Champion earns exemption into 2019 RBC Canadian Open
VICTORIA, B.C. – Amateur golfers over the age of 25 will gather for the 32nd playing of the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship at Victoria Golf Club from Aug. 20-24.
The field of 156 amateur golfers will navigate the course, surrounded by West Coast beauty, craggy shorelines, lush fairways and challenging breezes. Founded in 1893, Victoria Golf Club is the second oldest golf course in North America on its original location.
“We are truly honoured to host this prestigious tournament at Victoria Golf Club,” said General Manager Scott Kolb. “We look forward to challenging this strong field with our historic golf course, in addition to showcasing the beautiful city of Victoria and all it has to offer.”
Graham Cooke of Hudson, Que., captured the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur title seven times between 1987 and 2002. He is among a group of five other players who have captured this championship on multiple occasions, including 2014, 2015 and 2016 winner Garrett Rank of Elmira, Ont.
Cooke and Rank join four other past Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur champions competing in this event – Dave Bunker (2008-2010), Kevin Carrigan (2012-2013), Garth Collings (2003) and defending champion Todd Fanning. Bunker, Rank and Cooke are the only players to win the tournament three years in a row.
“We are thrilled to bring this talented field to Victoria Golf Club. The Mid-Amateur is a great opportunity for Canadian amateurs to find success and experience on a national stage,” said Tournament Director Akash Patel. “This beautiful course is in great condition and sure to draw out some exciting competition.”
In 2017, Fanning finished at 10 under par, finding himself in a three-man playoff at Wascana Country Club. He would eventually emerge victorious on the fourth playoff with an eight-foot putt for par. Fanning will look to become the seventh player with back-to-back wins at the championship.
The first round will take place on Aug. 21 and the field will be reduced to the low 70 and ties for the final two rounds.
The championship was first contested in 1987 and includes an inter-provincial competition which is held over the first 36 holes. In addition, the championship includes a Mid-Master competition for players over the age of 40 that runs concurrently with the tournament.
A supplemental qualifier will be held at Gorge Vale Golf Club on August 19th, where three spots into the tournament will be awarded. Additional information can be found here.
Team Ontario will attempt to defend its title in the inter-provincial team competition, hoping for their fourth consecutive victory.
In addition to the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur title, the 2018 champion will receive an exemption into the 2019 RBC Canadian Open at Hamilton Golf and Country Club from June 3-9, 2019.
Additional information about the tournament, including the full field and tee-times is available here.
Garrett Rank of Elmira, Ont.
In 2016, Rank earned his third straight championship win at the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur and is the highest ranked Canadian golfer in the field at No. 88. He recently won both the Ontario Men's Mid-Amateur and the Investor's Group Ontario Men's Amateur. The 30-year-old also earned co-medallist honours at the U.S. Open Qualifier at Ansley Golf Club and a third place finish at the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship.
Dave Bunker of Brampton, Ont.
The 53-year-old won this event three years in a row between 2008-2010. He also won the Investors Group Men’s Mid-Amateur three times, most recently in 2014. Bunker has four top-five finishes in the six events he competed in this season, including a tie for second at Investors Group Ontario Men's Mid-Am Championship.
Todd Fanning of Winnipeg, Man.
The 50-year-old comes in as the event’s defending champion after rallying in the final round and winning the 2017 tournament in a playoff. Fanning finished third in the Nott Autocorp Men’s Amateur Championship in July.
Kevin Carrigan of Victoria, B.C.
Carrigan won the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship two times in a row in 2012 and 2013 and finished fourth in 2017. The 32-year-old finished third at the B.C. Amateur Championship in 2017 and 2018.
Graham Cooke of Hudson, Que.
With seven victories, Cooke holds the record for most titles at the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship. The 71-year-old has three top-three finishes this year, including a win at the Championnat Senior Montreal at Kanawaki Golf Club.
Garth Collins of Matlock, Man.
The 60-year-old, who won the championship in 2003, finished in second at the 2018 Manitoba Mid-Amateur and fourth at the 2018 Manitoba Senior Championship.
Championship was first contested in 1987 and was originally known as the RCGA Pre-Seniors Championship before it was renamed to its current name in 1989.
The Inter-Provincial Team Championship for the R. Bruce Forbes Trophy was first conducted in 1992 and is played concurrently over the first two rounds of stroke play.
Graham Cooke of Hudson, Que. and Stu Hamilton of Brampton, Ont., captured 11 of the first 20 championships played.
Graham Cooke was the inaugural champion in 1987.
Graham Cooke has the most event wins with seven.
The defending champion is Todd Fanning of Winnipeg, Man., who captured gold-medal honours in both the Mid-Amateur and Mid-Master division
Three players have won the event three times in a row: Garrett Rank, Dave Bunker and Graham Cooke – no one has won it four times straight.
In 2006, the format was changed from match to stroke play, with a Mid-Master category introduced for golfers over the age of 40.
In 2017, Team Ontario captured the inter-provincial R. Bruce Forbes Trophy for the third straight year.
ABOUT THE COURSE
Victoria Golf Club
Founded in 1893
The oldest 18-hole golf course in Canada in its original location, and second oldest in North America.
The course began as 14 holes but quickly expanded to 18 in 1895.
The clubhouse, completed in 1928, is a registered Canadian Historic Place.
For more than a century, famous names have graced the course, including golfing greats Harry Vardon, Chick Evans, Byron Nelson, Joyce Wethered, Ben Hogan, Al Geiberger, Pat Bradley, George Knudson, Sam Snead, Dawn Coe-Jones and Johnny Miller, to name a few.
Numerous celebrities such as Bob Hope, Bing Crosby, Wayne Gretzky, Pamela Anderson, Kiefer Sutherland and, most recently, Alice Cooper have played at the course.
More information can be found here.
GOLF CANADA AMATEUR CHAMPIONSHIPS
Golf Canada annually conducts more than 20 championships nation-wide which play host to more than 3,000 domestic and international athletes from all corners of the world. In partnership with our host clubs, thousands of volunteers, provincial golf associations and our proud sponsors, Golf Canada is dedicated to supporting player development through world-class competition since our inception in 1895. Officiated by certified Canadian Rules of Golf officials, Golf Canada’s amateur competitions are fully compliant with golf’s international governing bodies and include marquee events such as the Canadian Men’s and Women’s Amateur Championships as well as the Canadian Junior Girls and Junior Boys Championships. Golf Canada’s amateur championships are proudly supported by RBC, Canadian Pacific, Sport Canada, Levelwear, Titleist and FootJoy. For more information and scheduling visit www.golfcanada.ca/competitions.
Golf Canada is the National Sports Federation and governing body for golf in Canada representing 319,000 golfers and 1,400 member clubs across the country. A proud member of the Canadian Olympic Committee, Golf Canada’s mission is to grow participation, excellence and passion in the sport while upholding the integrity and traditions of the game. By investing in the growth of the sport and introducing more participants of all ages to the game, our goal is to be relevant to and respected by all Canadian golf enthusiasts from coast to coast. For more information about what Golf Canada is doing to support golf in your community, visit www.golfcanada.ca.