The Globe’s Lorne Rubenstein raises some interesting possibilities when talking about where the Canadian Open may go after 2011 when it is at Shaughnessy in Vancouver. The piece doesn’t appear to be online yet, but essentially Rubenstein mentions the possibilities for courses beyond 2011. Those listed include Coppinwood, which the RCGA has taken a look at previously, Devil’s Pulpit, which would seem unlikely given its location, and Laval’s second course in Montreal. Rubenstein suggests that course will be renovated by Mike Weir and “design associate” Ian Andrew (Lorne’s words, not mine, since I know we didn’t hire a “design associate” at Weir Golf Design. Mike and former IMG head Brad Pelletier hired a designer.)
I think Coppinwood and the Pulpit, while interesting choices, are unlikely. The biggest issue is the television deal, which ends in 2012, and sponsor RBC’s deal, which ends at the same time. Both are linked. If a new television is presented and is attractive to RBC, they’ll sign on again. I think that much is certain from my discussions with them on the matter. Where the tournament goes is another issue, especially if the date remains the same. RBC would still like to get its hands on the former Buick date that has gone to the Greenbrier, though that is only a one-year deal. All of this complicates any renovation at Laval sur le Lac by Weir Golf Design.
So here’s how I see it:
2012 — Glen Abbey
2013 — Laval
2014 — Hamilton (discussions are once again on about this)
2015 — Glen Abbey
2016 — Other? Options — Coppinwood, Westmount, Ottawa Hunt
2017 — Laval
There’s also the option that’s been floated about a one-off at Banff Springs, which would be a remarkable feat, but probably very difficult given environmental issues. It would be a great spot to showcase Canada though. I hear Royal Montreal is out of the mix, having turned down the opportunity to host the Open. Their golf course is the weakest of the above list, so I don’t see this as much of a loss.