Graham Gunn & Jean Pilon Take Titles At Flagstick.com Players Tour BPG Spring Open

Graham Gunn (L) and Jean Pilon (R) Photo: Joe McLean

The first stroke play event of the 2017 Flagstick.com Players Tour for members of the PGA of Canada – Ottawa Zone is in the books.

The BPG (Boutiques Pro Golf) Spring Open was held on Monday, June 5th at the Pakenham Golf & Country Club in Pakenham, Ontario, northwest of Ottawa.

Graham Gunn, from the Gunn Academy at White Sands, took home the first-place cheque with his two under par score of 70 on the Island and Canyon nines. He was followed closely by Rivermead Golf Club’s Bob Flaro who posted an even par round of 72.

Flagstick Golf Magazine caught up with the Flagstick.com Players Tour Spring Open winner and asked about his game.

“Everything was good”, replied Mr. Gunn. “I’ve been focusing on one swing thought and it was good and my speed control with the putter was good. I only missed one putt that I really should have made. I’ve been using AimPoint for the past six or seven years, I’m an AimPoint instructor and around here it made my putting easier. On the eighteenth-hole I AimPointed my chip and almost had my first Flaro (chip-in) of the year. That would have been good. Before today, I hadn’t played an eighteen-hole game this year. I’ve played four nines. It’s either been raining and if it’s not raining we’ve been busy at the academy.”

It was unusual to see Graham and his caddy Stan Hogan in a power cart and he explained the rationale. “We anticipated lots of rain and it was just a more viable way of staying dry. As it turned out, the weather held in there. It was kind of spitting and misty but didn’t do anything.”

When asked if his win bodes well for the year, Graham replied – “I think so. I try not to go crazy with stuff. I play with what we work with and teach what I believe works and it’s nice to do this because it gives credibility to what we do. My caddy was great. Stanley kept everything dry and he’s always a good calming influence.”

Earlier this year host professional Chris Learmonth told Flagstick.com that he was happy to be hosting his fellow professionals, especially since many had mentioned not having played his course in some time. “We’ll be in good shape and ready for them,” said Learmonth, a former PGA of Canada – Ottawa Zone Champion. Thanks to the efforts of Pakenham’s greenkeeper Mandy Payne and her staff, the course was ready and players were happy with the course conditions in spite of the cool and wet spring in the Ottawa Valley.

In the Senior Division of the Flagstick.com Players Tour Spring Open, Champlain’s Jean Pilon posted a 76 for the win followed closely by Golf O Max’s John Watson.

When asked about his game, Mr. Pilon replied – “This year being at Champlain and being my own boss, I’ve played seven rounds of golf already, even with the bad weather we’ve been having. I felt comfortable out there and I made some good swings, missed a few short putts and with the exception of the double I took on the eleventh-hole, I wasn’t in much trouble. It felt good to be back playing tournament golf. I had a great time.”

When asked about her feelings after the completion of her first event as the new PGA of Canada – Ottawa Zone Executive Director, Carol Ann Baxter replied with a smile on her face and laughter in her voice – “It means one less thing to learn. You know what, the guys were so great. It made it an easier day. Some of the guys I’ve known for years and some I’ve never met before. It was a nice day. I’m looking forward to the rest of the season especially when it gets a little warmer. Hopefully we can get more players out to our events.”

Ottawa Zone golf professionals were also treated to an assorted supply of licorice and candies at the first tee, just another touch by their new Executive Director.

You know that you’re welcomed when the club captain and some of the members volunteer to spend the day forecaddying. Thanks to Dan LeClerc, Bob Henry, Eddie Finnegan and Richard Tessier for their efforts. As well, the food and beverage staff under Cindy Clouthier took care of the wants and needs of everyone. Club President John Stokes welcomed the PGA of Canada – Ottawa Zone golf professionals Pakenham and invited them to come back in the future.

Zone Captains Colin Orr and Bill Keating thanked the staff and volunteers at Pakenham as well as the Fleming Family for offering their course for the Spring Open.

Next up on the Flagstick.com Players Tour for PGA of Canada – Ottawa Zone golf professionals is the Serge Giroux Charity event and the Summer Open, both being hosted at the Kanata Golf & Country Club.

PGA of Canada – Ottawa Zone BPG Spring Open
Flagstick.com Players Tour
Pakenham Golf & Country Club
Monday, June 5, 2017
Graham Gunn White Sands 70
Bob Flaro Rivermead 72
Michel Dagenais Kingsway Park 73
Jonathan Schaepper Mountain Creek 73
Dan McNeely Smiths Falls 74
Lee Curry Camelot 74
Gregg Foley 19th Tee 75
Jean Leduc Hautes Plaines 76
Chris Learmonth Pakenham 76
Bill Minkhorst Prescott 76
Jon Stevenson Pine View 77
Bill Keating Camelot 77
Scott Johnson Kanata 77
Colin Pitchers GolfTec Ottawa 77
Marc Foucault Mont Ste-Marie 78
Andy Rajhathy EG 78
Darrell Buchanan The Meadows 78
Dany Lacombe GreyHawk 79
Scott Mikkelsen GreyHawk 79
J.C. Beecroft Royal Ottawa 79
SENIOR DIVISION
Jean Pilon Champlain 76
John Watson Golf O’Max 77
Greg White Cedarhill 79
Don Ferne Manderley 81
Dave Kalil Ottawa Hunt 83
Scott MacDonald Juniper Fairways 83