In honor of the HP Byron Nelson Championship, I thought I would post a quick primer on Byron Nelson, one of the greatest golfers to ever walk the fairways of the PGA Tour.
In 1945, Byron Nelson won 18 of 35 PGA Tour events (and finished 2nd seven times), including an 11 tournament win-streak. It’s a record that’s as unlikely to ever be matched or beaten as anything else in sports.
And while it receives less attention, Byron Nelson’s streak of 113 “cuts made” is second only to Tiger’s 145. The difference is that in Nelson’s era only the top 20 in a tournament received a check, which the current record books define as a “cut made”. So in reality, Nelson finished in the top 20 113 times in a row. Continue reading
1. TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach
Designed by Pete Dye, the par-3, 132-yard 17th of TPC Sawgrass, known simply as the “Island Green” is one of the most intimidating holes on the PGA tour. In addition to being almost entirely surrounded by water, the undulating green has earned the badge of ruining rounds for many of the best golfers on the tour (In 2007, a record 50 shots fell into the water in one round).
There is a lost art form within the game of golf. An art that produces an experience because of golf’s rare mix of mental, social, and physical skills required — traditionally, this is called an exhibition match.
A Very Brief History
Before there was a professional golf tour, many of the game’s greatest players earned money by competing in exhibition matches against each other. There was no better ‘exhibitor’ than Walter Hagen. A man with a larger than life personality and a grandiose lifestyle to match it. To draw the widest audience as possible, celebrities of that time would also join in on the competition. Continue reading