Who Was the First Golfer to Win The Masters Twice?

The Masters Tournament was founded in 1934, and it didn't take long for the championship to crown its first 2-time winner. Horton Smith was the first golfer to win The Masters twice, by winning two of the first three Masters played.

Smith won the very first Masters in 1934, then won again in 1936:

  • 1934 Masters: Smith's win in the very first Masters Tournament was also the first wire-to-wire victory. He was tied for the lead after Round 1 and held the outright lead after each successive round. Those leads were only one stroke after each round, however, and one stroke is the margin by which he won over runner-up Craig Wood.

  • 1936 Masters: Smith was the chaser, not the leader, in the third Masters ever played — Harry Cooper held the lead after each of the first three rounds. Cooper led Smith by three going into the final round. But in that last round, Smith scored 72 to Cooper's 76 to pull out the one-stroke victory.
These two Masters wins were the only major championships won by Smith, but his victories were not shocks to the golf fans of the era. Smith was one of the top golfers. He won eight times in 1929 (good enough to make the list of highest single-season PGA Tour win totals) and four times in 1930, and also had multiple-win seasons on the PGA Tour in 1928, 1934-37 and 1941. Smith is also regarded as one of the all-time great putters.

He did not have a lot of success in his other Masters appearances, however. In 1935, in-between his two wins, he tied for 19th. He was 19th again in 1937 and in 1941. But his only other Top 20 finish was solo fifth in the 1942 Masters. The first three-time Masters champion didn't come until 1950.

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