US Senior Open Golf Tournament

Facts, history about the biggest tourney in senior golf

Gene Sauers celebrates his victory at the 2016 US Senior Open
Gene Sauers celebrates his victory at the 2016 US Senior Open. Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

The U.S. Senior Open, conducted by the United States Golf Association (USGA), has been played annually since 1980. Local and sectional qualifiers are played for this national championship, just as for the U.S. Open and U.S. Women's Open. The format is four rounds of stroke play, with a cut after two rounds.

The U.S. Senior Open is one of the five majors in senior golf and is the most prestigious of the Champions Tour majors.

2019 Tournament

  • When: June 27-30, 2019
  • Where: The Warren Course at Notre Dame, South Bend, Ind.

2018 US Senior Open
David Toms, a PGA Championship winner on the "regular" tour, won this tournament for his first senior major. Toms sank a test par putt on the final hole to finish at 3-under 277. He won by a single stroke over runners-up Miguel Angel Jimenez, Tim Petrovic and Jerry Kelly. It was Toms' first win overall on the Champions Tour, too.

2017 Tournament
Kenny Perry won this tournament for the second time, and did so with a record-setting score. In Perry's previous win in 2013, he tied Hale Irwin's 72-hole tournament record of 267. In this victory, Perry grabbed that record all to himself with a final score of 264. That was two strokes better than runner-up Kirk Triplett. It was Perry's fourth overall win in a senior major and his ninth overall Champions Tour victory.

U.S. Senior Open Scoring Records

  • Low round: 62 - Loren Roberts, third round, 2006; Kirk Triplett, first round, 2017
  • Low total: 267 - Hale Irwin (66-71-65-65), 2000; Kenny Perry (67-73-64-63), 2013

U.S. Senior Open Trivia and Notes

  • The first U.S. Senior Open was for golfers ages 55 and up, but in 1981 the minimum age was lowered to 50.
  • Roberto de Vicenzo won the first U.S. Senior Open, with amateur William C. Campbell runner-up.
  • Miller Barber is the only three-time winner of this event, taking the title in 1982, 1984 and 1985.
  • Three golfers have won the title in back-to-back years: Barber (1984-85), Gary Player (1987-88), and Allen Doyle (2005-06).
  • Don Pooley is the only U.S. Senior Open champion to win after playing his way into the tournament through qualifying. Pooley won in 2002.
  • In case of playoff, a 3- or 4-hole aggregate playoff is used. But before that switch was made, there were four 18-hole playoffs: in 1981, Arnold Palmer defeated Bob Stone and Billy Casper; in 1983 Casper defeated Rod Funseth in 19 holes; in 1988 Gary Player defeated Bob Charles; and in 1991 Jack Nicklaus defeated Chi Chi Rodriguez.
  • In 2017, Kenny Perry won his second championship in this event, and did so by lowering the tournament scoring record by three shots. Perry's 264 bettered the previous record shared by Hale Irwin (2000) and ... Kenny Perry (2013). So in both Perry's wins, he tied or broke scoring records.

    Recent U.S. Senior Open Winners

    2018 - David Toms
    2017 - Kenny Perry
    2016 - Gene Sauers
    2015 - Jeff Maggert
    2014 - Colin Montgomerie
    2013 - Kenny Perry
    Full List of U.S. Senior Open Winners

    Future Sites

    • 2019: The Warren Course (University of Notre Dame), South Bend, Ind.
    • 2020: Newport Country Club, Newport, R.I.
    • 2021: Omaha (Neb.) Country Club
    • 2022: Saucon Valley Country Club, Bethlehem, Pa.