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Golf Canada’s 2020 National Amateur Championships cancelled due to COVID-19 pandemic

Golf Canada Tee Block
Tsawwassen, BC – 03 August 2018 – Canadian Junior Girls Championship at Beach Grove Golf Club in Tsawwassen, BC. (Chuck Russell/Golf Canada)

OAKVILLE, ONT. (Golf Canada) – Due to continued health concerns as well as government restrictions on travel and group gatherings during the COVID-19 pandemic, Golf Canada has cancelled all of its amateur golf competitions for the duration of the 2020 season.

The National Sport Federation had previously announced the cancellation or postponement of a number of its junior and amateur competitions scheduled through mid-June.

“National amateur competitions have been a proud focus throughout our 125-year history and while we share in the disappointment of competitors, our host clubs and event volunteers, the most important consideration is the health and safety of the people who come together at our championships,” said Golf Canada CEO Laurence Applebaum. “Ongoing travel restrictions—both international and across some provincial borders—in addition to continued restrictions on larger group gatherings and limitations on player training were significant contributors to this decision. We are also sensitive to the needs of our host clubs to ensure a safe and healthy environment for their staff and members.”

The 107th Canadian Women’s Amateur Championship, one of the top-ranked women’s amateur events in the world that attracts many international athletes, was scheduled to begin in five weeks at The Royal Montreal Golf Club from July 21-24. In addition, the 116th Canadian Men’s Amateur which features a 264-player field was scheduled to take place at The Glencoe Golf & Country Club in Calgary, Alta. from August 3-6 – marking the 125th anniversary of this storied championship. The cancellations will mark the first time since the second World War where these two national championships will not be conducted.

Golf Canada has also announced that the National Orders of Merit will not be awarded in 2020. The purpose of the points-based rankings is to identify and give recognition top-performing male and female amateur and junior golfers across Canada who have achieved success in the golf season. The decision to not award the Orders of Merit was made recognizing the varying access Canadian golfers will have to domestic and international competitions, and the resulting difficulty in running an equitable ranking system. Golf Canada will look to resume the Orders of Merit on September 1st, 2020 for the 2021 rankings. For more information, please visit the National Orders of Merit page by clicking here.

Golf Canada and Golf Ontario previously announced the cancellation of the 7th annual World Junior Girls Championship, scheduled for September 30 – October 3, 2020 at Angus Glen Golf Club in Markham, Ont.

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

Canadian Men's Mid-Amateur Championship

American Joseph Deraney defends Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship

(Jeff Vogan/ Golf Canada)

RICHMOND HILL, Ont. – Joseph Deraney knows exactly where he will be on June 11, 2020.

The Belden, Miss., product carded a final round of even-par to defend his Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship, earning an exemption into the 2020 RBC Canadian Open.

“I didn’t hit it very well,” said Deraney. “I was getting tired – my legs are hurting. I had a couple of incredible up-and-downs that kind of helped save the round. I was pretty steady.”

Deraney, 36, started the final round at Summit Golf Club in a tie for the lead with Garrett Rank of Elmira, Ont. He was able to rebound from back-to-back bogeys on holes No. 5 and No. 6 to win the championship by one stroke.

Deraney took the lead on the par-5 No. 16 with a birdie. Rank held a four stroke lead on the front-nine, but had bogeyed the two previous holes. With the birdie giving Deraney a one-shot lead, the two golfers parred the rest of the holes down the stretch. Rank had a 15-foot birdie putt on the par-4 18th to force a playoff, but missed it to the right.

This is Deraney’s second straight year earning an exemption into the RBC Canadian Open. He played the tournament in 2019, missing the cut.

“I’m pretty stoked about that,” said Deraney. “The field was so good last year. The golf course was so good. Getting to hit balls next to major champions was a once in a lifetime experience…I thought.”

Rank finished the championship at 5-under-par with a final round of 1 over 72.

Charles Fitzsimmons came in third place at 2 under for the tournament, carding a final round of 3 over. The longtime member of the Western University men’s golf team has finished in the top-five of each of the past three Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championships.

