European Open Golf Trivia

  • It was only in 1990 that the Royal & Ancient Golf Club adopted the 1.68 inch diameter ball, 38 years later than the rest of the world.
  • Winner of the European Open in 1983,
    Japan’s Isao Aoki, is the only player to have won events on the PGA Tour, the Senior Tour and the Japanese, European and Australian Tours.
  • European Open defending champion, Colin Montgomerie had this to say about Tiger Woods’ total dominance of the majors: “It’ll be nice if Elin had quadruplets nicely spaced out throughout the year, perhaps the first in April, the second in mid-June, the third in July and the fourth in the second week in August. The rest of us might have a chance then!”
  • The terms ‘birdie’, ‘eagle’ and ‘albatross’ originated in States in the 1800s. In 19th-Century American slang the term ‘bird’ was applied to anything that was great; it was the equivalent of today’s ‘cool’. Thus hitting a shot which led to an under-par score was considered great, ‘bird’, or ‘birdie’. It seemed the right thing to do to continue with the avian trend, and soon ‘eagle’ and ‘albatross’ followed.
  • Prior to the mid-1760s it was quite common to find golf courses with 12, 19, 23 or even 15 holes. In 1764 St Andrews converted from 22 holes to the traditional 18 holes, and soon most of the other courses followed suit. It was, however, only in the 1900s that 18 holes became the official standard.
  • An interesting titbit of European Open golf trivia is that only two Americans have ever won the European Open – Bobby Wadkins in 1978 and Tom Kite in 1980.
  • Darren Clarke is the only golfer from Northern Ireland to have won the European Open. He took the title at the K Club near Dublin in 2001.
  • There are currently over 50 million golfers in the world. Their average total score is a dismal 107 shots, and over 80% of all golfers will never achieve a handicap of 18 or less.
  • 2007 champion, Colin Montgomerie won €3 548 214 in prize money at the European Open, compared to that of Bobby Wadkins, the winner of the inaugural event in 1978. He only pocketed £102 715!