by Jeff Skinner
I am still nursing a Masters hangover and have been counting the days to our next major championship. With all due respect to this week’s Zurich Classic and next month’s Players Championship (sorry, still not a Major) The U.S. Open can’t get here soon enough and it’s only 51 days away.
There’s plenty of golf between now and then so I’ll have to get by with making plans to visit Merion Golf Club when they open the gates to Open patrons and reading the history of this celebrated club. Click here for Merion’s own history page.
The USGA has visited this iconic course more than any other club and the 2013 U.S. Open will mark the nineteenth occasion the USGA flag has flown over what was formerly was The Merion Cricket Club.
The first visit came in 1904 for the Women’s Amateur and the USGA must have liked what they saw as the love affair with Merion has continued for over a hundred years.
The last time the Open was held at Merion was 1981 when David Graham won and Merion has waited too long for another Open. With the explosion of the popularity and the corporate commitment the Open now commands the relatively small property has kept the Open away. But the USGA has made a concerted effort to be able to fit the now outsized Open on their smaller but cherished property.
Bobby Jones’ history alone is enough to rival any other club in America. Jones played in his first national championship at Merion, the 1916 Amateur. He won his first U. S. Amateur there in 1924 and he capped off his Grand Slam with a farewell win at Merion with another U. S Amateur in 1930.
The USGA has been “Looking Back at Merion” with a series of articles highlighting each visit to Merion. Click here for the link to a look at Merion’s history and a snapshot of the USGA Championships held there.