About Arnold Palmer: American golfer (1929 - 2016) | Biography, Filmography, Bibliography, Facts, Information, Career, Wiki, Life
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Arnold Palmer
American golfer

Arnold Palmer

Arnold Palmer
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro American golfer
A.K.A. Arnold Daniel Palmer
Was Athlete Golfer Architect Aviator Pilot Aircraft pilot
From United States of America
Field Engineering Military Sports
Gender male
Birth 10 September 1929, Latrobe, USA
Death 25 September 2016, Pittsburgh, USA (aged 87 years)
Star sign Virgo
Height: 178 cm
The details (from wikipedia)


Arnold Daniel Palmer (September 10, 1929 – September 25, 2016) was an American professional golfer who is generally regarded as one of the greatest and most charismatic players in the sport's history. Dating back to 1955, he won numerous events on both the PGA Tour and the circuit now known as PGA Tour Champions. Nicknamed The King, he was one of golf's most popular stars and seen as a trailblazer, the first superstar of the sport's television age, which began in the 1950s.

Palmer's social impact on behalf of golf was perhaps unrivaled among fellow professionals; his humble background and plain-spoken popularity helped change the perception of golf from an elite, upper-class pastime (private clubs) to a more populist sport accessible to middle and working classes (public courses). Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, and Gary Player were "The Big Three" in golf during the 1960s; they are widely credited with popularizing and commercializing the sport around the world.

In a career spanning more than six decades, he won 62 PGA Tour titles from 1955 to 1973. He is fifth on the Tour's all-time victory list, trailing only Tiger Woods, Sam Snead, Jack Nicklaus, and Ben Hogan. He won seven major titles in a six-plus-year domination from the 1958 Masters to the 1964 Masters. He also won the PGA Tour Lifetime Achievement Award in 1998, and in 1974 was one of the 13 original inductees into the World Golf Hall of Fame.

Early life

Palmer, age 23, while in theU.S. Coast Guard in 1953
Palmer in 1953

Palmer was born to Doris (Morrison) and Milfred Jerome "Deacon" Palmer (1905–1976) in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, a working-class steel mill town. He learned golf from his father, who had suffered from polio at a young age and was head professional and greenskeeper at Latrobe Country Club, which allowed young Palmer to accompany his father as he maintained the course.

Palmer attended Wake Forest College on a golf scholarship. He left upon the death of close friend Bud Worsham (1929–1950) and enlisted in the U.S. Coast Guard, where he served for three years, 1951–1954. At the Coast Guard Training Center in Cape May, New Jersey, he built a nine-hole course and had some time to continue to hone his golf skills. After his enlistment term ended, Palmer returned to college and competitive golf.

Palmer won the 1954 U.S. Amateur in Detroit and made the decision to turn pro in November of that year. "That victory was the turning point in my life," he said. "It gave me confidence I could compete at the highest level of the game." When reporters there asked Gene Littler who the young golfer was that was cracking balls on the practice tee, Littler said: "That's Arnold Palmer. He's going to be a great player some day. When he hits the ball, the earth shakes."

After winning that match, Palmer quit his job selling paint and played in the Waite Memorial tournament in Shawnee-on-Delaware, Pennsylvania. There, he met his future wife, Winifred Walzer, and they remained married for 45 years until her death in 1999.

On November 17, 1954, Palmer announced his intentions to turn pro. "What other people find in poetry, I find in the flight of a good drive," Palmer said.


Palmer's first tour win came during his 1955 rookie season, when he won the Canadian Open and earned $2,400 for his efforts. He raised his game status for the next several seasons. Palmer's charisma was a major factor in establishing golf as a compelling television event in the 1950s and 1960s, which set the stage for the popularity it enjoys today. His first major championship win at the 1958 Masters Tournament, where he earned $11,250, established his position as one of the leading stars in golf, and by 1960 he had signed up as pioneering sports agent Mark McCormack's first client.

In later interviews, McCormack listed five attributes that made Palmer especially marketable: his good looks; his relatively modest background (his father was a greenskeeper before rising to be club professional and Latrobe was a humble club); the way he played golf, taking risks and wearing his emotions on his sleeve; his involvement in a string of exciting finishes in early televised tournaments; and his affability.

Palmer is also credited by many for securing the status of The Open Championship (British Open) among U.S. players. Before Ben Hogan won that championship in 1953, few American professionals had traveled to play in The Open, due to its extensive travel requirements, relatively small purse, and the style of its links courses (radically different from most American courses). Palmer wanted to emulate the feats of his predecessors Bobby Jones, Sam Snead and Hogan in his quest to become a leading American golfer.

In particular, Palmer traveled to Scotland in 1960 to compete in the British Open for the first time. He had already won both the Masters and U.S. Open and was trying to emulate Hogan's 1953 feat of winning all three tournaments in a single year. Palmer played what he himself said were the four best rounds of his career, shooting 71-69-67-69. His scores had the English excitedly claiming that Palmer may well be the greatest golfer ever to play the game. British fans were excited about Palmer's playing in the Open. Although he failed to win, losing out to Kel Nagle by a single shot, his subsequent Open wins in the early 1960s convinced many American pros that a trip to Britain would be worth the effort, and certainly secured Palmer's popularity among British and European fans, not just American ones.

