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The Memorial Tournament

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The Memorial Tournament

Memorial Tournament
Tournament information
Location Dublin, Ohio
Established 1976
Course(s) Muirfield Village Golf Club
Par 72
Length 7,386 yards (6,754 m)
Tour(s) PGA Tour
Format Stroke play
Prize fund $6.2 million
Month played June
Tournament record score
Aggregate 268 Tom Lehman (1994)
To par –20 Tom Lehman (1994)
Current champion
United States Matt Kuchar

The Memorial Tournament is a PGA Tour golf tournament founded by Jack Nicklaus. It is played on a Nicklaus-designed course at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio, a suburb north of Nicklaus' home town of Columbus. The golf course passes through a large neighborhood called Muirfield Village. There is a statue of Nicklaus teaching a young child how to golf along Muirfield Drive.

As a restricted field event on the PGA Tour, only the first 75 players on the previous year's money-list are guaranteed invites.[1]

One of the main features of the tournament is a yearly induction ceremony honoring past golfers. A plaque for each honoree is installed near the clubhouse at Muirfield. Nicklaus himself was the honoree in 2000.


Columbus is where Nicklaus was born and raised, learned the game of golf, went to college, and where he started his own family. It was Nicklaus's vision to create a golf club that embodied his personal and professional life and to create a golf tournament that would long represent his passion for tournament golf, and would give back to a community that has embraced him and the game. This vision was fulfilled in May 1976 with the first Memorial Tournament, two years to the day after the doors were opened and the first shots played at Muirfield Village. The par-72 course was set at 7,072 yards (6,467 m),[2] a considerable length for the mid-1970s.

Nicklaus signalled his intent to host his own tournament during Masters Week in 1966, when he spoke of his desire to create a tournament that, like The Masters, had a global interest, and was inspired by the history and traditions of the game of golf. He also wanted the tournament to give back in the form of charitable contributions to organizations benefiting needy adults and children throughout Columbus and Ohio. The primary charitable beneficiary of the tournament is Nationwide Children's Hospital.

The Memorial reached the height of its popularity in the 1990s having reached "Sold-Out" status, a first on the PGA Tour other than the major championships. For a variety of reasons the event has started seeing ticket sales decrease during the last five years.

Invitational status

The Memorial Tournament is one of only five tournaments given "invitational" status by the PGA Tour, and consequently it has a reduced field of only 120 players (as opposed to most full-field open tournaments with a field of 156 players). The other four tournaments with invitational status are the Arnold Palmer Invitational, the RBC Heritage, the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial, and the AT&T National. Invitational tournaments have smaller fields (between 120 and 132 players), and have more freedom than full-field open tournaments in determining which players are eligible to participate in their event, as invitational tournaments are not required to fill their fields using the PGA Tour Priority Ranking System. Furthermore, unlike full-field open tournaments, invitational tournaments do not offer open qualifying (aka Monday qualifying).

Tournament highlights

  • 1976: Roger Maltbie wins the inaugural Memorial tournament in a playoff, defeating Hale Irwin with a birdie on the fourth extra hole. The playoff was a three-hole aggregate, the first of its kind.[3] Irwin and Maltbie halved the first two extra holes, so it effectively became sudden-death for the third hole. Maltbie's errant approach shot appeared headed for the gallery when it hit a stake, causing the ball to bounce onto the green, where both parred to halve the hole.[2]
  • 1977: Poor weather results in a Monday finish for the tournament. Host Jack Nicklaus wins by two shots over Hubert Green.[4]
  • 1980: Tom Watson's bid to become the first Memorial champion to defend his title is foiled when David Graham birdies the 72nd hole to edge Watson by one shot.[5]
  • 1984: Jack Nicklaus defeats Andy Bean in a sudden-death playoff to become the first two-time Memorial winner.[6]
  • 1988: On his way to winning PGA Player of the Year, Curtis Strange wins Memorial by two shots over David Frost and Hale Irwin.[7]
  • 1991: Kenny Perry wins for the first time ever on the PGA Tour. He defeats Hale Irwin on the first hole of a sudden-death playoff.[8]
  • 1993: Paul Azinger birdies the 72nd hole by holing out from a sand trap and finishes one shot ahead of Corey Pavin.[9]
  • 1994: Tom Lehman shoots a tournament record 268 (-20) for 72 holes on his way to a five-shot victory over Greg Norman.[10]
  • 2000: Tiger Woods becomes the first Memorial winner to successfully defend his title and finishes five shots ahead of Ernie Els.[11]
  • 2001: Woods wins for a third consecutive year, seven shots clear of runners-up Paul Azinger and Sergio García.[12]
  • 2005: Bart Bryant saves par from a hazard on the 72nd hole to win by one shot over Fred Couples.[13]
  • 2007: K. J. Choi shoots a final round 65 to win by one shot over Ryan Moore.[14]
  • 2012: Tiger Woods birdied three of his last four holes including a chip in on the 16th hole, turning a two-shot deficit into a two-shot victory. The win is Woods' 73rd PGA Tour victory tying Jack Nicklaus for second most PGA Tour wins.[15]
  • 2013: Defending champion Tiger Woods has a third round back nine score of 44, the worst in his career. He would finish twenty shots behind Matt Kuchar.

