The Open Championship passes through St. Andrews for the thirtieth time. The Claret Jug has been lifted 29 times on the green of 18 by the Champion Golfer of the Year. No other club has had this honor so many times, and the one that occupies the second place, with 24 editions, is the Prestwick Golf Club, which is no longer part of the Rota.
So the real runner-up is Muirfield, who has crowned Champion Golfer of the Year fifteen times. But back to the winners of St. Andrews (rest assured, I’m not talking about everyone…)
The Open, Champion Golfer of the Year
1873 Tom Kidd He was the first winner of the Open on the Old Course (his own club), the first edition held away from the Prestwick Golf Club.
He was also the first to lift the Claret Jug, which replaced the Challenge Belt, finally attributed to Young Tom Morris in 1870, after his third consecutive victory. Jackpot pocketed: £11. 1895 John Henry Taylor Another “first”
The Devonshire pro was the first non-Scottish winner at the Old Course, after seven editions in which the St. Andrew’s cross flew higher than all. He won the Open five times in total (including two in St. Andrews), and in 1901 he was one of the founders of the British PGA, of which he was the first president.
1905 James Braid Another Scottish pro who won the second of his five Open on the Old Course (also twice in St. Andrews). Along with Taylor and Harry Vardon he was part of the Great Triumvirate of golf. The three won 16 of the 21 Open Championships between 1894 and 1914.
Braid was also a renowned architect of fields (more than 200 active projects). 1921 Jock Hutchinson Again a “first” The US player was the first non-UK professional to make a name for himself on the Old Course. But appearances can be deceiving, as Hutchinson took American citizenship only in 1920.
Jack Falls “Jock” Hutchinson was born in 1884 in St. Andrews. Another prophet in his homeland from him. 1927 Bobby Jones Jones stunned the crowd by demanding that the Claret Jug stay with his friends from him at the Royal and Ancient, rather than leave with him for Atlanta.
In 1950 he was awarded the honorary citizenship of St. Andrews, an honor that yesterday went to Jack Nicklaus. 1946 Sam Snead The first postwar Open was the prerogative of Sam Snead. It was the second of the seven Majors won by the American champion in his career.
1957 Bobby Locke It was his fourth and final victory in the Open Championship. The South African was one of the greatest players in history, famous for his skill with the putter. He has 15 PGA Tour wins to his credit, from which he was suspended for three years from 1948 to 1951 due to the fact that it was his habit to register in advance for various tournaments and exhibitions, and then fail to show up, most of the time without.
adequate justification. The ban has always been a welcome sanction on the PGA Tour. 1970 Jack Nicklaus The new honorary citizen of St. Andrews won the second of his three Open Championships on the Old Course, where he would repeat in 1978.
He defeated Doug Sanders in the first playoff of 18 in Open history, who literally threw the victory away on the 72nd hole. Jackpot pocketed: £5,250 (marked improvement over Tom Kidd’s £11). 1984 Severiano Ballesteros Seve won the second of the three Open in his palmares, detaching Bernhard Langer and Tom Watson by two strokes.
But, above all, his victory was consecrated by the gesture that he would become the icon of the great Spanish champion. 1995 John Daly We remember this edition well, because it was the one in which Costantino Rocca touched the Claret Jug.
John Daly defeated him in the four holes of the playoffs, which Costantino forced him to with the unforgettable 60-meter putt played by the Valley of Sin under the green of 18. 2000 Tiger Woods Tiger’s first time. These days Woods has stated that he fell in love with the Old Course as soon as he set foot there.
And this love, which still lasts today, was recognized with the awarding to the Tiger of the honorary membership of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews (honor also attributed to Paul Lawrie and Rory McIlroy). Tiger won again at St.
Andrews in 2005. 2015 Zach Johnson The Ryder Cup US Team Captain won his second Major by defeating Marc Leishman and Louis Oosthuizen (who won on the Old Course in 2010) in a three-man playoff. Who will be the 30th St. Andrews Champion Golfer of the Year? My friend Isa launched the survey on Facebook for some time, leave your prediction in the comments…
I did it, but more than a prediction it is a hope. But it happens that in golf, hopes come true, when you least expect them.