Oldest PGA Tour Winner

10 Oldest PGA Tour Winners Ever

One of the four major golf tournaments is the annual PGA Championship, established in 1916. This championship is organized by the Professional Golfers Association (PGA). The Association also organizes PGA Tour each year, where the best golfers compete in the United States and North America.

The major championships are Masters Tournament (The Master’s) in April, U.S. Open in June, and The Open Championship in July. But PGA Championship in May is considered the most sought-after for professional golf players. The game of golf was invented in Scotland and has been played since the 15th century, but it is still one of the most competitive sports today.

Here’s a list of the 10 oldest PGA Championship Winners over the last century!

10. Hubert Green

Age When He Won: 39
Championship Year: 1985
Score: 278
Current Age: Deceased

Hubert Greenphoto source: World Golf Hall of Fame

Hubert Green was an American professional golfer with 29 professional golf tournament wins, including two major championships: the U.S. Open (1977) and the PGA Championship (1985).

He was 39 when he won the PGA Championship, with 19 PGA Tour wins total, the first being in 1971. 

Born in 1946, Hubert Green turned to pro golf in 1969. He was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2007.

Green was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2003, which was professionally dealt with, but the cancer was in remission soon after. He passed away in 2018 from complications.

Did You Know?

Hubert Green was the first golfer to be included in the Florida State Seminoles Hall of Fame in 1977. He was awarded the Ben Hogan Award for continuing to play golf despite being ill. 


9. Chick Harbert

Age When He Won: 39
Championship Year: 1954
Score: 4&3
Current Age: Deceased

Chick Harbertphoto source: Michigan PGA

Melvin R. “Chick” Harbert turned to professional golf in 1940, winning 18 tournaments. His major tournament wins are the PGA Championship in 1954 and U.S. Open in 1946 and 1957, respectively. He has a total of 7 PGA Tour Wins.

Before 1958, PGA Championship played in match play format. Harbert’s score is 4&3, meaning the lowest score wins.

Harbert was up by four holes, with only three holes left to play, which guaranteed his win. He died in 1992 from a cerebral hemorrhage in his home.

Did You Know?

Match play is a golf scoring system in which players earn points for each hole they made better than the opponent, while stroke-play counts the total number of strokes of 18 holes. PGA switched to the stroke-play format because of their audience and a better understanding of the game.


8. Larry Nelson

Age When He Won: 40
Championship Year: 1987, 1981
Score: 287
Current Age: 74

Larry Nelsonphoto source: World Golf Hall of Fame

Larry Gene Nelson has been an American professional golf player since he was 24, with 41 professional wins total. When it comes to major wins, he won U.S. Open in 1983 and PGA Championship in 1981 and 1987. Nelson was 40 years old when he won his second PGA. 

He fell in love with golf during his draft in the United States Army at the height of the Vietnam War.

Nelson had great international success, winning tournaments in Japan, Australia, and New Zealand. He was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2006. 

Did You Know?

Larry Nelson received PGA Distinguished Service Award in 2011 for outstanding humanitarian qualities, sportsmanship, and enthusiasm for golf. The award was introduced in 1988. 


7. Raymond Floyd

Age When He Won: 40
Championship Year: 1982, 1969
Score: 272
Current Age: 79

photo source: World Golf Hall of Fame

Raymond Loran Floyd won the PGA Championship for the second time in 1982 when he was 40. The first time he won was in 1969. Other than this, Floyd has four major wins and 63 professional wins total. Because of this, he was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1989.

Floyd won the major tournament, The Master’s Tournament 1976, by eight strokes with a record of 271 points. His father was a professional golfer, but Floyd almost became a professional baseball player before turning to golf in 1961.

Did You Know?

Raymond Floyd and Sam Snead are the only golf players to ever win official events and tournaments in four different decades. Floyd was also the oldest player to compete in a Ryder Cup in 1993, at age 51.


6. Jack Nicklaus

Age When He Won: 40
Championship Year: 1980, 1975, 1973, 1971, 1963
Score: 274
Current Age: 82

Jack Nicklausphoto source: World Golf Hall of Fame

Jack Nicklaus is considered the greatest golf player ever, judging objectively by his records. He is the only player in the history of PGA Championships with a total of 5 wins, the latest being in 1980 when he was 40.

Nicklaus has 117 professional victories, and 18 major tournament wins. 

He competed in 164 major tournaments and is third after Sam Snead and Tiger Woods with 73 PGA Tour victories. Jack Nicklaus is now the head of Nicklaus Design company and has written “Golf My Way”, one of the best instructional golf books of all time.

