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Curtis Strange

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Curtis Strange
Personal information
Full nameCurtis Northrup Strange
Born (1955-01-30) January 30, 1955 (age 67)
Norfolk, Virginia
Height5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight180 lb (82 kg; 13 st)
Sporting nationality United States
SpouseSarah Strange
Children2 sons
CollegeWake Forest University
Turned professional1976
Former tour(s)PGA Tour
Champions Tour
Professional wins29
Highest ranking3 (June 19, 1988)[1]
Number of wins by tour
PGA Tour17
European Tour2
Japan Golf Tour1
PGA Tour of Australasia3
Best results in major championships
(wins: 2)
Masters TournamentT2: 1985
PGA ChampionshipT2: 1989
U.S. OpenWon: 1988, 1989
The Open ChampionshipT13: 1988
Achievements and awards
World Golf Hall of Fame2007 (member page)
PGA Tour
leading money winner
1985, 1987, 1988
PGA Player of the Year1988

Curtis Northrup Strange (born January 30, 1955) is an American professional golfer and TV color commentator. He is the winner of consecutive U.S. Open titles and a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame and Virginia Sports Hall of Fame. He spent over 200 weeks in the top-10 of the Official World Golf Ranking between their debut in 1986 and 1990.[2]

Amateur career

Strange and his identical twin brother, Allan,[3] were born in Norfolk, Virginia.[4] His father, a local country club owner, started him in golf at age 7.[3] Strange graduated from Princess Anne High School in Virginia Beach, then enrolled at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. He played golf for the Demon Deacons and was part of the NCAA Championship team with Jay Haas and Bob Byman that Golf World has labeled "the greatest of all time".[5] In 1974 Strange was ranked the #2 amateur in the country by Golf Digest. The following year he was ranked number #3.

In the spring of 1976, Strange intended to transition from amateur to professional despite still being a junior in college. At this point, he was known for having one of the best amateur careers of all time. According to the golf columnist for The Charlotte Observer, Richard Sink, "Strange, only a junior, will leave behind a collegiate record perhaps unmatched." He finished in the top ten in all of his 25 college matches and finished in the top 5 in 21 of those. He won nine individual events and was the youngest NCAA Champion in golf at the time.[6] In 1976, he was ranked #9 amateur in the country by Golf Digest.[7]

Professional career

Strange was one of the leading players on the PGA Tour in the 1980s; 16 of his 17 tour victories took place in that decade. He topped the money list in 1985, 1987, and 1988, when he became the first to win a million dollars in official money in a season. His two majors were consecutive U.S. Opens in 1988 and 1989. Since World War II, only three golfers have successfully defended their titles at the U.S. Open; Brooks Koepka in 2018, Strange in 1989, and Ben Hogan in 1951.

The 1989 U.S. Open was Strange's last win on tour. In other majors, he led midway through the final round at The Masters in 1985, but finished two strokes back. Strange was also a runner-up at the PGA Championship in 1989, one stroke back. He played on five Ryder Cup teams (1983, 1985, 1987, 1989, and 1995) and captained the team in 2002.[3]

Despite skipping the Open Championship several times in his prime,[8] Strange played a considerable amount of international tournaments. He won the 1986 ABC Japan-U.S. Match, an event on the Japan Golf Tour that included many American pros. He also played extensively on the Australasian Tour. He won three events in Australia in the late 1980s and early 1990s and recorded runner-up finishes at the 1976 Australian Open,[9] 1977 Colgate Champion of Champions, 1986 Air New Zealand Shell Open, and the 1990 Daikyo Palm Meadows Cup.

Like Henrik Stenson and Ben Hogan, Strange was a natural left-hander who played right-handed.

Later career and honors

After reaching the age of 50 in January 2005, Strange began play on the Champions Tour, remarking, "I was getting worse and said, 'To hell with it.'"[10] His only top-five finishes came that first season; third place at the Constellation Energy Classic and a tie for fifth at the FedEx Kinko's Classic.[3]

In 1997, he was hired as the lead golf analyst for ESPN/ABC, working alongside host Mike Tirico. He left due to a contract dispute before the 2004 U.S. Open, but rejoined ESPN/ABC at the 2008 U.S. Open, four years after he first left. In 2016, he was hired by Fox as a course reporter for their USGA championships.[11]

In this capacity he has provided commentary for several notable events, including Tiger Woods' playoff win at the 1997 Mercedes Championships, David Duval's final round of 59 at the 1999 Bob Hope Chrysler Classic, Jean van de Velde's collapse at the 1999 Open Championship, Woods achieving the career grand slam at the 2000 Open Championship, Peter Jacobsen becoming one of the oldest Tour winners at age 49 during the 2003 Greater Hartford Open, Woods' U.S. Open winning performance in 2008 (early rounds), Tom Watson nearly winning The Open Championship at age 59 in 2009, and Phil Mickelson's final nine charge to win in 2013.

On April 18, 2007, Strange was elected to the World Golf Hall of Fame, and was inducted on November 12 at the World Golf Village in St. Augustine, Florida.

In May 2009, he was named to the Hampton Roads Sports Hall of Fame, which honors athletes, coaches and administrators who contributed to sports in southeastern Virginia.

