Colin Stuart Montgomerie, OBE (born 23 June 1963) is a Scottish professional golfer. He has won a record eight European Tour Order of Merit titles, including a streak of seven consecutively from 1993 to 1999. He has won 31 European Tour events, the most of any British player, placing him fourth on the all-time list of golfers with most European Tour victories.
Montgomerie won three consecutive Volvo PGA Championships at Wentworth Club between 1998 and 2000. He has finished runner-up on five occasions in major championships and his career-high world ranking is second. He was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2013.
In June 2013, after turning 50, Montgomerie joined the Champions Tour, where he made his debut in the Constellation Senior Players Championship, one of the five senior major championships. On 25 May 2014, Montgomerie won his first senior major championship at the Senior PGA Championship. He followed this up on 13 July 2014, when he claimed his second senior major at the U.S. Senior Open. On 24 May 2015, Montgomerie defended his Senior PGA Championship title to win his third senior major. However, in 2016 he narrowly missed out on making it three Senior PGA Championships in a row – finishing second and three shots behind winner Rocco Mediate. He won twice on the senior circuit in 2017, winning the inaugural Japan Airlines Championship before claiming his sixth Champions Tour win at the SAS Championship.
Although Scottish by birth and ancestry, he was raised in Yorkshire, England, where his father, James Montgomerie, was Managing Director of Fox's Biscuits. He spent a number of years with the Ilkley Golf Club, where he was tutored by the past professional Bill Ferguson. He was educated at both Leeds Grammar School and Strathallan School, Perthshire. During his time in Leeds, he became a supporter of Leeds United. His father later became the secretary of Royal Troon Golf Club, one of Scotland's most famous clubs.
Montgomerie became one of the first British golfers to go to a United States college, attending Houston Baptist University, where he played on the golf team and became its top player. He won three important Scottish amateur tournaments – the 1983 Scottish Youths Championship, the 1985 Scottish Stroke Play Championship, and the 1987 Scottish Amateur Championship. He also played for Scotland twice in the Eisenhower Trophy (1984 and 1986) and for Great Britain and Ireland in the Walker Cup twice (1985 and 1987). Before turning pro he considered a career in sports management, utilizing his degree in business management and law; the interview process included a golf outing that convinced the firm he should become a client rather than an employee.
Montgomerie turned professional in 1988, and was named the Rookie of the Year on the European Tour that season. He quickly developed into one of Europe's top pros, winning his first event at the 1989 Portuguese Open TPC by 11 shots, and making his Ryder Cup debut in 1991. He finished first on the European Tour Order of Merit every year from 1993 to 1999 (a record for most consecutive Orders of Merit), and has 31 victories on the tour, including the 1998, 1999, and 2000 Volvo PGA Championships at Wentworth, England. However, despite many near-misses, Montgomerie was unable to win on the PGA Tour.
Montgomerie first reached the top-10 in the Official World Golf Rankings in 1994, and spent almost 400 weeks in the top-10. His highest ranking was number two. In his prime Montgomerie was considered one of the best drivers of the golf ball in the world and became a very precise iron player, often able to judge the distance he hit the ball exactly from long range.
Montgomerie came first in the Volvo Bonus Pool every year from 1993 to 1998. The Volvo Bonus Pool was an extra tranche of prize money awarded at the end of each European Tour season from 1988 to 1998 to the regular members of the tour who had had the best performances over the season.
His form fell away gradually in the new millennium, partly due to marriage problems, and his ranking slumped to 82nd in the world, but he came back strongly in 2005, winning a record eighth European Tour Order of Merit and returning to the top ten in the World Rankings. Late in 2005 he became the first man to win 20 million Euros on the European Tour—topping the European Tour's all-time highest earners list. He remained the leader in career earnings on the European Tour until 2010, when he was surpassed by Ernie Els.
Despite the drop in form, his influence remained strong. In 2012, Montgomerie was named by the Golf Club Managers' Association's Golf Club Management magazine as the seventh most powerful person in British golf.
At the end of 2004, Montgomerie was named an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in the New Year's Honours. He represents the Turnberry resort in Scotland, where there is a Colin Montgomerie Golf Academy.
After re-forming his partnership with caddie Alastair McLean in 2004, the pair split again on 10 June, a week before the start of the U.S. Open. Montgomerie managed to win for the first time in nearly two years at the Smurfit Kappa European Open in July 2007, silencing the critics who suggested that he would not win again. In mid-2008 Montgomerie slipped out of the top 100 players in the world ranking system.
