by Jeff Skinner
While the boys of The PGA Tour toil down in Dallas Texas at The Byron Nelson Championship it’s time to remember the most unbeatable record in all of sport. Few golf fans and journalist will debate the fact that Byron Nelson was a true gentleman. He was revered as few men in golf were for his manner off the course as well as his historic accomplishments on the course.
Nelson’s 1945 season will never be duplicated, or even threatened for that matter. He won eleven consecutive starts on the PGA Tour and had eighteen total victories for the year. No modern day golfer will ever come close to that; heck some of the big names don’t even play eighteen time s in a season.
Nelson’s swing was so repeatable and smooth he was used as the model for the first mechanical swing machine and it was called appropriately, Iron Byron.
As prolific as his accomplishments on the tour were, his legacy is one of mentoring and advising generations of golfers. His counsel, advice and friendship aided golfers from Ken Venturi to Tom Watson to Scott Verplanck and many more in between. It’s a shame that the tournament honoring Byron doesn’t get the field it used to. Not too long ago this was a premier tour stop but as Jeff Rude writes, many factors have contributed to it falling from its upper echelon status.
It’s a shame that “The Nelson” is an afterthought to many tour pros but that’s what happens, all things change. Almost all things, Nelson’s streak of eleven consecutive wins is safe. That will never change.