Amateur wins (5)

Professional wins (29)

PGA Tour wins (17)

Major championships (2)
Tour Championships (1)
Other PGA Tour (14)
No. Date Tournament Winning score To par Margin of
1 Oct 21, 1979 Pensacola Open 69-71-62-69=271 −17 1 stroke United States Billy Kratzert
2 May 4, 1980 Michelob-Houston Open 66-63-66-71=266 −18 Playoff United States Lee Trevino
3 Aug 17, 1980 Manufacturers Hanover Westchester Classic 69-65-70-69=273 −11 2 strokes United States Gibby Gilbert
4 Aug 21, 1983 Sammy Davis Jr.-Greater Hartford Open 69-62-69-68=268 −16 1 stroke United States Jay Haas, United States Jack Renner
5 Sep 30, 1984 LaJet Golf Classic 68-67-67-71=273 −15 2 strokes United States Mark O'Meara
6 Mar 3, 1985 Honda Classic 67-64-70-74=275 −13 Playoff United States Peter Jacobsen
7 Mar 24, 1985 Panasonic Las Vegas Invitational 69-73-64-66-66=338 −17 1 stroke United States Mike Smith
8 Jul 7, 1985 Canadian Open 69-69-68-73=279 −9 2 strokes United States Jack Nicklaus, Australia Greg Norman
9 Apr 27, 1986 Houston Open (2) 72-68-68-66=274 −14 Playoff United States Calvin Peete
10 Jul 5, 1987 Canadian Open (2) 71-70-66-69=276 −12 3 strokes South Africa David Frost, United States Jodie Mudd,
Zimbabwe Nick Price
11 Aug 2, 1987 Federal Express St. Jude Classic 70-68-68-69=275 −13 1 stroke United States Russ Cochran, United States Mike Donald,
United States Tom Kite, Zimbabwe Denis Watson
12 Aug 30, 1987 NEC World Series of Golf 70-66-68-71=275 −5 3 strokes South Africa Fulton Allem
13 May 1, 1988 Independent Insurance Agent Open 69-68-66-67=270 −18 Playoff Australia Greg Norman
14 May 29, 1988 Memorial Tournament 73-70-64-67=274 −14 2 strokes South Africa David Frost, United States Hale Irwin
15 Jun 20, 1988 U.S. Open 70-67-69-72=278 −6 Playoff England Nick Faldo
16 Nov 14, 1988 Nabisco Championship 64-71-70-74=279 −9 Playoff United States Tom Kite
17 Jun 18, 1989 U.S. Open (2) 71-64-73-70=278 −2 1 stroke United States Chip Beck, United States Mark McCumber,
Wales Ian Woosnam

PGA Tour playoff record (6–3)

No. Year Tournament Opponent(s) Result
1 1980 Michelob-Houston Open United States Lee Trevino Won with birdie on first extra hole
2 1981 Tournament Players Championship United States Raymond Floyd, United States Barry Jaeckel Floyd won with par on first extra hole
3 1983 Joe Garagiola-Tucson Open United States Gil Morgan, United States Lanny Wadkins Morgan won with birdie on second extra hole
4 1985 Honda Classic United States Peter Jacobsen Won with par on first extra hole
5 1986 Houston Open United States Calvin Peete Won with birdie on third extra hole
6 1988 Independent Insurance Agent Open Australia Greg Norman Won with birdie on third extra hole
7 1988 U.S. Open England Nick Faldo Won 18-hole playoff;
Strange: E (71),
Faldo: +4 (75)
8 1988 Nabisco Championship United States Tom Kite Won with birdie on second extra hole
9 1991 Doral-Ryder Open United States Rocco Mediate Lost to birdie on first extra hole

Japan Golf Tour wins (1)

No. Date Tournament Winning score To par Margin of
1 Nov 2, 1986 ABC Japan-U.S. Match 67-68-72-64=271 −17 4 strokes United States Chip Beck

PGA Tour of Australasia wins (3)

No. Date Tournament Winning score To par Margin of
1 Jan 10, 1988 Sanctuary Cove Classic 67-70-67-68=272 −16 1 stroke Wales Ian Woosnam
2 Jan 15, 1989 Daikyo Palm Meadows Cup 66-70-71-73=280 −8 2 strokes United States Raymond Floyd
3 Dec 5, 1993 Greg Norman's Holden Classic 68-67-69-70=274 −18 2 strokes Australia John Wade

PGA Tour of Australasia playoff record (0–1)

No. Year Tournament Opponent Result
1 1990 Daikyo Palm Meadows Cup Australia Rodger Davis Lost to eagle on second extra hole

South American Golf Circuit wins (1)

Other wins (7)

