New/old Coppinwood owner Paul McLean has confirmed the Uxbridge-based club is seeking the RBC Canadian Open and Golf Canada CEO Scott Simmons and tournament director Bill Paul said they are eying the Tom Fazio course as a potential site for the Open.
McLean and co-owner Gerard Waslen recently acquired the club (McLean, who runs financing company Maxium founded Coppinwood) and have been actively seeking the Canadian Open. McLean, who is also on an advisory board for Golf Canada, said he’d stay out of lobbying for the tournament.
But it doesn’t sound like there’s a lot of convincing to do.
“It is a great venue, I like it a lot,” said Paul.
So the question is whether RBC is prepared to take the tournament to Coppinwood, which is about a half hour east of Toronto in a rural setting. The course, a solid but rarely spectacular Fazio design, would set up nicely for the event and its bowled green sites would be great locations for spectators. The clubhouse is likely a little small, but the practice facilities are top notch.
Right now Golf Canada has a couple of decisions to make regarding the Canadian Open. It is complicated by the fact the 2016 Olympics include golf and may force the PGA Tour to rework its schedule to allow some of its top players to participate. So Simmons and Paul aren’t sure what date they have to fill quite yet, though they expect that decision to be forthcoming very soon.
Currently Royal Montreal is scheded to hold next year’s tournament, leaving the 2015-17 Opens available. It is expected one of the tournaments will be a return to Vancouver’s Shaughnessy G&CC, while the 2017 playing is anticipated at the recently redesigned Laval course (by Ian Andrew and Mike Weir) to coincide with that club’s 100th anniversary. That would leave one year open.
There had been thought that Beacon Hall could be in the running, but that club has been in turmoil over the last year with infighting and leadership changes.
Bill also floated the idea of having a stable home course once again for the Canadian Open, a course where the event could be played regularly with some tournaments being held elsewhere. Could that be Coppinwood?