Time for another national open, this time in America’s hat — Canada! It’s the RBC Canadian Open! I prematurely apologize for the Canadian jokes. Y’all are really nice people.
About the Sponsor
Heyo, The Royal Bank of Canada is actually sponsoring a PGA Tour event in Canada, unlike earlier in the year when they sponsored the Heritage in South Carolina. Unlike last time, I don’t need to wonder why RBC sponsors this tournament since it’s in Canada. Instead, I’m going look up a little of the history of the RBC logo.
First off, that lion has a name. Leo. Nobody said Canadians have creativity. Instead of talking about some sort of history, here are a few of the best Leos I’ve uncovered from googling.
About the Tournament
Poor Canadians. While we have the US Open, and the Brits have “the Open” (or whatever name you want to call it), the Canadians have to have a title sponsor for their open. Also, it’s not really that open since it’s just a normal event on the PGA Tour.
Nevertheless, we’re still talking about a country’s national championship! Want evidence? The tournament was first played in 1911 and is the third longest consecutive running golf tournament behind… the other two national opens mentioned above. That’s elite company. And until 1988 when the PGA Tour decided to demote it to a September date, it was considered the 5th major. Seems like a conflict of interest with the Players Championship? Poor Canadians. They probably apologized after being moved to the worse date for having to be moved in the first place.
The tournament flips between Glen Abbey GC (talked about below), and numerous other courses located in Canada.
Also notable is that Mark Calcavecchia set the PGA Tour record for birdies in a row with NINE. I was going to put the number 9 back there but I couldn’t write that in all caps and I really needed to emphasize the absurdness of it. I’ve been sitting here trying to figure out how to put that in perspective but I can’t. Sadly, he was +2 on the other 9 holes and shot 65 on the day.
About the Course
Glen Abbey Golf Course hosts the event this week for the 26th time. Located in Ontario (which is next to Michigan, north of Ohio and around there) which means that players coming back from the Monday finish at the British Open don’t have to go all the way across the country to get to the next Tour stop.
The course features the “valley holes” on the back nine. Starting at 11 with a 60 foot drop from tee box to fairway, and ending after 15 green. I’m the happiest person in the world that they didn’t decide to name this stretch of holes like every other course on earth. Calling them the valley holes is enough for people to know what you’re talking about. Kudos to the Canadians.
Time for the weekly Tiger mention! Even though he sucked it up at the Open, we still gotta talk about him on GOTM. This week, we relive one of his most famous shots. A six iron from a fairway bunker on the last hole of the tournament to win. Love baggy clothes Tiger.
Tim Clark hopefully has his visa all figured out in order to get to Canada since he’s the defending champion this week! To do so, he birdied 5 of the last 8 holes with a rain delay in between. Also notable was how Jim Fyurk didn’t win again, when leading after 54 holes. Luckily for him, he won at the other RBC event earlier in the year.
What to Watch For
Not Mike Weir — If you haven’t been looking at the bottom of the PGA Tour leaderboards, you probably wouldn’t have noticed that he’s been dominated the bottom. The poor guy hasn’t made a cut since last October while playing a full schedule. Well he’s put an end to the suffering and decided to take a break from the Tour, right before his nation’s open. Hopefully he likes his semi retirement and can get back in form at some point, but only if he likes to.
Jet Lag — With the top players coming in from Europe with one fewer day than normal to prepare / recover from the cold temperature and wrong timezone. But really, this is a non issue since these are Tour players. They tour. And they’re used to it. Still won’t stop the announcers from using this as a talking point!
Flop shots — With St. Andrews being a links course, get your eyes adjusted for the rough of a North American golf course and flop shots!