve been keenly interested in players of Thai or partial Thai heritage on the LPGA tour since I first paid attention to a specific tournament when Jenny Chuasiriporn made a bid to take the 1998 US Women’s Open, ultimately falling just short to future Hall of Famer Se Ri Pak. Many Thai and mixed Thai players have come and gone on the LPGA over the years. But I had a special soft spot for Stacy Prammanasudh. She was born in Enid, Oklahoma. Her mother is American and her father is Thai. I didn’t blog much about her. Unfortunately, her two victories came before I started Fairways and Forehands. I’m sure die-hard LPGA fans who check the leaderboard every day of a tournament know the experience of first scanning the list to see where their favorites are. While I pretty much like almost everybody on tour, I also have my favorites that draw my eye upon first glance at a leaderboard. Stacy Prammanasudh was among those favorites. Not anymore. Oh, she’s still a favorite. Or should I say, she would be. Stacy P is retiring, according to this article from EnidNews.com:
Stacy retires with 2 LPGA victories, at the 2005 Franklin American Mortgage Championship and the 2007 Fields Open. She also won twice on the Futures Tour (now called the Symetra Tour), at the 2003 Frye Chevrolet Classic and 2003 Lincoln Financial Futures Golf Classic. She was the 2003 Futures Tour Player of the Year. Her best results at Majors were a T3 at the 2006 US Women’s Open and T5 at the 2007 Kraft Nabisco Championship. She was also a member of the winning 2007 United States Solheim Team, where she defeated then world #2 Suzann Pettersen in singles.
Not only was Stacy a four year All-American for her golf prowess, she was also a three-time Academic All-American. Her excellence in the classroom culminated in being awarded the 2001 Edith Cummings Munson Golf Award, given annually to a collegiate female golfer who demonstrates surpassing scholastic achievement. Other golfers to have won the award include Heather Bowie, Alena Sharp, Karin Sjodin, Amanda Blumenherst, Azahara Munoz twice and Brooke Pancake twice. Stacy’s 10 collegiate tournament victories trail only Nancy Lopez’s 11 among University of Tulsa golfers (to be fair to the great Nancy Lopez, she turned pro after her sophomore year, so she likely would have been far ahead).
I will miss seeing both Stacy and her father, Lou Prammanasudh, on tour. As a fan of both the LPGA (golf) and WTA (tennis), I’ve seen some unhealthy father-daughter relationships. Heck, on the WTA there have been some downright abusive relationships that have led to tournament bans and even incarceration. I can only speak as an outsider, but from afar it seemed that the relationship between Stacy and her dad was an example of everything that could be nurturing and balanced. In the end, I know all careers come to an end. As a fan, I’ve bid melancholy farewells to Virada Nirapathpongporn, Mi Hyun Kim and Grace Park in recent years. And now I say goodbye and best wishes always to Stacy Prammanasudh. Stacy P, you will be missed.
As one career completes its final denouement, another sits poised to write another chapter. Ariya Jutanugarn was in the midst of a breakout season when some ill-advised horseplay with her sister, Moriya Jutanugarn, led to a freak shoulder injury when she took a tumble during a practice round at the 2013 US Women’s Open. She had her first full practice round in seven months on January 3rd, 2014 at the Amata Spring Country Club in Chon Buri, Thailand. Not surprisingly, she wasn’t 100% after not playing in half a year, but she hopes to play the Women’s Australian Open. I’m certainly happy to have Ariya back, but I do hope she takes her time. She’s only 18 years old. There’s no need to rush anything. Although her sister won the LPGA Rookie of the Year award, it was Ariya who dazzled in the few non-member appearances she made, nearly winning the 2013 Honda LPGA Thailand. She was a rookie on the Ladies European Tour in 2013, winning the Lalla Meryem Cup. It seems she will take the same approach in 2014, playing the LET while also trying her hand at select LPGA events. You can read more about Ariya’s return here:
Ariya seems pretty well and moving spritely, I guess you could say, in this video of her and her sister dancing at a meeting of their fan club, the Mo-May fan club. Moriya is Mo. Ariya is May. Both get their boogie on! 🙂
A FEW STACY PRAMMANASUDH PICS TO HONOR HER CAREER
ALL PICS CLICK TO ENLARGE