Who's who in golf - Byron Nelson


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Name: - John Byron Nelson Jr
Country: - USA
Lived : - [1912-2006]. Born February 4, 1912 in Waxahachie, Texas. Died September 26, 2006 in Roanoke, Texas, aged 94.
Original Home/Club: - Fort Worth, Texas
Occupation: - Professional golfer, rancher.
Turned Pro: - 1932

Roll of Honour

Majors (5). Ryder Cup player (1937, '47); Ryder Cup captain (1965). Total professional wins (64), of which US PGA Tour (52). Other wins included the 1955 French Open. US PGA tour leading money winner (1944, '45). Donald Ross Award (2002, ASGCA). Old Tom Morris Award (1994, GCSAA). World Golf Hall of Fame (inducted in 1974). Congressional Gold Medal (2006).


Did you know?

Byron Nelson, nicknamed Lord Byron, was one of the greatest players and ambassadors of golf in the mid-1900s. Together with Sam Snead and Ben Hogan (all born within seven months of each other in 1912), they formed the great golfing triumverate of the time. Between 1935-51 Nelson accumulated 52 US PGA Tour titles, including five major championships. In the 1945 season, he won 18 PGA Tour tiles, including 11 straight wins, an achievement never likely to be repeated. Even allowing for the absence of several players who were still in military service, Nelson's record in 1945 was extraordinary. The 11 back-to-back wins were played with a stroke average of 67.9 per round, more than six shots better than the average of players finishing second. At the age of 34 Nelson retired from full-time professional golf, preferring the life of a rancher in his home state of Texas. When the Dallas Open became the Byron Nelson Classic in 1968, it was the first time a US PGA Tour event carried a professional golfer's name.


