WASKESIU LAKE, Saskatchewan—Coming into the final round with a five-shot lead, Raoul Menard got off to a rough start, making bogeys on three of his first four holes. However, the Angie-Gardien, Quebec, native got things back on track, winning the Elk Ridge Open by four shots with a three-round total of 9-under, good victory over Toronto’s Sebastian Szirmak.
“I’m not going to lie, my mind was racing a little bit at that point,” said Menard on his slow start. “I just told myself to be patient and just keep doing my routine—my process—and it would fall into place, and it did.”
This marked Menard’s first start on the Mackenzie Tour – PGA TOUR Canada schedule this season, and the victory ranks as a career highlight for the 29-year-old.
“I’ve had some fun experiences in golf, and this is definitely one of them,” said Menard. “I’m just happy the way I handled it, and hopefully it’s just the beginning. I want to make it to the top level, that’s the goal, and this is why we’re here. It’s one step, and hopefully we take it further.”
Szirmak birdied four holes in the final round, including three over the first seven holes, cutting Menard’s lead to just two shots at that point, but he was unable to get any closer.
“I was like a shark,” quipped Szirmak. “I sensed a little blood in the water, and I was trying to put pressure on him. It was just a bit of a shame on the back nine. I had a lot of looks (for birdie), I just didn’t get some of those putts to fall.”
Selkirk, Manitoba’s Travis Fredborg tied for third, at 4-under, along with American Franklin Huang.
Kade Johnson of Yorkton, Saskatchewan, tied for fifth, at 3-under, after a second consecutive round of 68. He was happy to put in a solid performance in his home province.
“It’s awesome to play a professional event in Saskatchewan,” said Johnson. “I’ve never been able to do that before. It was cool coming up 18 and hearing everybody cheer me on, and I definitely now know the support I have in this province.”
The Mackenzie Tour – PGA TOUR Canada heads to Calgary next week for the ATB Financial Classic at Country Hills Golf Club, with the first round set to begin Thursday.
Points List Standings
Through Elk Ridge Open