There are two things in Yellowknife that give clues about the impending completion of summer:
Labour Day and the golf season coming to an end. Roadwork doesn’t count because that’s a southern thing.
The Yellowknife chapter of the Mediocre Golf Association rounded out its 2020 campaign with its final tournament, The Last Gasp, at the Yellowknife Golf Club on Sunday with another first-time winner coming out on top. Dennis Bourke won his maiden event with an 18-hole total of 89, finishing six shots ahead of runner Rick Savard, who carded a 95.
Bourke’s win got him the big cheque of $1.12 but not good enough to win the overall money title this season as Daryl Snow managed to hang onto top spot. His total of $5.67 over the eight tournaments he played this year was good enough to give him the championship. Hughie Graham ended up second with $4.87.
Shaun Morris, the chapter’s president, said Snow got lucky in a way as he very nearly played his way out of contention.
“He birdied the 12th but then shot 12 on the 13th,” he said. “The 13th is a par-4 so he lost eight shots on that one hole.”
The tournament also featured the best finish ever by a woman as Thip Chanthalangsy came in fourth with a score of 97.
Morris said it’s the first time he can remember a woman finishing inside the top-five in any event.
“We’ve had women break 100 before but they ended up far down the standings,” he said. “That’s the best result for a woman we’ve had.”
It was good enough to secure Chanthalangsy the women’s money title.
Just playing this season was good enough for Morris, who said there was genuine doubt about what would happen once all the Covid-19 predictions began to flow.
“The fear was there but thankfully, we got the go-ahead to play,” he said. “We lost a lot on the social side of things – no awards dinner afterward, no large groups, no shotgun starts – but we knew there would be restrictions and we just did the best we could with them.”
That meant playing eight tournaments in four months – three in an eight-day span at one point – and several players entered all eight. Several more played in excess of five.
“There was no stopping us this season,” said Morris. “Once we got going, it was full speed ahead.”
The final event each season is the MGA World Championships in Las Vegas, which has seen a sizable quotient of the Yellowknife chapter attend on an annual basis. That won’t be happening this year because of Covid-19.
Morris said it was just too much of a hassle for the organizers to try and book courses and get everything organized with so much changing on a regular basis.