TOTTENHAM, Ontario—The historic Ontario Open, a fixture in Canadian golf from 1923 to the 1990s and recently restored as an important component of the Golf Ontario schedule, announced Monday that the official PGA TOUR Canada tournament will be known as Sotheby’s International Realty Canada Ontario Open. PGA TOUR Canada Executive Director Scott Pritchard, Sotheby’s International Realty Canada President and CEO Don Kottick and Golf Ontario CEO Mike Kelly made the announcement about the tournament set for July 25-31 at Woodington Lake Golf Club.
“This is an important day not only in the history of PGA TOUR Canada but also for golf in Ontario,” Pritchard said. “The Ontario Open is a historic and important part of the golf landscape in this part of the country, and it’s important that it returns to is previous stature. To have a company like Sotheby’s International Realty Canada partnering with the Ontario Open ensures that this will take place.”
The Ontario Open was an annual event, starting from its inception in 1923, not even taking time off during the Second World War when numerous tournaments did shut down. Winners during the tournament’s first iteration included Canadian legends George Knudson (five victories), Moe Norman (three victories) and World Golf Hall of Fame member Sam Snead, who captured the 1940 tournament. The Ontario Open began again in 1989, with former PGA TOUR player Michael Bradley winning the event. Various clubs in Ontario hosted the tournament between 1992 and 1996 before the tournament took a 21-year hiatus, beginning in 1997.
“As one of the oldest and most storied golf championships in the world, the Ontario Open has a reputation for attracting the best golfers nationally and internationally. Our sponsorship of this tournament is not only a reflection of our company’s commitment to contributing to the communities in which our clients live, work and play, it is a reflection of our commitment to celebrating and aligning with professional excellence, whether in sport or in business,” Kottick said.
Woodington Lake Golf Club opened in 1995 and is celebrating its 27th season offering championship golf to Southern Ontario. The Legends Course first hosted the tournament in 2019—its first playing in 40 years—when it was not affiliated with PGA TOUR Canada. England’s Greg Eason, a PGA TOUR Canada veteran, won the tournament. Woodington Lake and the Legends Course will again host the 72-hole, medal-play event that is the sixth tournament on the 11-event PGA TOUR Canada schedule. It will offer full Fortinet Cup points to all players who make the cut and will help assist in which players move on to the 2023 Korn Ferry Tour.
“From our ownership group and all of our dedicated staff, we are thrilled to be hosting the Sotheby’s International Realty Canada Ontario Open at our beautiful facility here at Woodington Lake. Marrying together a partner with the legacy of Sotheby’s and such a historic golf tournament on our Legends course is a privilege, and we look forward to growing the event together for years to come. We’re also excited to host once again The Ontario Disabilities Championship early in the week,” said John Chetti, Partner in Woodington Lake Golf Club.
The Ontario Disabilities Championship promotes awareness and participation for gofers with disabilities and provides a platform for future-talent identification. Up to 60 participants will contest this 36-hole stroke-play championship July 25-26.
Golf Ontario CEO Mike Kelly said, “We are thrilled to see the Ontario Open return as a regular event on the summer golf schedule, and Sotheby’s International Realty Canada’s involvement puts this tournament on strong footing.”
The Sotheby’s International Realty Canada Ontario Open is the sixth stop in the race for the Fortinet Cup, the points-based competition that mirrors the competitive structure on the PGA TOUR, PGA TOUR Champions and PGA TOUR Latinoamerica. The Fortinet Cup will offer a $100,000 player bonus pool—with $25,000 to the winner—to the top Fortinet Cup points-winners will earn membership on the 2023 Korn Ferry Tour. The No. 1-ranked player at the end of the season earns Player of the Year honors and is eligible to play in every open Korn Ferry Tour tournament the following season.