A runner-up finish at the 2008 French Open in June boosted him back up the rankings, but his good play was short-lived, and as a result Montgomerie failed to qualify for Nick Faldo's 2008 Ryder Cup team. In March 2009, Montgomerie played in his milestone 500th European Tour event at the Open de Andalucia where he played well and made the cut, but was not a factor on the weekend.
After nearly two years without a top-10 finish, Montgomerie posted a final round of 68 for a share of 7th place in the 2011 BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth. In August 2012, Montgomerie finished tied for 6th at the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles, his highest finish in over four years.
Montgomerie is generally considered to be one of the best golfers never to have won a major championship, after finishing in second place on five separate occasions. During what most consider to be his best years in the 1990s Montgomerie had several close shaves. A third place at the 1992 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach Golf Links was the first of these. He was prematurely congratulated by Jack Nicklaus who said "Congratulations on your first U.S. Open victory" to Montgomerie after he finished the 18th hole on Sunday. Tom Kite, who was still on the golf course when Montgomerie finished, wound up winning the championship.
At the 1994 U.S. Open, played at Oakmont Country Club, Montgomerie lost in a three-man playoff to Ernie Els (a playoff which also included Loren Roberts). Montgomerie shot 78 to trail the 74s shot by Els and Roberts, with Els winning at the 20th extra hole.
At the 1995 PGA Championship, Montgomerie birdied the final three holes of the Riviera Country Club course in the final round, to tie Steve Elkington at 17 under par, which was a record low score in a major championship. On the first sudden-death playoff hole, after being in better position after two shots, Montgomerie missed his putt, while Elkington holed from 35 feet to claim the title.
Els defeated Montgomerie at the 1997 U.S. Open, played at Congressional Country Club. Montgomerie opened the tournament with a 65 but shot a 76 in the second round. A bogey on the 71st hole dropped Montgomerie one shot behind Els, who parred the last to win.
At the 2006 U.S. Open, played on the West course of the Winged Foot Golf Club, Montgomerie had yet another chance to win his first major championship. He stood in the middle of the 18th fairway in the final round having sunk a 50-foot birdie putt on the 17th green, which put him in the joint lead with Phil Mickelson. While waiting in position on the 18th fairway for the group in front to finish, Montgomerie switched his club from a 6-iron to a 7-iron, assuming adrenaline would kick in. Once the wait was over, he hit the approach shot poorly, ending up short and right of the green, in thick rough. He pitched onto the green, and then three-putted from 30 feet to lose the tournament by one stroke. After the loss, Montgomerie said, "At my age I've got to think positively. I'm 43 next week, and it's nice I can come back to this tournament and do well again, and I look forward to coming back here again next year and trying another U.S. Open disaster." Geoff Ogilvy won the championship.
At The Open Championship in 2001 at Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club, Montgomerie started brightly with an opening 65, and still remained ahead after 36 holes, but he fell away over the weekend. He was also in contention with two rounds to play at Muirfield in 2002 and Royal Troon Golf Club in 2004, but failed to capitalise and finished midway down the field. His best finish in the Championship came in 2005 at St Andrews, where he finished second to Tiger Woods, who beat him by five shots.
In 2016, Montgomerie came through Open Qualifying at Gailes Links to qualify for his home Open at Royal Troon. He had the honour of hitting the opening tee shot at the tournament and ended up making the cut.
Despite his disappointments in the majors, Montgomerie is heralded as one of the greatest Ryder Cup players of all time. To date he has been a member of the European team on eight occasions, and has never lost in a singles match. He holds a win-lose-draw record of 20–9–7, thus giving him a total points scored tally of 23.5, only 1.5 points behind the all-time record held by Nick Faldo. He has played pivotal roles in several of the matches. He halved the last hole with Scott Hoch to obtain the half-point that won Europe the cup in 1997, and sank the winning putt, in what is considered to be his finest hour in the 2004 staging of the event.
Montgomerie was not part of Nick Faldo's 2008 Ryder Cup team, with the wildcards going to Paul Casey and Ian Poulter. Montgomerie captained the Great Britain & Ireland team in the first four stagings of the Seve Trophy, losing in 2000 but winning in 2002, 2003, and 2005.
On 28 January 2009, it was announced that Montgomerie would be the captain the European team at the 2010 Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor. On 4 October 2010, Montgomerie led the European team to victory, 14½ to 13½. On the same day he also announced that he would be stepping down as captain of the European Team. In December 2010, he accepted the BBC Sports Personality Coach of the Year award as captain of the victorious Ryder Cup team.
