SEPTEMBER 14, 2021
RICHMOND, BC (PGA of British Columbia) – Mid-September always offers a welcomed break in the schedule for competitors in the Nike Golf PGA of BC Club Professional Championship presented by Oakcreek Golf & Turf LP, but it’s far more than a hit-and-giggle for the players striving to etch their name on the Dick Munn Memorial Trophy.
A field of 44 Club Professionals (Head, Executive and Head Teaching Professionals) will take on Royal Colwood Golf Club on Monday and Tuesday in the 16th edition of the 36-hole event, which will have a purse of nearly $15,000 up for grabs. It’s a terrific opportunity for key decision-makers in the province’s golf community to reconnect near the tail end of another year while fiercely contesting a provincial crown.
“It’s the perfect end to cap off our tournament season with the PGA of BC,” said defending champion Brad Clapp (Ledgeview Golf Club), who’s relishing the chance to seek back-to-back titles at the same time as tapping into the expertise of his colleagues.
“We’ve all gone through another crazy summer, so I’ll probably be picking guys’ brains and asking the same questions I did last year and making sure to use it as an opportunity to learn and grow as a pro as well.”
Royal Colwood Golf Club has previously been the venue for two PGA of BC Championships but will host its first CPC next week as the event returns to Vancouver Island for the first time since 2017.
“Royal Colwood is a very special club,” said host Executive Professional and GM Winston Michell. “I think it’s one of the top 30 clubs in the country year after year, and to be able to showcase it to my and Head Professional Rich Chlopan’s peers while supporting the PGA of British Columbia is very gratifying.
“I think that a lot of our Head and Executive Professionals probably spend a little extra time at their desk than they’d like to and not as much time on the golf course honing their game. But to get them together in one place after what everybody’s been through over the last year will certainly be an enjoyable sigh of relief for everyone.”
As much as the CPC represents a break from each Professional’s busy schedule, last year’s event showed just how intense the competition can be. Paired together both days of the event, Clapp and Dave Zibrik (Point Grey Golf & Country Club) battled to a standstill at 5-under-par through two rounds at Nicklaus North Golf Course and a three-hole playoff was needed before Clapp claimed his first title in the event.
“Obviously I was battling the entire field, but playing with Dave for both days and then the playoff as well, it felt like it was just me battling Dave,” said Clapp, who also fended off charges from Mark Kitts (Shadow Ridge Golf Club) and Brian McDonald (Fairview Mountain Golf Club) as they finished one shot out of the playoff.
“I just happened to make a few good swings that week.”
As a past winner on the Mackenzie Tour-PGA Tour Canada, Clapp is known to many for his pedigree in competition but is starting to make an impact on the industry in a new way. Last year marked his first year of eligibility for the CPC and he’s since moved into a new Executive Professional role in 2021 as Ledgeview’s General Manager. With increased day-to-day duties has come a change to the 34-year-old’s tournament mindset.
“When I first got done playing (full-time), I had this expectation of hitting every shot the way I wanted to or not making mistakes or going low every single round. When I wasn’t achieving that, I didn’t enjoy golf as much just because my expectations were too high,” said Clapp. “The motto I’ve taken – and it’s especially true this year taking on a new, larger role as General Manager – is: ‘What did you do to avoid the bad shots?’ I ask myself that almost every round.”
But Clapp showed in 2020 that he’ll hit his share of good ones, too. His victory last year made him just the third PGA of BC Professional to collect titles in each of the Association’s individual stroke-play championships that are unrestricted by age and gender – the PGA of BC Championship and Assistants’ Championship being the others – a feat only previously achieved by Doug Morgan (Richmond Country Club) and former member Phil Jonas (PGA of Saskatchewan).
Despite all his triumphs in the game, Clapp doesn’t believe he’s successfully defended a title in his career. He knows that’ll be a tall task at Royal Colwood with a talented field eager to supplant him as the new champ. That includes 2016 winner Zibrik, who’s been the runner-up each of the past three years, 2019 champ Kitts and two-time titlist Lindsay Bernakevitch (Victoria Golf Club). The field will also feature two winners of the PGA Head Professional Championship of Canada in McDonald (2018 national champ) and Kyle German (Bald Eagle Golf Club, 2008 winner), plus two-time PGA of BC Women’s Champion Ashley Zibrik (Shaughnessy Golf & Country Club).
“I’d be extremely honoured and privileged to win back-to-back, for sure, but I’ve got a lot of work to do before that happens,” said Clapp. “We’ve got some great players coming.”
Michell and Chlopan will give the host facility two representatives on the tee sheet, though the former quipped that his “golf game does not necessarily mirror my excitement level for hosting the event.” Michell noted that superintendent Don Singlehurst and his team will have the A.V. Macan-designed course in outstanding shape as Professionals begin arriving in Victoria next week.
“The greens are in fantastic condition,” he said. “It will certainly cater to those who can keep it between the tree lines and keep their games simple.
“I’m sure our PGA Professionals around the province are excited to be coming here and we’re grateful that they’re travelling from different destinations across BC after a challenging year.”
Click here to view live scoring once the championship is underway Monday.
CLUB PROFESSIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP FAST FACTS:
- Reigning PGA of BC Seniors’ Champion Rob Anderson (Kelowna Golf & Country Club) is unfortunately unavailable to compete next week, marking the first time he’ll miss the tournament since its 2006 debut. Not only had he played in all 15 previous editions of the CPC, Anderson won the 2007 tournament, was twice a runner-up and recorded 14 top-10 finishes. McDonald (Fairview Mountain Golf Club) will match Anderson with his 15th start in the event next week, while Alan Kristmanson (Whistler Golf Club) won’t be far behind in making his 14th start in the tournament.
- Dave Zibrik owns the tournament scoring record relative to par at 9-under, set during his 2016 triumph at Quilchena Golf & Country Club. He shares the gross-scoring record of 137 with Jonas (2017 winner) Kitts and Clapp. Zibrik’s three runner-up showings have him tied with David Bolton (Pacific Golf Academy) for the most second-place finishes in the event.
- Clapp, Kitts and Dave Zibrik are all trying to join the select group of players to win two CPC titles. Bernakevitch (2015 & 2018), Dean Claggett (Two Eagles Golf Course & Academy, 2008 & 2012) and now-amateur Dan Swanson (2010 & 2011) are the others, with Swanson the only individual who has managed back-to-back wins.
- No player has captured multiple PGA of BC titles in a season since Bernakevitch won both the CPC and Tournament of Champions in 2015. That streak could end at Royal Colwood with 2021 Tournament of Champions winner Dave Zibrik and Shadow Ridge’s reigning Pro-Assistant champs Kitts and James Presnail all competing.
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About Oakcreek Golf & Turf LP
Oakcreek Golf & Turf LP is Western Canada’s full-service distributor of Toro Commercial Turf Care Equipment, Toro Golf Irrigation Equipment and Yamaha Golf Cars, plus all additional related products. It proudly offers the very best quality products and professional service and support to golf courses, municipal parks, independent landscapers and private clients. Oakcreek Golf & Turf LP has been in business since 1969 and currently employs approximately 100 people throughout the year at its six locations throughout Western Canada. For more information, visit www.oakcreekgolf.com.
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