One of the many beautiful things about being a professional golfer is the ability to have a longer career than most other athletes. Let’s face it. With a few notable exceptions, there aren’t many MLB, NFL, or NBA players that have careers that span more than two decades or play into their mid-to-late 40s. But that’s certainly not an uncommon thing on the PGA Tour, is it? Just look at 50-year-old Phil Mickelson. Sure, he plays a few events on the PGA Tour Champions these days but he still gets out there and tees it up with the less-than-50 crowd on the regular tour on a consistent basis.
And it’s not as if the older guys can’t win on the PGA Tour or even win major championships. Jack Nicklaus won his sixth and final Masters at age 46 and Tiger Woods won his 15th major at the age of 43. And look at what 47-year-old Stewart Cink just did at the RBC Heritage, shooting a pair of 63s to open the tournament en route to a 19-under finish and a four-stroke victory, his second win of the season. But what’s crazy is that Cink’s win at Harbour Town doesn’t put him anywhere close to being the oldest player to win a PGA Tour event.
Here’s a quick look at the five oldest players to win an official PGA Tour event.
5. John Barnum-51 years, one month, five days
John Barnum holds a special place in PGA Tour history as he’s the only player to win his first tournament after turning 50. Barnum was 51 years, one month, and three days old when he won the 1962 Cajun Classic Open Invitational at Oakbourne Country Club in Lafayette, Louisiana, the lone PGA Tour victory of his career.
4. Jim Barnes-51 years, three months, seven days
Four-time major championship winner — he’s actually a nine-time major champ if you include his five non-modern major wins — Jim Barnes was one of the greatest players of his era and won 22 times on the PGA Tour. His final win came at the 1937 Long Island Open, which he won by seven strokes to become the first player to win a PGA Tour event after turning 50. Barnes was 51 years, three months, and seven days old when he won his final tournament, at least on tour as he won the New Jersey State Open, a tourney featuring both amateurs and pros, in 1939.
3. Davis Love III-51 years, four months, 10 days
1997 PGA Championship winner Davis Love III won his first PGA Tour event, the 1987 MCI Heritage Golf Classic, six days after his 23rd birthday, and his 21st and last more than 28 years later. At 51 years, four months, and 10 days old, DLIII won the 2015 Wyndham Championship at Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, North Carolina, by one stroke over Jason Gore.
2. Art Wall-51 years, seven months, 10 days
1959 Masters champion Art Wall won 17 times on the PGA Tour, his final victory coming at the 1975 Greater Milwaukee Open when he was 51 years, seven months, and 10 days old, winning by one stroke over Gary McCord.
1. Sam Snead-52 years, 10 months, eight days
It’s only fitting that Sam Snead holds the top spot on this list seeing as how he still sits on top of the all-time PGA Tour wins list (tied with Tiger Woods) with 82. That 82nd victory came on April 4, 1965, at the Greater Greensboro Open, his eighth win at the event, when he was 52 years, 10 months, and eight days old. And it’s not as if things were close as this was a five-stroke victory for the seven-time major champion.
Stats courtesy of PGATour.com