Dick Burton

Dick Burton

When Henry Cotton won the 1934 Open, it ended a decade of American domination in The Open. It also started a run of six British winners in a row, including Cotton again in 1937 and ended by Dick Burton at St Andrews in 1939.
  • Remembered for holding The Open title for the longest time

    Fun fact

  • 9

    PROFESSIONAL WINS

  • He enlisted in the RAF when war broke out after his Open win

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When Henry Cotton won the 1934 Open, it ended a decade of American domination in The Open. It also started a run of six British winners in a row, including Cotton again in 1937 and ended by Dick Burton at St Andrews in 1939.

Played before the outbreak of war, it was the last Open to be staged until 1946 so Burton held the Claret Jug for seven years. Perhaps the best years of his career were lost to the war – within weeks of winning he joined the RAF – but as a down-to-earth Lancastrian he was just grateful to survive.

“I was lucky,” he said. “A lot of those who watched me at St Andrews also went off to war and they never came back. Some of my friends didn’t make it either, I did.”

He went on to become the long-time professional at Coombe Hill in London. One of two golfing brothers, he was a big-hitter. That helped no end playing in the wind on the Old Course and he came to the 18th needing a 4 to win.

A long drive left only a pitch to the green and he hit his approach to 15 feet. He started walking after his putt when it looked like rolling a yard past the hole, but suddenly it dropped and he had won by two strokes from American Johnny Bulla.

Returning to St Andrews to defend his title in the 1946 Open, he went out of bounds on the first hole and finished 12th, 12 strokes behind Sam Snead. The following year he was fifth, having been fourth in 1938. For many years he held the record aggregate for a leading British 72-hole tournament of 266 after rounds of 68, 66, 64 and 68. He played in three Ryder Cups.

Venue
Finish
R1
R2
R3
R4
Total
Par
Carnoustie 1968
M/C
88
84
-
-
-
M/C
Royal Lytham & St Annes 1963
M/C
83
73
-
-
-
M/C
Royal Birkdale 1961
M/C
80
77
-
-
-
M/C
Muirfield 1959
M/C
75
74
-
-
-
M/C
St Andrews 1957
M/C
77
72
-
-
-
M/C
Royal Liverpool 1956
M/C
83
79
-
-
-
M/C
Carnoustie 1953
47
80
74
80
80
314
-
Royal Portrush 1951
12
74
77
71
73
295
-
Royal Troon 1950
M/C
73
78
-
-
-
M/C
Royal St George's 1949
14
73
70
74
74
291
-
Muirfield 1948
18
74
70
74
77
295
-
Royal Liverpool 1947
5
77
71
77
71
296
-
St Andrews 1946
12
74
76
76
76
302
-
St Andrews 1939
1
70
72
77
71
290
-
Royal St George's 1938
4
71
69
78
85
303
-
Carnoustie 1937
M/C
77
80
-
-
-
M/C
Royal Liverpool 1936
12
74
71
75
76
296
-
Muirfield 1935
M/C
76
78
-
-
-
M/C
Royal St George's 1934
39
76
71
79
81
307
-
St Andrews 1933
M/C
82
78
-
-
-
M/C
Princes 1932
48
74
77
80
78
309
-

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