Ben Hogan

1953 / Carnoustie

Ben Hogan made his only appearance in The Open in 1953 at Carnoustie and won the Claret Jug in a fitting climax to a glorious career. 

He was the greatest golfer of his generation and since a car crash, in which he nearly died, in 1949 he had played in very few tournaments, concentrating on the Masters and the US Open. 

In 1953 he won both those titles and decided to make the journey to Scotland. He arrived a week early to practise with the smaller British ball and learn the course.

Just like everyone else, he qualified for The Open itself and then produced rounds of 73, 71, 70 and 68 for a total of 282 and a four-stroke victory over Peter Thomson, Dai Rees, Antonio Cerda and amateur Frank Stranahan. He is one of only four Champion Golfers to improve his score each time over four rounds.

Huge galleries followed his progress, his only other visit to Britain being for the 1956 Canada Cup at Wentworth. Struggles with his putter saw him post an opening-round 73 – tied for seventh, three shots behind fellow American Stranahan.

Hogan continued to struggle on the greens in round two but a score of 71 moved him to a tie for fourth, on even par, as Scotland’s Eric Brown and Wales’ Rees led the way on two-under, with Roberto De Vicenzo one stroke behind.

In addition to the support of the locals, Hogan also had some famous fans in attendance as Frank Sinatra, who was performing at a concert in Dundee, was in the gallery for day two and told the media that “all America is rooting for Hogan."

In the third round, the eight-time major winner made his move – joining De Vicenzo atop the leaderboard after birdieing the 18th to card a 70.

Battling chills, flu and old injuries from his car accident four years prior, Hogan later admitted he was desperate to avoid a 36-hole play-off. And he did – in style.

A remarkable birdie at the fifth changed the trajectory of his final round as he found himself deeply bunkered with a bad angle but chipped in from 30 feet.

He then birdied the par-five sixth by driving down the narrow alley of fairway between the bunkers and out of bounds on the left; a strip of land since known as Hogan’s Alley.

The Champion Golfer to-be then opened up a two-shot lead by the 13th, saved par at 17 and finished off a course-record round of 68 – bettering the mark set by Cerda in the third round earlier that morning – with a final birdie at 18.

Not until Tiger Woods in 2000 would a player match his three major titles in the same year. It was the ninth and final major of Hogan’s career, the last six coming in eight appearances. He vowed he would return but never did.

