Wire-to-Wire Winners of Women's PGA Championship

The Women's PGA Championship (formerly known as the LPGA Championship) dates to 1955. In the many decades since, how many golfers have won the tournament wire-to-wire?

It hasn't been all that uncommon, actually, unless you limit your answer to golfers who held the outright lead (no ties) after each round of the tournament. In that case, only four golfers have won the Women's PGA Championship wire-to-wire with no ties.

Winning Wire-to-Wire, No Ties

These are the four golfers who won this major championship by holding the outright lead following all four rounds:
  • Se Ri Pak, 1998: Pak's win a couple months later in the 1998 U.S. Women's Open is the more-famous one. But her first win in a major was wire-to-wire in the 1998 LPGA Championship. Pak opened 65-68 and wasn't seriously challenged after that, winning by three strokes.

  • Yani Tseng, 2011: 22-year-old Tseng won this major for the second time in 2011, and it was her fourth major championship victory overall. Tseng led by one after a first-round 66, and still by one after a 70 in Round 2. Her lead grew to five when she scored 66 in the third round, and after a 66 in the final round Tseng won by 10 shots.

  • Hannah Green, 2019: Green's victory was not just a first win in a major for her, but her first career win on the LPGA Tour. She led by one after the first round, by three following the second round, by one after Round 3, and won by a single stroke over runner-up Sung Hyun Park.

  • In Gee Chun, 2022: Chun jumped out front with a 64 in the first round, opening a five-stroke lead. That grew to six strokes after the second round. Chun didn't play great over the final two rounds, scoring 75-75, but she never gave up the lead and won by one shot over Minjee Lee and Lexi Thompson.

Winning Wire-to-Wire, Ties Included

The number of additional golfers who won the LPGA Championship/Women's PGA Champion wire-to-wire, if we include those who were tied for the lead after one or more rounds in the year they won, has now grown to double-digits:
  • Beverly Hanson, 1955
  • Mickey Wright, 1958
  • Mickey Wright, 1961
  • Judy Kimball, 1962
  • Kathy Whitworth, 1967
  • Sandra Post, 1968
  • Jan Stpehenson, 1982
  • Nancy Lopez, 1985
  • Betsy King, 1992
  • Cristie Kerr, 2010
Note that Beverly Hanson, in 1955, was this LPGA major's very first winner. Also note that Mickey Wright, in 1958 and 1961, is the only golfer who makes the list twice.

Sandra Post's victory in 1968 made her, at the time, not just the youngest Women's PGA Championship winner but the youngest winner of any LPGA major. At 20 years old, Post held that second record for 40 years.

In the 2010 LPGA Championship, Cristie Kerr won by a whopping 12 strokes, the tournament's margin-of-victory record. But she didn't lead outright after each round, sharing the lead after Round 1.

Related articles:

Associated Press. "Upstart surprises LPGA field with 1st major title," Wilmington (N.C.) Star-News, May 18, 1998, https://news.google.com/newspapers?id=jtpOAAAAIBAJ&sjid=oh4EAAAAIBAJ&pg=6598%2C1271337
LPGA Tour. Media Guide, All-Time Records.
PGA of America. KPMG Women's PGA 2024 Media Guide, All-Time Records.

Popular posts from this blog

Ryder Cup Captains: The Full List