Palmer was greatly disappointed by his runner-up finish in the 1960 British Open. His appearance overseas drew American attention to the Open Championship, which had previously been ignored by the American golfers. Palmer went on to win the Open Championship in 1961 and 1962, and last played in it in 1995. Martin Slumbers, chief executive of the Royal & Ancient, called Palmer "a true gentleman, one of the greatest ever to play the game and a truly iconic figure in sport". His participation in The Open Championship in the early 1960s "was the catalyst to truly internationalize golf," said European Tour chief executive Keith Pelley.

Palmer won seven major championships:

  • Masters Tournament: 1958, 1960, 1962, 1964
  • U.S. Open: 1960
  • The Open Championship: 1961, 1962

Palmer's most prolific years were 1960–1963, when he won 29 PGA Tour events, including five major tournaments, in four seasons. In 1960, he won the Hickok Belt as the top professional athlete of the year and Sports Illustrated magazine's "Sportsman of the Year" award. He built up a wide fan base, often referred to as "Arnie's Army", and in 1967 he became the first man to reach $1 million in career earnings on the PGA Tour. By the late 1960s Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player had both acquired clear ascendancy in their rivalry, but Palmer won a PGA Tour event every year from 1955 to 1971 inclusive, and in 1971 he enjoyed a revival, winning four events.

Palmer won the Vardon Trophy for lowest scoring average four times: 1961, 1962, 1964, and 1967. He played on six Ryder Cup teams: 1961, 1963, 1965, 1967, 1971, and 1973. He was the last playing captain in 1963, and captained the team again in 1975.

Palmer was eligible for the Senior PGA Tour (now PGA Tour Champions) from its first season in 1980, and he was one of the marquee names who helped it to become successful. He won ten events on the tour, including five senior majors.

Palmer won the first World Match Play Championship that was held in England. The event was originally organized by McCormack to showcase his stable of players. Their partnership was one of the most significant in the history of sports marketing. Long after he ceased to win tournaments, Palmer remained one of the highest earners in golf due to his appeal to sponsors and the public.

Palmer gives President Bush golf tips before being awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, 2004

In 2004, he competed in the Masters Tournament for the last time, marking his 50th consecutive appearance in that event. At his death, he and Jack Nicklaus were the only two Masters champions to be regular members of Masters organizer Augusta National Golf Club (as opposed to the honorary membership the club grants to all Masters champions).

From 2007 until his death, Palmer served as an honorary starter for the Masters. He retired from tournament golf on October 13, 2006, when he withdrew from the Champions Tours' Administaff Small Business Classic after four holes due to dissatisfaction with his own play. He played the remaining holes but did not keep score.

Golf businesses

Palmer had a diverse golf-related business career, including owning the Bay Hill Club and Lodge in Orlando, Florida, which is the venue for the PGA Tour's Arnold Palmer Invitational (renamed from the Bay Hill Invitational in 2007), helping to found The Golf Channel, and negotiating the deal to build the first golf course in the People's Republic of China. This led to the formation of Palmer Course Design in 1972, which was renamed Arnold Palmer Design Company when the company moved to Orlando, Florida, in 2006. Palmer's design partner was Ed Seay.

Palmer designed more than 300 golf courses in 37 states, 25 countries, and five continents (all except Africa and Antarctica), including the first modern course built in China, in 1988. In 1971, he purchased Latrobe Country Club (where his father used to be the club professional) and owned it until his death. The licensing, endorsements, spokesman associations and commercial partnerships built by Palmer and McCormack are managed by Arnold Palmer Enterprises. Palmer was also a member of the American Society of Golf Course Architects.

In 1997, Palmer and fellow golfer Tiger Woods initiated a civil case in an effort to stop the unauthorized sale of their images and alleged signatures in the memorabilia market. The lawsuit was filed against Bruce Matthews, the owner of Gotta Have It Golf, Inc. and others. Matthews and associated parties counter-claimed that Palmer and associated businesses committed several acts, including breach of contract, breach of implied duty of good faith and violations of Florida's Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act. On March 12, 2014, a Florida jury ruled in favor of Gotta Have It on its breach of contract and other related claims. The same jury rejected the counterclaims of Palmer and Woods, and awarded Gotta Have It $668,346 in damages.

One of Palmer's most recent products (mass-produced starting in 2001) is a branded use of the beverage known as the Arnold Palmer, which combines sweet iced tea with lemonade.

Automotive businesses

Palmer got into the car business in 1974 when he, along with partners Mark McCormack and Don Massey, purchased a Cadillac dealership in Charlotte, North Carolina. Over the years, Palmer would acquire several other dealerships in several states including a Buick-Cadillac store in his hometown of Latrobe. The Latrobe dealership, known as Arnold Palmer Motors, closed in 2017 after 36 years in business.