Philip Arci of Vaughan, Ont., finished at 1 under in fourth place, while Mike Aizawa of Richmond, B.C., rounded out the top-five at 1 over.

Derek Meinhart of Mattoon, Ill., won the 40-and-over Mid-Master division with a 72-hole score of 4 over. Meinhart carded a final round of 2 under, making six birdies to win the division by two strokes.

“I’ve been hitting it really well all week, but I haven’t been making putts,” said Meinhart. “Today I got a few to fall. I enjoyed this golf course all week and the challenge that it brought. This is my fourth year [playing the Canadian Mid-Amateur]. I enjoy it and look forward to it every year. I brought the family this year, so we had a great time.”

Meinhart was Deraney’s caddie when the latter played the RBC Canadian Open in 2019, and Deraney is planning on having his countryman on his bag again in 2020.

Mike Dinner of Burlington, Ont., finished runner-up in the Mid-Master division at 7 over, while Ryan Kings of Kitchener, Ont., came in third at 9 over.

On Wednesday, Team Ontario defended their inter-provincial team title, securing the R. Bruce Forbes Trophy for the fifth straight year and the 15th time overall.

Full results can be found here.

Canadian Men's Mid-Amateur Championship

Deraney and Rank tied for lead heading into final round of Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship

(Golf Canada)

RICHMOND HILL, Ont. – It’s tight atop the leaderboard heading into the final round of the 33rd Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship held at Summit Golf Club, with Joseph Deraney of Belden, Miss., and Garrett Rank of Elmira, Ont., sharing the lead.

Deraney, the defending champion, ascended the leaderboard by carding a 3-under-par 68, the lowest score in round three.

“It was windy and it’s very blustery,” said Deraney. “It blows in between the trees. The pins were in some really good locations, so it’s a tough golf course. We knew anything under-par was going to be a good score.”

Deraney made consecutive birdies on holes No. 7 and 8 and on holes No. 14 and 15, moving to 6 under for the tournament. The defending champion, Deraney came from behind to win the competition in 2018.

“Last year I wasn’t that far out,” said Deraney. “I was in the second-to-last group and clearly visible to the guys behind me. Again, this golf course is set-up pretty difficult. You have to keep hitting shots. If you need to start pressing towards the end, you can do that, but the first 14 to 15 holes you just have to play good golf.”

A double-bogey on the par-4 1st erased the two-stroke lead Rank carried into the third round. The three-time champion recovered with three birdies and an eagle on the par-5 16th.

Both Deraney and Rank bogeyed the 18th hole, giving them a one-stroke lead over Charles Fitzsimmons of London, Ont.

Fitzsimmons, who carded the low score in the second round, is alone in third at 5 under. The reigning Canadian University/College men’s individual champion briefly led on Thursday, ultimately carding a round of 1 under.

Mike Aizawa of Richmond, B.C., is alone in fourth place at 1 under for the tournament, shooting a 2-under-par 69 in the third round.

Philip Arci (Vaughan, Ont.) rounds out the top-five at even-par.

In the 40-and-over Mid-Master division, Mike Dinner of Burlington, Ont., has opened a three-stroke lead. Dinner carded a round of 2 under on Thursday and now sits at 3 over for the tournament. He is in eighth place in the Mid-Amateur division.

Derek Meinhart (Mattoon, Ill.) and Ashley Chinner (Brooklin, Ont.) are tied for second at 6-over-par.

In addition to the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur title, the 2019 champion will receive an exemption into the 2020 RBC Canadian Open at St. George’s Golf and Country Club in Toronto.

Full scoring can be found here.

Canadian Men's Mid-Amateur Championship

Garrett Rank leads by two at Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship

(Golf Canada)

RICHMOND HILL, Ont. – Garrett Rank increased his lead by shooting a 1-under-par 70 in the second round of the 33rd Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship held at Summit Golf Club.

Rank entered Wednesday with a one-stroke lead and made three birdies and two bogeys in the second round to move to 6 under for the tournament. His advantage over the field is now two strokes after 36 holes.

