Juli Inkster Disqualified After TV Viewer Reports Violation
Inkster, a Hall of Famer, was disqualified for using a weighted device to warm up on the Ghost Creek Course in North Plains, Ore.
Inkster, 50, was three shots behind the leader (8-under after the first two rounds) when the incident occurred. She used the weighted "doughnut" while waiting at the tee at the 10th hole.
According to The Oregonian, she had given an interview to the Golf Channel at the tee, then put the doughnut on her 9-iron to loosen up. The Golf Channel then telecast footage of her practice swings, prompting a viewer to email tournament officials, who alerted the LPGA rules staff.
She was disqualified for violating Rule 14-3 of the U.S. Golf Association's rules of golf, which bar the use of practice devices during rounds. The rule book specifically addresses weighted "doughnuts." They are barred during rounds.
LPGA rules official Sue Witter said she reviewed the footage and that Inkster had clearly violated the rule. Inkster was told of her disqualification after she completed her round.
"I didn't see her put it on, but you see her swing it a couple of times and then you see her walk over and take it off," Witter told reporters after the round. Witter said Inkster was surprised and unaware she had broken the rule.
Inkster told an LPGA media relations staffer that she was trying to stay loose during a 30-minute wait at the tee. She did not speak to reporters after her disqualification.
She issued a short statement.
"It had no effect on my game whatsoever, but it is what it is. I'm very disappointed," Inkster said.
Inkster had a chance to become the oldest winner in LPGA Tour history.