Many of Canada’s best golfers — including some local favourites — will be in action in the Cowichan Valley next week as Duncan Meadows hosts the 114th Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship.
Rounds one and two will be played at Duncan Meadows and Pheasant Glen on Monday and Tuesday. The top 70 who make the cut will play rounds three and four at Duncan Meadows on Wednesday and Thursday. A qualifier at Duncan Meadows this Friday (Aug. 3) will offer one last chance for hopefuls to make the final field of 240.
Among those who have already qualified is Mill Bay’s Tristan Mandur. Although his home club is Arbutus Ridge, he is still looking forward to playing a short distance from there.
“It’s definitely exciting to sleep in my own bed and have it close to home,” he said. “It’s not every day you get to do that.”
The 19-year-old Mandur last competed in the Canadian Men’s Amateur Championship in 2016, when it was held at the Royal Ottawa Golf Club in Gatineau, Quebec, and when he was still in high school.
“I made the cut, but I didn’t play my best the next two days,” he recalled.
He’s hoping for a better result this time around.
“My goal is obviously to win,” he said. “You go to every tournament with the mind to win, but I’m also just going to go and enjoy it. It’s my last tournament before I go back to university.”
A 2017 graduate of Shawnigan Lake School, Mandur is about to begin his sophomore year at the University of Utah, where he’s a member of the Utes golf team. He finished 34th overall, and first on his team, at the 2018 Pac-12 men’s championship at Rolling Hills, California in April.
“It went pretty well. We had a solid full season,” he said. “I was pretty happy with my year. I had a 72.8 stroke average and played all 11 events. That was pretty good for my freshman year.”
Mandur expects to see a lot of familiar faces at Duncan Meadows next week; a lot of fellow university golfers, and guys he used to compete against in junior.
“I have a pretty good idea who is playing,” he said. “It will be good. It’s the top Canadian men’s amateur tournament.”
Mandur, who tied for ninth at the BC Amateur Championship in Kamloops last month, has already golfed Duncan Meadows this summer, and said the course is “awesome.” As of Wednesday, he wasn’t sure if he would be starting the tournament at Duncan Meadows or Pheasant Glen, but he is equally prepared for both courses.
“Obviously, I’ll have a bit of a different game plan,” he said. “But I’ll go in and play my game.”
Other golfers from the Cowichan Valley who will be competing next week include Dallas Jones of Ladysmith (Mount Brenton), who finished 27th at the BC Amateur, Todd Bissenden of Chemainus (Duncan Meadows), and Darien Pridham of Crofton (Mount Brenton). Aaron Keller of Duncan (Cowichan), and Brent Wilson of Cobble Hill (Gorge Vale) are competing in this Friday’s qualifier.
Also in the Canadian Amateur Championship field are defending champion Zach Bauchou of Forest, Virginia, and 2016 winner Hugo Bernard of Mont-Saint-Hilaire, Quebec. The 2018 BC Amateur Championship winner, Richmond’s Chris Crisologo is also in the mix.
The Canadian Amateur Championship was last held in B.C. in 2013 at Royal Colwood. The tournament champion receives an exemption into next year’s RBC Canadian Open.