“It was kind of tricky with the wind, and the greens were definitely a lot firmer than they were yesterday afternoon,” said Rank. “I’m not happy with my back-nine. I probably gave away four shots, which makes lunch taste a little worse, but it’s a long week and we’re only halfway through.”

Rank’s round got off to an ideal start. Teeing off on the par-3 No. 10, his tee shot carried over the green. The 31-year-old then chipped in for birdie from 30 feet while standing on a steep incline.

“I hit a really good shot off the tee, just with the wrong club,” added Rank. “I was in a bit of a pickle there and hit a great chip. I was lucky for it to go in. It was a nice start after kind of a bad decision off the tee.”

Sitting in second place and two strokes back of Rank is Charles Fitzsimmons of London, Ont. Fitzsimmons ascended the leaderboard with a round of 4 under 67, the lowest score of the second round. He made an eagle on the par-5 No. 14 and recorded two birdies to move into second.

“I just hit the ball really, really well,” said Fitzsimmons. “All of my shots were on point. I got a couple of putts to drop at key points to keep things going, but I really was just hitting it well all day.”

Fitzsimmons is the reigning Canadian University/College men’s individual champion and finished runner-up at the 2019 Ontario Men’s Amateur Championship. The 32-year-old has finished in the top-five of each of the past two Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateurs.

“I hit my approach shot a little to the right and just got a really good bounce off the front slope,” said Fitzsimmons when asked about his eagle. “It rolled up to 30 feet below the pin – it’s tough to get it there. I had a really nice look at it and just put it right in the jar.”

Defending champion Joseph Deraney of Beldon, Miss., carded 2 under on Wednesday. He now sits alone in third place at 3 under for the tournament.

Ryan Sevigny of Ottawa began the second round a stroke behind Rank, but carded a round of 3 over to move into fourth-place at 1 under, overall.

Mike Aizawa of Richmond, B.C., and Philip Arci of Vaughan, Ont., round out the top-five at 1 over.

Ryan Kings of Kitchener, Ont., Derek Meinhart of Mattoon, Ill., and Ashley Chinner of Brooklin, Ont., lead the 40-and-over Mid-Master division. All three sit at 3 over par for the tournament, nine shots behind Rank in the Mid-Amateur division.

Team Ontario continued their tradition of dominance in the inter-provincial competition. The trio of Fitzsimmons, Arci and Simon McInnis of Toronto, combined to finish the 36-hole competition at 3 under par, 12 strokes ahead of runners-up Team Québec.

It’s Ontario’s fifth straight year winning the R. Bruce Forbes Trophy. It is also the province’s 15th win all-time in the inter-provincial team competition, the most since the division was established in 1992.

A total of 72 players who finished 12-over-par or better have advanced to the final two rounds. The third round is scheduled to start at 7:30 a.m. local time on Thursday.

In addition to the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur title, the 2019 champion will receive an exemption into the 2020 RBC Canadian Open at St. George’s Golf and Country Club in Toronto.

Full scoring can be found here.

Canadian Men's Mid-Amateur Championship

Garrett Rank leads Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship after first round

(Golf Canada)

RICHMOND HILL, Ont. – Garrett Rank of Elmira, Ont., carded a 5-under-par 66 to lead after the opening round at the 33rd Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship, held at Summit Golf Club on Tuesday.

Rank made six birdies in the round while overcoming a one-stroke penalty he incurred when he hit his ball out of bounds. The lone blemish for Rank was a bogey on the par-4 6th. He holds a one-stroke lead over Ryan Sevigny of Ottawa.

“I played really well,” said Rank. “That one-stroke penalty was the mistake of the day. It could have been a really special round. My short game was awesome – I hit a lot of pitches from around the green. Whenever I missed the green, I was able to get it up-and-down stress-free.”

The 31-year-old NHL linesman is a past champion at the event, having won three years in a row from 2014 to 2016. Rank led the 2018 Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship after the first round (also with a score of 5 under), ultimately finishing in a tie for third.