As a measure of his popularity, Palmer, like Elvis Presley before him, was known simply as "The King." But in a life bursting from the seams with success, Palmer never lost his common touch. He was a man of the people, willing to sign every autograph, shake every hand, and tried to look every person in his gallery in the eye.

Golf Week

According to Adam Schupak of Golf Week, "No one did more to popularize the sport than Palmer". "His dashing presence singlehandedly took golf out of the country clubs and into the mainstream. Quite simply, he made golf cool." Jack Nicklaus said:

Arnold transcended the game of golf. He was more than a golfer or even great golfer. He was an icon. He was a legend. Arnold was someone who was a pioneer in his sport. He took the game from one level to a higher level, virtually by himself.

In 2000, Palmer was ranked the sixth greatest player of all time in Golf Digest magazine's rankings, and by 2008 had earned an estimated $30 million.

Palmer was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2004 and the Congressional Gold Medal in 2009. He was the first golfer to be awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the second golfer, after Byron Nelson, to be awarded the Congressional Gold Medal.

In addition to Palmer's impressive list of awards, he was bestowed the honor of kicking off the Masters Tournament beginning in 2007. From 2007 to 2009, Palmer was the sole honorary starter. In 2010, longtime friend and competitor Jack Nicklaus was appointed by Augusta National to join Palmer. In 2012, golf's The Big Three reunited as South African golfer Gary Player joined for the ceremonial tee shots as honorary starters for the 76th playing of the Masters Tournament. In describing the effect that Palmer had on the sport, biographer James Dodson stated:

We loved him with a mythic American joy... He represented everything that is great about golf. The friendship, the fellowship, the laughter, the impossibility of golf, the sudden rapture moment that brings you back, a moment that you never forget, that's Arnold Palmer in spades. He's the defining figure in golf.

Personal life

Palmer was married to the former Winnie Walzer (1934–1999) for 45 years; the couple had two daughters. She died at age 65 on November 20, 1999, from complications due to ovarian cancer. His grandson, Sam Saunders, is a professional golfer who grew up playing at Bay Hill, where he won the club championship at age 15. He attended Clemson University in South Carolina on a golf scholarship and turned pro in 2008. Saunders stated that Palmer's family nickname is "Dumpy". He married his second wife, Kathleen Gawthrop, in 2005 in Hawaii.

During the spring and summer months, Palmer resided in Latrobe, and he spent winters in Orlando and La Quinta, California. He first visited Orlando in 1948 during a college match. When he took up residence in Orlando, Palmer helped the city become a recreation destination, "turning the entire state of Florida into a golfing paradise". That included building one of the premier events on the PGA Tour there along with his contributing to new hospitals. On hearing about Palmer's death, Tiger Woods said, "My kids were born at the Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women & Babies, and his philanthropic work will be remembered along with his accomplishments in golf." Arnold Palmer Boulevard is named in his honor.

Palmer had supported Scottish football club Rangers F.C. since his boyhood. He was a member of the Freemasons since 1958. Palmer created the Arnie's Army Charitable Foundation to help children and youth. The Foundation saw the creation of the Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women & Babies Center, The Howard Philips Center for Children & Families, the Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children, and the Winnie Palmer Nature Reserve. He and O.J. Simpson were spokespersons for Hertz Rent-a-Car.

During his playing career, Arnold Palmer smoked cigarettes, which caused him to battle an addiction to nicotine. He noted that many of his colleagues smoked, and he even endorsed the product in television commercials. Later in life, Palmer made a complete about-face and urged the public to give up smoking. He said that cigarette smoking has a negative effect on every organ in the body. As a testimonial for smoking cessation products, he was depicted in a 1989 photo by Robert Straus that was subject to copyright litigation as late as 20 years later.

Palmer was a Republican, and donated money to Pat Toomey, John McCain, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum and George W. Bush. He was approached on multiple occasions by the Republican Party encouraging him to run for political office, but declined on each occasion.


Arnold Palmer statue unveiled at Laurel Valley Golf Course, Ligonier, PA, on September 10, 2009, in honor of Palmer's 80th birthday. Pictured: Arnold Palmer with sculptor Zenos Frudakis.

Palmer's early "fear of flying" was what led him to pursue his pilot certificate. After almost 55 years, he logged nearly 20,000 hours of flight time in various aircraft. His personal website reads:

Next to marrying his wife, Winnie, and deciding on a professional career in golf, there's only one decision Arnold Palmer considers smarter. Learning how to fly an airplane.

