Twelve Canadians confirmed for 2016 RBC Canadian Open

BETHESDA, MD - JUNE 23: David Hearn of Canada plays a shot from the fifth tee during the first round of the Quicken Loans National at Congressional Country Club on June 23, 2016 in Bethesda, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

OAKVILLE, Ont. – Golf Canada and RBC are proud to announce that Web.com Tour player Brad Fritsch of Manotick, Ont., along with a trio of National Amateur Squad members are among the Canadians receiving tournament exemptions to compete in the 2016 RBC Canadian Open taking place at Glen Abbey Golf Club in Oakville, Ont., from July 18-24.

Fritsch, who will make his ninth appearance in Canada’s National Men’s Open Championship, is having a strong year on the Web.com Tour with a victory at the Servientrega Championship Presented by Efecty and a runner-up finish at the El Bosque Mexico Championship presented by INNOVA that positions the 38-year-old fifth on the Tour’s money list.

Tournament exemptions have also been given to Team Canada National Amateur Squad members Hugo Bernard of Mont St-Hilaire, Que., Calgary’s Jared du Toit and Burlington, Ont., native Blair Hamilton.

As well, this will be the second consecutive year in which Garrett Rank of Elmira, Ont., has earned his place in the RBC Canadian Open by claiming victory in the previous year’s Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship.

PGA of Canada professional Dave Levesque of Montréal earned his way into the 2016 RBC Canadian Open by claiming the No. 1 position on the PGA of Canada Player Rankings presented by RBC. Branson Ferrier of Barrie, Ont., shot 4-under 68 at King’s Forest Golf Course to top the 144-player field to earn an exemption through the RBC Canadian Open Ontario Regional Qualifier.

Fritsch, Bernard, du Toit, Hamilton, Rank, Levesque and Ferrier will be among 12 Canadians who will challenge for the 107th playing of Canada’s National Men’s Open Championship.

Leading the Canadian contingent at Glen Abbey will be Brantford, Ont., native David Hearn, whose 2016 season includes six Top-20 finishes, including a T9 result at The RSM Classic in Sea Island, Ga. Hearn, who held the 54-hole lead before finishing third in the 2015 RBC Canadian Open, is the No. 127-ranked player on the World Golf Ranking.

Joining Hearn will be fellow Canadian PGA Tour players Graham DeLaet of Weyburn, Sask., Abbotsford, B.C., natives Adam Hadwin and Nick Taylor and Canadian Golf Hall of Fame member Mike Weir of Brights Grove, Ont., who will be playing in Canada’s National Men’s Open Championship for a 25th time.

“We are excited to have these 12 deserving Canadians compete in the 107th playing of Canada’s National Men’s Open Championship,” said RBC Canadian Open Tournament Director Brent McLaughlin. “The passion that these talented players have shown in representing Canada is a true inspiration to the country’s young golfers and we are proud to welcome them to the field for the RBC Canadian Open.”

The 12 Canadian players will look to become the first Canadian to capture the national title since Pat Fletcher accomplished the feat in 1954.

The Canadians confirmed for Glen Abbey will join a field of PGA Tour and international stars that includes defending champion and World No. 1 Jason Day, U.S. Open champion and World No. 2 Dustin Johnson, World No. 15 Matt Kuchar, 2006-2007 RBC Canadian Open champion and World No. 20 Jim Furyk, 2013 RBC Canadian Open champion and World No. 23 Brandt Snedeker, World No. 71 Ryan Palmer, World No. 74 Graeme McDowell, 2016 Masters low amateur Bryson DeChambeau, former World No.1 amateur Jon Rahm and World Golf Hall of Fame member Ernie Els.

Celebrating Canada’s Olympic Golf Team on Tuesday July 19…

The 2016 edition of the RBC Canadian Open is one of the final events before golf returns to the Olympic Games following a 112-year absence. For the first time since Canadian George S. Lyon captured gold in 1904, teams from around the globe will compete on international sport’s grandest stage.

The 2016 Canadian Olympic golf team will be officially welcomed by the Canadian Olympic Committee to Team Canada during a FREE public celebration at Glen Abbey on Tuesday, July 19 at 11 a.m. ET. The men’s team will compete from August 11-14, while the women’s team will take to the Campo Olimpico de Golf course in Rio de Janeiro from August 17-20.

In addition, Friday, July 22 will once again be Red and White Day at the RBC Canadian Open. Players and spectators are encouraged to wear Canada’s national colours in support of our Canadian hopefuls in the field challenging for Canada’s National Open Championship.

Confirmed Canadians in the 2016 RBC Canadian Open:

David Hearn

Graham DeLaet

Adam Hadwin

Nick Taylor

Mike Weir

Brad Fritsch

Jared du Toit

Blair Hamilton

Hugo Bernard

Garrett Rank

Dave Levesque

Branson Ferrier

The final field for the 2016 RBC Canadian Open will be released on Friday, July 15 after 5 p.m. ET.

Information regarding tickets, free 17-and-under junior passes, volunteer opportunities and corporate hospitality for the 2016 RBC Canadian Open can be found at www.rbccanadianopen.com.