Did You Know?

Nicklaus has won The Masters Tournament and PGA Championship five times, respectively, the U.S. Open four times, and The Open Championship three times total. He was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1974.


5. Jim Turnesa

Age When He Won: 40
Championship Year: 1952
Score: 1-up
Current Age: Deceased

Jim Turnesaphoto source: Trenham Golf History

Jim R. Turnesa is the oldest professional golf player on this list, born in 1912. He won PGA Championship in 1952 at the age of 40. His score was 1-up, meaning that Turnesa beat his runner-up by one hole. That is the only major win he has, with 11 professional wins total. 

Turnesa has two PGA Tour wins, the second being Reading Open in 1951. He died in 1971 from lung cancer in his home. 

Did You Know?

Jim Turnesa was one of the seven famous brothers who played golf, second to last. His brothers Phil, Frank, Joe, Mike, Doug, and Willie weren’t as successful as the younger brother. New York Times article nicknamed them the “golf dynasty”


4. Lee Trevino

Age When He Won: 45
Championship Year: 1984, 1974
Score: 273
Current Age: 82

Lee Trevinophoto source: World Golf Hall of Fame

Lee Buck Trevino, nicknamed Supermex, has been a professional golf player since 1960, with 92 professional wins. Trevino has 6 major wins: two PGA Championship, two U.S. Open, and two The Open Championship wins. He was 45 when he won his second PGA Championship in 1984.

Trevino has been a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame since 1981. He was the first golf player to break 70 in all four rounds of a U.S. Open Tournament in 1968. Trevino won a couple of Sportsman and Athlete of the year awards in 1971. 

Did You Know?

One of his best quotes “You don’t know what pressure is until you play for five bucks with only two in your pocket.” He’s one of the best self-made golf players today, starting from the three-room shack and working in the cotton fields when he was five to becoming one of the greatest golf players. 


3. Jerry Barber

Age When He Won: 45
Championship Year: 1961
Score: 277
Current Age: Deceased

Jerry Barberphoto source: LA Times

Carl Jerome Barber was a professional golf player from 1942 until his death in 1994. With 14 professional wins, Barber has one win in a major tournament, PGA Championship 1961. Barber was proclaimed PGA Player of the Year in the same year. 

He was a full-time member of the PGA Tour from 1948 to 1962. He was 45 years old in 1961, making him the oldest player back at the time to win a major title in a tournament. Julius Boros passed his record seven years later. Barber died at the age of 78 from the consequences of a stroke. 

Did You Know?

Like many other professional golfers, Barber played in U.S. Senior Open and some other tournaments for senior players. German golfer Bernhard Langer is considered to be the most successful senior golf player, with a total of 11 senior wins. 


2. Julius Boros

Age When He Won: 48
Championship Year: 1968
Score: 281
Current Age: Deceased

Julius Borosphoto source: World Golf Hall of Fame

Before him, Jerry Barber held the record for the oldest player to win a major title, but Julius Nickolas Boros surpassed him in 1968. Boros won three major tournaments, the biggest one being PGA Championship which he won when he was 48 years old. He held that title for 53 years until 2021. 

He also has 18 PGA Tour victories and two U.S. Open wins (1952 and 1963). Boros has 25 professional wins in his career. While a professional golfer, Boros was noted for his perfect swing and strong records. He’s been in the World Golf Hall of Fame since 1982.  

Did You Know?

“By the time you get to your ball, if you don’t know what to do with it, try another sport.” – Julius “Moose” Boros.


1. Phil Mickelson

Age When He Won: 51
Championship Year: 2021, 2005
Score: 282
Current Age: 52

Phil Mickelsonphoto source: World Golf Hall of Fame

The youngest player on the list is also the oldest PGA Tour winner, Phil Mickelson, winning PGA Championship in 2021 at 51 years old. Mickelson has 57 professional victories and six major wins: four in The Master’s Tournament and one in The Open Championship from 2013.

He also has another PGA Championship win from 2005, which he won when he was 35. Mickelson was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2012 and has won three Haskins Awards for the most outstanding collegiate golfer in the United States. 

Did You Know?

Phil Mickelson also holds a record for the longest time between two major wins as he went almost 16 years between his 2005 and 2021 victories. Some of the other golfers with spans like these are Gene Sarazen (10 years), Gary Player (10 years), Lee Trevino (10 years), and Raymond Floyd (13 years). 

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