In 1960, This Amateur Beat Arnold Palmer and Ben Hogan at Augusta

In 1960, This Amateur Beat Arnold Palmer and Ben Hogan at Augusta

Arnold Palmer - 1960 The King came to the 18th hole needing a birdie to win after tying Ken Venturi with a long birdie putt on 17. Palmer found the right side of the fairway with his drive and then rocketed a 6-iron to the uphill 18th green. He nearly holed it and made the subsequent 5-footer to secure the title.
Arnold Palmer 1960

Looking back on decades of playing golf, there is probably one afternoon that Charles Harrison remembers better than most.

On a spring day in 1960, Harrison, who had qualified for the Masters that year by way of the U.S. Amateur, played a practice round with Arnold Palmer, Ben Hogan, and Australian golfer Norman Von Nida. This was already a round to remember: with Augusta as the setting, the Masters was fast approaching, and the biggest names in the sport in attendance.

And then he carded the low round in the group.

Harrison shot a 65, winning bets against both Palmer and Hogan, who shot a 73 and 72, respectively. A 2010 profile in the magazine Golf Georgia recounted the story:

“At the turn Hogan asked Harrison where they stood in just their individual bet between the two of them. ‘You’re four-down,’ replied Harrison, who had shot a 31 to Hogan’s 35. ‘Then I guess I better press you on the back side,’ Hogan replied. Harrison smiled back at him and said, ‘Mr. Hogan, I wish I had a recording of that.’”

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Harrison’s accomplished career as an amateur led to his induction into the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame in 1991. He qualified for the U.S. Amateur 16 times, competed in two Masters, and won the Atlanta Amateur 10 times, more than anyone else. But for all his achievements, beating Arnie and Ben Hogan at once has to rank near the top. Take a look at the scorecard, posted to Instagram by the company Classic Georgia yesterday.