On this week’s show, I’m joined by the great Tom Patri, 9-time winner between the PGA & Champions Tours Tom Purtzer, the Pittsburgh Field Club’s Head Golf Professional Chris Sheehan, and the Curator of History at Oakmont and Allegheny Country Club, David Moore.
TP and I go back to his 1981 D2 National Championship while he was at Florida Southern. We hear about the penalty levied on him and his team in 1980 that cost them the National Championship and how they used that to fuel them to win it the next year. Tom shares some advice for kids and their parents looking to play college golf and he talks about the great player that Andy Bean was. We lost Andy a couple of days ago.
Tom Purtzer won 9 times between the PGA & Champions Tours. One of the many amazing things about his accomplishments is that he won tournaments over the course of 3 different decades, winning in 1977, ’84, ’88, and ’91. We get into one of his professional wins not on the PGA Tour, a 10-stroke victory at the 1979 Japan vs. USA Golf Matches. He also takes us inside his conversation with Ben Hogan at the Champions Dinner prior to the Colonial National Invitational.
Chris Sheehan is the Head Professional at the Pittsburgh Field Club. Chris has worked at some of the most prestigious courses in our country like Oak Hill, Inverness, and Lebanon Country Club. Along his golf journey, he got to work with Bill and Craig Harmon. Chris and I get into the rich history of PFC. The club is 142 years old and beginning preparation for their 150th anniversary in 2032. We hear about Alexander Findlay’s original course design plus the Hall of Fame Designers who have tinkered with the course over the years like A.W. Tillinghast, Donald Ross, Robert Trent Jones, and Tripp Davis. We also hear the tale of the 18th hole which was transformed from a 275-yard Par 4 into a Par 3 after a few members died climbing up the steep elevation change from the tee to the green.
David Moore is the Curator of Collections at Oakmont and Allegheny Country Clubs. David tells some fantastic Arnold Palmer stories that give great insight into who Mr. Palmer was. We go way back and hear the history behind the first 25 years at Oakmont. He also shares his insights on the origin of the Stimpmeter, the Golf Heritage Society’s National Convention, the work he did at Montclair Golf Club in New Jersey, and an inexpensive DIY project to display your autographed golf balls.