Irwin in 1986
|Full name||Hale S. Irwin|
|Born||June 3, 1945|
|Height||6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)|
|College||University of Colorado|
|Current tour(s)||PGA Tour Champions|
|Former tour(s)||PGA Tour|
|Highest ranking||7 (May 19, 1991)|
|Number of wins by tour|
|Japan Golf Tour||1|
|PGA Tour Champions||45 (1st all time)|
|Best results in major championships|
|Masters Tournament||T4: 1974, 1975|
|PGA Championship||T5: 1975|
|U.S. Open||Won: 1974, 1979, 1990|
|The Open Championship||T2: 1983|
|Achievements and awards|
|World Golf Hall of Fame||1992 (member page)|
leading money winner
|1997, 1998, 2002|
Player of the Year
|1997, 1998, 2002|
Rookie of the Year
|Byron Nelson Award|
|1996, 1997, 1998, 2002|
|Charles Schwab Cup||2002, 2004|
|Payne Stewart Award||2019|
Hale S. Irwin (born June 3, 1945) is an American professional golfer. He was one of the world's leading golfers from the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s. He is one of the few players in history to win three U.S. Opens, becoming the oldest ever U.S. Open champion in 1990 at the age of 45. As a senior golfer, Irwin ranks first all-time in PGA Tour Champions victories. He is widely regarded as the greatest player in Champions Tour history.
Along with Gary Player, David Graham, Bernhard Langer and Justin Rose, Irwin is one of five golfers to win official tournaments on all six continents on which golf is played. He has also developed a career as a golf course architect.
Irwin was born in Joplin, Missouri, and raised in Baxter Springs, Kansas and Boulder, Colorado. His father introduced him to the game of golf when he was 4 years old. He broke 70 for the first time at the age of 14. Irwin was a star athlete in football, baseball, and golf at Boulder High School and graduated in 1963. Irwin then attended the University of Colorado, where he was a two-time All-Big Eight defensive back, as well as an academic All-American in football. He won the individual NCAA Division I Championship in golf in his senior year in 1967 and turned professional the following year.
Irwin had 20 victories on the PGA Tour beginning with the 1971 Sea Pines Heritage Classic and finishing with the 1994 MCI Heritage Golf Classic, and won prize money of just under six million dollars. His 1994 Heritage win at the age of nearly 49 made him one of the oldest winners in Tour history.
Irwin's tournament victories kept him ranked high among his peers - he was ranked among the top five in McCormack's World Golf Rankings in every year from 1975 to 1979, inclusive. He ranked in the top-10 of the Official World Golf Rankings for a few weeks in 1991.
Irwin's first U.S. Open triumph came at Winged Foot in 1974 at the age of 29. In what became known as "The Massacre at Winged Foot", Irwin won with a score of 7-over par, the second-highest winning score in relation to par of any U.S. Open since 1945. The course conditions at Winged Foot in 1974 were described as "brutal".Johnny Miller and several other players suggested that the USGA had intentionally made the Winged Foot course setup particularly treacherous in response to Miller's record-breaking round of 63 at Oakmont the year before. Irwin, however, said in 1974: "I've always enjoyed playing tough courses. It's much more of a challenge to me." Irwin earned $35,000 for his victory at Winged Foot and said that he had a vivid dream three weeks earlier that he won the U.S. Open, which he only told his wife about.
Irwin won the Piccadilly World Match Play Championship at Wentworth Club in 1974 and 1975. He missed out on a record-breaking third straight victory when he was beaten in the 1976 final by Australian David Graham on the second sudden-death playoff hole.
Between 1974 and 1977, Irwin had four consecutive top-5 finishes at The Masters. In 1977, Irwin's three wins on the PGA Tour included a five shot victory in the Colgate Hall of Fame Classic at Pinehurst Resort. Irwin shot a second round of 62 at Pinehurst for a 15-under par opening 36-hole total of 127, which was the best in any PGA Tour event for over a decade.
Between January 1975 to the end of the 1978 season, Irwin made the cut in 86 consecutive PGA Tour events. To date, this is the fourth longest streak of consecutive cuts made on the PGA Tour, behind Tiger Woods (142), Byron Nelson (113) and Jack Nicklaus (105).
