U.S. Open (golf)

U.S. Open (golf)

tournament_name = U.S. Open
nickname =

location = USA
establishment = 1895
course = Bethpage State Park (Black Course) in 2009
par = 70 in 2009
yardage = 7,214 in 2009
tour = PGA Tour
PGA European Tour
Japan Golf Tour
format = Stroke play
month_played = June
aggregate = 272 Jack Nicklaus (1980)
272 Lee Janzen (1993)
272 Tiger Woods (2000)
272 Jim Furyk (2003)
to-par = -12 Tiger Woods (2000)
Current Champion = Tiger Woods

The United States Open Championship, commonly known as the U.S. Open, is the annual open golf tournament of the United States. It is the second of the four major championships in golf and is on the official schedule of both the PGA Tour and the European Tour. It is staged by the United States Golf Association (USGA) in mid-June, scheduled such that the final round is always played on the third Sunday, which is Father's Day. From 2008, it will also be an official money event on the Asian Tour, with 50% of Asian Tour members' earnings counting towards the Order of Merit. [http://www.asiantour.com/story.htm;jsessionid=272AE8266BB31849A484EFD55BB83D03?id=3391]

The U.S. Open is staged at a variety of courses, set up in such a way that scoring is very difficult with a premium placed on accurate driving. U. S. Open play is characterized by tight scoring at or around par by the leaders, with the winner emerging at just under par. A U.S. Open course is seldom beaten severely, and there have been many over-par wins. Normally, an Open course is longer than normal and will have a high cut of rough (termed "Open rough" by the American press and fans), hilly greens (such as at Pinehurst No. 2 in 2005, which was described by Johnny Miller of NBC as "like trying to hit a ball on top of a VW Beetle"), and pinched fairways. Some courses that are attempting to get into the rotation for the U.S. Open will normally be rebuilt to have these features. Rees Jones is the most notable of the "Open Doctors" who take on these projects.


The first U.S. Open Championship was played on October 4, 1895, on a nine-hole course in Newport, Rhode Island. It was a 36-hole competition and was played in a single day. Ten professionals and one amateur entered. The winner was a 21-year-old Englishman named Horace Rawlins, who had arrived in the U.S. in January that year to take up a position at the host club. He received $150 cash out of a prize fund of $335, plus a $50 gold medal; his club received the Open Championship Cup trophy, which was presented by the USGA.In the beginning, the tournament was dominated by experienced British players until 1911, when John J. McDermott became the first native-born American winner. American golfers soon began to win regularly and the tournament evolved to become one of the four majors.Throughout the modern history of the competition, the title has been won almost exclusively by players from the United States. Since 1950, players from only five nations other than the United States have won the championship, most notably South Africa, which has won five times since 1965.

A streak of four consecutive non-American winners occurred from 2004 to 2007 for the first time since 1910. These four players—South African Retief Goosen (2004), New Zealander Michael Campbell (2005), Australian Geoff Ogilvy (2006) and Argentinian Ángel Cabrera (2007) —are all from countries in the Southern Hemisphere. No player from Europe has won since Tony Jacklin of England in 1970.

The 2008 edition of the Open ended in a tie between Tiger Woods and Rocco Mediate, forcing an 18-hole playoff the following day. After completing 90 holes over five days, both players were still tied, marking only the third time in Open history that a winner was determined using sudden death. On the first sudden death hole (the seventh), Woods won the tournament with a par to defeat Mediate, who made a bogey. The victory made Woods the sixth player to win three or more U.S. Opens.

Qualification and prizes

The U.S. Open is open to any professional, or to any amateur with an up-to-date USGA Handicap Index not exceeding 1.4. Players (male or female) may obtain a place by being fully exempt or by competing successfully in qualifying. The field is 156 players.

About half of the field is made up of players who are fully exempt from qualifying. There are 17 full exemption categories, including winners of the U.S. Open for the last ten years and the other three majors for the last five years, the top 30 from the previous year's PGA Tour money list, the top 15 from the previous year's European Tour money list, and the top 50 in the Official World Golf Rankings as of two weeks before the tournament.

Potential competitors who are not fully exempt must enter the Qualifying process, which has two stages. Firstly there is Local Qualifying, which is played over 18 holes at over 100 courses around the United States. Many leading players are exempt from this first stage, and they join the successful local qualifiers at the Sectional Qualifying stage, which is played over 36 holes in one day at several sites in the U.S. and one each in Europe and Japan. There is no lower age limit and the youngest-ever qualifier was 15-year-old Tadd Fujikawa of Hawaii, who qualified in 2006.

