Canadian Open history at Hamilton

J. Douglas Edgar wins by 16 strokes in 1919

Purse $435 / Par 70, 6,470 yards

A strong contingent of American players, including Francis Ouimet and a 17-year-old amateur star from Atlanta, Bobby Jones, came to Hamilton to play in a series of matches against the top Canadians and then stayed for the Open the following week. It was the first Canadian Open in five years, with the event having been cancelled during WWI.

Jones led by one shot after the first round, but the tournament turned into a one-man show. J. Douglas Edgar, an Englishman transplanted to Atlanta, Georgia, went on to win the first of two Canadian Open championships. He demolished the field by shooting a then-world-record 72-71-69-66—278 to win by an astounding 16 strokes, a margin of victory that has stood as the Canadian Open and PGA Tour record for more than 90 years. Jones, who never played in another Canadian Open in his legendary career, tied for second with Jim Barnes of St. Louis and Karl Keffer of Ottawa, the defending champion.

For his victory, Edgar received a gold medal and $200. Keffer and Barnes each won $100 and silver medals. Jones, as the leading amateur, took home a gold medal, along with a silver medal for finishing in a tie for second and $100 worth of silver-plated wares. The total purse in 1919 was a whopping $435, split among the top six golfers. Hamilton G&CC Head Professional Nicol Thompson Sr. earned $10 for finishing sixth.

1. J Douglas Edgar 72-71-69-68—278 ($200)
T2. James Barnes 78-71-73-72—294 ($100)
T2. Bobby Jones 71-77-75-71—294 (Amateur)

T2. Karl Keffer 76-73-72-73—294 ($100)

5. Leo Diegel 79-72-73-71—295 ($25)

6. Nicol Thompson Sr. 73-74-74-76—297 ($10)

A playoff win for Tommy Armour in 1930

Purse $1,475 / Par 70, 6,470 yards

The championship returned to Hamilton for what would be the longest tournament in Canadian Open history. It began on a Friday and didn’t end until the following Wednesday—and weather wasn’t a factor. Tommy Armour, the Silver Scot, a student of Douglas Edgar, won the second of his three Canadian Open titles in a playoff with Leo Diegel, the defending two-time champion.

Hometown hero Nicol Thompson Sr. opened the tourney with a 66 for a three-shot lead and remained on top of the leaderboard after the second round before falling off the pace. After playing 36 holes on Friday, the tournament was scheduled to end with 36 holes on Saturday. Armour came from five strokes off the pace with a final-round, course-record-setting 64 to tie Diegel.

However, tournament golf wasn’t allowed on Sunday and Armour was scheduled to be in Detroit on Monday. The players agreed to come back to Hamilton to complete the 23rd Canadian Open on Wednesday for a 36-hole playoff that Armour won by shooting 69-69—138 to Diegel’s 69-72—141.

1. Tommy Armour 74-68-71-64—277 ($500)

2. Leo Diegel 69-72-69-67—277 ($300)
3. Johnny Farrell 73-66-70-69—278 ($200)
T4. Tony Manero 69-69-70-71—279 ($125)
T4. Macdonald Smith 70-71-70-68—279 ($125)
6. Walter Hagen 70-69-71-70—280 ($75)
7. Nicol Thompson Sr. 66-71-74-71—282 ($50)

The Tway it was in 2003

Purse $4.2 million / Par 70, 6,982 yards

Hamilton G&CC received rave reviews from players and golf fans as the Canadian Open returned to Ancaster after a 70-plus-year absence. Bob Tway picked up his eighth victory on the PGA Tour and first in more than eight years in a playoff victory over Brad Faxon.

After both players matched pars on the first two playoff holes, Tway won on No. 18, about an hour after he closed with a 25-foot par putt to tie Faxon at eight-under 272. It was Tway’s 18th appearance in the Canadian Open and at 44 years, four months and three days, he became the oldest player at the time to win the Canadian Open, eclipsing a mark set by Kel Nagle at age 43 in 1964. Canadian sports hero and Masters Champion Mike Weir shot a final-round 69 to finish 10th at three-under.

