CN has announced it will be modifying its sponsorship position in Canadian golf beyond 2013, electing to focus its efforts on Canadian youth and grassroots golf. As a result, the railway will cease to be the title sponsor of the Canadian Women's Open and Canadian Women's Tour at the end of this year.
CN will continue to be the title sponsor of the CN Future Links program, Canada's national junior golf program, and becomes a proud supporter of the Golf in Schools initiative.
"CN will continue to have a major impact across this country by increasing our support into grassroots junior golf programs throughout Canada that are introducing children to a sport they can enjoy for a lifetime," said CN President and CEO Claude Mongeau. "We support Golf Canada's vision to grow the sport and are thrilled to remain a part of it."
New programming as part of the investment in youth golf will include CN Future Links School Adoption Program and CN Future Links Field Trip Program. A full listing of programs and information for junior golfers, parents, instructors and facilities is available at www.cnfuturelinks.com.
"We believe that Golf Canada's vision to grow the sport aligns well with our corporate values to impact the health, wellness and safety of children in communities across Canada," said Mongeau. "Golf and its inherent values are good for our children, and we look forward to elevating the CN Future Links junior program and to investing in Golf in Schools and the development of Canada's future golfing heroes."
Mongeau says CN will assist Golf Canada and the LPGA in finding a replacement title sponsor for the Canadian Women's Open as well as the Canadian Women's Tour.
"The CN Canadian Women's Open has provided us a vehicle to raise millions of dollars for pediatric care through CN's Miracle Match Program," said Mongeau. "After eight great years, it's time to pass the torch for another company to align their brand with these tremendous properties and continue the legacy of excellence beyond 2013."
LPGA Commissioner Michael Whan thanked CN for their eight year support of the tournament and looked forward to finding "the next great partner for this world-class tournament."
Golf Canada Executive Director and CEO Scott Simmons says CN's decision will have a significant impact on the growth of Canadian golf in the coming years.
"I can't say enough what a debt of gratitude golf enthusiasts should be feeling for the support that CN has provided to Canadian golf," said Simmons. "Since 2006, their support has elevated the status of the Canadian Women's Open as one of the premiere events on the LPGA Tour while also creating a world-class women's developmental golf tour here in Canada. The strengthening of CN's support for junior golf will provide Canada with arguably the world's best junior golf development program."
Over the last seven years of CN's sponsorship of Canada's National Women's Open, the CN Miracle Match program has raised more than $8.2 million for children's hospitals located in the cities that have hosted the championship. The beneficiary for this year's tournament, to be staged August 19-25 at Royal Mayfair Golf Club in Edmonton, will be announced at a later date.