Lack of sponsor sinks RCGA boss

JOHN HERBERT -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 7:59 AM ET

Stephen Ross's inability to land a title sponsor for the Canadian Open doomed the Royal Canadian Golf Association executive director.

The Blenheim native was fired early in March after 30 years with the RCGA.

The RCGA has been searching for a new title sponsor for more than a year since Bell Canada announced it was pulling out after 12 years.

Chief financial officer Rick Desrochers, who landed Canadian National Railway as the title sponsor for the Canadian Women's Open last year when it was about to fold, has been appointed chief executive.

He will assist in finding a replacement for Ross.

Awards

The Golf Association of Ontario has awarded $35,000 to 13 student golfers in Ontario, including Cheryl Beech, Sean Keane and Greg Gabel from the University of Western Ontario. The recipients receive between $2,500 and $3,500.

The GAO has introduced a scholarship in honour of Craig Revell, a Kingston golfer who died from bone cancer in September 2005. His younger brother, Brad, is the first recipient. Brad Revell and Matt Hill of Bright's Grove tied as the GAO's No. 1-rated junior last year. Revell is at North Carolina State and Hill will join him there in late August.

Rankings

Karly Pinder of Exeter, a member of the RCGA national women's team, finished 2006 in seventh place in the national amateur rankings. Lisa Maunu of St. Thomas finished in 10th.

Kingsville's Laura Matthews and Richard Scott topped the men's and women's ratings. Andrew Parr finished in third.

Scott and Parr have since turned professional.

Names

Gary West of Toronto is the 104th president of the RCGA, while Bill Duffield of Kitchener is new president of the GAO.

Henry Brunton, coach of the men's national team, has been recognized by Golf Magazine as one of the top 100 teachers in the world.

Parr's coach, Dave Woods of Markham, has been named coach of the year by the Canadian Professional Golfers Association.

Did you know

The GAO represents 435 member clubs and 115,000 members. The RCGA represents 1,650 clubs and 377,000 members.

Trivia

- North America's oldest golf club is Royal Montreal, which opened in 1873.

- The defending Olympic golf champion is a Canadian. George S. Lyon of Toronto won the gold medal in 1904.

- The Canadian Open is the third-oldest professional tournament in the world.

- Arnold Palmer's first victory was in Canada at Weston Golf and Country Club.

For the ages

When Vijay Singh won the Arnold Palmer Invitation at Bay Hill in Orlando at the age of 44, it was his 31st victory and his 19th since he turned 40.


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