? Who is eligible to play in the U.S. Open?
•Entries are open to male professional golfers and amateurs with handicaps of two strokes or less. Most entrants, however, must qualify first in local and sectional qualifying rounds.
? How many golfers entered this year's Open?
•A record number of 2,476 filed entries to fill the starting field of 150. All but 21 had to play qualifying rounds.
June 11, 1961
? What course had held the most Opens?
•Four have been held at the Myopia Hunt Club in Hamilton, Mass. (1898, 1901, 1905, 1908), and four have been held at Baltusrol in Springfield, N.J. (1903, 1915, 1936, 1954). Three have been previously staged at Oakland Hills in Birmingham, Mich. (1924, 1937, 1951), and this year's Open will be the fourth.
? What is the record low score for the full tournament?
•In 1948 Ben Hogan shot a 276 at the Riviera Country Club in Los Angeles to win over Jimmy Demaret, who had 278. This was the only time anyone has broken 280.
? What is the highest winning score?
•In 1901 at Myopia, Willie Anderson and Alex Smith tied for first at 331, and Anderson won the subsequent playoff with an 85 against Smith's 86.
? What is the record low score for 18 holes?
•Lee Mackey shot a 64 in the first round at Merion in 1950, but the next day tumbled to an 81 and eventually finished tied for 25th.
? Who holds the record for the greatest number of strokes taken on a single hole?
•Ray Ainsley. In the second round of the 1938 tournament, played at Cherry Hills in Denver, Ainsley's second shot on the 16th hole kicked off the edge of the green and into a bordering creek. By the time he had slashed the drifting ball out of the rocks, mud and water, and finished the hole, the unfortunate Ainsley was soaking wet and had taken 19 strokes. It is a record that has never been threatened since.
? Who was the last foreign player to win?
•Ted Ray. He won in 1920 at Inverness with a score of 295, beating Harry Vardon, Jack Burke Sr., Leo Diegel and Jock Hutchison by a stroke.
? Who was the last amateur to win?
•In 1933 Johnny Goodman, an amateur from Omaha, won with a score of 287 at the North Shore Golf Club in Illinois, beating professional Ralph Guldahl by a stroke.
? Who was the first amateur to win?
•Francis Ouimet in 1913. A former caddie, he was playing in his first Open at the age of 20 and finished birdie-par in the rain to tie British professionals Harry Vardon, 43, and Ted Ray, 36, for first. The next day he won the championship playoff with a 72 to Vardon's 77 and Ray's 78.
? How many players have won both the U.S. Amateur and the Open in the same year?
•Only two. Bob Jones did it, of course, in 1930, the year of his Grand Slam. But Chick Evans had done it 14 years earlier, in 1916. In fact, all five of the amateurs who have won the Open—Jones, Evans, Francis Ouimet, Jerry Travers and Johnny Goodman—have also won the Amateur Championship as well.
?Has any player won the Open two years in a row?
•Yes. Willie Anderson won it in 1903, '04 and '05. Johnny McDermott won in 1911 and '12, Bob Jones in 1929 and '30, Ralph Guldahl in 1937 and '38, and Ben Hogan in 1950 and '51.
? What Open winner has the longest stretch of years between his first and last championship?
•So far, Gene Sarazen. He won the Open in 1922 at the age of 20, won his second and last Open in 1932. In 1940 Sarazen tied for first but lost the playoff to Lawson Little 73 to 70.
? What was the longest Open?
•In 1931 at Inverness, Billy Burke and George Von Elm tied for first at 292 and then had to negotiate a 72-hole playoff before Burke won with a score of 297 to Von Elm's 298.
? How many times has the Open been forced into a playoff?
•There have been 20—and six of them have been three-way playoffs. Jones has been in the most—four—and won two.
? What has been the biggest winning margin?
•Eleven shots. In 1899 Willie Smith shot a 315, and George Low, Val Fitzjohn and W. H. Way were second at 326. In 1921 Jim Barnes won with a 289 while Walter Hagen and Fred McLeod were second at 298, a margin of nine shots.
? When did the Open first charge admission fees to spectators?
•Not until 1922.
? Has the championship always scheduled 36 holes for the final day?
•Yes. But until 1926 (1919 excepted) two rounds were played on the first day as well, making it a two-day tournament.
? Has there ever been an exception to the rule of 36 holes on the final day?
•Only one. In 1959 drenching rains postponed the final 18 holes for one day.
? Who was the oldest champion?
•Ted Ray, who won in 1920 at the age of 43.
? Who was the youngest champion?
•The first champion was the youngest ever to win. He was Horace Rawlins, who won in 1895 at the age of 19.
? Have two members of the same family ever won?
•Yes. Willie Smith won in 1899, and his older brother Alex won in 1906 and 1910.
? Has a left-hander ever won the Open?
? Sam Snead is famous for never having won the Open, but how many times has he finished second?
•Four times: in 1937, '47, '49 and '53. In 1939 he took an 8 on the last hole at the Philadelphia Country Club, when a par 5 would have won, and finished fifth.
? Has any Open winner shot successively improving rounds?
•Yes, but only one. In 1951 at Oakland Hills Ben Hogan shot 76-73-71-67-287—to win by two shots over Clayton Heafner.
? What was the lowest final round ever shot by an Open winner?
•Arnold Palmer's 65 last year at Cherry Hills.
? Where will the Open be played in the next two years?
•In 1962 it will be played at Oakmont in Pittsburgh, and in 1963 at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass., the scene and the 50th anniversary of Ouimet's playoff win over Vardon and Ray.
? Who has won the most Opens?
•Willie Anderson, Bob Jones and Ben Hogan have won four each, but Hogan will have a chance to win his fifth this year at Oakland Hills.