“Maybe I’m a little more confident with the successes I’ve had this summer,” said Rank when asked about being in a similar position to last year. “Overall I’m just sticking to what I’m doing and adding them up at the end of the week and seeing where I’m at.”

Rank is looking to cap off a remarkable season. The former Team Canada member became the first Canadian in 42 years to win the prestigious Western Amateur Championship earlier in August and played the 2019 U.S. Amateur.

Sevigny also made six birdies and would have been tied atop the leaderboard had he not missed a short par putt on the 18th hole. Sevigny sits at 4 under 67 after the first round.

“I played the front-nine very steady,” said Sevigny. “Everything was solid. I wouldn’t say any one part of my game was amazing, but I felt very in control and I like the way the course is playing. I’m super satisfied and happy. I felt like I played much better than a 67, but I’ll take it.”

Defending champion Joseph Deraney (Belden, Miss.) is tied for third at 1 under. Deraney made three front-nine birdies and is four strokes behind Rank, tied with David Lang of Toronto and Cameron Dunning of Calgary

There is a three-way tie for the lead in the 40-and-over Mid-Master division between Dwight Reinhart (Ottawa), Derek Meinhart (Mattoon, Ill.), and Mike Dinner (Burlington, Ont.). All three players sit at even-par after 18 holes.

Team Québec leads the 36-hole inter-provincial competition at the conclusion of the opening round. The trio of Sevigny, Noah Norton (Kahnawake, Que.) and Patrick Godin (Saint-Clet, Que.) combined to shoot 1 under, leading the field by two strokes.

Team Ontario is in second place at 1 over and Team Manitoba is in third at 3 over. The inter-provincial team champion will be crowned Wednesday, at the conclusion of the second round.

In addition to the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur title, the 2019 champion will receive an exemption into the 2020 RBC Canadian Open at St. George’s Golf and Country Club in Toronto.

Full scoring can be found here.

Canadian Men's Mid-Amateur Championship

Summit Golf Club to host Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship

RICHMOND HILL, Ont. – Top amateur golfers over the age of 25 will gather Aug. 20-23 for the 33rd playing of the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship taking place at Summit Golf Club in Richmond Hill, Ont.

Joseph Deraney of Belden, Miss., captured the title in 2018, becoming only the second non-Canadian to win the championship. Deraney started the final day in sixth position, but a remarkable round of 65 earned him the championship. The 36-year-old is returning to defend his title in 2019.

Deraney and Garrett Rank of Elmira, Ont., headline a full field of 156 competitors who will take to the fairways of Summit Golf Club. Rank recently won the prestigious Western Amateur and is a three-time Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur champion, having won the tournament in 2014, 2015 and 2016. He’s also a NHL referee and former Team Canada member.

Rank and Deraney are among the five former champions competing in the event, along with Dave Bunker of Brampton, Ont. (2008-10), Rob Couture of Dallas, Tx. (2011) and Todd Fanning of Winnipeg (2017).

“We are thrilled to bring this talented field to Summit Golf Club,” said Akash Patel, the Tournament Director and Rules and Competitions Coordinator with Golf Canada. “The Mid-Amateur is a great opportunity for Canadian amateurs to find success and compete on a national stage. This beautiful course is in great condition and sure to draw out some exciting competition.”

The first round will take place Tuesday, Aug. 20 and the field will be reduced to the low 70 and ties for the final two rounds.

The championship was first contested in 1987 and includes a Mid-Master competition for players over the age of 40 that runs concurrently with the tournament. Todd Fanning of Winnipeg defended his Canadian Men’s Mid-Master title in 2018.

An inter-provincial team competition for the R. Bruce Forbes Trophy is held over the first 36 holes. Team Ontario is aiming for its fifth consecutive inter-provincial team victory. The trio of Rank, Bunker and Toronto native Patrick Forbes won with a score of 8 under. Team British Columbia finished runner-up at 2 over.

