Canada’s popular SCORE Golf Magazine released its latest Top 100 rankings this month, with few changes at the top but plenty of interest right through the list. For as long as we can remember, The National Golf Club of Canada has held the number 1 spot in the biennial rankings, and once again in 2012 the Fazio and Fazio creation tops the list. Next is a pair of championship ready classics, St George’s and Hamilton, followed by the Stanley Thompson foursome of Jasper Park, Capilano, Highlands Links and Banff Springs. While all are worthy of praise, the placement of Highlands Links down in 6th place does surprise.
What shouldn’t shock observers of these things, is how strong, modern tests fare throughout the rest of this ranking list. According to the magazine 55 of the courses listed in the Top 100 were built during the past 25 years, are many of these have been on glorious sites. While modern architects like Doug Carrick and Thomas McBroom have been prolific in Canada, the fact none of their courses can dislodge the established elite 7 speaks volumes to both the quality of the Stanley Thompson portfolio as much as the disappointment with modern golf here.
The next SCOREGolf ranking is sure to include the much anticipated Cabot Links course in Nova Scotia, which was built by respected designer Rod Whitman and opened earlier this year. The expectation from many is that Cabot Links will challenge for a place in the Top 5 next time. We will publish this list on Planet Golf when produced in 2014. In the meantime enjoy the 2012 Canada Top 100 - click here