Who's who: Christy O'Connor

  • Photo of Christy O'Connor
  • ireland.png
  • Photo of Christy O'Connor Jr
  • Photo of Christy O'Connor
  • ireland.png
  • Photo of Christy O'Connor Jr

Who's who: Christy O'Connor

  • Name:

    Christy O'Connor
  • Also known as:

    Himself
  • Country:

    Ireland
  • Lived:

    [1924-2016]. Born on Dec 21, 1924 in Knocknacarra, Co. Galway. Died on May 14, 2016 in Dublin, aged 91.
  • Original/Home Club:

    Galway GC, Galway.
  • Occupation:

    Professional golfer
  • Turned Pro:

    1946

Roll of Honour

Ryder Cup player (1955, '57, '59, '61, '63, '65, '67, '69, '71, '73). Multiple wins on the regular and senior professional tours in the UK and Ireland. Awarded Harry Vardon Trophy as (British) PGA Order of Merit winner (1961, '62). World Golf Hall of Fame (inducted in 2009).

Golf course design

Christy O'Connor worked with his nephew Christy O'Connor Jr on the design of Concra Wood in 2008.

Did you know?

Known as "Himself" amongst his golfing peers, Christy O'Connor was the uncle ( ... not father) of another Irish golfing legend, Christy O'Connor Junior. Although known for most of his career simply as Christy O'Connor, he is usually referred to as Christy O'Connor Sr to avoid confusion with O'Connor Jr. Turning professional in 1946, O'Connor was the Irish professsional champion on 10 occasions, played in every Ryder Cup from 1955 to 1973, and won the Harry Vardon Trophy as the winner of the British Tour's Order of Merit in 1961 and 1962.

Top tournaments won by Christy O'Connor

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

277 (-7)

Prize money

£2,500

Title sponsor

Forte

Played as the Forte PGA Seniors Championship (May 23-26). Second-placed Peter Gill (Eng) finished 9 shots behind Christy O'Connor Snr (Ire). O'Connor won this title for the third straight year, recording the last of his six wins in eight years in the event. [Burnham & Berrow GC, Burnham on Sea, Somerset].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

285 (+13)

Prize money

£2,500

Title sponsor

Forte

Played as the Forte PGA Seniors Championship (May 24-27). Defending champion Christy O'Connor Snr (Ire) beat Guy Wolstenholme (Eng) with a birdie at the fifth playoff hole, to record the fifth of his six wins in this event. Alex Mitchell (Scot) was eliminated at the first playoff hole, and Peter Butler (Eng) at the second. [Longniddry GC, East Lothian].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

287 (+3)

Prize money

£2,000

Title sponsor

Forte

Played as the Forte PGA Seniors Championship (July 21-24). Christy O'Connor Snr (Ire) beat Fred Boobyer (Eng) with a par at the first playoff hole, to record the fourth of his six wins in this event. [North Berwick GC, North Berwick, East Lothian].

1979
Europe
Cambridgeshire GC
280 (-8)
£2,000
Cambridgeshire Hotel

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Venue

Cambridgeshire GC

Score

280 (-8)

Prize money

£2,000

Title sponsor

Cambridgeshire Hotel

Played as the PGA Seniors Championship (July 5-8; sponsored by The Express and Cambridgeshire Hotel). Christy O'Connor Snr (Ire) beat Roberto De Vicenzo (Arg) at the second playoff hole, to record his third win in four years in this event. De Vicenzo was runner-up for the third straight year. [Cambridgeshire GC, Bar Hill, nr Cambridge; at the time known as Cambridgeshire Moat House Hotel].

Category

America

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

6 & 5

Prize money

$4,000

Title sponsor

x

Played as the World Professional Senior's Golf Championship (Oct 10; 36-hole match between the US and British PGA Senior Champions). Defending champion O'Connor Senior (Ire) beat Julian Boros (USA) 6 and 5. [Bide-a-Wee GC, Portsmouth, Virginia].