Top tournaments won by Byron Nelson

1955Men EuropeFrench OpenLa Boulie271x
Played as the Open de France. Second-placed Harry Weetman (Eng) finished 2 shots behind Nelson (USA), the second of only a few Americans to have won this title. [La Vallée course, La Boulie GC (RCF), Versailles, nr Paris].
1951Men AmericaPebble Beach Pro-AmPebble Beach209 (-7)$2,000
Played as the Bing Crosby Pro-Am (Jan 12-14; 54-hole event). Second-placed Cary Middlecoff (USA) finished 3 shots behind Nelson (USA). [Pebble Beach Links, Monterey Peninsula, CA. Earlier rounds also at: Cypress Point Club and Monterey Peninsula CC].
1946Men AmericaChicago OpenMedinah CCxx
Played as the Chicago Victory National Open. [No. 3 Course, Medinah CC, Bloomingdale, nr Chicago, IL].
1946Men AmericaColumbus InvitationalColumbus CC276 (-12)$2,500
Played as the inaugural Columbus $10,000 Invitational (July 5-7). Second-placed Ed "Porky" Oliver (USA) finished 2 shots behind Nelson (USA). [Columbus CC, Columbus, Ohio].
1946Men AmericaHouston OpenRiver Oaks CC274 (-10)$2,000
Played as the inaugural Houston Open. Second-placed Ben Hogan (USA) finished 2 shots behind Nelson (USA). [River Oaks CC, Houston, TX].
1946Men AmericaLos Angeles OpenRiviera CC, Calif.284 (E)$2,666
Played as the Los Angeles Open (Jan 4-7). Second-placed Ben Hogan (USA) finished 5 shots behind Nelson (USA). [Riviera CC, Pacific Palisades, Los Angeles, CA].
1946Men AmericaNew Orleans ClassicCity Park GC277 (-11)$1,500
Played as the New Orleans Open. Second-placed Ben Hogan (USA) finished 5 shots behind defending champion Nelson (USA). [East course, City Park, New Orleans, LA. Also known as the No.1 or Wisner course].
1946Men AmericaSan Francisco Openxx
Played as the San Francisco Open.
1945Men AmericaAll American OpenTam O'Shanter CC269 (-19)$13,600
Played as the All American Open (aka the Tam O'Shanter). Second-placed Lt. Ben Hogan (USA) and Gene Sarazen (USA) finished 11 shots behind defending champion Nelson (USA). [Tam O'Shanter CC, Niles, nr Chicago, IL; now the municipal Tam O'Shanter Golf Course].
1945Men AmericaAtlanta Openxx
Played as the Atlanta Open.
1945Men AmericaCanadian OpenThornhill280 (-8)$2,000
Played as the Canadian Open. Second-placed Herman Barron (USA) finished 4 shots behind Nelson (USA). [Thornhill G&CC, Vaughan, Toronto, Ont.].
1945Men AmericaCharlotte Openxx
Played as the Charlotte Open.
1945Men AmericaChicago Openxx
Played as the Chicago Victory National Open.
1945Men AmericaCorpus Christi Openxx
Played as the Corpus Christi Open.
1945Men AmericaDurham Openxx
Played as the Durham Open.
1945Men AmericaEsmeralda Openxx
Played as the Esmeralda Open.
1945Men AmericaKnoxville Invtl.xx
Played as the Knoxville Invitational.
1945Men AmericaMiami Four-Ballxx
Played as the Miami Four-Ball.
1945Men AwardsMoney Winner - PGA Tr$63,333see Score
Nelson (USA) won his second PGA Tour leading money winner title, with 1945 season earnings of $63,333 on the Tour.
1945Men AmericaMontreal Openxx
Played as the Montreal Open.
1945Men AmericaNew Orleans ClassicCity Park GC284 (-4)$1,333
Played as the New Orleans Open. Nelson (USA) beat Harold "Jug" McSpaden (USA) in an 18-hole playoff (Nelson 65, McSpaden 70). [East course, City Park, New Orleans, LA. Also known as the No.1 or Wisner course].
1945Men AmericaPhiladelphia Classicxx
Played as the Philadelphia Inquirer.
1945Men AmericaPhoenix OpenPhoenix CC, AZ274 (-10)$1,000
Played as the Phoenix Open (Jan 11-14). Second-placed Denny Shute (USA) finished 2 shots behind Nelson (USA), who recorded the first of his 18 wins in 1945. [Phoenix CC, Phoenix, AZ].
1945Men AmericaSeattle Openxx
Played as the Seattle Open.
1945Men MajorsUS PGA Ch'shipMoraine CC4 & 3$3,750
The US PGA Championship (27th) (July 9-15). Nelson (USA) beat Sam Byrd (USA) 4 and 3 in the 36-hole final. Byrd held a 2-up lead after the first 18 holes of the final, finished the round with four straight birdies. Nelson rallied in the afternoon on the final day, winning or halving all the remaining holes from the 22nd. [Moraine CC, Dayton, Ohio].
1945Men AmericaWyndham Ch'shipStarmount Forest271 (-13)$1,333
Played as the Greater Greensboro Open. Second-placed and defending champion Sam Byrd (USA) finished 8 shots behind Nelson (USA), who recorded his second win in this event. [Starmount Forest CC, Greensboro, NC].
1944Men AmericaAll American OpenTam O'Shanter CC280 (-8)$13,462
