Imagine Golf Blogs

The Week In Golf 17 - 23 August

Featuring a true golfing pioneer, a lefty and a dodgy lobster.

Posted Aug 17, 2010 by The Week In Golf

Charlie Sifford

August 17, 1980 - Curtis Strange won the Manufacturers Hanover Westchester Classic with a two stroke victory over the equally excellently-named Gibby Gilbert. Strange is considered to be one of the greatest golfers of the '80s, winning 16 PGA Tour events that decade. During that period he also won back to back U.S Opens in 1988 and 1989. Unfortunately, his career went the way of the shellsuit and Timmy Mallett and his successes were confined to that era. He never won another PGA event or major.

August 18, 1974 - Over at Wethersfield Country Club, Dave Stockton won the Greater Hartford Open, edging out Raymond Floyd by four strokes. Coincidentally, Stockton also won the CVS Charity Classic on this day in 1971, finishing ahead of Raymond Floyd by one stroke.Also, on this day in 1969, PGA Tour member, Brett Quigley, was born in Fort Devens, Massachusetts. Happy Birthday, Brett!

August 19, 1974 - Lanny Wadkins won the CVS Charity Classic with a nine under par, two stroke victory over Tom Jenkins, Lee Elder and Rik Massengale. In all, Wadkins would win 21 times on the PGA Tour and pick up one major, the 1977 PGA Championship, despite coming close to several other major wins.

August 20, 1964 - Charlie Sifford, the first black player to gain full PGA playing rights, captured his first Tour title by winning the Greater Hartford Open. A victim of the PGA’s ‘caucasian-only clause’ in its constitution, Sifford endured death threats, intimidation and discrimination in his bid to overturn the ruling. Even Tiger Woods has paid tribute to Sifford. “If it wasn’t for Charlie,” he once said, “we wouldn’t be here.”

August 21, 1914 - Despite a dodgy lobster dinner, Walter Hagen recovered from a nasty bout of food poisoning to win the U.S Open at Midlothian Country Club near Chicago. Elswhere, on this day in 1920, Jock Hutchinson entered the PGA Championship as an alternate, making it to the final against Douglas Edgar... where he lost. Only kidding, he posted a one up victory over Edgar to hoist the Wanamaker Trophy. 

August 22, 1993 - Everyone's favourite lefty, Phil Mickelson recorded an event-record 45 points to win the International at Castle Pines, Colorado by a whopping eight points over Mark Calcavecchia. Elsewhere, on this day in 1945, the US Rubber Company said its synthetic rubber golf balls would soon go into production.

August 23, 1981 -  Hale Irwin defeated Bobby 'Jed' Clampett, Gil 'Captain' Morgan and Peter 'No-one else of note with the same surname apart from Mancunian writer Howard' Jacobsen in a playoff, to win the Buick Open. Born in Missouri in 1945, Hale Irwin won 20 times on the PGA Tour between 1971 and 1994. He secured three major titles; the 1974, 1979 and 1990 U.S Opens and played on five Ryder Cup teams.

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