All sports have their obvious points of ascension, the place that you reach the pinnacle and etch your place into the history of the respective sport that you are playing. Football has the Super Bowl, Baseball has the World Series, and Golf has the series of four majors that will determine who is the crème of the crop, the best of the best. You don’t have to have any complicated formulas, ridiculous statistical booklets or self-important critics telling you who is the best and why, it is quite simply the person that emerges at the top of each of these four contests. Win at the British Open and you have etched your name into the history of golf as one of the best to swing a club.
While all of the four majors in golf are special, the British Open holds a special place in the sport due to its status as the longest running and oldest of the four majors. Beginning in or around the 1860s, the British Open has given the Claret Jug to its winner, sometimes calling this jug the championship jug. The Claret Jug is used to hold Red Wine and is very well known in the area where the British Open is played, more reason to use it as the official face of the tournament in general.
The British Open does not have a permanent home, but has been most frequent played at Royal St. Andrews 26 times and Prestwick a total of 24 times. Tiger Woods won the most recent British Open at Royal Liverpool in 2006 after playing a very emotional round that he would eventually dedicate to his recently passed father Earl Woods. Harry Vardon has won the most British Open Tournaments with six while three others are tied right behind him with five, though none are still active with the ability to pass Vardon that won all six of his titles in a 18 year period from 1896 to 1914. Greg Norman logged the lowest total score of 267 from Royal St. Georges in 1993 to win the British Open.