Name
Finish
R1
R2
R3
R4
Total
Par
Greg NORMAN
1
66
68
69
64
267
-
2
69
63
70
67
269
-
Bernhard LANGER
3
67
66
70
67
270
-
Corey PAVIN
4
68
66
68
70
272
-
Peter SENIOR
4
66
69
70
67
272
-
6
68
69
69
68
274
-
6
68
70
67
69
274
-
6
72
68
69
65
274
-
Scott SIMPSON
9
68
70
71
66
275
-
Fred COUPLES
9
68
66
72
69
275
-
Wayne GRADY
9
74
68
64
69
275
-
Payne STEWART
12
71
72
70
63
276
-
Barry LANE
13
70
68
71
68
277
-
Gil MORGAN
14
70
68
70
70
278
-
Fuzzy ZOELLER
14
66
70
71
71
278
-
Jose RIVERO
14
68
73
67
70
278
-
14
66
73
71
68
278
-
14
71
66
70
71
278
-
Mark MCNULTY
14
67
71
71
69
278
-
Tom KITE
14
72
70
68
68
278
-
Howard CLARK
21
67
72
70
70
279
-
Peter BAKER
21
70
67
74
68
279
-
Jesper PARNEVIK
21
68
74
68
69
279
-
Mark ROE
24
70
71
73
66
280
-
David FROST
24
69
73
70
68
280
-
Rodger DAVIS
24
68
71
71
70
280
-
Des SMYTH
27
67
74
70
70
281
-
Mark JAMES
27
70
70
70
71
281
-
Yoshinori MIZUMAKI
27
69
69
73
70
281
-
Malcolm MACKENZIE
27
72
71
71
67
281
-
Larry MIZE
27
67
69
74
71
281
-
27
68
73
69
71
281
-
Iain PYMAN
27
68
72
70
71
281
-
Wayne WESTNER
34
67
73
72
70
282
-
Howard TWITTY
34
71
71
67
73
282
-
Jean VAN DE VELDE
34
75
67
73
67
282
-
Paul BROADHURST
34
71
69
74
68
282
-
Ray FLOYD
34
70
72
67
73
282
-
Greg TURNER
39
67
76
70
70
283
-
39
69
71
69
74
283
-
Paul MOLONEY
39
70
71
71
71
283
-
Duffy WALDORF
39
68
71
73
71
283
-
Anders SORENSEN
39
69
70
72
72
283
-
Andrew MAGEE
39
71
72
71
69
283
-
Rocco MEDIATE
39
71
71
72
69
283
-
Christy O'CONNOR JR
39
72
68
69
74
283
-
Carl MASON
39
69
73
72
69
283
-
Lee JANZEN
48
69
71
73
71
284
-
John HUSTON
48
68
73
76
67
284
-
Steve ELKINGTON
48
72
71
71
70
284
-
Stephen AMES
51
67
75
73
70
285
-
Frank NOBILO
51
69
70
74
72
285
-
Ian WOOSNAM
51
72
71
72
70
285
-
Ian GARBUTT
51
68
75
73
69
285
-
Jonathan SEWELL
51
70
72
69
74
285
-
51
69
74
72
70
285
-
Sam TORRANCE
51
72
70
72
71
285
-
Manuel PINERO
51
70
72
71
72
285
-
Craig PARRY
59
72
69
71
74
286
-
Vijay SINGH
59
69
72
72
73
286
-
59
69
71
73
73
286
-
Paul AZINGER
59
69
73
74
70
286
-
Olle KARLSSON
63
70
71
73
73
287
-
Ross DRUMMOND
63
73
67
76
71
287
-
Jamie SPENCE
63
69
72
72
74
287
-
Magnus SUNESSON
66
70
73
73
72
288
-
William GUY
66
70
73
73
72
288
-
Tom PERNICE JR
66
73
70
70
75
288
-
James COOK
66
71
71
74
72
288
-
70
73
69
67
80
289
-
Tom PURTZER
70
70
70
74
75
289
-
Mike MILLER
70
73
68
76
72
289
-
Mike HARWOOD
73
72
70
72
76
290
-
Dan FORSMAN
73
71
70
76
73
290
-
Peter FOWLER
73
74
69
74
73
290
-
Peter MITCHELL
73
73
70
72
75
290
-
Mikael KRANTZ
77
77
66
72
77
292
-
Ricky WILLISON
78
73
70
74
76
293
-
Katsuyoshi TOMORI
M/C
71
73
-
-
-
M/C