Montgomerie has been the playing captain of the European team in the Royal Trophy, played against a team from Asia. Europe was successful on both those occasions. He has the distinction of being the only person to have been a victorious player and captain in the Ryder Cup, Seve Trophy and Royal Trophy – the three main team golf competitions open to players from Europe.
In 2011, Montgomerie was named president of the English junior golf charity, the Golf Foundation, and in 2012 the Scottish first minister, Alex Salmond, named him as an ambassador for the Scottish junior golf programme, clubgolf.
Montgomerie was also a popular columnist for the Scottish golf magazine, Bunkered, between 2008 and 2010.
Montgomerie met his first wife Eimear Wilson, from Troon, when he was a good amateur and she was a promotions assistant. She was a 17-year-old law student at Edinburgh University and a spectator at an amateur championship in Nairn, at which Montgomerie destroyed the field. The couple had three children (Olivia, Venetia, and Cameron), and lived in Oxshott, Surrey. In 2002, Eimear gave Montgomerie an ultimatum to choose between golf and marriage, resulting in Montgomerie spending 10 weeks alone before they agreed to try again.
In 2006, the couple finally broke up, with Eimear suing for divorce on grounds of unreasonable behaviour due to his obsession with golf, claiming it left her suffering from anxiety and depression. In 2006, the couple agreed to a clean break divorce settlement of £8 million, in return for Eimear giving up any claim on Colin's future earnings.
Since the divorce, he has had various relationships, including Spanish model Ines Sastre, and a divorced neighbour Jo Baldwin, whom he met on the school run. Their split, he suggested, caused his worst run in his professional career.
In 2007, Montgomerie announced his engagement to Scottish millionairess Gaynor Knowles. The couple wed on 19 April 2008 at Loch Lomond Golf Club. On 8 July 2010, Montgomerie was granted a super injunction by Mr Justice Eady, which came to light when he attended a press conference at the 2010 PGA Championship in Wisconsin. In March 2017, he and Knowles divorced.
Montgomerie has been successfully defended twice by celebrity driving solicitor Nick Freeman for traffic infractions and speeding. Montgomerie was acquitted the first time when the policeman who was said to have caught him travelling at 96 mph on the A3 near Esher, Surrey (a 70 mph road) at 12:50 am failed to attend court. Montgomerie's second acquittal saved him from a 56-day ban in November 2008, after Montgomerie was caught driving his Bentley Continental Flying Spur and failing to pay the fine. Freeman revealed that Montgomerie hated flying, and drove 55,000 miles per annum in part to visit his children.
|No.||Date||Tournament||Winning score||Margin of
|1||22 Oct 1989||Portuguese Open TPC||−24 (67-65-69-63=264)||11 strokes|| Rodger Davis, Manuel Moreno,
|2||4 Aug 1991||Scandinavian Masters||−18 (68-65-70-67=270)||1 stroke||Seve Ballesteros|
|3||25 Jul 1993||Heineken Dutch Open||−7 (68-73-71-69=281)||1 stroke||José Cóceres, Jean van de Velde|
|4||7 Nov 1993||Volvo Masters||−10 (69-70-67-68=274)||1 stroke||Darren Clarke|
|5||15 May 1994||Peugeot Open de España||−11 (70-71-66-70=277)||1 stroke|| Richard Boxall, Mark McNulty,
|6||21 Aug 1994||Murphy's English Open||−14 (70-67-68-69=274)||1 stroke||Barry Lane|
|7||28 Aug 1994||Volvo German Open||−19 (65-68-66-70=269)||1 stroke||Bernhard Langer|
|8||27 Aug 1995||Volvo German Open (2)||−16 (69-64-68-67=268)||1 stroke||Niclas Fasth, Sam Torrance|
|9||10 Sep 1995||Trophée Lancôme||−11 (64-69-65-71=269)||1 stroke||Sam Torrance|
