PGA Championship

The PGA Championship is one of the four major championships in golf and it’s the only one these four competitions which does not explicitly invite amateurs to participate. It’s also the only major to reserve twenty places in the field for club professionals who qualify from the PGA Professional Championship. Organized by the PGA of America, this annual event is limited to 156 players.

It began as a match play tournament in 1916 at Siwanoy Country Club in New York (with Englishman Jim Barnes receiving $500 and a diamond-studded gold medal for his win) and this format of knock-out competition continued until the 39th edition in 1957. From then on, the championship changed to the tried and trusted arrangement of four rounds of stroke play golf over four days.

PGA Championship Wanamaker Trophy

Rodman Wanamaker, heir to a New York department store empire, was instrumental in establishing the PGA and he put up the $2,500 prize money for the inaugural contest, along with a magnificent silver cup – The Wanamaker Trophy – which stands 28 inches high, 10.5 inches in diameter, 27 inches from handle to handle and weighs in at 27 pounds.

Walter Hagen won the PGA for four straight years between 1924 and 1927 but, after he was beat in the quarter final in 1928, he was forced to admit that he didn’t have the trophy. The story goes that he’d lost it celebrating his 7th major championship win at the 1925 PGA in Olympia Fields by jumping out of a taxi at a nightclub in Chicago and leaving the Wanamaker Trophy behind. It turned up a few years later in Detroit in an unmarked case at L.A. Young & Company, the firm that made Hagen’s clubs.

Hagen’s five-time success rate in six finals is the record number of ...

PGA Championship host courses

Aronimink

3rd Pennsylvania - Best in Area 86th USA Ranking 100th North America Ranking

The course in play today at Aronimink Golf Club opened in 1928 and Dornoch’s most famous son, Donald Ross, originally designed it. Gil Hanse restored the old classic ahead of the 2018 BMW Championship.

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BallenIsles (East)

91st Florida - Best in Area

Extending to over 1,300 acres, the beautifully landscaped BallenIsles housing complex is laid out around the three top drawer golf courses named North, South and East.

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Baltimore (East)

1st Maryland - Best in Area 65th USA Ranking 74th North America Ranking

Although the club was inaugurated in 1898, the East course at Baltimore Country Club was designed by the great genius of golf course architecture, A.W. Tillinghast and it opened for play in 1926.

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Baltusrol (Lower)

4th New Jersey - Best in Area

Baltusrol Golf Club takes its name from Mr Baltus Roll who once farmed this land in the 19th century before his untimely murder.

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Bellerive

5th Missouri - Best in Area

The golf course at Bellerive Country Club is routed round a winding creek, which is a feature on nine holes. With large undulating greens and bold bunkering this is certainly a firm tournament favourite...

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Big Spring

5th Kentucky - Best in Area

Host to the PGA Championship in 1952, the course at Big Spring Country Club has been altered a number of times down the years by the likes of William Diddel, Larry Packard, Arthur Hills and, most recently, Rees Jones in 2004.

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Birmingham Country Club

23rd Michigan - Best in Area

Host venue for the PGA Championship in 1953 and the US Women’s Amateur in 1968, the course at Birmingham Country Club was laid out by the prolific Tom Bendelow in 1920, four years after the club’s formation.

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Blue Hill (Championship)

47th Massachusetts - Best in Area

The Championship course at Blue Hill Country Club is a 1925 Skip Wogan design that Ron Prichard lovingly restored in 2003. Keeping it in the family, the architect’s son Phil also laid out the club’s 9-hole Challenger course in 1961.

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PGA Championship Leaderboard

Rank Name Courses Played
1 Paul Rudovsky Courses Played 63
2 Joseph Andriole Courses Played 49
3 Cory Lewis Courses Played 47
4 Mark White Courses Played 44
= Bob McCoy Courses Played 44
6 Joshua Asher Courses Played 43
7 James Gold Courses Played 41
8 Fergal O'Leary Courses Played 40
9 Paul Jones Courses Played 36
10 David Harak Courses Played 35