1. Bob Tway 70-70-66-66—272 ($756,000)

2. Brad Faxon 67-72-66-67—272 ($453,600)
3. Tom Pernice Jr. 68-72-65-68—273 ($285,600)
T4. Hidemchi Tanaka 66-70-67-71—274 ($184,800)
T4. K.J. Choi 71-70-67-66—274 ($184,800)
T6. Fred Funk 69-68-68-70—275 ($145,950)
T6. Vijay Singh 75-67-65-68—275 ($145,950)

Jim Furyk rallies for single-stroke victory in 2006

Purse $5 million / Par 70, 6,946 yards

The top-ranked player in the Canadian Open walked away with a one-stroke victory, posting a 5-under 65 in the final round. Jim Furyk, a crowd favourite, started the day two strokes behind third-round leader Justin Rose and found himself in first place early on the back nine thanks to a hot putter on a cold, windy day.

The 36-year-old, who had the best round of the day, finished at 14-under 266 for his second win of the season, one stroke ahead of Bart Bryant and two better than Sean O’Hair. He had a five-footer for par on the final hole, but backed off three times before knocking it in to maintain a two-shot cushion. Bryant made a birdie on No. 17 but was unable to pick up another stroke on No. 18.

Furyk’s winning score was six shots lower than Bob Tway’s winning mark at the 2003 Canadian Open thanks to rain softening the course’s traditional firm and fast conditions. Still, the Hamilton G&CC layout was again a hit with players.

Brantford’s David Hearn was the top Canadian after a solid 2-under 68 in tough conditions. The final round effort vaulted him up 11 places to a tie for 20th, earning him a paycheque of slightly more than $50,000.

1. Jim Furyk 63-71-67-65—266 ($900,000)
2. Bart Bryant 69-67-64-67—267 ($540,000)
3. Sean O’Hair 65-69-66-68—268 ($340,000)

4. Brett Quigley 71-63-67-68—269 ($240,000)
T5. Jonathan Byrd 65-68-67-70—270 ($169,500)

Others at T5 included; Trevor Immelman, Steve Lowery, Rory Sabbatini and Camillo Villegas.

Four rounds in the 60s for Scott Piercy in 2012

Purse $5.2 million / Par 70, 6,966 yards

Scott Piercy opened the 103rd playing of Canada’s national open championship with a scorching 8-under-par 62 and went on to shoot three consecutive rounds of 3-under 67 to capture the 2012 RBC Canadian Open.

Piercy finished with a four-day total of 17-under par 263, to defeat Robert Garrigus and William McGirt, who lead going into the final round, by one shot. He had five birdies in the final round including four in a row on No. 2, No. 3, No. 4, No. 5 and one on No. 15. The 33-year-old earned $936,000 for his second PGA Tour victory.

Graham DeLaet was the low Canadian finishing T56 at 2-under and Albin Choi was the low Canadian amateur finishing T73 at 1-over. Piercy and Tim Clark unofficially equalled the course record with 62s in round one and two respectively, when the field was playing lift clean and place because of wet course conditions.

1. Scott Piercy 62-67-67-67-263 ($936,000)
T2. Robert Garrigus 64-66-64-70-264 ($457,600)
T2. William McGirt 63-66-66-69-264 ($457,600)
T4. Josh Teater 67-65-68-66-266 ($214,933)
T4. Bud Cauley 70-63-67-66-266 ($214,933)
T4. Chris Kirk 69-66-63-68-266 ($214,933)

Rory McIlroy wins in his first RBC Canadian Open in 2019

Purse $7.6 million / Par 70, 6,966 yards

Using a loonie as his ball marker, Rory McIlroy fired a final round 9-under par 61 to win Canada’s National Open Championship, the RBC Canadian Open in his first appearance.

The 30-year-old entered Sunday’s final round sharing the lead with Americans Matt Kuchar and Webb Simpson. He started his round by lipping-out a chip for eagle on the first hole, en route to birding four of his first five holes. With the win the Northern Irishman claimed his 16th PGA TOUR title.

“It’s been a while since I played like this and sort of put my foot down, but it was so nice to do it today,” said McIlroy. “I’m very proud of what I’ve done today. Hopefully this sets up well for the rest of the year, too.” Adam Hadwin fired an even-par 70 in the final round, finishing as the low Canadian in sixth place at 12-under par 268. Hadwin was awarded the Rivermead Cup for the fourth time in his career as low Canadian. Mackenzie Hughes was the second best Canadian at 8-under.

1. Rory McIlroy 67-66-64-61-258 ($1,368,000)
T2. Shane Lowry 64-68-66-67-265 ($668,800)
T2. Webb Simpson 66-64-67-68-265 ($668,800)
T4. Brandt Snedeker 69-60-69-69-267 ($334,400)
T4. Matt Kuchar 65-63-69-70-267 ($334,400)