On Palmer's 70th birthday in 1999, Westmoreland County Airport in Latrobe was renamed Arnold Palmer Regional Airport in his honor. According to their website: "[The airport] started as the Longview Flying Field in 1924. It became J.D. Hill Airport in 1928, Latrobe Airport in 1935 and Westmoreland County Airport in 1978. Complementing a rich history rooted in some of the earliest pioneers of aviation, the name was changed to Arnold Palmer Regional in 1999 to honor the Latrobe native golf legend who grew up less than a mile from the runway where he watched the world's first official airmail pickup in 1939 and later learned to fly himself." There is a statue of Palmer made by Zenos Frudakis, holding a golf club in front of the airport's entrance, unveiled in 2007.

Palmer thought he would pilot a plane for the last time on January 31, 2011, and flew from Palm Springs in California to Orlando in his Cessna Citation X. His pilot's medical certificate expired that day and he chose not to renew it. However, public FAA records show he was issued a new third-class medical in May 2011.


  • A Life Well Played: My Stories (2016) ISBN 9781250085948
  • Reflections on the Game (2012, with Thomas Hauser. Originally published as Arnold Palmer: A Personal Journey, 1994) ISBN 9780002554688
  • Arnold Palmer: Memories, Stories, and Memorabilia from a Life on and off the Course (2004) ISBN 9781584793304
  • Playing by the Rules: The Rules of Golf Explained & Illustrated from a Lifetime in the Game (2002) ISBN 9780743450225
  • A Golfer's Life (1999, with James Dodson) ISBN 9780345414816
  • Arnold Palmer's Complete Book of Putting (1986, with Peter Dobereiner) ISBN 9780689116247
  • Arnold Palmer's Best 54 Golf Holes (1977) ISBN 9780385052597
  • Go for Broke! My Philosophy of Winning Golf (1973, with William Barry Furlong) ISBN 9780671214784
  • 495 Golf Lessons (1973, with Earl Puckett) ISBN 9780695804022
  • Golf Tactics (1970) ISBN 9780695804022
  • Situation Golf (1970) ISBN 978-0841500235
  • My Game and Yours (1965) ISBN 9780671471958


Palmer died on September 25, 2016 (shortly after his 87th birthday) while awaiting heart surgery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (Shadyside) in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He was admitted three days earlier to undergo testing on his heart. After his funeral, he was cremated and his ashes were scattered in his hometown at Latrobe Country Club. His estate was valued at $875 million and was divided between his two daughters, his second wife (who received $10 million), eight employees who received $25,000 each, and his charity, Arnie's Army, which received $10 million.


From a humble start working at the local club in his beloved Latrobe, Pennsylvania, to superstardom as the face of golf around the globe, Arnold was the American Dream come to life... Today, Michelle and I stand with Arnie's Army in saluting the King.

President Barack Obama

Less than a week after Palmer died, his life was celebrated by both teams at the Ryder Cup at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minnesota, just outside the Twin Cities. The celebration included a video tribute and a moment of silence during the opening ceremony, which also included tributes from the opposing captains - Davis Love III for Team USA and Northern Ireland's Darren Clarke for Team Europe - and the opposing honorary captains - Nicklaus for Team USA and England's Tony Jacklin for Team Europe. During the matches, the players paid tribute to Palmer, which included wearing a special logo, button and pin. Palmer's bag from the 1975 Ryder Cup was also placed on the first tee as a tribute. Palmer had won more than 22 Ryder Cup matches and had also captained Team USA to two victories, in addition to holding or being tied for the records for youngest captain, most career singles points and most points in a single Ryder Cup. PGA of America president Derek Sprague stated:

The game has never known a more enthusiastic sportsman than Arnold Palmer. So it is fitting that we pay tribute to Mr. Palmer during the 41st Ryder Cup, to celebrate it in a very special way, the life of an unforgettable champion and gracious ambassador of the game.

Two days after a 17–11 victory, which marked the first American Ryder Cup triumph since 2008 at Valhalla and which Love dedicated to Palmer, the majority of the team attended the memorial service for Palmer at St. Vincent College in Latrobe and also brought the trophy after Palmer's daughter Amy asked the team if they could do so.

A Golden Palm Star on the Palm Springs Walk of Stars was dedicated to Palmer on January 1, 2017.

Amateur wins (26)

  • 1946 WPIAL Championship, PIAA Championship
  • 1947 WPIAL Championship, PIAA Championship, Western Pennsylvania Junior, Western Pennsylvania Amateur
  • 1948 Southern Conference Championship, Sunnehanna Invitational, Western Pennsylvania Junior
  • 1950 Southern Intercollegiate, Western Pennsylvania Amateur, Greensburg Invitational
  • 1951 Western Pennsylvania Amateur, Worsham Memorial
  • 1952 Western Pennsylvania Amateur, Greensburg Invitational
  • 1953 Ohio Amateur, Cleveland Amateur, Greensburg Invitational, Mayfield Heights Open, Evergreen Pitch and Putt Invitational
  • 1954 U.S. Amateur, Ohio Amateur, All-American Amateur, Atlantic Coast Conference Championship, Bill Waite Memorial

Amateur major wins (1)

Year Championship Winning score Runner-up
1954 U.S. Amateur 1 up Robert Sweeny Jr.