Irwin added a second U.S. Open title in 1979 at Inverness Club. With its narrow fairways and heavy rough, the Inverness course was a stern test for the players. Irwin's final round of 75 tied the post-World War II tournament record for the highest final round score by a U.S. Open champion. The next month in The Open Championship at Royal Lytham & St Annes, Irwin came to the final round with a two-shot lead. He was bidding to become only the third golfer since 1945 to win the U.S. Open and The Open Championship in the same year after Ben Hogan (1953) and Lee Trevino (1971) - a feat later matched by Tom Watson (1982) and Tiger Woods (2000). Irwin said in 1979: "I would dearly love to win the British Open. It is special." However, he was thwarted in his attempt at an historic double by the incredible recovery play of Seve Ballesteros.
In 1983, Irwin had another close tilt at The Open Championship, but lost by a shot to Tom Watson at Royal Birkdale, after whiffing on a tiny putt of about an inch, during his third round of play. Irwin said that his mistake, which cost him the chance of a playoff with Watson, was "a mental lapse" and that he learned a lesson from it, later being very careful on short putts.
Irwin said in an interview in 2000 that the greatest disappointment of his career was not at the British Open, but at the 1984 U.S. Open at Winged Foot. Irwin had led the tournament after the first three rounds, but shot a final round of 79 to finish 6th. Reflecting on his final round collapse, Irwin said: "A number of factors were in play and it was very emotional. I thought it would be great to win 10 years later at the same venue and, more than anything else, my father was dying of cancer then and I thought it would be wonderful to give him a victory. I destroyed myself with the pressures I'd built up."
After his victory in the 1985 Memorial Tournament, Irwin had occasional top-10 finishes in tournaments for the rest of the 1980s, but he did not have a further official PGA Tour win until an incredible year in 1990, which was capped by his third U.S. Open victory. In a remarkable tournament, Irwin holed an improbable 45-foot (14 m) birdie putt on the 72nd hole to join a playoff against fellow American Mike Donald. In the 18-hole Monday playoff, Donald was two shots ahead of Irwin with three holes to play. Donald missed a 15-foot par putt on the 18th which would have given him victory. Both men shot rounds of 74 in the playoff and Irwin won the title with a birdie on the first sudden-death playoff hole. After becoming the oldest ever U.S. Open champion at the age of 45, winning his first PGA Tour event for five years, Irwin was gracious in victory. He said of his playoff opponent Mike Donald: "God bless him. I almost wish he had won."
Somewhat remarkably, after his 1990 U.S. Open triumph Irwin won the Buick Classic the following week, becoming the first man since Billy Casper in 1966 to win a PGA Tour event the week after gaining the U.S. Open title.
During his career, Irwin won professional tournaments on all six continents on which golf is played: Africa, Australia, Asia, Europe, North America and South America. Irwin played on five Ryder Cup teams: 1975, 1977, 1979, 1981, and 1991. He was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1992.
Irwin qualified to play on the over-50 Senior PGA Tour (now Champions Tour) in 1995, and enjoyed even greater success at this level than he did on the PGA Tour. Through the 2014 season, he is the career leader in wins and earnings with 45 victories and over $26 million. Irwin won three consecutive PGA Seniors' Championships between 1996 and 1998, including a 12-stroke victory in the 1997 tournament, which was the largest ever margin of victory in a 72-hole Champions Tour event until Bernhard Langer's 13-stroke victory in the 2014 Senior Open Championship. Irwin's nine victories in 1997 tied the Senior Tour record set by Peter Thomson in 1985.
Irwin won the U.S. Senior Open in 1998 and 2000 for a career total of five USGA titles. He narrowly missed out on a third U.S. Senior Open title in 2004 when he finished one stroke behind Peter Jacobsen.
Irwin is the oldest player to finish in the top five in a senior major, with a third-place finish at the 2012 Senior PGA Championship at the age of 66. In the 2012 3M Championship, Irwin shot a score under his age for the first time in his career. His round of 65 included an eagle on the 9th hole and six consecutive birdies on the back nine.
Irwin is married to wife Sally and has two children. Irwin's son Steve qualified for the 2011 U.S. Open. Steve Irwin said of his father: "I'm very proud of him. The U.S. Open is what truly defined his career. It's been my ultimate goal in golf to play in the U.S. Open since I began competing."
