It went to well the first time that the Champions Tour event in Montreal, the Montreal Championship, will be returning to the Club de golf Le Fontainebleau Golf Club for the 2nd straight year.
Tournament operators, Syncho Sports, confirmed the fact to Flagstick Golf Magazine earlier this morning and expect to release a statement later today.
The 2nd playing of the 54-hole, (USD) $1.8 million Champions Tour event will play out on June 27-July 3, 2011 at ClubLink’s Club de golf Le Fontainebleau in the Montreal suburb of Blainville.
The inaugural championship contested this past summer was wildly successful with the tour’s top player, Fred Couples, exclaiming that it felt like a major with massive number of the fans in attendance, even for the pro-am.
The 2010 Montreal Championship attracted more than 54,000 fans for the week with even bigger crowds expected for 2011, according to the organizers.
“Champions Tour players, staff, and tens of thousands of spectators were very appreciative of both the course and the tournament,” said Tournament Director David Skitt, who passed on the good news earlier today. “The decision to return to Fontainebleau was an easy one and we look forward to hosting another unforgettable tournament in 2011. Fontainebleau members can be very proud of their course and we are extremely thankful for their continued support.”
ClubLink’s Director of Communications, John Gordon, reiterated Skitt’s remarks in an email exchange this morning. “We are certainly pleased that the success of the inaugural event combined with the overwhelmingly positive reaction of the players to Fontainebleau made the decision to return in 2011 an easy one,” wrote Gordon.
The 2010 tournament saw an amazing field of pros take to the course at Fontainebleau with 1987 Masters Champion Larry Mize firing a final round 64 to beat out John Cook by a stroke for the $270,000 first place prize.
With the success of the Montreal Championship and reponse by the community it is expected the field for the 2011 tournament will be just as strong, if not stronger. That could include a visit by top Champions Tour players Bernhard Langer and Tom Watson, who both missed the tournament in 2010. Recent Champions Tour winner Rod Spittle, who will be exempt on the tour in 2011, could guarantee some extra Canadian content with his presence.
On top of being a hit with the pros, the Montreal Championship was also welcomed by the community who did more than just show up to watch. The first Montreal Championship’s Birdies for Charity initiative raised more than $160,000 for the Fondation de l’Hospital Sainte-Justine and Golf Quebec junior golf programs. They will be looking to grow that total in 2011.
“The people of Quebec embraced this tournament this past summer and we fully anticipate that support growing in our second year,” added Skitt. “I believe we have a head start in realizing our goal of becoming the best stop on the Champions Tour schedule and the excitement is already building for next year.”