1962: Arnold Palmer wins his 2nd Open Championship in a row by 6 strokes at Royal Troon


Arnold Palmer makes it two straight in ’62

On this day, In 1962 Arnold Palmer hoisted his second consecutive Claret Jug, this time at Royal Troon.  After finishing runner-up in his first Open in 1960, he won it in his second appearance in 1961.  In this edition, Palmer won the Open Championship by six strokes handily over runner-up Kel Nagle.  Palmer and Nagle were quite familiar with each other as they played opposite roles in the 1960 Open Championship.

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Palmer was the leader after thirty-six holes shooting a 71, 69 for a -4 under par 140 total.  Nagle was just one behind with a pair of 71’s for a 142 total.  Four others were tied five strokes off the lead, which was never a threat to Palmer.

During the Friday morning round of play, Palmer shot a five under par 67, which gave him a commanding five stroke lead over Nagle. Arnie shot another dazzling round in the afternoon, shooting three under giving him an walk to the finish.  Palmer buried twelve birdies over the course of the last two rounds. He finished 71-69-67-69 for a 276 total and a six stroke victory in all.  Ironically, the last man to win The Open Championship was also an American.  It was Walter Hagen in 1929 at Muirfield over Johnny Farrell.


  • This was the last Open in which all players had to qualify; in 1963 a system of exemptions for the leading players was introduced.
  • The PGA Championship was played the next week (19–22 July) near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the first of five times in the 1960s that these two majors were played in consecutive weeks in July
  • The night before, (July 12) The Rolling Stones played their 1st ever concert at London’s Marquee Club. Arnold Arnold

Josh Morris

Josh Morris is the Editor of Golf History Today. A proud USGA Volunteer and golf enthusiast. In his free time he enjoys being a weekend caddie as well as playing as much as he can.

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  1. I visited Scotland courtesy of Uncle Sam’s canoe club (Navy). On a bicycle tour through the Trossacks, I passed Royal Troon golf club. I hadn’t been “infected” with golf yet, or I’d have tried to play there. What a site.

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