For 25 years, Hale Irwin helped to raise money for the St. Louis Children's Hospital, which named a wing in his honor. Irwin also enjoys hunting and fishing and spending time with his grandchildren. He is the uncle of former CU lineman Heath Irwin.
|No.||Date||Tournament||Winning score||To par||Margin
|1||Nov 28, 1971||Sea Pines Heritage Classic||68-73-68-70=279||-5||1 stroke||Bob Lunn|
|2||Sep 16, 1973||Sea Pines Heritage Classic||69-66-65-72=272||-12||5 strokes||Jerry Heard, Grier Jones|
|3||Jun 16, 1974||U.S. Open||73-70-71-73=287||+7||2 strokes||Forrest Fezler|
|4||Jun 1, 1975||Atlanta Classic||66-69-68-68=271||-17||4 strokes||Tom Watson|
|5||Jun 30, 1975||Western Open||71-68-71-73=283||-1||1 stroke||Bobby Cole|
|6||Feb 22, 1976||Glen Campbell-Los Angeles Open||69-69-66-68=272||-12||2 strokes||Tom Watson|
|7||Mar 7, 1976||Florida Citrus Open||74-66-64-66=270||-18||Playoff||Kermit Zarley|
|8||May 29, 1977||Atlanta Classic||70-70-66-67=273||-15||1 stroke||Steve Veriato|
|9||Aug 28, 1977||Colgate Hall of Fame Golf Classic||65-62-69-68=264||-20||5 strokes||Leonard Thompson|
|10||Oct 16, 1977||San Antonio Texas Open||68-67-64-67=266||-14||2 strokes||Miller Barber|
|11||Jun 17, 1979||U.S. Open||74-68-67-75=284||Even||2 strokes||Jerry Pate, Gary Player|
|12||Feb 14, 1981||Hawaiian Open||68-66-62-69=265||-23||6 strokes||Don January|
|13||Aug 23, 1981||Buick Open||65-73-67-72=277||-11||Playoff|| Bobby Clampett, Peter Jacobsen,|
|14||Mar 14, 1982||Honda Inverrary Classic||65-71-67-66=269||-19||1 stroke||George Burns, Tom Kite|
|15||May 29, 1983||Memorial Tournament||71-71-70-69=281||-7||1 stroke||Ben Crenshaw, David Graham|
|16||Feb 5, 1984||Bing Crosby National Pro-Am||69-69-68-72=278||-10||Playoff||Jim Nelford|
|17||May 26, 1985||Memorial Tournament||68-68-73-72=281||-7||1 stroke||Lanny Wadkins|
|18||Jun 18, 1990||U.S. Open||69-70-74-67=280||-8||Playoff||Mike Donald|
|19||Jun 24, 1990||Buick Classic||66-69-68-66=269||-15||2 strokes||Paul Azinger|
|20||Apr 17, 1994||MCI Heritage Golf Classic||68-65-65-68=266||-18||2 strokes||Greg Norman|
PGA Tour playoff record (4-5)
|1||1970||Los Angeles Open||Billy Casper||Lost to birdie on first extra hole|
|2||1972||Liggett & Myers Open|| David Graham,
Lou Graham, Larry Ziegler
|Lou Graham won with birdie on third extra hole|
David Graham and Ziegler eliminated with par on first hole
|3||1976||Florida Citrus Open||Kermit Zarley||Won with par on sixth extra hole|
|4||1976||Memorial Tournament||Roger Maltbie||Lost to birdie on fourth extra hole|
|5||1981||Bing Crosby National Pro-Am|| John Cook, Bobby Clampett,
Ben Crenshaw, Barney Thompson
|Cook won with par on third extra hole|
Clampett, Crenshaw, and Thompson eliminated with birdie on first hole
|6||1981||Buick Open|| Bobby Clampett, Peter Jacobsen,
|Won with birdie on second extra hole|
|7||1984||Bing Crosby National Pro-Am||Jim Nelford||Won with birdie on second extra hole|
|8||1990||U.S. Open||Mike Donald||Won with birdie on first extra hole after 18-hole playoff (Donald:74, Irwin:74)|
|9||1991||Memorial Tournament||Kenny Perry||Lost to birdie on first extra hole|
|No.||Date||Tournament||Winning score||Margin of
|1||Jul 30, 1995||Ameritech Senior Open||-22 (66-63-66=195)||8 strokes||Kermit Zarley|
|2||Oct 1, 1995||Vantage Championship||-17 (66-68-65=199)||4 strokes||Dave Stockton|
|3||Feb 25, 1996||American Express Invitational||-19 (66-67-64=197)||5 stroke||Bob Murphy|
