May is here and conversations about the next PGA Championship have already begun to circulate. Each year, players worldwide set their sights on a victory at a PGA Major. The PGA Championship history is very intriguing and we cannot wait to see who the next golfer is to take the crown in 2022.
PGA Championship History
Dating back to 1916, the PGA Championship has been something professional golfers look forward to showcasing their talents in a never-ending pursuit of golfing glory. This event formerly was the final Major of each season, played in August on the weekend before Labor Day. At that time, the event competed in a Match Play format before converting in 1958 to the Stroke Play format we are used to watching now.
Different times of year – different opportunities
Following a change in 2019, the Major now takes play the weekend before Memorial Day in May. The PGA ultimately decided to move the tournament’s date to expand the opportunities available. Moving from August to May immediately offered additional courses to be played throughout the country without battling the summer heat. Eliminating the heat bodes well for the players, which means healthier turf conditions.
The PGA Championship is one of four major events hosted by the PGA Tour. The events have different levels of meaning depending on who is competing and the requirements for entry. For example, the Master Tournament is the first major of the year and is renowned as one of the most anticipated sporting events in the world. The time and effort it takes to make this happen is unfathomable. Even down to determining the final pairings in golf, everything with the major championships are designed to get the best results.
Different from masters?
The difference between the Masters and PGA Championship is simple; the Masters is by invitation only; however, anyone can attend with an invitation, even amateurs. On the other hand, the PGA Championship is exclusive to the top-performing professionals based on the Official World Golf Rankings, with exceptions.
Who gets to play?
Going into detail about exactly how exclusive this tournament is could take a big chunk of time, so to keep this concise, I will give you this list provided by the PGA directly:
- All former PGA Champions
- Winners of the last five Masters
- Winners of the last five U.S. Opens
- Winners of the last five Open Championships
- Winners of the last three Players Championships
- The top 15 finishers at the previous PGA Championship
- The top 20 finishers at the PGA Professional Championship
- Year-To-Date PGA Championship Points Leaders
- Ryder Cup team members (assuming they remain in the current top 100 of the OWGR)
- Winners of PGA Tour-approved tournaments
- Special Invitations
- Any additional spots held for those leading in PGA Championship Points
Seeing it all written down indeed sheds light on the caliber of the talent that competes every year at the PGA Championship.
Southern Hills Country Club
This year the tournament finds itself at Southern Hills Country Club, a private, member-owned golf course in Tulsa, Oklahoma. This golf course is no stranger to hosting huge tournaments and boasts many prestigious events:
- 1946 U.S. Women’s Amateur
- 1953 Junior Amateur
- 1958 U.S. Open
- 1961 U.S. Senior Amateur
- 1965 U.S. Amateur
- 1970 PGA Championship
- 1977 U.S. Open
- 1982 PGA Championship
- 1987 Women’s Mid-Am
- 1994 PGA Championship
- 1995 Tour Championship
- 1996 Tour Championship
- 2001 U.S. Open
- 2007 PGA Championship
- 2009 U.S. Amateur
- 2021 Senior PGA Championship
- 2022 PGA Championship
The history you will find at Southern Hills Country Club is undeniable. Which always adds to the excitement as your best players on Tour compete for the coveted Wanamaker Trophy. The trophy is named after Rodman Wanamaker, nicknamed the “Godfather of the PGA,” as he was a crucial part of forming the PGA.
PGA championship history – Trophy
The trophy itself is the most prominent trophy that can be won on the PGA Tour, weighing 27 pounds and two and a half feet tall. Imagine hoisting that historic, massive silver trophy over your head after outpacing the best players in the game and earning the title PGA Championship winner.
Where are future events held?
Looking past Southern Hills and 2022, the PGA Championship will be making stops all over the United States. Returning to Oak Hill Country Club for the 4th time in 2023, Vahalla Golf club for the 4th time in 2024, before its second showing Quail Hollow in 2025, and Aronomink Golf Club in 2026. These courses will be excited to host this particular Major again, but in 2027 and 2028, the excitement will build as PGA Frisco and Olympic Club golf course will be hosting the event for the first time in history.
Favorite Major tournament for 2022?
The Major tournaments in the PGA are tough to compare to any other event in sports. A team does not win in PGA Majors, and teammates can not make up for your poor play. Players must compete against one another and their mental prowess as well. A single person walks away as the victor, and redemption must wait until the following year, hoping to perform well enough to return to the event. We will all see the 2022 PGA Championship winner with the prized Wanamaker Trophy in a few short weeks, and again, a well-deserving player will make PGA history.