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ShopRite LPGA Classic determining sponsor exemption via fan vote

The sponsor exemption is getting an update fit for modern times.

The ShopRite LPGA Classic presented by Acer announced Monday that fans can vote who gets the final spot in its tournament by picking their favorite of four golfers in a Twitter poll that will be conducted for the next week.

Tournament officials worked with sports social media tracking firm MVP Index, which came up with the top female golfers in social media following who weren't already qualified for the tournament.

The favorites will be Blair O'Neal, a Golf Channel host who won the network's reality show competition "Big Break" and has 186,000 Instagram followers, and Indian golfer Sharmila Nicollet, who has more than 350,000 followers on Twitter. Of all LPGA players, only Paula Creamer has more.

The other two contenders are Scottish golfer Carly Booth and Susana Benavides, the only Bolivian-born golfer to play in an LPGA event.

"We've always been proud of the exemptions we've given in the past," said Tim Erensen, the executive director for the tournament, which takes place in the first week in June. "In the past, we've given exemptions to Brooke Henderson, Lexi Thompson and Paula Creamer at the beginning of their careers. We think this idea adds to the excitement of what we do."

MVP Index was co-founded by Shawn Spieth, the father of two-time major winner Jordan Spieth.