In addition to the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur title, the 2019 champion will receive an exemption into the 2020 RBC Canadian Open at St. George’s Golf & Country Club in Toronto from June 8-14.

Founded in 1912, Summit Golf Club was partially designed by famed golf course architect Stanley Thompson. The 2019 Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship will be the fourth Golf Canada championship conducted at Summit Golf Club, along with the 1970 Canadian Junior Girls, the 1973 Canadian Men’s Amateur and the 1999 Canadian Men’s Senior Championships.

“We are truly honoured to host the prestigious Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship at Summit Golf Club,” said Director of Golf and General Manager Ian Leggatt. “We look forward to challenging this strong field with our historic golf course, in addition to showcasing the beautiful city of Richmond Hill and all it has to offer.”

Additional information about the tournament, including the full field and tee times is available here.

NOTABLES

Garrett Rank, Elmira, Ont.
Rank won the 2019 Western Amateur in early August, becoming the first Canadian since 1977 to capture the prestigious championship. The current NHL referee is a three-time winner of the event, but hasn’t had his named etched on the trophy since 2016. Rank represented Canada at the 2018 World Amateur Championship and the 31-year-old’s older brother, Kyle, is also in the field.

Joseph Deraney, Belden, Miss.
The defending champion is looking to become the seventh golfer to win back-to-back Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateurs. Deraney has won two tournaments in 2019 – the Mississippi State Amateur Championship and the Greenwood Invitational. As the 2018 champion, Deraney earned an exemption to the 2019 RBC Canadian Open, missing the cut.

Dave Bunker, Brampton, Ont.
A three-time winner of the event from 2008-2010, Bunker is looking to rebound after missing the cut in 2018. The 54-year-old has played well in 2019, earning two top-10 results at the Ontario Men’s Match Play Championship and the Ontario Men’s Amateur Championship.

Todd Fanning, Winnipeg
Fanning has claimed the Mid-Master competition two years in a row, winning both the Mid-Master and Mid-Amateur in 2017. He played the RBC Canadian Open as a 50-year-old in 2018 – the fifth time he played the tournament and his first appearance in 16 years.

Rob Couture, Dallas
The former champion has played four tournaments thus far in 2019, with his best result being an eighth-place finish at the North Texas Mid-Amateur Championship – a tournament he has won on three occasions. Couture was the first non-Canadian to win the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur when he did so in 2011.

FAST FACTS

The Championship was first contested in 1987 and was originally known as the RCGA Pre-Seniors Championship before it was renamed to its current name in 1989.

The inter-provincial team championship for the R. Bruce Forbes Trophy was first conducted in 1992 and is played concurrently over the first two rounds of stroke play.

Graham Cooke of Hudson, Que. and Stu Hamilton of Brampton, Ont. captured 11 of the first 20 championships played. Cooke was the inaugural champion in 1987 and has the most event wins with seven.

The defending champion is Joseph Deraney, who won the title by posting a final round of 65.

Three players have won the event three times in a row: Garrett Rank, Dave Bunker and Graham Cooke – no one has won it four straight years.

The format changed from match to stroke play in 2006, with the Mid-Master category introduced for golfers over the age of 40.

In 2018, Team Ontario won the inter-provincial R. Bruce Forbes Trophy for the fourth straight year.

Canadian Men's Mid-Amateur Championship

American Joseph Deraney rallies to win Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship

Joseph Deraney
Joseph Deraney(Photo by: Chad Hipolito/GolfCanada)

VICTORIA, B.C. – Victoria Golf Club continued to test some of the best mid-amateur golfers for the fourth consecutive day, but nothing could stop Joseph Deraney as he rose to the challenge and shot a spectacular 65 to capture the 2018 Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur title on Friday.

Starting his day in sixth position, Deraney got off to a hard and fast start with back-to-back birdies on his first two holes. From there the 35-year-old never looked back, answering a solo bogey with four more birdies to win the championship by a 3-stroke margin at 4-under-par 276.

 “I’m really excited, I played really flawless, good shot after good shot,” said Deraney. “Earlier in the round I had a couple of 15 footers go in, which honestly I haven’t had all week so I got some momentum going.” 

