COURTENAY, British Columbia—Riley Wheeldon is in firm control of the final PGA TOUR Canada Qualifying Tournament of 2022. Playing a home game all week, the Comox Valley product will take a five-shot lead into the final round as he attempts to regain exempt status on the circuit where he has 83 career starts. In second place is Andrew Harrison, the author of a 66-67 last 36 holes, while Max Sear is at 11-under and six back of Wheeldon, alone in third.

Thursday at Crowne Isle Resort and Golf Community, Wheeldon did nothing to slow his momentum that began when he fired an opening, 5-under 67 Tuesday. He followed that with an identical score on day two only to post the best score of the week, a 7-under 65 Thursday. He turned a solid, workmanlike round into a thing of beauty over his final five holes. At 3-under for the day and 13-under overall through 13 holes, Wheeldon birdied Nos. 14, 15 and 16, parred the 17th and ended his round with a birdie-3 on the closing hole. That birdie was a nice bookend finish to his day. Wheeldon began the third round with an eagle-3 at the first hole, moving him to 4-under combined on the hole in his first three playings of the par-5.

“My game as always been there,” Wheeldon said following his round. “My attitude hasn’t. That was one thing I said to myself last summer, that if I was going to keep doing this, my attitude has to change. Having a little refresh this winter, I was able to come out and focus on attitude and let everything else fall into place and behold, this game is pretty fun.”

His attitude and game have meshed nicely this week, with Wheeldon playing 20 consecutive bogey-free holes between the second and third rounds. The streak ended on the par-4 ninth. All he did was begin a new streak with his stellar back-nine play that gave him significant separation from his pursuers.  

Did you know Canada’s Andrew Harrison played college golf at the University of British Columbia, where he graduated in 2020 with a degree in kinesiology? A year ago, playing on the Canada circuit that featured eight events, Harrison finished sixth on the final Points List.