1977
Europe
Cambridgeshire GC
284 (-4)
£1,500
Cambridgeshire Hotel

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Venue

Cambridgeshire GC

Score

284 (-4)

Prize money

£1,500

Title sponsor

Cambridgeshire Hotel

Played as the PGA Seniors Championship (June 26-29; sponsored by Cambridgeshire Hotel). Second-placed Roberto De Vicenzo (Arg) finished 3 shots behind defending champion Christy O'Connor Snr (Ire). Despite a final round 77 (+5), O'Connor recorded the second of his six wins in this event. [Cambridgeshire GC, Bar Hill, nr Cambridge; at the time known as Cambridgeshire Moat House Hotel].

1976
Europe
276 (-8)
£1,250
Ben Sayers/Strathclyde Hotels

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

276 (-8)

Prize money

£1,250

Title sponsor

Ben Sayers/Strathclyde Hotels

Played as the PGA Seniors Championship (June 28-30; sponsored by Ben Sayers and Strathclyde Hotels). Second-placed and defending champion Kel Nagle (Aus) finished 4 shots behind Christy O'Connor Snr (Ire), who recorded the first of his six wins in this event. [North Berwick GC, North Berwick, East Lothian].

1976
Europe
Whitecraigs
2 & 1
£1,500
Tennent-Caledonian

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Venue

Whitecraigs

Score

2 & 1

Prize money

£1,500

Title sponsor

Tennent-Caledonian

Played as the World Professional Senior's Golf Championship (July 2; 36-hole match between the US and British PGA Senior Champions). O'Connor Snr (Ire) beat Pete Cooper (USA) 2 and 1. [Whitecraigs GC, Glasgow, East Renfrewshire].

1972
Europe
284 (-12)
£2,500
Carroll & Co.

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

284 (-12)

Prize money

£2,500

Title sponsor

Carroll & Co.

Played as the Carroll's International. Second-placed David Talbot (Eng) finished 4 shots behind O'Connor Snr (Ire). [Woodbrook GC, nr Bray, Co. Wicklow].

1970
Europe
286 (-2)
£25,000
John Player

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

286 (-2)

Prize money

£25,000

Title sponsor

John Player

Played as the inaugural John Player Classic (Sept 3-6). Second-placed Tony Jacklin (Eng) finished 1 shot behind Christy O'Connor Sr (Ire), who won the £25,000 first prize, at the time the richest prize in world golf. [Notts GC, Hollinwell, nr Mansfield, England].

1969
Awards
71.47
n/a
British PGA

Category

Awards

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Venue

Score

71.47

Prize money

n/a

Title sponsor

British PGA

O'Connor (Ire) recorded the season's lowest stroke average on the GB&I PGA Tour, with 71.47. Bernard Hunt (Eng) was second with 71.82; Brian Huggett (Wales) was third with 71.89. Amongst those playing less than 40 rounds on the Tour, Tony Jacklin (Eng) averaged 70.62 over 8 rounds; Billy Casper (USA) 71.35 over 14 rounds, and Cobie Legrange (RSA) 71.65 over 26 rounds.

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

288 (E)

Prize money

£2,500

Title sponsor

Alcan

Played as the Alcan International (Oct 2-5; played alongside the Alcan Golfer of the Year Championship). Bill Large (Eng) and Chisity O'Connor Sr (Ire) finished in a tie for first place. [Royal Birkdale GC, Southport, Merseyside].

1967
Europe
277
£1,000
Carroll & Co.

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

277

Prize money

£1,000

Title sponsor

Carroll & Co.

Played as the Carroll's International. Second-placed Tommy Horton (Eng) finished 2 shots behind defending champion O'Connor Snr (Ire). [Woodbrook GC, nr Bray, Co. Wicklow].

1966
Europe
272 (-16)
£1,000
Carroll & Co.

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

272 (-16)

Prize money

£1,000

Title sponsor

Carroll & Co.

Played as the Carroll's International. Second-placed Eric Brown (Scot) finished 2 shots behind O'Connor Snr (Ire), who recorded an eagle-birdie-eagle finish to win this event for a second time. [Royal Dublin GC, Dollymount, Dublin].

