Jock Hutchison was born in St Andrews in 1884 and played his first rounds of golf over the Old Course but when he returned to win The Open at the Home of Golf in 1921 he was an American citizen.
He had emigrated prior to WWI and so became the second non-British Champion after Arnaud Massy in 1907. He was the first to take the Claret Jug back to America but by no means the last.
He had won the PGA Championship the previous year and was a frequent contender at the US Open, finishing runner-up twice. He came across early to St Andrews to practice on the links and was the favourite for the title after he won the qualifying.
His first round was spectacular as he holed in one at the short eighth and then almost did so at the ninth, his drive of around 300 yards hitting the edge of the hole and stopping three inches away. He opened with a 72 and led until a 79 in the third round but fought back with a closing 70, the lowest score yet in an Open at St Andrews, to tie English amateur Roger Wethered.
The Oxford undergraduate had been intending to return home for a cricket match the next day but stayed and instead lost by nine strokes, Hutchison winning 150-159. His victory proved controversial as he was using “ribbed” irons.
The R&A had decided to ban the grooves but the new rule only came into effect on July 1 and Hutchison won the title on June 25. Hutchison got huge backspin even on the rock-hard greens and JH Taylor said it was like “buying a shot out of the shop”. Hutchison was fourth on his defence a year later but never played again. He was later an honorary starter at the Masters.