|4||Apr 21, 1996||PGA Seniors' Championship||-8 (66-74-69-71=280)||2 strokes||Isao Aoki|
|5||Jan 19, 1997||MasterCard Championship||-9 (71-67-69=207)||2 strokes||Gil Morgan|
|6||Feb 9, 1997||LG Championship||-15 (70-66-65=201)||1 stroke||Bob Murphy|
|7||Apr 20, 1997||PGA Seniors' Championship||-14 (69-65-72-68=274)||12 strokes||Dale Douglass, Jack Nicklaus|
|8||Apr 27, 1997||Las Vegas Senior Classic||-6 (70-65-72=207)||1 stroke||Isao Aoki|
|9||Jul 20, 1997||Burnet Senior Classic||-17 (65-68-66=199)||2 strokes||Lee Trevino|
|10||Aug 3, 1997||BankBoston Classic||-13 (70-65-65=200)||2 strokes||Jerry McGee, Bob Wynn|
|11||Sep 14, 1997||Boone Valley Classic||-16 (70-65-65=200)||2 strokes||Gil Morgan|
|12||Oct 5, 1997||Vantage Championship||-18 (64-62-69=195)||1 stroke||Dave Eichelberger|
|13||Oct 19 1997||Hyatt Regency Maui Kaanapali Classic||-13 (67-63-70=200)||3 strokes||Mike Hill, Bruce Summerhays|
|14||Mar 15, 1998||Toshiba Senior Classic||-13 (70-68-62=200)||1 stroke||Hubert Green|
|15||Apr 19, 1998||PGA Seniors' Championship||-13 (68-68-69-70=275)||6 strokes||Larry Nelson|
|16||Apr 26, 1998||Las Vegas Senior Classic||-7 (69-67-70-75=281)||1 stroke||Vicente Fernández|
|17||Jul 19, 1998||Ameritech Senior Open||-15 (62-66-73=201)||3 strokes||Larry Nelson|
|18||Jul 26, 1998||U.S. Senior Open||+1 (77-68-71-69=285)||1 stroke||Vicente Fernández|
|19||Aug 30, 1998||BankBoston Classic||-15 (69-64-68=201)||2 strokes||Jay Sigel|
|20||Nov 8, 1998||Energizer Senior Tour Championship||-14 (66-73-70-65=274)||5 strokes||Gil Morgan|
|21||May 9, 1999||Nationwide Championship||-10 (69-68-69=206)||1 stroke||Bob Murphy|
|22||May 30, 1999||Boone Valley Classic||-13 (68-69-66=203)||2 strokes||Al Geiberger|
|23||Jun 27, 1999||Ford Senior Players Championship||-21 (67-71-64-65=267)||7 strokes||Graham Marsh|
|24||Jul 18, 1999||Ameritech Senior Open||-10 (73-66-67=206)||1 stroke||Bruce Fleisher, Raymond Floyd, Gary McCord|
|25||Jul 25, 1999||Coldwell Banker Burnet Classic||-15 (64-68-69=201)||2 strokes||Jim Dent, Dale Douglass|
|26||May 14, 2000||Nationwide Championship||-9 (71-67-69=207)||1 stroke||Vicente Fernández|
|27||Jun 4, 2000||BellSouth Senior Classic at Opryland||-18 (68-65-65=198)||1 stroke||Gil Morgan|
|28||Jul 2, 2000||U.S. Senior Open||-17 (66-71-65-65=267)||3 strokes||Bruce Fleisher|
|29||Oct 22, 2000||EMC Kaanapali Classic||-18 (71-62-65=198)||4 strokes||Joe Inman|
|30||Mar 18, 2001||Siebel Classic in Silicon Valley||-10 (71-70-65=206)||5 strokes||Allen Doyle, Tom Watson|
|31||Apr 28, 2001||Bruno's Memorial Classic||-21 (65-65-65=195)||4 strokes||Stewart Ginn|
|32||Oct 7 2001||Turtle Bay Championship||-11 (69-68-68=205)||3 strokes||John Jacobs|
|33||Feb 10, 2002||ACE Group Classic||-16 (68-64-68=200)||1 stroke||Tom Watson|
|34||Mar 10, 2002||Toshiba Senior Classic||-17 (67-64-65=196)||5 strokes||Allen Doyle|
|35||Aug 11, 2002||3M Championship||-12 (66-70-68=204)||3 strokes||Hubert Green|
|36||Oct 6, 2002||Turtle Bay Championship||-8 (69-69-70=208)||Playoff||Gary McCord|
|37||May 19, 2003||Kinko's Classic of Austin||-8 (69-66-73=208)||Playoff||Tom Watson|
|38||Oct 12, 2003||Turtle Bay Championship||-8 (68-73-67=208)||2 strokes||Tom Kite|
|39||Apr 25, 2004||Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf||-11 (66-68-71=205)||1 stroke||Gary Koch, Gil Morgan|
|40||May 30, 2004||Senior PGA Championship||-8 (67-69-69-71=276)||1 stroke||Jay Haas|
