For all event organizers now, including in sports, it’s a matter of buying time into the post-vaccine world.
The annual DC Bank Victoria Open presented by the Times Colonist will move from June 3-6 to dates to be determined in September at Uplands Golf Club. It is part of the Mackenzie Tour-PGA Tour Canada’s postponement of its 2021 pro golf season from its usual May start to a commencement in mid-July.
“We feel we will be in better position at that time to deliver the events as people expect them to be,” Scott Pritchard, executive director of the Mackenzie Tour PGA Tour Canada, told the Times Colonist.
“We’ve been working with the various provincial health authorities and hope to have the dates in the coming weeks. We will start in the East and move West. The Victoria organizing committee and Uplands have been extremely flexible and understanding.”
There are casualties, however, including the annual tour qualifying tournament that was to begin May 23 at Crown Isle in Courtenay. That will be cancelled for the second consecutive year. That qualifier will instead be held June 8-11 at The Home Course in Tacoma, Washington. Pritchard vowed a return to Crown Isle in the years ahead.
“The people at Crown Isle have been terrific through all this and we remain committed long term to Crown Isle,” said Pritchard.
The Victoria organizers, meanwhile, have begun making plans for September at Uplands.
“Our partners understand what everybody is going through,” said Keith Dagg, a lead member of the Victoria organizing committee.
“We believe September will be a better date for our event this year.”
The 2020 Mackenzie Tour-PGA Tour Canada was cancelled due to the pandemic, but an abbreviated four tournament season was salvaged, including two tournaments at Bear Mountain.
The Mackenzie Tour-PGA Tour Canada leads to the Korn Ferry Tour, which is the entry portal to the PGA Tour. The former Canadian Tour became the Mackenzie Tour PGA Tour Canada in 2013 and its alumni over the past eight years includes 41 PGA Tour players and 232 Korn Ferry Tour players.
The Victoria tournament has been part of the process and staged annually since 1981.