Dow Finsterwald

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Dow Finsterwald
— Golfer —
Personal information
Full nameDow Henry Finsterwald
Born(1929-09-06) September 6, 1929 (age 84)
Athens, Ohio
Height5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight160 lb (73 kg; 11 st)
Nationality United States
ResidenceOrlando, Florida
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Career
CollegeOhio University
Turned professional1951
Former tour(s)PGA Tour
Senior PGA Tour
Professional wins13
Number of wins by tour
PGA Tour11
Other2
Best results in Major Championships
(Wins: 1)
Masters Tournament3rd: 1960, 1962
U.S. OpenT3: 1960
The Open ChampionshipDNP
PGA ChampionshipWon: 1958
Achievements and awards
PGA Player of the Year1958
Vardon Trophy1957
 
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Dow Finsterwald
— Golfer —
Personal information
Full nameDow Henry Finsterwald
Born(1929-09-06) September 6, 1929 (age 84)
Athens, Ohio
Height5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight160 lb (73 kg; 11 st)
Nationality United States
ResidenceOrlando, Florida
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Career
CollegeOhio University
Turned professional1951
Former tour(s)PGA Tour
Senior PGA Tour
Professional wins13
Number of wins by tour
PGA Tour11
Other2
Best results in Major Championships
(Wins: 1)
Masters Tournament3rd: 1960, 1962
U.S. OpenT3: 1960
The Open ChampionshipDNP
PGA ChampionshipWon: 1958
Achievements and awards
PGA Player of the Year1958
Vardon Trophy1957

Dow Henry Finsterwald, Sr. (born September 6, 1929) is an American professional golfer who is best known for winning the 1958 PGA Championship. He won 11 Tour titles between 1955 and 1963, played on four Ryder Cup teams, and served as non-playing captain for the 1977 U.S. Ryder Cup team.

Finsterwald was born and raised in Athens, Ohio. He attended Ohio University in his hometown, where he played on the golf team, and graduated in the Class of 1952. In 1969, he was inducted into the Ohio University Athletics Hall of Fame joining his father, Russ Finsterwald, who was in the first class of inductees as a football player, and later basketball and football head coach.[1] He turned professional in 1951.

Finsterwald won 11 times on the PGA Tour during his career. He was known for his superb short game. He was one of the most consistent players on the Tour in the late 1950s and early 1960s. He finished fifth or better more than 50 times in his career. Finsterwald was a close friend of Arnold Palmer, who was also one of the dominant players on the Tour during this same time period.

Finsterwald played on four Ryder Cup Teams (1957, 1959, 1961, 1963) and was the non-playing captain of the 1977 team. He won the Vardon Trophy in 1957, which is awarded to the tour professional with the lowest scoring average. In 1958, he was honored as PGA Player of the Year.[2] Finsterwald finished in the money in 72 consecutive tournaments – second only to Byron Nelson's 113 consecutive cuts. This record stood for many years until eclipsed by Jack Nicklaus, Hale Irwin and Tiger Woods; however, he is still fifth on the list today.

The 1958 PGA Championship was held at Llanerch Country Club in Havertown, Pennsylvania. This was the first PGA Championship held after the format was switched from match play to stroke play. Finsterwald finished the tournament with a two-stroke victory over Billy Casper.[3] Three and one-half years later, Finsterwald and Gary Player lost one of the most epic battles in golf history – the 1962 Masters – in a playoff to Arnold Palmer.

Finsterwald was once involved in litigation in which a plaintiff claimed she lost the sight in her right eye as a result of an errant tee shot he hit at the 18th hole at the 1973 Western Open. A jury found Finsterwald not liable; however, Midlothian (Illinois) Country Club's insurers had to pay the woman about $450,000.[4]

Finsterwald served as director of golf at The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, Colorado for 28 years. He simultaneously served as PGA of America vice-president from 1976–1978; and on the USGA Rules of Golf committee from 1979-1981. He is also the Pro Emeritus of the Pikewood National Golf Club, based in Morgantown, West Virginia.

Finsterwald was honored by fellow Ohioan Jack Nicklaus at the 2007 Memorial Tournament in Dublin, Ohio. In 2008, he was inducted into the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame.[2]

Finsterwald lives in Orlando, Florida during the winter and Colorado Springs during the summer with his wife, Linda.[2] They have three sons and a daughter. His middle son, Dow Jr., is head pro at the Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas, site of the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial.