|41||Jan 30, 2005||Turtle Bay Championship||-16 (67-66-67=200)||5 strokes||Dana Quigley|
|42||Feb 27, 2005||Outback Steakhouse Pro-Am||-8 (72-69-68-67=276)||1 stroke||Morris Hatalsky, Mark McNulty|
|43||Sep 4, 2005||The First Tee Open at Pebble Beach||-13 (66-69-68=203)||1 stroke||Morris Hatalsky, Gil Morgan, Craig Stadler|
|44||Oct 2, 2005||SAS Championship||-13 (69-68-66=203)||2 strokes||Bob Gilder, Tom Jenkins|
|45||Jan 21, 2007||MasterCard Championship at Hualalai||-23 (66-62-65=193)||5 strokes||Tom Kite|
Champions Tour playoff record (2-6)
|1||1996||Boone Valley Classic||Gibby Gilbert||Lost to par on first extra hole|
|2||1999||BankBoston Classic||Tom McGinnis||Lost to birdie on second extra hole|
|3||1999||AT&T Canada Senior Open Championship||Jim Ahern||Lost to par on second extra hole|
|4||2002||SBC Senior Open||Bob Gilder||Lost to par on first extra hole|
|5||2002||Lightpath Long Island Classic||Hubert Green||Lost to birdie on seventh extra hole|
|6||2002||Turtle Bay Championship||Gary McCord||Won with birdie on first extra hole|
|7||2003||Kinko's Classic of Austin||Tom Watson||Won with birdie on second extra hole|
|8||2004||Administaff Small Business Classic||Larry Nelson||Lost to birdie on first extra hole|
Senior majors are shown in bold.
|Year||Championship||54 holes||Winning score||Margin||Runner(s)-up|
|1974||U.S. Open||1 shot deficit||+7 (73-70-71-73=287)||2 strokes||Forrest Fezler|
|1979||U.S. Open (2)||3 shot lead||E (74-68-67-75=284)||2 strokes||Jerry Pate, Gary Player|
|1990||U.S. Open (3)||4 shot deficit||-8 (69-70-74-67=280)||Playoff1||Mike Donald|
1Defeated Mike Donald with a birdie on the 19th hole after they were tied at 74 (+2) in an 18-hole playoff.
|The Open Championship|
|The Open Championship||T24||9||T32||T46||T24||6|
|The Open Championship||T2||T14|
|The Open Championship||T53||T57||T19|
|The Open Championship|
CUT = missed the halfway cut
WD = withdrew
"T" indicates a tie for a place.
|The Open Championship||0||1||0||1||3||7||11||11|
|The Players Championship||T34||7||T17||T3||T42||CUT||T14||T51||T19||T49||T15||T5||CUT||T24||CUT||CUT||T5||T27||CUT||CUT||4||T55||T46|
CUT = missed the halfway cut
"T" indicates a tie for a place
|1996||PGA Seniors' Championship||-8 (66-74-69-71=280)||2 strokes||Isao Aoki|
|1997||PGA Seniors' Championship (2)||-14 (69-65-72-68=274)||12 strokes||Dale Douglass, Jack Nicklaus|
|1998||PGA Seniors' Championship (3)||-13 (68-68-69-70=275)||7 strokes||Larry Nelson|
|1998||U.S. Senior Open||+1 (77-68-71-69=285)||1 stroke||Vicente Fernández|
|1999||Ford Senior Players Championship||-21 (67-71-64-65=267)||7 strokes||Graham Marsh|
|2000||U.S. Senior Open (2)||-17 (66-71-65-65=267)||3 strokes||Bruce Fleisher|
|2004||Senior PGA Championship (4)||-8 (67-69-69-71=276)||1 stroke||Jay Haas|
Results not in chronological order before 2017.
|Senior PGA Championship||-||1||1||1||T11||T2||T5||T2|
|U.S. Senior Open||T5||2||T5||1||T3||1||T11||T11|
|Senior Players Championship||T10||2||T19||2||1||T4||3||T6|
|Senior PGA Championship||T15||1||T46||T23||T42||CUT||T59||T65||4||3||T56||T67||CUT||CUT|
|U.S. Senior Open||2||25||T32||CUT||T40||T32||CUT||T4||CUT||T56||CUT||70||CUT||CUT||CUT|
|Senior Players Championship||T12||T9||2||T7||T27||T15||T41||T45||T30||T68||T75||T57||T68|
|Senior British Open Championship||T13||CUT|
The Senior British Open was not a senior major until 2003.
CUT = missed the halfway cut
"T" indicates a tie for a place
This list may be incomplete.