1960: Arnold Palmer staged the greatest comeback in U.S. Open history, erasing 7 strokes …

Palmer

Arnold Palmer triumphs at Cherry Hills

On this day, In 1960 Arnold Palmer staged the greatest comeback in U.S. Open history, erasing a seven-stroke deficit during the final round to win his only U.S. Open title.  Palmer led a full on charge on the front nine during the final round of the 60th U.S. Open climbing the leaderboard one by one.  The stage he did it on, Cherry Hills Country Club in Colorado was also setting of the 1938 U.S. Open won by Ralph Gudahl.

Palmer birdied six of his 1st seven holes during the final round.

Palmer trailed leader Mike Souchak by eight strokes after 36 holes, and by seven shots after 54 holes. Almost everyone believed he was out of contention beginning the final round, tied for fifteenth place. Palmer drove the green on the par-4 1st to set up a two-putt birdie, then chipped in from 90 feet for birdie at the second. After nearly making an eagle at 3 and tapping in for another birdie, he holed an 18-footer for birdie at 4 then made two more birdies at 6 and 7. He cooled off the rest of his round, finally carding a 65 (−6) for a 280 (−4) total.

Jack tasted defeat before his 1962 triumph

Twenty-year-old Jack Nicklaus, the reigning U.S. Amateur champion playing in his fourth Open, was also in contention during the final round, briefly holding the lead after making eagle at 5 and birdie at 9. Two three-putts on the back-nine dropped him to a 282 (−2) total, two strokes behind Palmer. His second-place finish was the best showing by an amateur at the U.S. Open since Johnny Goodman won in 1933.

Hogan falters late

At age 47, Ben Hogan was tied for the lead on the 71st tee, a par 5. On his third shot he hit a wedge on to the green but it spun back all the way off the green into the confines of the water hazard fronting the green and made bogey. Needing birdie to tie on 18, he again found water, triple-bogeyed, and finished in a tie for ninth place. Souchak shot a disappointing final round 75 on his way to a tie for third.

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