|RBC Canadian Open - July 19, 2010
RBC CANADIAN OPEN
St. George's Golf & Country Club
Etobicoke, Ontario, Canada
Par: 35-35—70Yards: 7,000
Winner's FedExCup Points Share: 500
Purse: $5,100,000Winner: $918,000
2009 Champion: Nathan Green (270, -18)
Historic St. George's Again Hosts
RBC Canadian Open as Green Defends
The RBC Canadian Open returns to St. George’s Golf & Country Club for the first time since 1968 and the fifth time overall for Canada’s national championship. Nathan Green returns to Canada, where it took him an extra day to pick up his first PGA TOUR win. Because of bad weather for a good part of the week last year at Glen Abbey Golf Club, play extended to Monday, where Green defeated Retief Goosen with a par on the second playoff hole.
Unique to St. George’s is the intimate nature of the course. Because of location and staging purposes, players will start on the first and ninth holes on Thursday and Friday instead of the traditional first and 10th at most PGA TOUR events. The tournament will use the driving range at nearby Islington Golf Club.
This season, Green has made 12 of 19 cuts, with his best finish a tie for eighth at the Sony Open in Hawaii. He is 103rd in the FedExCup.
RBC Canadian Open Notes
Prior to his victory a year ago, Nathan Green had played in three previous RBC Canadian Opens. He tied for 20th in 2006 and missed the cut in 2007 and 2008.
The last RBC Canadian Open playoff prior to last year's duel between Nathan Green and Retief Goosen came in 2004, also at Glen Abbey Golf Club, when Vijay Singh outlasted Mike Weir.
Lee Janzen picked up his third top-10 finish at the RBC Canadian Open when he tied for fifth a year ago. That performance goes with his tie for third in 1999 and his tie for ninth in 2002.
Since 2000, 21 players have recorded four rounds in the 60s at the RBC Canadian Open. But of those 21, only Nathan Green in 2009 (68-65-69-68), and Jim Furyk in 2007 (69-66-69-64) have gone on to win. A year ago, Retief Goosen (65-69-67-69) was the only other player in the field to enjoy four sub-70 rounds.
One of Jack Nicklaus’ seven second-place finishes at the Canadian Open occurred at St. George’s Golf & Country Club, when Bob Charles defeated him in 1968. Those seven runner-up performances are by far the most of any player at this event. George Cumming had the next-most, with four runner-up showings (1906, 1907, 1909 and 1914). But he also won in 1905. In all, 20 players finished second in Canada at least twice. Of that group, 12 never won the RBC Canadian Open.
Australian Nathan Green became the sixth international player to win this tournament since 1980 when he captured the 2009 event at Glen Abbey Golf Club. England’s Peter Oosterhuis won in 1981, with Australia’s Greg Norman winning twice—in 1983 and 1992. Nick Price of Zimbabwe, is also a two-time winner (1991 and 1994). The other international winners are David Frost in (South Africa) in 1993 and Vijay Singh (Fiji) in 2003.
PGA TOUR E-Notes
Rory McIlroy and Rickie Fowler (Las Vegas, NV/Oklahoma State) were the lone rookies to finish among the top-25 at the British Open. Fowler (T14) was playing in his first professional major championship.
U.S. Open champion Graeme McDowell (Northern Ireland/UAB), who joined the PGA TOUR for the remainder of the 2010 season prior to the British Open, earned 34 FedExCup points at St. Andrews and sits 216th in the FedExCup standings. As FedExCup points are not retroactive, McDowell needs a late-season push to move into the top-125 to qualify for the first Playoff event, The Barclays. His next scheduled start is the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational (Aug. 2-8).
Canada native Mike Weir (Sandy, UT/BYU) will make his 20th career RBC Canadian Open start in his quest to win his country’s national championship. Of his previous 19 starts, he has amassed three top-10 finishes at the RBC Canadian Open, including a playoff loss to Vijay Singh in 2004.
The last two champions of the RBC Canadian Open, Nathan Green in 2009 and Chez Reavie in 2008, each claimed their first victory on the PGA TOUR north of the border. With his win at the Reno-Tahoe Open last week, Matt Bettencourt (Duncan, SC/Modesto JC) became the 10th first-time winner on the PGA TOUR in 2010. Bettencourt is one of eight players with wins on TOUR this year in the RBC Canadian Open field.
Ernie Els (West Palm Beach, FL/South Africa) has led the FedExCup standings for 17 consecutive weeks. Els’ run atop the standings surpasses Tiger Woods’ string of 16 consecutive weeks during the FedExCup’s debut season, 2007.
J.L. Lewis celebrated his 50th birthday on July 18 and will make his Champions Tour debut at the Senior British Open. Lewis earned two PGA TOUR victories, the most recent coming at the 2003 84 Lumber Classic of Pennsylvania. His best season came the same year, finishing No. 28 on the money list.
Since the Senior British Open became an official Champions Tour event in 2003, Tom Watson is the only player to have made the cut in all seven.
Tom Lehman has never failed to finish in red numbers at a British Open at St. Andrews, finishing 10-under in 2000 (T4) and 4-under in both 2005 (T23) and 2010 (T14).
For the third consecutive year, a Champions Tour member has finished in the top-15 of the British Open – Tom Lehman (T14-2010), Tom Watson (2nd-2009), and Greg Norman (T3-2008).
Four Champions Tour members are scheduled to play the RBC Canadian Open on the PGA TOUR this week – Paul Azinger, Fred Couples, Tom Pernice Jr. and Jim Rutledge. Last week, Azinger was in the booth for ESPN at the British Open, Couples took the week off, Pernice finished 60th at the British Open and Rutledge was runner-up at a Canadian Tour event.
Tommy Gainey (Bishopville, SC) notched two key accomplishments with his Chiquita Classic victory on Sunday. He became the first two-time winner of 2010 and assumed the top spot on the money list. A third victory would grant him the 10th three-win promotion to the PGA TOUR since the rule was instituted in 1997.
Former Ohio State University All-American golfer and major champion Meg Mallon is this week's Honorary Chairperson for the Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational at the OSU Scarlet Course. Former Buckeye basketball star and CBS analyst Clark Kellogg is host of the Monday pro-am.
The world's leading amateur based on the R&A's World Amateur Golf Ranking, Peter Uihlein (Oklahoma State), leads a group of 12 college All-Americans/amateurs who will compete in the Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational.
Though not an offical record because it spans two tournaments and five days, Peter Tomasulo's (Long Beach, CA/Cal) consecutive rounds of 61 (Ford Wayne Gretzky Classic) and 62 (Chiquita Classic) - 123 are lower than any two back-to-back rounds in Tour history. Kevin Chappell (Fresno, CA/UCLA) set a new official mark of 61-63 in the opening rounds of the Gretzky event.
Nationwide Tour leading money winner Tommy Gainey is 34 years old. The next five players on the money list (Nos. 2-6) are 25 and under -- 2-Chris Kirk (25), 3-Kevin Chappell (24), 4-Jamie Lovemark (22), 5-Bobby Gates (24) and 6-Martin Piller (24). Kirk, Chappell and Lovemark are all recent college players of the year, while Gates and Piller are former Texas A&M roommates/teammates and only 47 days apart in age.