Results timeline

Tournament 1948 1949 1950 1951 1952 1953 1954
U.S. Amateur R256 R64 R256 DNP DNP R16 1

DNP = Did not play
R256, R128, R64, R32, R16, QF, SF = Round in which player lost in match play
Green background for wins. Yellow background for top-10


Professional wins (95)

PGA Tour wins (62)

No. Date Tournament Winning score Margin of
1 Aug 20, 1955 Canadian Open −23 (64-67-64-70=265) 4 strokes Jack Burke, Jr.
2 Jul 1, 1956 Insurance City Open −10 (66-69-68-71=274) Playoff Ted Kroll
3 Jul 29, 1956 Eastern Open −11 (70-66-69-72=277) 2 strokes Dow Finsterwald
4 Feb 25, 1957 Houston Open −9 (67-72-71-69=279) 1 stroke Doug Ford
5 Mar 31, 1957 Azalea Open Invitational −6 (70-67-70-75=282) 1 stroke Dow Finsterwald
6 Jun 9, 1957 Rubber City Open Invitational −12 (71-66-67-68=272) Playoff Doug Ford
7 Nov 3, 1957 San Diego Open Invitational −17 (65-68-68-70=271) 1 stroke Al Balding
8 Mar 23, 1958 St. Petersburg Open Invitational −8 (70-69-72-65=276) 1 stroke Dow Finsterwald, Fred Hawkins
9 Apr 6, 1958 Masters Tournament −4 (70-73-68-73=284) 1 stroke Doug Ford, Fred Hawkins
10 Jun 29, 1958 Pepsi Championship −11 (66-69-67-71=273) 5 strokes Jay Hebert
11 Jan 25, 1959 Thunderbird Invitational −18 (67-70-67-62=266) 3 strokes Jimmy Demaret, Ken Venturi
12 May 11, 1959 Oklahoma City Open Invitational −15 (73-64-67-69=273) 2 strokes Bob Goalby
13 Nov 29, 1959 West Palm Beach Open Invitational −7 (72-67-66-76=281) Playoff Gay Brewer, Pete Cooper
14 Feb 7, 1960 Palm Springs Desert Golf Classic −20 (67-73-67-66-65=338) 3 strokes Fred Hawkins
15 Feb 28, 1960 Texas Open Invitational −12 (69-65-67-75=276) 2 strokes Doug Ford, Frank Stranahan
16 Mar 6, 1960 Baton Rouge Open Invitational −9 (71-71-69-68=279) 7 strokes Jay Hebert, Ron Reif,
Doug Sanders
17 Mar 13, 1960 Pensacola Open Invitational −15 (68-65-73-67=273) 1 stroke Doug Sanders
18 Apr 10, 1960 Masters Tournament −6 (67-73-72-70=282) 1 stroke Ken Venturi
19 Jun 18, 1960 U.S. Open −4 (72-71-72-65=280) 2 strokes Jack Nicklaus (amateur)
20 Aug 7, 1960 Insurance City Open Invitational −14 (70-68-66-66=270) Playoff Bill Collins, Jack Fleck
21 Nov 27, 1960 Mobile Sertoma Open Invitational −14 (68-67-74-65=274) 2 strokes Johnny Pott
22 Jan 15, 1961 San Diego Open Invitational −13 (69-68-69-65=271) Playoff Al Balding
23 Feb 13, 1961 Phoenix Open Invitational −10 (69-65-66-70=270) Playoff Doug Sanders
24 Feb 26, 1961 Baton Rouge Open Invitational −14 (65-67-68-66=266) 7 strokes Wes Ellis
25 Apr 30, 1961 Texas Open Invitational −14 (67-63-72-68=270) 1 stroke Al Balding
26 Jun 25, 1961 Western Open −13 (65-70-67-69=271) 2 strokes Sam Snead
27 Jul 15, 1961 The Open Championship −4 (70-73-69-72=284) 1 stroke Dai Rees
28 Feb 4, 1962 Palm Springs Golf Classic −17 (69-67-66-71-69=342) 3 strokes Jay Hebert, Gene Littler
29 Feb 11, 1962 Phoenix Open Invitational −15 (64-68-71-66=269) 12 strokes Billy Casper, Don Fairfield,
Bob McCallister, Jack Nicklaus
30 Apr 9, 1962 Masters Tournament −8 (70-66-69-75=280) Playoff Gary Player (2nd),
Dow Finsterwald (3rd)
