I had the pleasant opportunity last week to play St. George’s Golf and Country Club and, this being my first time, it lived up to its billing as a magnificent host site for the 2010 RBC Canadian Open.
Superintendent Keith Bartlett has the course in fine shape and I know he’ll be putting his game face on to put a lot more bite into it than what we experienced last Tuesday.
Once those greens are up to speed, the undulations will cause a few four-letter words, even if they are in silent mode, and don’t underestimate what the rough will do once it’s grown in.
This Stanley Thompson gem is a mystery to most of the current generation of PGA Tour players, but they will undoubtedly come away with the same kudos for St. George’s as they served up for Hamilton Golf and Country Club when they first played that back in 2003.
Those two Southern Ontario layouts and a beauty such as Shaughnessy in Vancouver, which hosts next year’s Open, are going a long way in polishing the image of the national championship.
If the early commitments of players for this year’s Open are any indication, the quality of golf courses in this country is getting noticed by PGA Tour players.
St. George’s has always been considered one of the best this country has to offer, but the one concern with it hosting this year’s Open is location, location, location.
A section of Islington Avenue, which separates the clubhouse from the golf course, will be shut down. Transit will be rerouted. Players will need to be transported over to the nearby Islington Golf Club to use the range there and fans will have long shuttle rides in to the course.
Yet, Golf Canada (formerly known as the Royal Canadian Golf Association) believes it will all be worthwhile in order to showcase once of Canada’s finest golf courses and I agree with that assessment.
From this perspective, the Open pales in comparison to what will happen when Toronto hosts the G20 Summit later this month.
What do you think?
That’s the topic of this week’s GNN Poll.
With all of the logistical concerns about hosting the RBC Canadian Open at St. George’s, how big of a gamble did Golf Canada take in putting it there?
Was it a huge gamble, a calculated risk with slight potential for trouble or do you feel it will go off without a hitch?
Be sure to cast your vote at the GNN Poll on the home page and, as always, your comments are welcome in the box below.