The purse at the 2007 U.S. Open was $7 million, and the winner's share was $1.26 million. The PGA European Tour uses conversion rates at the time of the tournament to calculate the official prize money used in their Order of Merit rankings (€5,241,402 in 2007). In line with the other majors, winning the U.S. Open gives a golfer several privileges that make his career much more secure, if he is not already one of the elite players of the sport. U.S. Open champions are automatically invited to play in the other three majors (the Masters, the Open Championship (British Open), and the PGA Championship) for the next five years, as well as the near-major Players Championship, and they are exempt from qualifying for the U.S. Open itself for 10 years. They may also receive a five-year exemption on the PGA Tour, which is automatic for regular members. Non-PGA Tour members who win the U.S. Open have the choice of joining the PGA Tour either within 60 days of winning, or prior to the beginning of any one of the next five tour seasons.

The top 15 finishers at the U.S. Open are fully exempt from qualifying for the following year's Open, and the top eight are automatically invited to the following season's Masters.


Willie Anderson, Bobby Jones, Ben Hogan and Jack Nicklaus hold the record for the most U.S. Open victories, with four victories each. [cite web|url=http://www.usopen.com/2007/history/usopen_records.html#champions |title=Champions |publisher=US Open |accessdate=2008-04-26 ] Hale Irwin is the oldest winner of the U.S. Open: he was age in years and days|1945|6|3|1990|6|18 old when he won in 1990.cite web|url=http://www.usopen.com/2007/history/usopen_records.html#age |title=Age |publisher=US Open |accessdate=2008-04-26 ] The youngest winner of the U.S. Open is John McDermott who was 19 years 315 days old when he won in 1911. Jack Nicklaus, Lee Janzen, Tiger Woods and Jim Furyk hold the record for the lowest score over 72 holes, which is 272. Tiger Woods holds the distinction of being the most strokes under par for 72 holes, he was 12 strokes under par (-12) when he won in 2000. [cite web|url=http://www.usopen.com/2007/history/usopen_records.html#scoring |title=Scoring |publisher=US Open |accessdate=2008-04-26 ]


*Oldest champion: Hale Irwin in 1990 at 45 years, 15 days.
*Youngest champion: John McDermott in 1911 at 19 years, 315 days.
*Oldest player to make the cut: Sam Snead in 1973 at 61 years old. He tied for 29th place.
*Most consecutive victories: 3 by Willie Anderson 1903-1905.
*Most consecutive Opens started: 44 by Jack Nicklaus from 1957 to 2000.
*Largest margin of victory: 15 strokes by Tiger Woods, 2000. This is the all-time record for all majors.
*Lowest score for 72 holes: 272 – Jack Nicklaus (63-71-70-68), 1980; Lee Janzen (67-67-69-69), in 1993; Tiger Woods (65-69-71-67), 2000; Jim Furyk (67-66-67-72), 2003.
*Most strokes under par for 72 holes: 12 under (272) by Tiger Woods, 2000.
*Lowest score for 18 holes: 63 – Johnny Miller, 4th round, 1973; Jack Nicklaus, 1st, 1980; Tom Weiskopf, 1st, 1980; Vijay Singh, 2nd, 2003.
*Most frequent venues:
**8 Opens: Oakmont Country Club - 1927, 1935, 1953, 1962, 1973, 1983, 1994, and 2007.
**7 Opens: Baltusrol Golf Club - 1903, 1915, 1936, 1954, 1967, 1980 and 1993.

There is an extensive records section on the official site [http://www.usopen.com/2007/history/usopen_records.html here] .

Future sites

*2009 – Bethpage State Park, Black Course (Farmingdale, New York - June 18-21)
*2010 – Pebble Beach Golf Links (Pebble Beach, California)
*2011 – Congressional Country Club, Blue Course (Bethesda, Maryland)
*2012 – The Olympic Club, Lake Course (Daly City, California)
*2013 – Merion Golf Club, East Course (Ardmore, Pennsylvania)
*2014 – Pinehurst Resort, Course #2 (Pinehurst, North Carolina)
*2015 – Chambers Bay (University Place, Washington)


External links

* [http://www.usga.org/ United States Golf Association website]
* [http://www.usopen.com/ U.S. Open official site]

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