Professional wins (13)[edit]

PGA Tour wins (11)[edit]

No.DateTournamentWinning scoreMargin of victoryRunner(s)-up
1May 29, 1955Fort Wayne Invitational−19 (65-66-71-67=269)3 strokesUnited States Doug Ford
2May 13, 1956Carling Open Invitational−14 (65-71-69-69=274)3 strokesUnited States Jack Burke, Jr., United States Billy Casper,
United States Billy Maxwell
3Feb 11, 1957Tucson Open Invitational−11 (68-67-66-68=269)PlayoffUnited States Don Whitt
4Jul 20, 1958PGA Championship−4 (67-72-70-67=276)2 strokesUnited States Billy Casper
5Sep 8, 1958Utah Open−17 (69-65-67-66=267)1 strokeUnited States Fred Hawkins, United States Arnold Palmer
6Apr 12, 1959Greater Greensboro Open−6 (68-68-65-77=278)2 strokesUnited States Art Wall, Jr.
7Aug 9, 1959Carling Open Invitational−8 (74-68-66-68=276)1 strokeUnited States Gene Littler, United States Mike Souchak
8Sep 7, 1959Kansas City Open Invitational−5 (68-69-69-69=275)PlayoffUnited States Don Fairfield
9Jan 11, 1960Los Angeles Open−4 (70-68-71-71=280)3 strokesUnited States Bill Collins, United States Jay Hebert,
United States Dave Ragan
10Apr 24, 1960Greater New Orleans Open Invitational−18 (69-66-66-69=270)6 strokesUnited States Al Besselink
11Jun 3, 1963500 Festival Open Invitation−16 (68-68-64-68=268)2 strokesUnited States Tommy Aaron, United States Julius Boros,
United States Tony Lema, United States Bobby Nichols

Major championship is shown in bold.

Other wins (2)[edit]

this list may be incomplete

Major championships[edit]

Wins (1)[edit]

YearChampionship54 holesWinning scoreMarginRunner-up
1958PGA Championship2 shot deficit−4 (67-72-70-67=276)2 strokesUnited States Billy Casper

Results timeline[edit]

Tournament1950195119521953195419551956195719581959
Masters TournamentDNPT50T46DNPDNPDNPT24T7T17T18
U.S. OpenCUTDNPCUTDNPDNPT28DNPT13DNPT11
PGA ChampionshipDNPDNPDNPDNPDNPDNPDNP214
Tournament1960196119621963196419651966196719681969
Masters Tournament3CUT3T5T9T21T57CUTDNPDNP
U.S. OpenT3T6DNPT128CUTDNPDNPCUTT65
PGA ChampionshipT15T41T11T3CUTT63T12T60T48T76
Tournament1970197119721973197419751976197719781979
Masters TournamentDNPDNPDNPDNPDNPDNPDNPDNPDNPDNP
U.S. OpenCUTDNPDNPCUTDNPDNPDNPDNPDNPDNP
PGA ChampionshipCUTCUTT58CUTCUTT70DNP70CUTCUT
Tournament19801981198219831984
Masters TournamentDNPDNPDNPDNPDNP
U.S. OpenCUTDNPDNPDNPDNP
PGA ChampionshipCUTDNPDNPDNPCUT

Note: Finsterwald never played in The Open Championship.
DNP = Did not play
CUT = missed the half-way cut
"T" indicates a tie for a place
Green background for wins. Yellow background for top-10.

Summary[edit]

TournamentWins2nd3rdTop-5Top-10Top-25EventsCuts made
Masters Tournament0023591412
U.S. Open001136158
The Open Championship00000000
PGA Championship1114472415
Totals114812225335

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Ohio University Athletics Hall of Fame site". Retrieved November 21, 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c Baines, Gary (February 28, 2008). "Dow Getting His Due". Colorado Golf Journal. Archived from the original on July 8, 2011. Retrieved April 7, 2010. 
  3. ^ "Year by Year History of the PGA Championship – 1958: Bolt was an angel, Dow was a terror". PGA of America. Retrieved November 21, 2013. 
  4. ^ Clifford, Robert A. (May 1, 1996). "Getting Teed off Over Golf Balls". Retrieved November 21, 2013. 

External links[edit]