31 Apr 29, 1962 Texas Open Invitational −11 (67-69-70-67=273) 1 stroke Joe Campbell, Gene Littler,
Mason Rudolph, Doug Sanders
32 May 6, 1962 Tournament of Champions −12 (69-70-69-68=276) 1 stroke Billy Casper
33 May 14, 1962 Colonial National Invitation +1 (67-72-66-76=281) Playoff Johnny Pott
34 Jul 13, 1962 The Open Championship −12 (71-69-67-69=276) 6 strokes Kel Nagle
35 Aug 12, 1962 American Golf Classic −4 (67-69-70-70=276) 5 strokes Mason Rudolph
36 Jan 7, 1963 Los Angeles Open −10 (69-69-70-66=274) 3 strokes Al Balding, Gary Player
37 Feb 12, 1963 Phoenix Open Invitational −15 (68-67-68-70=273) 1 stroke Gary Player
38 Mar 10, 1963 Pensacola Open Invitational −15 (69-68-69-67=273) 2 strokes Harold Kneece, Gary Player
39 Jun 16, 1963 Thunderbird Classic Invitational −11 (67-70-68-72=277) Playoff Paul Harney
40 Jul 1, 1963 Cleveland Open Invitational −11 (71-68-66-68=273) Playoff Tommy Aaron, Tony Lema
41 Jul 29, 1963 Western Open −4 (73-67-67-73=280) Playoff Julius Boros, Jack Nicklaus
42 Oct 6, 1963 Whitemarsh Open Invitational −7 (70-71-66-74=281) 1 stroke Lionel Hebert
43 Apr 12, 1964 Masters Tournament −12 (69-68-69-70=276) 6 strokes Dave Marr, Jack Nicklaus
44 May 18, 1964 Oklahoma City Open Invitational −11 (72-69-69-67=277) 2 strokes Lionel Hebert
45 May 2, 1965 Tournament of Champions −11 (66-69-71-71=277) 2 strokes Chi Chi Rodriguez
46 Jan 9, 1966 Los Angeles Open −11 (72-66-62-73=273) 3 strokes Miller Barber, Paul Harney
47 Apr 18, 1966 Tournament of Champions −5 (74-70-70-69=283) Playoff Gay Brewer
48 Nov 20, 1966 Houston Champions International −9 (70-68-68-69=275) 1 stroke Gardner Dickinson
49 Jan 29, 1967 Los Angeles Open −15 (70-64-67-68=269) 5 strokes Gay Brewer
50 Feb 19, 1967 Tucson Open Invitational −15 (66-67-67-73=273) 1 stroke Chuck Courtney
51 Aug 13, 1967 American Golf Classic −4 (70-67-72-67=276) 3 strokes Doug Sanders
52 Sep 24, 1967 Thunderbird Classic −5 (71-71-72-69=283) 1 stroke Charles Coody, Jack Nicklaus,
Art Wall, Jr.
53 Feb 4, 1968 Bob Hope Desert Classic −12 (72-70-67-71-68=348) Playoff Deane Beman
54 Sep 15, 1968 Kemper Open −12 (69-70-70-67=276) 4 strokes Bruce Crampton, Art Wall, Jr.
55 Nov 30, 1969 Heritage Golf Classic −1 (68-71-70-74=283) 3 strokes Dick Crawford, Bert Yancey
56 Dec 7, 1969 Danny Thomas-Diplomat Classic −18 (68-67-70-65=270) 2 strokes Gay Brewer
57 Jul 26, 1970 National Four-Ball Team Championship
(with Jack Nicklaus)
−25 (61-67-64-67=259) 3 strokes Bruce Crampton and Orville Moody,
Gardner Dickinson and Sam Snead,
George Archer and Bobby Nichols
58 Feb 14, 1971 Bob Hope Desert Classic −18 (67-71-66-68-70=342) Playoff Raymond Floyd
59 Mar 14, 1971 Florida Citrus Invitational −18 (66-68-68-68=270) 1 stroke Julius Boros
60 Jul 25, 1971 Westchester Classic −18 (64-70-68-68=270) 5 strokes Gibby Gilbert, Hale Irwin
61 Aug 1, 1971 National Team Championship
(with Jack Nicklaus)
−27 (62-64-65-66=257) 6 strokes Julius Boros and Bill Collins,
Bob Charles and Bruce Devlin
62 Feb 11, 1973 Bob Hope Desert Classic −17 (71-66-69-68-69=343) 2 strokes Jack Nicklaus, Johnny Miller

