Dustin Johnson, the top-ranked golfer in the world, is trying to hold on for another PGA Tour victory on Sunday at the RBC Canadian Open. The winner of the tournament, which is being played at the Glen Abbey Golf Course in Oakville, Ontario, will be paid $1.116 million out of a purse of $6.2 million.
The second place finisher will receive $669,600 and third place receives $421,600. Along with Johnson, who sits at 20-under through 8 holes, two Korean golfers, Whee Kim and Byeong Hun An, are at the top of the leaderboard at 17-under, along with Keegan Bradley, of the U.S., and Abraham Ancer, of Mexico, at 16-under. Mackenzie Hughes is the top Canadian on the leaderboard, sitting in a crowd at 15-under. The tournament is in a weather delay because of lightning.
Johnson entered Sunday’s final round in a four-way tie with Kim, An and Kevin Tway, one week after missing the cut at Carnoustie at The Open Championship. Johnson told Golf Digest, “I felt like I was playing well going into the Open Championship and felt like I played well at the Open, I just scored really bad. I felt like my mental game wasn’t there. So I came here and practiced a little bit and got my focus back right and have played a little better this week.”
The national championship of Canada has been played annually since 1904, except during World War I and World War II. It is the oldest continuously played tournament behind The Open Championship and the U.S. Open. The RBC Canadian Open is among the middle of the pack as far as the size of it’s prize pool, but that will be changing in 2019. The PGA Tour is juggling its schedule, and the Canadian Open is one of the big winners.
The tournament has been stuck in the spot one week after the British Open for several years, but the RBC Canadian Open will be moving to early June starting in 2019, when it will be held from June 3 to June 9. It will now be the lead in tournament to the U.S. Open. RBC renewed its deal as the tournament’s title sponsor in 2016 and will be raising the purse by $1.2 million, to $7.6 million, starting in 2019, according to Score Golf.
“I think (the RBC Canadian Open) will get significantly more attention just given where it falls in the schedule quite organically. In addition to that, it’s early enough in the season that you are still in the height of competition rather than later in the summer where some of that trails off. You’ve got stronger fields battling it out earlier in the schedule and that is why we quite like where this is falling in the schedule and it’s going to deliver a robust product on TV,” Mary DePaoli, RBC’s executive vice-president and chief marketing officer, told Score.
“We will certainly be in a much stronger run for field of talent than we currently are,” said DePaoli, noting that travel within North America is much easier than a transatlantic flight. “Will there always be a handful of players who will not play the week before a major? Sure, but we also believe that this is going to give us a great opportunity to build a strong field because so many factors are now coming together, with the biggest component being the ease of getting talent to this date,” she added. “You’ve got a new date, you’ve got the purse, but I think what you can also expect to see from us is a totally refreshed event from top to bottom, which means spectator experiences, parking and logistics, creative engagement like The Rink and other ways to attract the core golf fan but also families and in particular more young people who we need to become much more engaged in this sport to see it carry through successfully into the future. We can rebuild this event to its rightful place among the best events on the PGA Tour.”
Here is what the top 50 will be paid this year:
RBC Canadian Open 2018