Riley Wheeldon of Comox, B.C., shot 64 to establish a new course record and register a one-stroke victory at the first of three RBC Canadian Open regional qualifiers at Bear Mountain Resort in Victoria on Monday.
“I had two lackadaisical bogeys in the middle of the round, but other than that I played very well,” said Wheeldon.
“I do know four or five of the guys from today whom I’ve been playing with around B.C., so with so few spots available, there wasn’t much margin for error,” he added.
Wheeldon recorded eight birdies, including five on the back nine to secure the win.
“It was fairly calm out and the course was in great condition. It’s just nice to know I’m one round away in a couple months from being in our biggest tournament of the year,” he said.
Seann Harlingten of West Vancouver and Dillon Rust of Edmond, Okla., finished T2 after matching 65s. Ian (Jae Hoon) Kim of Surrey, B.C., was the lone amateur to make the cut with a four-under 66.
The trio of Ben Taylor (Baton Rouge, La.), Ryan Burgess (Dallas), and Brad Clapp (Chilliwack, B.C.) finished with shares of fifth at two under and will join Wheeldon, Harlingten, Rust, and Kim at final qualifying at Heron Point Golf Links in Ancaster, Ont., on July 18.
A minimum of four players from the 18-hole stroke play final qualifier will gain entry into the RBC Canadian Open field.
There are two more RBC Canadian Open Regional Qualifiers to be played, including June 6 at Club de golf de la Vallée du Richelieu in Sainte-Julie, Que. and June 20 at King’s Forest Golf Club in Hamilton, Ont.