PGA Tour playoff record (14–10)

No. Year Tournament Opponent(s) Result
1 1956 Insurance City Open Ted Kroll Won with birdie on second extra hole
2 1957 Rubber City Open Invitational Doug Ford Won with birdie on sixth extra hole
3 1958 Azalea Open Howie Johnson Lost 18-hole playoff (Johnson:77, Palmer:78)
4 1959 West Palm Beach Open Gay Brewer, Pete Cooper Won with par on fourth extra hole
5 1960 Houston Classic Bill Collins Lost 18-hole playoff (Collins:69, Palmer:71)
6 1960 Insurance City Open Bill Collins, Jack Fleck Palmer won with birdie on third extra hole
Collins eliminated with birdie on first hole
7 1961 San Diego Open Invitational Al Balding Won with birdie on first extra hole
8 1961 Phoenix Open Invitational Doug Sanders Won 18-hole playoff (Palmer:67 Sanders:70)
9 1961 500 Festival Open Invitation Doug Ford Lost to birdie on second extra hole
10 1962 Masters Tournament Gary Player (2nd),
Dow Finsterwald (3rd)
Won 18-hole playoff (Palmer:68, Player:71, Finsterwald:77)
11 1962 Colonial National Invitation Johnny Pott Won 18-hole playoff (Palmer:69, Pott:73)
12 1962 U.S. Open Jack Nicklaus Lost 18-hole playoff (Nicklaus:71, Palmer:74)
13 1963 Thunderbird Classic Paul Harney Won with par on first extra hole
14 1963 U.S. Open Julius Boros, Jacky Cupit Lost 18-hole playoff (Boros:70, Cupit:73, Palmer:76)
15 1963 Cleveland Open Tommy Aaron, Tony Lema Won 18-hole playoff (Palmer:67, Aaron:70, Lema:70)
16 1963 Western Open Julius Boros, Jack Nicklaus Won 18-hole playoff (Palmer:70, Boros:71, Nicklaus:73)
17 1964 Pensacola Open Miller Barber, Gary Player Lost 18-hole playoff (Player:71, Palmer:72, Barber:74)
18 1964 Cleveland Open Tony Lema Lost to birdie on first extra hole
19 1966 Bob Hope Desert Classic Doug Sanders Lost to birdie on first extra hole
20 1966 Tournament of Champions Gay Brewer Won 18-hole playoff (Palmer:69, Brewer:73)
21 1966 U.S. Open Billy Casper Lost 18-hole playoff (Casper:69, Palmer:73)
22 1968 Bob Hope Desert Classic Deane Beman Won with par on second extra hole
23 1970 Byron Nelson Golf Classic Jack Nicklaus Lost to birdie on first extra hole
24 1971 Bob Hope Desert Classic Raymond Floyd Won with birdie on second extra hole


European Tour wins (2)

No. Date Tournament Winning score Margin of
1 Apr 19, 1975 Spanish Open −5 (72-69-69-73=283) 1 stroke John Fourie
2 May 26, 1975 Penfold PGA Championship +5 (71-70-73-71=285) 2 strokes Eamonn Darcy

Australian Tour wins (2)

  • 1963 Wills Masters
  • 1966 Australian Open

Other wins (14)

  • 1956 Panama Open, Colombian Open
  • 1960 Canada Cup (with Sam Snead)
  • 1962 Canada Cup (with Sam Snead)
  • 1963 Canada Cup (with Jack Nicklaus)
  • 1964 Piccadilly World Match Play Championship (Unofficial money event), Canada Cup (with Jack Nicklaus)
  • 1966 Canada Cup (with Jack Nicklaus), PGA Team Championship (with Jack Nicklaus)
  • 1967 Piccadilly World Match Play Championship (Unofficial money event), World Cup (with Jack Nicklaus), International Trophy (World Cup individual competition)
  • 1971 Lancome Trophy
  • 1980 Canadian PGA Championship

Senior PGA Tour wins (10)

No. Date Tournament Winning score Margin of
1 Dec 7, 1980 PGA Seniors' Championship +1 (72-69-73-75=289) Playoff Paul Harney
2 Jul 12, 1981 U.S. Senior Open +9 (72-76-68-73=289) Playoff Billy Casper, Bob Stone
3 Jun 13, 1982 Marlboro Classic −8 (68-70-69-69=276) 4 strokes Billy Casper, Bob Rosburg
4 Aug 15, 1982 Denver Post Champions of Golf −5 (68-67-73-67=275) 1 stroke Bob Goalby
5 Dec 4, 1983 Boca Grove Seniors Classic −17 (65-69-70-67=271) 3 strokes Billy Casper
6 Jan 22, 1984 General Foods PGA Seniors' Championship −12 (66-66-72=204) 2 strokes Don January
7 Jun 24, 1984 Senior Tournament Players Championship −6 (69-63-79-71=282) 3 strokes Peter Thomson
8 Dec 2, 1984 Quadel Seniors Classic −11 (67-71-67=205) 1 stroke Lee Elder, Orville Moody
9 Jun 23, 1985 Senior Tournament Players Championship −14 (67-71-68-68=274) 11 strokes Miller Barber, Lee Elder,
Gene Littler, Charles Owens
10 Sep 18, 1988 Crestar Classic −13 (65-68-70=203) 4 strokes Lee Elder, Jim Ferree, Larry Mowry

Senior PGA Tour playoff record (2–1)

No. Year Tournament Opponent(s) Result
1 1980 PGA Seniors' Championship Paul Harney Won with birdie on first extra hole
2 1981 U.S. Senior Open Billy Casper, Bob Stone Won 18-hole playoff (Palmer:70, Stone:74, Casper:77)
3 1984 Daytona Beach Seniors Golf Classic Orville Moody, Dan Sikes Moody won with birdie on second extra hole

Senior majors are shown in bold.