With his victory, the Lexington, Ky., native becomes only the second American to win the tournament. Previously, Deraney’s best finish at the tournament was T4 in 2016. This year’s win secures him an exemption into the 2019 RBC Canadian Open, his first PGA Tour event, to be held at Hamilton Golf & Country Club.

Deraney may be on top of the world with wins at this tournament alongside victories at the Timuquana Cup and Carlton Woods Invitational earlier this year, but there was one thing more that made the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur a highlight.

“I’ve been fortunate enough to win some national mid-ams in the US, not any of the USGA ones but some of the national bigger ones,” said the dad of three. “Probably this venue and where it’s at and the fact that me and my wife got to spend some time together, I would have to say that it would be at the top if not the top.”

Two-time Men’s Mid-Amateur champion Kevin Carrigan finished the event in second. The Victoria, B.C., native struggled with three bogeys across his first nine holes but recovered on the back-nine under the eyes of a hometown crowd by recording two birdies to finish at 1-under-par 279.

Another home crowd favourite and host club member, Saare Adams, started the day in the lead but fell back after he shot a final-round 73. The 34-year-old finished sharing a piece of third with 36-hole leader Garrett Rank. 

Rank started the day in a tie for second after a difficult third round. He started off well with a birdie on the first hole and was tied for the lead at one point during the day. However, the 30-year-old couldn’t find his footing and dropped to fifth until back-to-back birdies on the 15th and 16th holes saw him finish in a tie for third at an even-par 280.

The Mid-Master division came down to the wire as Sandy Harper and defending champion Todd Fanning spent the day paired up in a battle for the win. The duo made the turn with Harper leading by two, but the 61-year-old spent the back-nine switching between leading and sharing the lead with Fanning. After parring their final hole, the two were sent to playoff action to determine the winner.

It was an all too familiar situation for Fanning, who won the Mid-Amateur title in a three-man playoff last year.

“The playoff is the thing for me at this tournament,” said the 50-year-old. “I wish I was in the playoff for the Mid-Am but Joe played fantastic so hats off to him.”

Fanning came out on top as his bunker shot rolled into the hole for an eagle over Harper’s birdie to take home his second consecutive Mid-Master title while Harper settled for second.

 “What a great week by all the people and the members of Victoria Golf Club. I can’t think of a better venue for the mid-amateur and it’s going to be tough to top this,” added Fanning. “At 50 years old, even when you’re the best 40-and-over amateur in Canada two years in a row that does feel quite good.”

Victoria’s own Craig Doell finished one shot behind them in third at 5-over-par 285.

On Wednesday, Team Ontario defended their inter-provincial title, securing the R. Bruce Forbes Trophy for the fourth straight year to bring their total titles to 14. 

Canadian Men's Mid-Amateur Championship

Adams in lead heading into final round at Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur

Saare Adams (Golf Canada)

VICTORIA, B.C. – While cold weather conditions at Victoria Golf Club made for a tougher day Saare Adams carded a third-round 69 on Thursday to edge out Garrett Rank for the lead heading into the final day of the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship.

Adams battled it out on his home course, where he happens to also be the tournament chair, playing an up and down round with four bogeys and five birdies. The local golfer was one of only four golfers to score in the red during the third round.

“It was a good round. A little shaky start, butchered the first hole after a good drive and then made another bogey and kind of got into the groove, played better and found my putter,” said the 34-year-old. “I’ve got a good home course advantage. It was a little breezier today, so I think lots of the guys kind of struggled.”

All in all, Adams felt like it was just another round of golf and added, “I’m just trying to have some fun and not make any big numbers.”

Garrett Rank, the 36-hole leader got off to a  rocky start to his round with two consecutive bogeys out of the gate, followed by a birdie and yet another bogey. Rank settled down with 6 pars and a birdie through the first 14 holes, before difficult double bogeys on 15 and 16 saw him finish the day sharing a piece of second.

