The Blade/Dave Zapotosky
Jamie Farr is no longer associated with the golf tournament that has been his namesake for almost three decades, this after The Toledo Classic, Inc. announced Tuesday that Marathon Petroleum Corp. has become the title sponsor of the annual LPGA tournament at Highland Meadows Golf Club.
The new name of the tournament will be the Marathon Classic presented by Owens Corning & O-I. Farr hosted the tournament the past 28 years.
Owens Corning, a Toledo building products firm with a Pink Panther mascot, has been one of the named sponsors. O-I refers to Owens-Illinois Inc., a glass bottle maker based in Perrysburg.
"On behalf of the Board of Trustees of Toledo Classic, Inc. we want to express our deep appreciation and gratitude to Jamie for everything he has done over the years," reads a news release distributed jointly by Toledo Classic, Inc. and Marathon Petroleum. "Jamie's contributions and loyal support cannot be overstated, as the tournament and the community have been affected immeasurably by his involvement."
Farr, in a separate release, said: "Because of pending show business concerns which may prevent me from hosting the tournament in the future, I have decided to pass the baton to Marathon."
The tournament, to be held July 15-21 at Highland Meadows in Sylvania, will be broadcast internationally on The Golf Channel.
The deal with Marathon is for several years, though Marathon senior vice president marketing Tom Kelly declined to say how many.
The purse of this summer's tournament is $1.3 million and will grow to $1.4 million and $1.5 million in 2014 and 2015.