1964
Europe
276 (-12)
£450
Jeyes

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Venue

Cork GC

Score

276 (-12)

Prize money

£450

Title sponsor

Jeyes

Played as the Jeyes £3000 Professional-Amateur Tournament (May 21-24). Second-placed Peter Thomson (Aus) finished 1 shot behind Christy O'Connor Snr (Ire). [Cork GC, Co. Cork. Also known as "Little Island"].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

286

Prize money

£1,000

Title sponsor

Martini

Played as the £6000 Martini International (Apr 30-May 2). Second-placed Lionel Platts (Eng) finished 6 shots behind defending champion Christy O'Connor Snr (Ire). [West course, Wentworth Club, Virginia Water, Surrey].

1964
Europe
268
£1,000
Carroll & Co.

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

268

Prize money

£1,000

Title sponsor

Carroll & Co.

Played as the Carroll Sweet Afton Tournament. O'Connor Snr (Ire) beat Roberto de Vicenzo (Arg) at the second playoff hole. [Woodbrook GC, nr Bray, Co. Wicklow].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

298

Prize money

£875

Title sponsor

Martini

Played as the £6000 Martini International (May 2-4). Second-placed Neil Coles (Eng) and Christy O'Connor Sr (Ire) finished in a tie for first place. Dai Rees (Wales) finished 2 shots further back in third place. [Royal Liverpool GC, Hoylake, Wirral, Merseyside].

Category

Awards

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Venue

Score

71.25

Prize money

Title sponsor

British PGA

O'Connor (Ire) won his second straight Harry Vardon Trophy as the British PGA Tour 1962 Order of Merit winner. Award based on lowest scoring average in the season's top professional events. O'Connor's 71.25 was based on 40 rounds played.

Category

Awards

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Venue

Score

70.80

Prize money

Title sponsor

British PGA

O'Connor (Ire) won the Harry Vardon Trophy as the British PGA Tour 1961 Order of Merit winner. Award based on lowest scoring average in the season's top professional events. O'Connor's 70.80 was based on 40 rounds played.

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

274

Prize money

£1,000

Title sponsor

Daks

Played as the Daks Tournament. Second-placed Peter Mills (Eng) finished 3 shots behind O'Connor Snr (Ire). [West course, Wentworth Club, Virginia Water, Surrey].

1959
Europe
277 (-11)
£1,000
Dunlop

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

277 (-11)

Prize money

£1,000

Title sponsor

Dunlop

Played as the Dunlop Masters (Sep 17-19). Second-placed Joe Carr (Ire, amateur) and Norman Drew (N.Ire) finished 4 shots behind O'Connor Sr (Ire). [Portmarnock GC, nr Dublin, Ireland].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

5 & 4

Prize money

£750

Title sponsor

News of the World

Played as the News of the World Match Play (Sept 11-14). O'Connor (Ire) beat Tom Haliburton (Scot) 5 and 4 in the 36-hole final. [Ailsa course, Turnberry Resort, Ayrshire].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

276

Prize money

£250

Title sponsor

Spalding

Played as the Spalding £1,350 Tournament (April 18-20; British PGA circuit season-opener). Harry Weetman (Eng) and Christy O'Connor Snr (Ire) finished in a tie for first place. Gary Player (S Africa) was three shots further back in third. [High course, Moor Park GC, Rickmansworth, Herts].

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

277

Prize money

£650

Title sponsor

Dunlop

Played as the Dunlop Masters (Sept 19/20). Second-placed Eric Brown (Scot) finished 1 shot behind Christy O'Connor Sr (Ire). [Prestwick GC, Ayrshire, Scotland].

1955
Europe
292
£1,000
Swallow / Penfold

Category

Europe

Winner (holder)

O'Connor, Christy Sr

Score

292

Prize money

£1,000

Title sponsor

Swallow / Penfold

Played as the Swallow-Penfold Tournament. Second-placed Syd Scott (Eng) and Eric Brown (Scot) finished 2 shots behind Christy O'Connor (Ire), who became the first player to win £1,000 for a golf tournament played in Europe. [Southport & Ainsdale GC, Southport, Merseyside].

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