The Globe and Mail’s Lorne Rubenstein writes today that due to schedule changes to the 2007 PGA Tour season, the site of the Canadian Open that year will likely be moved.
The notion now is the Canadian Open (note current sponsor Bell Canada has still not signed on as a sponsor) will be moved from the North Course at Angus Glen and back to Glen Abbey.
Why is this significant? Well, because the North Course has been considered a weak venue from the start, with little player interest. In order to try to fix that, the RCGA dumped on the course’s designer, Doug Carrick, and brought in Davis Love III to make some changes. Those changes were largely made in the fall at a significant cost that was split between the RCGA and Angus Glen owner Gordon Stollery. Despite that, it now appears, according to comments from Bill Paul, the RCGA’s tournament director, that the tournament will not be at Angus Glen at all. Oh, and they are going to have to cancel the Wednesday pro-am as some players may not make it to the course in time for a practice round following the British. This seems silly, as I’ve left Toronto on a Friday night and played in Glasgow the following day, so why, at the very least, couldn’t players tee it up on Tuesday? Most wouldn’t arrive until Tuesday even if they didn’t play in the UK.
Bill Paul’s comments to Rubenstein seem to indicate clearly the tournament won’t be heading to Angus Glen:
“The timing of the new schedule doesn’t look that favourable for us for 2007,” Paul said from Palm Beach. “Can we afford to play at Angus Glen coming out of the gate that year? As we talk today, we’re playing at Angus Glen, but I’ve had a meeting with Kevin (Thistle) and I’ll have another when I get back.”
Lorne’s story ends on a downbeat:
The memory of when the Canadian Open was a must-play is a distant one, and fading further. No wonder anybody associated with the tournament has to be squirming these days.
You can read Lorne’s entire story here.
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What makes it even worse it they will now have to scrap all the marketing material Angus had created announcing them as the hosts of the 2007 event. I wonder if my Angus golf bag tag will now become a collectors item.
It is audacious to think that a relative new and unknown golf course could host a Canadian Open.
I wonder that yet-to-be-built golf course in Montreal that is slated to host the Canadian Open will suffer the same fate…