All hope is not lost for the 30-year-old, who is only one shot behind the lead alongside fellow former Mid-Amateur champion Kevin Carrigan. Carrigan, who started the day in a tie for third, posted an even-par 70 after registering four birdies and four bogeys to sit in second with Rank at 2-under-par 208.

In the over-40 Mid-Master division, Sandy Harper of Nanaimo, B.C. shot 67, the low-round of the day, to tie defending champion Todd Fanning  at 1 under par.

When asked about how it felt to co-lead the division, Harper just laughed.

“It was a good round. Overall, I hit it well and drove it well and hit a lot of greens,” said the Nanaimo, B.C. native. “I’m just trying for the 60-and-over division.”

Not to be outdone, Fanning added his own sense of humour to the conversation.

“Sandy played professional golf before I did, so I think our combined ages are probably more than the four other guys in the last two groups,” said the 50-year-old. “I find this golf course keeps you off balance the whole round. Staying patient is important and just understanding that everyone else is going through what you’re going through.”

Derek Meinhart of Mattoon, Ill., rounds out the Mid-Master top-three at 5 over par.

In addition to the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur title, the 2018 champion will receive an exemption into the 2019 RBC Canadian Open at Hamilton Golf & Country Club in Hamilton, Ont.

For full results click here.

Canadian Men's Mid-Amateur Championship

Rank holds the lead at Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship after 36 holes

Garrett Rank
Garrett Rank (Photo by: Golf Canada)

VICTORIA, B.C. – As the brisk, windy conditions set in at Victoria Golf Club, Garrett Rank fought hard to keep the heat going during the second round of the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship and hold on to his lead at Victoria Golf Club on Wednesday.

The three-time Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Champion started off strong with three birdies and an impressive eagle across his first twelve holes against a single bogey. However, the strength of the wind picked up, making for difficult playing conditions on the back-nine. 

“Sometimes you get the bad end of the draw and we got the bad end of the draw with nine holes of absolute survival in the wind,” said Rank. “I couldn’t really distance myself today and I guess mother nature didn’t cooperate, so it was a bit of a grind there.”

The less-than-ideal weather saw the 30-year-old make two more bogeys for a second round 68. With more wind forecasted for Thursday, the Elmira, Ont., talent will head into the third round with a three-stroke lead.

“I’m in a good condition after the first two days,” added the NHL referee. “Now everyone has to play in the same weather conditions, so it levels the playing field a little bit and I’m in a good spot.”

It was a different story for the three local golfers who round out the top-three. With the Victoria crowds cheering them on during the earlier wave, they are still within reach of winning the championship on home soil. As the familiar green of his home club lay under his feet, Victoria native Jordan Caron shot a 67 to sit in solo-second.

“I just wanted to come in with low expectations,” said the former host club Assistant Professional. “But it’s easy to get on your home golf course in a tournament like this and start thinking more about where not to hit instead of where to hit it, so I’ve been reigning myself in.”

Despite struggling with his swing, Caron registered four birdies and three bogeys enroute to a two-round score of 4 under par.

“I grinded well and kept my head and made a lot of par putts which is good and a few birdie putts here,” added Caron. “It was kind of fun to start getting to the part when I was under par again, so it’s exciting but at the same time you’re trying to treat it like a regular round of golf out here.” 

Another Victoria Golf Club member, Saare Adams, started on the back-nine weighed down by four bogeys, but made three consecutive birdies after making the turn. The 34-year-old finished the round sharing a piece of third at 2 under with fellow Victorian Kevin Carrigan, who won the tournament in 2012 and 2013.

In the Mid-Master division, Todd Fanning from Winnipeg, Man., held on to first place, recovering from a shaky start that included two bogeys and two double bogeys.

“Today was a little more up and down than yesterday,” said the defending champion. “I had a lot of silly shots and a lot of good shots and turned out to be an even-par 70 which was a bit of a grind because I had to finish 3 under on my last seven.”

