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Golf Canada – Champion earns exemption into 2018 RBC Canadian Open and 2017 U.S. Amateur Championship 

TORONTO, Ont. –  The world’s best amateur golfers are set to gather in Canada for the 113th playing of the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship at both The Toronto Golf Club and Islington Golf Club from Aug. 7-10.

The championship returns to The Toronto Golf Club for the ninth time – the most in the championships history. Islington Golf Club will co-host the competition for the first two rounds while the field of 264 players from nine different countries take on two of the best courses Canada has to offer.

“We are incredibly excited to be welcoming back the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship to The Toronto Golf Club for a record ninth time,” said John Gravett, General Manager and COO for The Toronto Golf Club. “Alongside our co-host Islington Golf Club, we are looking forward to challenging the deep international field on two of the country’s most memorable golf courses.”  

The Toronto Golf Club was established in 1876 and is the third oldest golf club in Canada. It has also had the honour of hosting the RBC Canadian Open five times. Islington Golf Club was designed by famed Canadian Golf Architect Stanley Thompson in 1923 and features tree-lined, parkland-style golf holes, rolling terrain, and the meandering Mimico Creek.

“Islington Golf Club and its membership are very proud to be co-hosting this prestigious event,” said Dave Fox, General Manager at Islington Golf Club. “The Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship is deeply rooted in Canadian golf history, and we are thrilled to be a part of its 113th playing.” 

“We are beyond excited to be conducting the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship at two of the most excellent golf courses in Toronto,” said Tournament Director Adam Helmer. “Every year, this competition offers players the opportunity to add their names to one of the most storied championships in the world—we are looking forward to writing the next chapter of Canadian golf history.”

In 2016, Team Canada’s Hugo Bernard (Mont-Saint-Hilaire, Que.) shot a final-round, 5-under-par 65 to claim a two-stroke victory at The Royal Ottawa Golf Club. It was his third win of the season after he walked away with champion honours at the Alexander of Tunis and the NCAA Division II Championship.

Current PGA TOUR Canadians Mackenzie Hughes (Dundas, Ont.) and Nick Taylor (Abbotsford, B.C.) are recent winners of the event. Taylor won it in 2007 while Hughes won back-to-back titles from 2011-2012 – the last player to win in consecutive years.

A full field of competitors will compete for the Earl Grey Trophy and the title of Canadian Men’s Amateur champion, including Team Canada National Amateur Squad Members Bernard and Austin James (Bath, Ont.). Also in the draw are Team Canada Development Squad members Max Sekulic (Rycroft, Alta.), Chandler McDowell (Springbrook, Alta.), Peyton Callens (Langton, Ont.) and A.J. Ewart (Coquitlam, B.C.). 

An inter-provincial team championship will be played in conjunction with the first 36 holes of the competition with three-member teams vying for the Willingdon Cup. Team Newfoundland and Labrador comprised of National Team members Blair Bursey, Chuck Conley and Nathan Peters claimed the province’s first victory with a two-stroke win in 2016.

The Canadian Men’s Amateur Qualifier will be played at The Toronto Golf Club on Aug. 4 – a minimum of five spots into the tournament will be awarded. Additional information can be found here

The field will be reduced to the low 70 and ties for the final two rounds contested at The Toronto Golf Club.

In addition to claiming the title of 2017 Canadian Men’s Amateur champion, the winner will earn exemptions into the 2017 U.S. Amateur at The Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, Calif., and the 2018 RBC Canadian Open at Glen Abbey Golf Club in Oakville, Ont. The champion will also be eligible to receive an exemption into the U.S. Junior Amateur, the U.S. Mid-Amateur or the U.S. Senior Amateur, if applicable. 

For more information on the 2017 Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship including the full field, starting times and live scoring, click here.

NOTABLES​

Hugo Bernard of Mont-Saint-Hilarie, Que.
The 22-year-old member of Canada’s National Amateur Squad is the event’s defending champion. He is fresh off winning medallist honours at the U.S. Amateur Qualifier in Maine. In 2016, he also won the Alexander of Tunis Championship and the Division II Championship (NCAA). 

Andy Zhang of Winter Garden, Fla.
The 19-year-old is the highest ranked competitor in the field at No. 37. He finished runner up to Bernard last year and made history at the age of 14 when he became the youngest to compete at the U.S. Open in 2012.

Garrett Rank of Elmira, Ont.
In 2016 he 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. 65. He recently earned medallist at the U.S. Amateur Qualifier at Granite Golf Club while setting a course record. 