M/C
71
73
-
-
-
M/C
Philip TALBOT
M/C
70
74
-
-
-
M/C
M/C
73
71
-
-
-
M/C
Costantino ROCCA
M/C
71
73
-
-
-
M/C
Robert ALLENBY
M/C
69
75
-
-
-
M/C
Tony JOHNSTONE
M/C
72
72
-
-
-
M/C
Fulton ALLEM
M/C
73
71
-
-
-
M/C
Donnie HAMMOND
M/C
69
75
-
-
-
M/C
Colin MONTGOMERIE
M/C
74
70
-
-
-
M/C
David EDWARDS
M/C
76
68
-
-
-
M/C
Billy ANDRADE
M/C
70
74
-
-
-
M/C
Glen DAY
M/C
67
77
-
-
-
M/C
Chip BECK
M/C
73
71
-
-
-
M/C
M/C
69
75
-
-
-
M/C
Eoghan O'CONNELL
M/C
74
70
-
-
-
M/C
Davis LOVE III
M/C
70
74
-
-
-
M/C
Retief GOOSEN
M/C
69
76
-
-
-
M/C
Bill MALLEY
M/C
74
71
-
-
-
M/C
Paul McGINLEY
M/C
73
72
-
-
-
M/C
John COOK
M/C
73
72
-
-
-
M/C
Craig CASSELLS
M/C
68
77
-
-
-
M/C
Anders FORSBRAND
M/C
71
74
-
-
-
M/C
Gary EVANS
M/C
67
78
-
-
-
M/C
Steven RICHARDSON
M/C
72
73
-
-
-
M/C
Jeff MAGGERT
M/C
72
73
-
-
-
M/C
Martin GATES
M/C
72
73
-
-
-
M/C
Eduardo ROMERO
M/C
73
72
-
-
-
M/C
Ben CRENSHAW
M/C
70
75
-
-
-
M/C
Vicente FERNANDEZ
M/C
73
72
-
-
-
M/C
Lanny WADKINS
M/C
72
73
-
-
-
M/C
Paul WAY
M/C
72
74
-
-
-
M/C
Jeff SLUMAN
M/C
74
72
-
-
-
M/C
De Wet BASSON
M/C
72
74
-
-
-
M/C
Richard BOXALL
M/C
71
75
-
-
-
M/C
Mats HALLBERG
M/C
69
77
-
-
-
M/C
M/C
70
76
-
-
-
M/C
Robert KARLSSON
M/C
74
72
-
-
-
M/C
Robert LEE
M/C
72
74
-
-
-
M/C
Joakim HAEGGMAN
M/C
73
74
-
-
-
M/C
David GILFORD
M/C
72
75
-
-
-
M/C
Jose Maria OLAZABAL
M/C
73
74
-
-
-
M/C
Chen Tze MING
M/C
73
74
-
-
-
M/C
M/C
71
76
-
-
-
M/C
Jim GALLAGHER JR
M/C
73
74
-
-
-
M/C
Naomichi OZAKI
M/C
70
77
-
-
-
M/C
Per-Ulrik JOHANSSON
M/C
69
79
-
-
-
M/C
Michael WELCH
M/C
74
74
-
-
-
M/C
Steve PATE
M/C
79
69
-
-
-
M/C
Stephen FIELD
M/C
72
76
-
-
-
M/C
Jim MCGOVERN
M/C
74
74
-
-
-
M/C
Takaaki FUKUZAWA
M/C
73
75
-
-
-
M/C
M/C
74
74
-
-
-
M/C
Gordon BRAND JR
M/C
70
79
-
-
-
M/C
Roger CHAPMAN
M/C
73
76
-
-
-
M/C
Mark DAVIS
M/C
74
75
-
-
-
M/C
Jose Manuel CARRILES
M/C
76
73
-
-
-
M/C
Michael CLAYTON
M/C
72
77
-
-
-
M/C
Brad FAXON
M/C
70
79
-
-
-
M/C
Peter SMITH
M/C
75
74
-
-
-
M/C
David FEHERTY
M/C
77
72
-
-
-
M/C
Brian WATTS
M/C
72
77
-
-
-
M/C
M/C
73
76
-
-
-
M/C
Benoit TELLERIA
M/C
73
77
-
-
-
M/C
Gary ORR
M/C
72
78
-
-
-
M/C
Terry PRICE
M/C
72
78
-
-
-
M/C
Andrew SHERBORNE
M/C
73
78
-
-
-
M/C
Larry RINKER
M/C
78
73
-
-
-
M/C
Tony NASH
M/C
70
81
-
-
-
M/C
Paul EALES
M/C
73
78
-
-
-
M/C
Graham FARR
M/C
73
79
-
-
-
M/C
Peter SCOTT
M/C
73
79
-
-
-
M/C
Stephen DUNDAS
M/C
76
77
-
-
-
M/C
Mitch VOGES
M/C
80
75
-
-
-
M/C
Ryoken KAWAGISHI
M/C
79
76
-
-
-
M/C
Noboru SUGAI
M/C
74
82
-
-
-
M/C
Simon GRIFFITHS
M/C
77
81
-
-
-
M/C
Nico VAN RENSBURG
M/C
82
77
-
-
-
M/C

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