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Wire-to-wire major championship winners

What does winning wire-to-wire mean in golf? And how many times has it happened in major history? Matt Chivers dives into the records

 

Winning any major championship is impressive, but the feat is even more remarkable when a player does so wire-to-wire.

But what exactly does the term mean? And how many times has it happened in the history of the men’s and women’s major championships? We dive into the record books so you don’t have to…

What does wire-to-wire mean in golf?

The phrase wire-to-wire originates from horse racing, with the first wire representing the start position, and the second wire representing the finish line. When a horse leads a race from start to finish, they are said to have won ‘wire-to-wire’.

So too in golf, when a player leads a tournament from start to finish, sitting in first position at the end of every round to secure the win, they are also said to have won ‘wire-to-wire’.

Winning a golf tournament ‘wire-to-wire’ is extremely impressive, but the feat is even more spectacular when a player does so with ‘no ties’, meaning they led every round without sharing the lead with another player.

Wire-to-wire golf major winners

In the history of the nine men’s and women’s major championships, a player has won wire-to-wire on 72 occasions, with 42 of these achieved with no ties:

The Masters

1941 – Craig Wood (no ties)
1960 – Arnold Palmer (no ties)
1972 – Jack Nicklaus (no ties)
1976 – Raymond Floyd (no ties)
2015 – Jordan Spieth (no ties)

PGA Championship

1964 – Bobby Nichols (no ties)
1969 – Raymond Floyd
1971 – Jack Nicklaus (no ties)
1982 – Raymond Floyd
1983 – Hal Sutton (no ties)
2000 – Tiger Woods
2005 – Phil Mickelson
2016 – Jimmy Walker
2019 – Brooks Koepka
2024 – Xander Schauffele (no ties)

2005 – Phil Mickelson
2019 – Brooks Koepka (no ties)

US Open

1903 – Willie Anderson
1906 – Alex Smith
1914 – Walter Hagen (no ties)
1916 – Charles Evans Jr
1921 – Jim Barnes (no ties)
1953 – Ben Hogan (no ties)
1958 – Tommy Bolt
1970 – Tony Jacklin (no ties)
1972 – Jack Nicklaus
1977 – Hubert Green
1980 – Jack Nicklaus
1991 – Payne Stewart
2000 – Tiger Woods (no ties)
2001 – Retief Gooson
2002 – Tiger Woods (no ties)
2011 – Rory McIlroy (no ties)
2014 – Martin Kaymer (no ties)

The Open Championship

1899 – Harry Vardon
1900 – JH Taylor
1903 – Harry Vardon
1912 – Ted Ray (no ties)
1927 – Bobby Jones (no ties)
1932 – Gene Sarazen (no ties)
1934 – Henry Cotton (no ties)
1971 – Lee Trevino
1973 – Tom Weiskopf (no ties)
1974 – Gary Player
2005 – Tiger Woods (no ties)
2014 – Rory McIlroy (no ties)

Player of the decade

Chevron Championship

1986 – Pat Bradley (no ties)
1987 – Betsy King (no ties)
1989 – Juli Inkster (no ties)
1991 – Amy Alcott (no ties)
1998 – Pat Hurst (no ties)
2000 – Karrie Webb (no ties)
2021 – Patty Tavatanakit (no ties)

US Women’s Open

1954 – Babe Zaharias
1955 – Fay Crocker (no ties)
1958 – Mickey Wright (no ties)
1963 – Mary Mills
1967 – Catherine Lacoste
1968 – Susie Berning (no ties)
1970 – Donna Caponi
1971 – JoAnne Carner

KPMG Women’s PGA Championship

1955 – Beverly Hanson
1958 – Mickey Wright (no ties)
1962 – Judy Kimball
1967 – Kathy Whitworth
1968 – Sandra Post
1982 – Jan Stephenson
1985 – Nancy Lopez (no ties)
1992 – Betsy King
1998 – Se Ri Pak (no ties)
2010 – Christie Kerr
2011 – Yani Tseng (no ties)
2019 – Hannah Green (no ties)
2022 – Ingee Chun (no ties)

Women's PGA Championship

Evian Championship

None

Women’s Open

2005 – Jeong Jang (no ties)
2007 – Lorena Ochoa (no ties)

NOW READ: LPGA Tour schedule 2024

NOW READ: What is the lowest round in a golf major?

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Matt Chivers

Matt Chivers

Now on the wrong side of 25, Matt has been playing golf since the age of 13 and was largely inspired to take up the game by countless family members who played golf during his childhood.

Matt is a member at Royal Cinque Ports in Deal playing off a 5 handicap, just a pitching wedge away from his hometown of Dover where he went to school and grew up. He has previously been a member at Etchinghill and Walmer and Kingsdown in Kent.

Having studied history at the University of Liverpool, Matt went on to pass his NCTJ Exams in Manchester a year later to fulfil his lifelong ambition of becoming a journalist. He picked up work experience along the way at places such as the Racing Post, the Independent, Sportsbeat and the Lancashire Evening Post.

Matt joined NCG in February 2023 and is the website’s main source of tour news, features and opinion. He has reported live from events such as The Open, the Ryder Cup and The Players Championship, having also interviewed and spoken to the likes of Rory McIlroy, Tommy Fleetwood, Lee Westwood, Graeme McDowell, Henrik Stenson, to name just a few.

Consuming tour golf on what is a 24/7 basis, you can come to Matt for informed views on the game and the latest updates on the PGA Tour, DP World Tour, LPGA Tour, Ladies European Tour and LIV Golf.

What’s in Matt’s bag: Cobra LTDx LS driver, Cobra LTDx 3-wood, TaylorMade P7MC irons, Ping Glide 4.0 wedges, Odyssey putter.

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