Chandler Phillips of Huntsville, Texas
The 20-year-old just completed his sophomore year at Texas A&M during which he was honoured as a Second Team PING All-American by the Golf Coaches Association of America. His most recent win came at the John Burns Intercollegiate last February, and he is currently ranked 42nd in the world. 

Austin James of Bath, Ont.
The member of Team Canada’s National Amateur Squad won the Big South Men’s Golf Championship (NCAA) in 2016. James, 21, is currently ranked at No. 465 and finished fourth in 2016’s Ontario Men’s Amateur.

Lawren Rowe of Victoria, B.C.
This season, the 21-year-old finished T2 at the U.S. Amateur Qualifying in Pullman, Wash., and fourth at the Canadian University/College Championship. During his past season playing for the Victoria Vikes he was victorious in four of his eight regular season tournaments in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).

Zach Bauchou of Forest, Va.
The 21-year-old finished T11 at the 2016 U.S. Amateur Championship and is currently ranked 49th in the world. In 2016, he won the Faldo Series Grand Final at The Greenbrier and was the runner up at the 2016 Southern Amateur Championship.

Shintaro Ban of San Jose, Calif.
In 2016, Ban captured the California State Amateur Championship and the Robert Kepler Intercollegiate. The 21-year-old is currently ranked 69th in the world.

Jimmy Jones of Tampa, Fla.
The son of Canadian Golf Hall-of-Famer Dawn Coe-Jones. A junior at University of South Florida, Jones posted six top-25 finishes in 2016-17 to lead the team. He was a semi-finalist for the 2016 NCAA Division II Jack Nicklaus Player of the Year Award.

FAST FACTS

Championship was first contested in 1895 at the Ottawa Golf Club.

The third oldest amateur championship in the world after the British Amateur Championship and Australian Amateur Championship. 

T.M. Harley was the inaugural champion.

Hall of Famer George S. Lyon has won the championship a record eight times, all between 1898 and 1914. 

Originally began as a match play tournament until it changed to stroke play in 1969. Between 1995 and 2007 it briefly returned to match play in celebration of event’s reaching the centennial mark. 

The winner receives the Earl Grey Cup.

Tournament has been held every year since 1895 except between 1915-1918 and 1940-1945 due to World War I and World War II.

There is an inter-provincial competition held in conjunction with the first two rounds of play. The wining team receives the Willingdon Cup. 

Canadian Golf Hall of Fame members who have won the title: Moe Norman, Gary Cowan, Doug Roxburgh, Ross Somerville, Jim Nelford, and Brent Franklin.

Four players have won both the U.S. Amateur and Canadian Amateur Championship: Ross Somerville, Dick Chapman, Harvie Ward and Gary Cowan. 

Current PGA TOUR players who have won the event include Mackenzie Hughes (2011, 2012) and Nick Taylor (2007).

The defending champion is Canadian Hugo Bernard. 

The Toronto Golf Club will be hosting event for the ninth time, the most in the championship’s history.

Mackenzie Hughes was the last player to win the competition in back-to-back years (2011-2012). Fellow Canadian Cam Burke accomplished the feat in 2008-2009 – he will look for his third title after regaining amateur status in 2017.

Eleven of the last 15 championships were won by a Canadian, including in 10 straight years from 2003-2012.

ABOUT THE COURSES

The Toronto Golf Club

Established in 1876.

Third oldest golf course in North America.

Designed by English architect H.S. Colt.

Has hosted the RBC Canadian Open five times. 

Has hosted the Men’s Canadian Amateur Championship more than any other club (nine times). 

The Toronto Golf Club will play as a par 70 with a maximum yardage of 6836.

Islington Golf Club

Established in 1923.

Designed by famed Canadian golf course architect Stanley Thompson. 

Features tree-lined, parkland-style golf holes across rolling terrain with Mimico Creek running through the heart of it.

Islington Golf Club will play as a par 70 with a maximum yardage of 6458

NOTE TO MEDIA Course images can be downloaded here.

Click here to download the full media guide.

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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, Acura, Titleist and FootJoy. For more information and scheduling visit www.golfcanada.ca/competitions.

GOLF CANADA – LOVE THE GAME. GROW THE GAME.
Golf Canada is the National Sports Federation and governing body for golf in Canada representing 305,000 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.

For more information:

Tyler Costigan
Manager, Corporate Communications & Social Media
Golf Canada
(t) 1-800-263-0009 x 315
(c) 416-300-4860
(e) tcostigan@golfcanada.ca