‘Super Rookie’ Bang Shin-sil (19, KB Financial Group) used her long game to climb to the top of the KLPGA Tour.
Bang shot a final round of 9-under-par 207 to win the 11th E1 Charity Open on the 2023 KLPGA Tour at Seongmunan CC in Wonju, Gangwon Province, on Monday.
Bang, who turned pro in October of last year, made her KLPGA Tour debut this season as a conditional player after finishing 40th in the seeding process for the top tour spots, but her victory in just five events helped her secure a top tour seed for the 2025 season.
One of the reasons she’s gotten so much attention is because of her gut-busting long shots. In fact, he has a drive distance of 259.6341 yards (approximately 237 meters) this season, which ranks first overall in this category.
While he’s been turning heads in the galleries with his long drives, there’s a name that’s been invoked. It’s Yoon In-na, 20, who landed on the KLPGA Tour a year ago in 2022 with a driver swing speed of over 100 mph.
A year apart in age, the two players share many similarities.
The distance of their driver shots is unrivaled, and they both hit the greens at a very high rate. The only flaw was a slight lack of accuracy on their long shots, which is often the fate of long hitters, and both players tasted their first victories in their rookie seasons.
A comparison of Bang Shin-sil and Yoon In-na’s records. The Korea Daily Sports
But who was better in terms of long shots?
Yoon In-na, who is one year older, participated in 15 tournaments last year and her average driving distance reached 263.4517 yards (about 240 meters).
In the history of the KLPGA Tour, there have been 19 occasions when drivers have averaged 260 yards or more, and Yoon’s distance ranks seventh on the all-time list behind Kim Se-young (266.94 yards) and Jang Ha-na (266.42 yards) in 2013. With 259 yards, Bang Shin-sil can become the 20th player in history to go over 260 yards.
Bang’s longest shot this season was 320.1 yards (approx. 292 meters) on the 13th hole in the final round of the Chris F&C KLPGA Championship last month, and at the E1 Charity Open, where she won, she wowed the gallery with a 306.5-yard (approx. 280 meters) drive on the 16th hole in the second round.스포츠토토
Yoon In-na hit a 355.4-yard (approx. 324 meters) cannonball on the ninth hole of the final round of the Mediheal Hankook Ilbo Championship, her second event of the season. Earlier in the season, at the Lotte Rent-a-Car Women’s Open, she had a long drive of 353.7 yards (approx. 323 meters) on the fourth hole on the first day of the tournament.
Yoon In-na has been sidelined from tour events since her misconduct at the Korean Women’s Open in June last year, when she was handed a three-year suspension.
While there are no “what ifs” in all sports, it’s clear that if Yoon In-na hadn’t been caught, she would have been able to go toe-to-toe with Bang Shin-shil this season, further boosting the popularity of Korean women’s golf. Many golf fans have expressed their disappointment that the dream matchup didn’t happen.