Played as the All American Open (aka the Tam O'Shanter). Second-placed Ed Dudley (USA) finished 5 shots behind Nelson (USA). [Tam O'Shanter CC, Niles, nr Chicago, IL; now the municipal Tam O'Shanter Golf Course].
1944Men AmericaByron Nelson Ch'shipLakewood CC, TX276 (-8)$2,000
Played as the inaugural Texas Victory Open. Second-placed Harold "Jug" McSpaden (USA) finished 10 shots behind Nelson (USA). [Lakewood CC, Dallas, TX].
1944Men AmericaKnoxville Invtl.xx
Played as the Knoxville War Bond Tournament.
1944Men AmericaMinneapolis Four-Ballxx
Played as the Minneapolis Four-Ball.
1944Men AwardsMoney Winner - PGA Tr$37,967see Score
Nelson (USA) was the PGA Tour 1944 leading money winner, with earnings of $37,967 on the Tour.
1944Men AmericaNashville Openxx
Played as the Nashville Open.
1944Men AmericaNew York Red Crossxx
Played as the New York Red Cross Tournament.
1944Men AmericaSan Francisco Openxx
Played as the San Francisco Open.
1944Men AmericaSan Francisco Victory Openxx
Played as the San Francisco Victory Open.
1942Men AmericaAll American OpenTam O'Shanter CC280 (-8)$2,500
Played as the All American Open (aka the Tam O'Shanter). Nelson (USA) beat Clayton Heafner (USA) in an 18-hole playoff (Nelson 67, Heafner 71). [Tam O'Shanter CC, Niles, nr Chicago, IL; now the municipal Tam O'Shanter Golf Course].
1942Men AmericaOakland Openxx
Played as the Oakland Open.
1942Men MajorsThe MastersAugusta National280 (-8)$1,500
The Masters Tournament (9th) (April 9-12). Nelson (USA) beat Ben Hogan (USA) in an 18-hole playoff: Nelson 69 (-3), Hogan 70 (-2). This was Nelson's second Masters title. [Augusta National GC, Augusta, GA].
1941Men AmericaAll American OpenTam O'Shanter CC278 (-10)$2,000
Played as the inaugural All American Open (aka the Tam O'Shanter). Second-placed Ben Hogan (USA) and Leonard Dodson (USA) finished 1 shot behind Nelson (USA). [Tam O'Shanter CC, Niles, nr Chicago, IL; now the municipal Tam O'Shanter Golf Course].
1941Men AmericaMiami Openxx
Played as the Miami Open
1941Men AmericaWyndham Ch'shipSedgefield CC276 (-6)$1,200
Played as the Greater Greensboro Open. Second-placed Vic Ghezzi (USA) finished 2 shots behind Nelson (USA). [Sedgefield CC and Starmount Forest CC, Greensboro, NC].
1940Men AmericaMiami Openxx
Played as the Miami Open
1940Men AmericaTexas OpenBrackenridge Park271 (-13)$1,500
Played as the Texas Open. Nelson (USA) beat Ben Hogan (USA) in an 18-hole playoff: Nelson 70 (-1), Hogan 71 (E). [Brackenridge Park GC, San Antonio, TX].
1940Men MajorsUS PGA Ch'shipHershey CC1-up$1,100
The US PGA Championship (23rd) (Aug 26-Sep 2). Nelson (USA) beat Sam Snead (USA) 1-up in the 36-hole final. [West course, Hershey CC, Hershey, PA].
1939Men AmericaBMW Ch'ship (US)Medinah CC281x
Played as the Western Open. Lloyd Mangrum (USA) finished in second place behind Nelson (USA). [No. 3 Course, Medinah CC, Bloomingdale, nr Chicago, IL].
1939Men AwardsLow Stroke Ave - PGA of Am473 ptsn/a
Nelson (USA) won the PGA of America Vardon Trophy, based on a season-long points accumulation.
1939Men AmericaNorth & South Openxx
Played as the North & South Open.
1939Men AmericaPhoenix OpenPhoenix CC, AZ198 (-15)$700
Played as the Phoenix Open (Feb 3-5; 54-hole tournament; last played in 1935). Second-placed Ben Hogan (USA) finished 12 shots behind Nelson (USA). [Phoenix CC, Phoenix, AZ].
1939Men MajorsUS OpenPhiladelphia CC284 (+8)$1,000
The US Open (43rd) (June 8-12). Nelson (USA) beat Craig Wood (USA) in the second of two 18-hole playoffs. First playoff: Nelson 68 (-1), Wood 68 (-1), Denny Shute 76 (+7; eliminated). Second playoff: Nelson 70 (+1), Wood 73 (+4). [Spring Mill course, Philadelphia CC, Gladwyne, nr Philadelphia, PA].
1938Men AmericaHollywood Openxx
Played as the Hollywood Open.
1938Men AmericaThomasville Openxx
Played as the Thomasville Open.
1937Men AmericaBelmont CC Match Playxx
Played as the Belmont Country Club Match Play.
1937Men MajorsThe MastersAugusta National283 (-5)$1,500
The Masters Tournament (4th) (April 1-4; played as the Augusta National Invitation Tournament). Second-placed Ralph Guldahl (USA) finished 2 shots behind Nelson (USA), who recorded the first of his two Masters wins. [Augusta National GC, Augusta, GA].
1936Men AmericaMetropolitan Openxx
Played as the Metropolitan Open.
1935Men AmericaNew Jersey Openxx
Played as the New Jersey State Open

 

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