Koepka adds his name to the major 63 list (again)
What’s the lowest score in a major?
Brooks Koepka wasn’t far from writing his name in the record books on the opening day of the 2019 PGA Championship.
The defending champion made light work of a course that has been touted as one of the toughest on the major rota.
But his 63 at Bethpage was enough to write his own little piece of history as he became the only player to card that score in a major in consecutive seasons.
But he is by no means the first to go this low at a major tournament – indeed his was the 37th round of 63 or better in one of the big four.
But is it the lowest score in a major?
Nope. That honour belongs to Branden Grace, who carded a magnificent 62 at Royal Birkdale on day three of the 2017 Open Championship.
So who else has shot 63 in a major?
We know that Koepka holds two of those 37 spaces, having also done it at Bellerive in 2018, so who accounts for the other 34?
Johnny Miller stormed around Oakmont in the 1973 US Open and only five more players have gone on to match the number in that event.
Jack Nicklaus did it in 1980 and there was then a 23-year absence of a 63 at the US Open.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, Augusta has proved to be the toughest track to score on, with only two players managing a 9-under-par round. Nick Price was the first to do so in 1986 and, a decade later, Greg Norman repeated that feat.
The PGA Championship, has seen the highest number of 63s, with the score being carded 17 times.
The majority of these have taken place after the turn of the century, with the likes of Tiger Woods, Jose Maria Olazabal, Steve Stricker and Mark O’Meara all signing up.
And finally, there is the Open, where 11 players have been one away from Grace’s record over the links, most recently Haotong Li as he announced himself to the golfing world at Birkdale.
Before that, both Phil Mickelson and Henrik Stenson shot the number at Royal Troon – the latter doing it on Sunday in their incredible duel that ultimately led to the Swede clinching his maiden major.
Other players who have achieved this score at the Open include Nick Faldo, Rory McIlroy and the late Payne Stewart.
Lowest score in a major: 62
Branden Grace (2017 Open, Royal Birkdale, Par 70)
Lowest score in a major: 63
Johnny Miller (1973 US Open, Oakmont, Par 71)
Bruce Crampton (1975 PGA Championship, Firestone, Par 70)
Mark Hayes (1977 Open, Turnberry, Par 70)
Tom Weiskopf (1980 US Open, Baltusrol Par 70)
Jack Nicklaus (1980 US Open, Baltusrol, Par 70)
Isao Aoki (1980 Open, Muirfield, Par 71)
Raymond Floyd (1982 PGA Championship, Southern Hills, Par 70)
Gary Player (1984, PGA Championship, Shoal Creek, Par 72)
Nick Price (1986, Masters, Augusta National, Par 72)
Greg Norman (1986 Open, Turnberry, Par 70)
Paul Broadhurst (1990 Open, St. Andrew’s, Par 72)
Jodie Mudd (1991 Open, Royal Birkdale, Par 70)
Nick Faldo (1993 Open, Royal St. George’s, Par 70)
Payne Stewart (1993 Open, Royal St. George’s, Par 70)
Vijay Singh (1993 PGA Championship, Inverness, Par 71)
Michael Bradley (1995 PGA Championship, Riviera, Par 71)
Brad Faxon (1995 PGA Championship, Riviera, Par 71)
Greg Norman (1996 Masters, Augusta National, Par 72)
Jose Maria Olazabal (2000 PGA Championship, Valhalla, Par 72)
Mark O’Meara (2001 PGA Championship, Atlanta Athletic, Par 70)
Vijay Singh (2003 US Open, Olympia Fields, Par 70)
Thomas Bjorn (2005 PGA Championship, Baltusrol, Par 70)
Tiger Woods ( 2007, PGA Championship, Southern Hills, Par 70)
Rory McIlroy (2010 Open, St. Andrew’s, Par 72)
Steve Stricker (2011 PGA Championship, Atlanta Athletic, Par 70)
Jason Dufner (2013 PGA Championship Oak Hill, Par 70)
Hiroshi Iwata (2015 PGA Championship, Whistling Straits, Par 72)
Robert Streb (2016 PGA Championship, Baltusrol, Par 70)
Phil Mickelson (2016 Open, Royal Troon, Par 71)
Henrik Stenson (2016 Open, Royal Troon, Par 71)
Justin Thomas (2017 US Open, Erin Hills, Par 72)
Haotong Li (2017 open, Royal Birkdale, Par 70)
Tommy Fleetwood (2018 US Open, Shinnecock Hills, Par 70)
Brooks Koepka (2018 PGA Championship, Bellerive, Par 70)
Charl Schwartzel (2018 PGA Championship, Bellerive, Par 70)
Brooks Koepka (2019 Pga Championship, Bethpage Black, Par 70)