No. Date Tournament Winning score To par Margin of
1 Oct 5, 1980 Laurent-Perrier Trophy 62-70-68-68=268 −20 12 strokes United States Bobby Clampett
2 Dec 14, 1980 JCPenney Mixed Team Classic
(with United States Nancy Lopez)
70-65-67-66=268 −20 2 strokes United States Gibby Gilbert and United States Sandra Spuzich,
United States Lori Garbacz and United States Craig Stadler
3 Aug 19, 1986 Fred Meyer Challenge
(with United States Peter Jacobsen)
64 −8 Shared title with Australia Greg Norman and South Africa Gary Player
4 May 26, 1989 PGA Grand Slam of Golf 73 +1 2 strokes United States Craig Stadler
5 Nov 19, 1989 RMCC Invitational
(with United States Mark O'Meara)
66-62-62=190 −26 6 strokes West Germany Bernhard Langer and United States John Mahaffey,
United States Lanny Wadkins and United States Tom Weiskopf
6 Nov 26, 1989 Skins Game $265,000 $175,000 United States Jack Nicklaus
7 Nov 25, 1990 Skins Game (2) $220,000 $130,000 Australia Greg Norman

Major championships

Wins (2)

Year Championship 54 holes Winning score Margin Runner(s)-up
1988 U.S. Open 1 shot lead −6 (70-67-69-72=278) Playoff1 England Nick Faldo
1989 U.S. Open (2) 3 shot deficit −2 (71-64-73-70=278) 1 stroke United States Chip Beck, United States Mark McCumber,
Wales Ian Woosnam

1Defeated Faldo in 18-hole playoff; Strange: 71 (E), Faldo: 75 (+4).

Results timeline

Tournament 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979
Masters Tournament CUT T15 LA CUT
U.S. Open CUT
The Open Championship CUT
PGA Championship T58 CUT
Tournament 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989
Masters Tournament CUT T19 T7 CUT T46 T2 T21 T12 T21 T18
U.S. Open T16 T17 T39 T26 3 T31 CUT T4 1 1
The Open Championship T15 T29 T14 T13 T61
PGA Championship T5 T27 T14 86 CUT CUT CUT 9 T31 T2
Tournament 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999
Masters Tournament T7 T42 T31 WD T27 9 CUT
U.S. Open T21 CUT T23 T25 4 T36 T27 CUT CUT CUT
The Open Championship CUT T38 CUT CUT T72 T44 T19
PGA Championship CUT WD CUT CUT T19 T17 T26 CUT
Tournament 2000 2001 2002
Masters Tournament
U.S. Open CUT
The Open Championship
PGA Championship T58 CUT CUT
  Top 10
  Did not play

LA = Low amateur
CUT = missed the halfway cut
WD = withdrew
"T" indicates a tie for a place.


Tournament Wins 2nd 3rd Top-5 Top-10 Top-25 Events Cuts made
Masters Tournament 0 1 0 1 4 10 20 14
U.S. Open 2 0 1 5 5 10 22 15
The Open Championship 0 0 0 0 0 4 13 9
PGA Championship 0 1 0 2 3 6 23 12
Totals 2 2 1 8 12 30 78 50
  • Most consecutive cuts made – 13 (1987 Masters – 1990 U.S. Open)
  • Longest streak of top-10s – 2 (twice)

Results in The Players Championship

Tournament 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999
The Players Championship CUT CUT 21 T2 T51 T8 T33 T33 CUT CUT DQ T34 T16 T6 WD CUT CUT T23 CUT CUT CUT T23
  Top 10

CUT = missed the halfway cut
WD = withdrew
DQ = disqualified
"T" indicates a tie for a place

U.S. national team appearances




In 1988 when Strange won the U.S. Open, Ping  recognized him with a golden putter replica of the Ping Zing 2 he used to win. A second one was made and placed in the Ping Gold Putter Vault.[12]

See also


  1. ^ "Week 25 1988 Ending 19 Jun 1988" (pdf). OWGR. Retrieved December 20, 2018.
  2. ^ "69 Players Who Have Reached The Top-10 In World Ranking" (PDF). Official World Golf Ranking. Retrieved December 20, 2013.
  3. ^ a b c d "PGA Tour Media Guide – Curtis Strange". Retrieved December 20, 2013.
  4. ^ "PGA Tour Profile – Curtis Strange". Retrieved December 20, 2013.
  5. ^ Yocom, Guy (February 2005). "My Shot: Curtis Strange". Golf Digest. Archived from the original on March 5, 2005.
  6. ^ "Wake Defends NCAA Title..." The Charlotte Observer. June 6, 1976. p. 31. Retrieved July 4, 2021 – via
  7. ^ "Dunaway Finds His Game..." The Charlotte Observer. January 30, 1977. p. 56. Retrieved July 3, 2021 – via
  8. ^ Yocom, Peter (July 7, 2007). "My Shot: Curtis Strange". Golf Digest. Retrieved April 25, 2019.
  9. ^ Peter, Thomson (November 1, 1976). "Par for the course for Jack". The Age. p. 33. Retrieved January 9, 2020.
  10. ^ Apfelbaum, Jim, ed. (2007). The Gigantic Book of Golf Quotations. Skyhorse Publishing. ISBN 978-1-60239-014-0.
  11. ^ "Fox Sports Signs Curtis Strange".
  12. ^ "6 fascinating stories from Ping's Gold Putter Vault". PGA Tour. January 10, 2019. Retrieved February 8, 2019.

External links

This page was last edited on 16 July 2022, at 18:07
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