Arnold Palmer, who shot 85-81 at NCR to miss the cut by 21 strokes, said the U.S. Senior Open was his last major. "As far as trying to compete in a major championship such as the Open, this is it. I'm through," he said. Palmer, 75, played in his first Senior Open in 1981, when the USGA lowered the eligibility age from 55 to 50 to take advantage of Palmer's popularity. Here are the players with the most Senior Open starts.
PLAYER ... STARTS
Arnold Palmer ...¬†25
September 7, 2005
Dale Douglass ... 20
Miller Barber ... 19
Gary Player ... 17
Chi Chi Rodriguez ...¬†16
Bob Charles ... 15
"Nah, I'll go and get beat up for a week. No big deal. There's always a cold beer at the end."
--1982 MASTERS CHAMPION CRAIG STADLER ON WHETHER THE LENGTHENING OF AUGUSTA NATIONAL DAMPENS HIS ENTHUSIASM TO RETURN.
Curtis Strange had just double-bogeyed the third hole of the Senior Open--the 12th, because he started on the back nine--and "was getting ready to throw up on myself," he says, when he holed a 202-yard three-iron shot on the par-3 13th. Strange has made 12 aces in his life, 11 in competition. His best-known came on the 12th hole during the second round of the 1988 Masters. Strange, who earlier had four-putted the 9th green, memorably retrieved his ball and tossed it into Rae's Creek. "I wasn't disgusted--you guys always got that wrong," Strange said to writers at NCR. "I was having fun and threw it in the water to show some personality, some fun-ness."
Strange shot 71-75 at NCR to miss the cut by one. He's been playing more since leaving ABC in May 2004. "When I hit a bad shot now, it's not because of being on TV," he says. "I'm simply not playing well. I'm not afraid to admit that I have the flinches with the chippies."