After recording the first ace of the tournament on the sixth hole, Sandy Harper of Nanaimo, B.C. is in second, three shots behind Fanning at 2 over. David Greenaway of Barrie, Ont., and host club member Craig Doell of Victoria, B.C., are tied for third at 4 over par.

Team Ontario cemented their spot in the tournament’s history, defending their inter-provincial title with an impressive 10-stroke margin to win the R. Bruce Forbes Trophy for the fourth straight year.  Thanks to Rank’s lead, three-time Mid-Amateur champion Dave Bunker of Brampton, Ont., and Patrick Forbes of Toronto, Team Ontario secured their 14th win in the inter-provincial division, the most wins by a team since the division was established in 1992.

Team British Columbia finished in second with a total 2-over-par 282 while Team Manitoba came in third at 9-over-par 289.

In addition to the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur title, the 2018 champion will receive an exemption into the 2019 RBC Canadian Open at Hamilton Golf & Country Club in Hamilton, Ont. 

Canadian Men's Mid-Amateur Championship

Rank leads Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship after round 1

Garrett Rank
Garrett Rank (Photo by: Golf Canada)

VICTORIA, B.C. – Garrett Rank heated up an otherwise calm, windless day at Victoria Golf Club after he shot a 5-under-par 65 to lead the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship after round one on Tuesday.

The Elmira, Ont., talent started the day on the back nine and didn’t waste any time before recording an eagle straight out of the gate on his first hole.

“I got off to a great start, eagled the first hole, made a nice putt for birdie on my third hole and it was off to the races. I made a few mistakes in the middle of the round but had a lot of really good putting today,” said Rank, whose 2016 Men’s Mid-Amateur win made him one of only three players to record three consecutive titles in the tournament’s history. “65 is a great score and I’m pleased with it, but definitely going to need to be a bit sharper if I’m going to take it home.”

After his eagle, the 30-year-old Team Canada Amateur Squad graduate would go on to card five birdies against two bogeys to lead the field. He has made quite the splash in amateur golf this season, most recently at the 114th Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship where he finished in third and was the low Canadian at the tournament by seven strokes.

“I’m in love with the game of golf and love playing golf,” added the NHL referee, when asked about competing in his fourth event in a row and his intense amateur golf summer schedule. “If this is what I get to do in the summer, then I need to play in events.”

Two B.C. players sit in second place as Jordan Caron of Victoria and Jay Snyder of Vancouver shot matching 3-under-par 67s. Both players played consistent golf throughout the day. Caron, who calls Victoria Golf Club home, registered four birdies and a sole bogey while Snyder, who earned an exemption into this week’s tournament after winning the 2018 B.C. Mid-Amateur Championship, carded five birdies and two bogeys.

Todd Fanning, the defending Men’s Mid-Amateur and Mid-Master champion from Winnipeg, Man., leads the over-40 Mid-Master division by two strokes.

“We had the afternoon draw and neither of us threw grass or discussed the wind direction with our caddies one time,” said the 50-year-old. “Only getting one practice round on a course this difficult and with the greens this tricky, I felt like I was thinking pretty conservatively and was just kind of unsure of a few different shots. All-in-all, I think that a 69 is a good way to start.”

Canadian Golf Hall of Fame Legend and seven-time Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Champion Graham Cooke from Hudson, Que., is in second alongside four other golfers —Senan Foley (Calgary, Alta.), Sandy Harper (Nanaimo, B.C.), Craig Doell (Victoria, B.C.) and Glenn Robinson (Middle Sackville, N.S.)— at 1-over-par 71.

Defending champion Team Ontario leads the inter-provincial competition in large part due to Rank’s low-round of the day. Fellow teammates Dave Bunker (Brampton, Ont.) and Patrick Forbes (Toronto, Ont.) have Ontario at the top of the leaderboard by a comfortable four-stroke margin at 7 under par.

Team British Columbia is in solo second at 3 under while Team Quebec is in third at 3 over.

In addition to the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur title, the 2018 champion will receive an exemption into the 2019 RBC Canadian Open at Hamilton Golf & Country Club in Hamilton, Ont.