Other senior wins (5)

  • 1984 Doug Sanders Celebrity Pro-Am
  • 1986 Union Mutual Classic
  • 1990 Senior Skins Game
  • 1992 Senior Skins Game
  • 1993 Senior Skins Game

Major championships

Wins (7)

Year Championship 54 holes Winning score Margin Runner(s)-up
1958 Masters Tournament Tied for lead −4 (70-73-68-73=284) 1 stroke Doug Ford, Fred Hawkins
1960 Masters Tournament 1 shot lead −6 (67-73-72-70=282) 1 stroke Ken Venturi
1960 U.S. Open 7 shot deficit −4 (72-71-72-65=280) 2 strokes Jack Nicklaus (amateur)
1961 The Open Championship 1 shot lead −4 (70-73-69-72=284) 1 stroke Dai Rees
1962 Masters Tournament 2 shot lead −8 (70-66-69-75=280) Playoff Gary Player (2nd),
Dow Finsterwald (3rd)
1962 The Open Championship 5 shot lead −12 (71-69-67-69=276) 6 strokes Kel Nagle
1964 Masters Tournament 5 shot lead −12 (69-68-69-70=276) 6 strokes Dave Marr, Jack Nicklaus

Defeated Player (2nd) and Finsterwald (3rd) in an 18-hole playoff – Palmer (68), Player (71) and Finsterwald (77). 1st, 2nd and 3rd places awarded in this playoff.

Results timeline

Tournament 1953 1954 1955 1956 1957 1958 1959
Masters Tournament T10 21 T7 1 3
U.S. Open CUT CUT T21 7 CUT T23 T5
The Open Championship
PGA Championship T40 T14
Tournament 1960 1961 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969
Masters Tournament 1 T2 1 T9 1 T2 T4 4 CUT 27
U.S. Open 1 T14 2 T2 T5 CUT 2 2 59 T6
The Open Championship 2 1 1 T26 16 T8 T10
PGA Championship T7 T5 T17 T40 T2 T33 T6 T14 T2 WD
Tournament 1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979
Masters Tournament T36 T18 T33 T24 T11 T13 CUT T24 T37 CUT
U.S. Open T54 T24 3 T4 T5 T9 T50 T19 CUT T59
The Open Championship 12 T7 T14 T16 T55 7 T34
PGA Championship T2 T18 T16 CUT T28 T33 T15 T19 CUT CUT
Tournament 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989
Masters Tournament T24 CUT 47 T36 CUT CUT CUT CUT CUT CUT
U.S. Open 63 CUT CUT T60
The Open Championship CUT T23 T27 T56 CUT CUT CUT
PGA Championship T72 76 CUT T67 CUT T65 CUT T65 CUT T63
Tournament 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999
U.S. Open CUT
The Open Championship CUT CUT
Tournament 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004
Masters Tournament CUT CUT CUT CUT CUT
U.S. Open
The Open Championship
PGA Championship
  Top 10
  Did not play

CUT = missed the half-way cut
WD = withdrew
"T" = tied


Tournament Wins 2nd 3rd Top-5 Top-10 Top-25 Events Cuts made
Masters Tournament 4 2 1 9 12 19 50 25
U.S. Open 1 4 1 10 13 18 32 24
The Open Championship 2 1 0 3 7 12 23 17
PGA Championship 0 3 0 4 6 13 37 24
Totals 7 10 2 26 38 62 142 90
  • Most consecutive cuts made – 26 (1958 Masters – 1965 Masters)
  • Longest streak of top-10s – 6 (1966 Masters – 1967 U.S. Open)

Senior major championships

Wins (5)

Year Championship Winning score Margin Runner(s)-up
1980 PGA Seniors' Championship +1 (72-69-73-75=289) Playoff Paul Harney
1981 U.S. Senior Open +9 (72-76-68-73=289) Playoff Billy Casper, Bob Stone
1984 General Foods PGA Seniors' Championship −6 (69-63-79-71=282) 2 strokes Don January
1984 Senior Players Championship −12 (72-68-67-69=276) 3 strokes Peter Thomson
1985 Senior Players Championship −14 (67-71-68-68=274) 11 strokes Miller Barber, Lee Elder,
Gene Littler, Charles Owens

This was the January edition of the tournament.
Palmer won this with a birdie on the first playoff hole.
Won in an 18-hole playoff, Palmer shot a (70) to Stone's (74) and Casper's (77).

U.S. national team appearances


  • Ryder Cup: 1961 (winners), 1963 (winners, playing captain), 1965 (winners), 1967 (winners), 1971 (winners), 1973 (winners), 1975 (winners, non-playing captain)
  • World Cup: 1960 (winners), 1962 (winners), 1963 (winners), 1964 (winners), 1966 (winners), 1967 (winners, individual winner)
  • Presidents Cup: 1996 (winners, non-playing captain)
  • UBS Cup: 2001 (winners, captain), 2002 (winners, captain), 2003 (tie, captain), 2004 (winners, captain)
The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article on 06 Mar 2020. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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