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Published: Wednesday, 8/8/2012 - Updated: 2 years ago

Defending champ Choi, rest of field ready to go

Lewis ready for demanding week at Highland Meadows

BY RYAN AUTULLO
BLADE SPORTS WRITER
Farr Classic defending champion Na Yeon Choi hits a tee shot Tuesday at Highland Meadows during a celebrity pro-am. Farr Classic defending champion Na Yeon Choi hits a tee shot Tuesday at Highland Meadows during a celebrity pro-am.
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Na Yeon Choi is feeling fresh, having spent a few days recovering from travels that took her to three continents within the last month.

Stacy Lewis, after recharging last week at the ocean, is feeling brisk as well.

It's a good thing for them they're feeling lively, because this week will tap into their energy source. Defending champion Choi and local favorite Lewis will be among the biggest draws at the Jamie Farr Toledo Classic at Highland Meadows, meeting daily with media and fans, and in the case of Lewis, family members. The Nos. 2 and 3 players in the world -- Lewis is second, leaping Choi in the latest rankings -- addressed the media Tuesday, touching on topics such as the importance of a break from the tour last week and how they will approach a tournament where every shot they hit gets magnified.

Competing at the Farr in 2008 -- her first LPGA event as a rookie -- was an exhausting process for Lewis, who entertained family members still living in the area in between rounds.

"Now, coming back as one of the best players, the week has gotten even more busy. There's more requests," said Lewis, who was born in Toledo.

Choi, who won a playoff to capture the 2010 title, hasn't stopped moving since she won the U.S. Open the first week of July. Soon after she stepped off a plane in Korea, getting bombarded by supporters overjoyed by her first title in a Major, Choi headed for Japan for a non-LPGA event. Then she was off to the Evian Masters in France (she finished 40th, Lewis was runner-up) before heading to London to cheer on her country in the Olympics. Prior to her arrival in Sylvania, Choi was in Orlando for a practice sessions.

Competing at the Farr in 2008 -- her first LPGA event as  rookie -- proved an exhausting process for Stacy  Lewis. Competing at the Farr in 2008 -- her first LPGA event as rookie -- proved an exhausting process for Stacy Lewis.
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She made all of these stops over just four weeks, but claims to be feeling fine.

"If my body feels OK, then I'm mentally back to normal," she said. "I was very tired."

Last week's break in the tour came at an opportune time for Lewis, allowing her to head to the ocean to relax and navigate a paddle board, a hobby of hers.

She was in Findlay on Monday participating in a golf outing for Marathon Petroleum, her sponsor. Dinner with the family followed.

Her week won't get any lighter.

"I need to kind of relax my mind and my body," she said. "Once I get to the tournament I can prepare."

Contact Ryan Autullo at: rautullo@theblade.com, 419-724-6160 or on Twitter @AutulloBlade.



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