2012 course layout

Muirfield Village Golf Club

Hole 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Out 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 In Total[16]
Yards 470 455 401 200 527 447 583 185 412 3,680 471 567 184 455 363 529 215 478 444 3,706 7,386
Par 4 4 4 3 5 4 5 3 4 36 4 5 3 4 4 5 3 4 4 36 72

Winners and Honorees

Year Player Country Score Margin
of victory
share ($)
2013 Matt Kuchar  United States 276 (−12) 2 strokes 1,160,000 Raymond Floyd
2012 Tiger Woods (5)  United States 279 (−9) 2 strokes 1,160,000 Tom Watson
2011 Steve Stricker  United States 272 (−16) 1 stroke 1,160,000 Nancy Lopez
2010 Justin Rose  England 270 (−18) 3 strokes 1,080,000 Seve Ballesteros
2009 Tiger Woods (4)  United States 276 (−12) 1 stroke 1,080,000 JoAnne Carner and Jack Burke, Jr.
2008 Kenny Perry (3)  United States 280 (−8) 2 strokes 1,080,000 Tony Jacklin, Ralph Guldahl, Charles B. Macdonald, and Craig Wood
2007 K.J. Choi  South Korea 271 (−17) 1 stroke 1,080,000 Louise Suggs and Dow Finsterwald
2006 Carl Pettersson  Sweden 276 (−12) 2 strokes 1,035,000 Michael Bonallack, Charles Coe, Lawson Little, Henry Picard, Paul Runyan, and Denny Shute
2005 Bart Bryant  United States 272 (−16) 1 stroke 990,000 Betsy Rawls and Cary Middlecoff
2004 Ernie Els  South Africa 270 (−18) 4 strokes 945,000 Lee Trevino and Joyce Wethered
2003 Kenny Perry (2)  United States 275 (−11) 2 strokes 900,000 Julius Boros and William C. Campbell
2002 Jim Furyk  United States 274 (−14) 2 strokes 810,000 Kathy Whitworth and Bobby Locke
2001 Tiger Woods (3)  United States 271 (−17) 7 strokes 738,000 Payne Stewart
2000 Tiger Woods (2)  United States 269 (−19) 5 strokes 558,000 Jack Nicklaus
1999 Tiger Woods  United States 273 (−15) 2 strokes 459,000 Ben Hogan
1998 Fred Couples  United States 271 (−17) 4 strokes 396,000 Peter Thomson
1997 Vijay Singh  Fiji 202* (−14) 2 strokes 342,000 Gary Player
1996 Tom Watson (2)  United States 274 (−14) 2 strokes 324,000 Billy Casper
1995 Greg Norman (2)  Australia 269 (−19) 4 strokes 306,000 Willie Anderson, John Ball, James Braid, Harold Hilton, and J.H. Taylor
1994 Tom Lehman  United States 268 (−20) 5 strokes 270,000 Mickey Wright
1993 Paul Azinger  United States 274 (−14) 1 stroke 252,000 Arnold Palmer
1992 David Edwards  United States 273 (−15) Playoff 234,000 Joseph Dey
1991 Kenny Perry  United States 273 (−15) Playoff 216,000 Babe Zaharias
1990 Greg Norman  Australia 216* (E) 1 stroke 180,000 Jimmy Demaret
1989 Bob Tway  United States 277 (−11) 2 strokes 160,000 Henry Cotton
1988 Curtis Strange  United States 274 (−14) 2 strokes 160,000 Patty Berg
1987 Don Pooley  United States 272 (−16) 3 strokes 140,000 Old Tom Morris and Young Tom Morris
1986 Hal Sutton  United States 271 (−17) 4 strokes 100,000 Roberto De Vicenzo
1985 Hale Irwin (2)  United States 281 (−7) 1 stroke 100,000 Chick Evans
1984 Jack Nicklaus (2)  United States 280 (−8) Playoff 90,000 Sam Snead
1983 Hale Irwin  United States 281 (−7) 1 stroke 72,000 Tommy Armour
1982 Raymond Floyd  United States 281 (−7) 2 strokes 63,000 Glenna Collett-Vare
1981 Keith Fergus  United States 284 (−4) 1 stroke 63,000 Harry Vardon
1980 David Graham  Australia 280 (−8) 1 stroke 54,000 Byron Nelson
1979 Tom Watson  United States 285 (−3) 3 strokes 54,000 Gene Sarazen
1978 Jim Simons  United States 284 (−4) 1 stroke 50,000 Francis Ouimet
1977 Jack Nicklaus  United States 281 (−7) 2 strokes 45,000 Walter Hagen
1976 Roger Maltbie  United States 288 (E) Playoff 40,000 Bobby Jones

* rain-shortened to 54 holes
Note: Green highlight indicates scoring records.

Multiple winners

Six men have won the Memorial Tournament more than once through 2013.


External links

  • Coverage on the PGA Tour's official site
  • – Muirfield Village Golf Club
  • Jack Nicklaus Museum

Coordinates: 40°08′25″N 83°08′29″W / 40.1404°N 83.1414°W / 40.1404; -83.1414

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