This Day in Hogan History: Ben wins at Colonial Invitational
By: Mark Baron
On May 19, 1946 Ben Hogan shot a final round 65 to win the inaugural Colonial Invitational at the Colonial Country Club in Ft. Worth Texas by one stroke over Harry Todd, winning $3,000 for his efforts. The Colonial Invitational is the longest running non-major PGA Tour event held at the same site.
Hogan became the only golfer to win both Dallas / Ft. Worth events in the same season when he won the Dallas Open later in September that year. Sam Snead finished three strokes back in 4th place. Byron Nelson finished six strokes back tied for 9th place. Ben won an additional $250 for shooting the low score in the fourth round, a 65.
In the first round the surprise leader was little-known George Schneiter out of Ogden Utah, shooting a course record three under par 67. Ben finished five strokes back shooting a 73.
In the second round Sam Snead shot a 69 to take a one stroke lead over Herman Keiser. Both Hogan and Byron Nelson shot 72’s. Hogan finished five strokes back of the lead.
In the third round Ben shot a 69, one of only six players to better par that day. He finished three strokes back in a tie with Lloyd Mangrum for fourth place. Sam Snead shot a 72 to fall out of first place, one stroke behind the leader Harry Todd.
In the fourth round Ben set a new course record by shooting 65 to win the tournament and $3,000.00. The previous record was a 67 shot by George Schneiter set in the first round. Ben shot a 33 on the outward nine and better that score by one on the inward nine with a blazing 32, that include three straight birdies on holes 11 -13.
With the victory, Ben’s annual total earnings jumped to $17,819.50, more than $7,000 ahead of second place, Byron Nelson with $10,478.75. Sam Snead was third at $10,176.16, followed by Jimmy Demaret and Herman Keiser.
This was the first of the five times Ben won this tournament, giving the golf course the nickname “Hogan’s Alley.”
Mark Baron is a Ben Hogan expert who posts daily about the legend. Check out Mark's huge following on the Ben Hogan Facebook Page and stay tuned for special Hogan anniversaries for Mark's insight. Check out the page here: www.facebook.com/benhogangolf