|10||17 Mar 1996||Dubai Desert Classic||−18 (67-68-67-68=270)||1 stroke||Miguel Ángel Jiménez|
|11||7 Jul 1996||Murphy's Irish Open||−5 (69-69-73-68=279)||1 stroke||Andrew Oldcorn, Wayne Riley|
|12||8 Sep 1996||Canon European Masters||−24 (65-71-61-63=260)||4 strokes||Sam Torrance|
|13||8 Jun 1997||Compaq European Grand Prix||−18 (69-68-68-65=270)||5 strokes||Retief Goosen|
|14||6 Jul 1997||Murphy's Irish Open (2)||−15 (68-70-69-62=269)||7 strokes||Lee Westwood|
|15||25 May 1998||Volvo PGA Championship||−14 (70-70-65-69=274)||1 stroke|| Ernie Els, Gary Orr,
|16||13 Sep 1998||One 2 One British Masters||−7 (70-72-70-69=281)||1 stroke||Pierre Fulke, Eduardo Romero|
|17||27 Sep 1998||Linde German Masters||−22 (65-68-66-67=266)||1 stroke||Robert Karlsson, Vijay Singh|
|18||16 May 1999||Benson & Hedges International Open||−15 (68-66-71-68=273)||3 strokes||Ángel Cabrera, Per-Ulrik Johansson|
|19||31 May 1999||Volvo PGA Championship (2)||−18 (69-70-67-64=270)||5 strokes||Mark James|
|20||11 Jul 1999||Standard Life Loch Lomond||−16 (69-65-70-64=268)||3 strokes|| Sergio García, Michael Jonzon,
|21||8 Aug 1999||Volvo Scandinavian Masters (2)||−20 (67-67-65-69=268)||9 strokes||Jesper Parnevik|
|22||22 Aug 1999||BMW International Open||−20 (69-65-64-70=268)||3 strokes||Pádraig Harrington|
|23||7 May 2000||Novotel Perrier Open de France||−16 (71-68-65-68=272)||2 strokes||Jonathan Lomas|
|24||29 May 2000||Volvo PGA Championship (3)||−17 (67-65-70-69=271)||3 strokes|| Darren Clarke, Andrew Coltart,
|25||1 Jul 2001||Murphy's Irish Open (3)||−18 (63-69-68-66=266)||5 strokes|| Darren Clarke, Niclas Fasth,
|26||5 Aug 2001||Volvo Scandinavian Masters (3)||−14 (66-69-69-70=274)||1 stroke||Ian Poulter, Lee Westwood|
|27||10 Nov 2002||Volvo Masters Andalucia (2)||−3 (70-69-72-70=281)||Shared title with Bernhard Langer|
|28||21 Mar 2004||Caltex Masters||−16 (71-69-67-65=272)||3 strokes||Gregory Hanrahan|
|29||2 Oct 2005||Dunhill Links Championship||−9 (70-65-73-71=279)||1 stroke||Kenneth Ferrie|
|30||4 Dec 2005
|UBS Hong Kong Open||−9 (69-66-66-70=271)||1 stroke|| K.J. Choi, James Kingston,
Lin Keng-chi, Edward Loar,
|31||8 Jul 2007||Smurfit Kappa European Open||−11 (69-71-64-65=269)||1 stroke||Niclas Fasth|
European Tour playoff record (0–7–1)
|1||1991||Volvo PGA Championship||Seve Ballesteros||Lost to birdie on first extra hole|
|2||1992||Volvo Masters||Sandy Lyle||Lost to par on first extra hole|
|3||1994||U.S. Open||Ernie Els, Loren Roberts||Els won with par on second extra hole after 18-hole playoff
(Els:74, Roberts:74, Montgomerie:78)
|4||1995||Murphy's English Open||Philip Walton||Lost to birdie on second extra hole|
|5||1995||PGA Championship||Steve Elkington||Lost to birdie on first extra hole|
|6||1998||Murphy's Irish Open||David Carter||Lost to par on first extra hole|
|7||2002||Deutsche Bank - SAP Open TPC of Europe||Tiger Woods||Lost to par on third extra hole|
|8||2002||Volvo Masters Andalucia||Bernhard Langer||Playoff abandoned after two holes due to darkness; tournament shared|
PGA Tour playoff record (0–2)
|1||1994||U.S. Open||Ernie Els, Loren Roberts||Els won with par on second extra hole after 18-hole playoff
(Els:74, Roberts:74, Montgomerie:78)
|2||1995||PGA Championship||Steve Elkington||Lost to birdie on first extra hole|
|Senior major championships (3)|
|Other PGA Tour Champions (3)|
|No.||Date||Tournament||Winning score||Margin of
|1||25 May 2014||Senior PGA Championship||−13 (69-69-68-65=271)||4 strokes||Tom Watson|
|2||13 Jul 2014||U.S. Senior Open||−5 (65-71-74-69=279)||Playoff||Gene Sauers|
|3||24 May 2015||Senior PGA Championship (2)||−8 (72-69-70-69=280)||4 strokes||Esteban Toledo|
|4||25 Sep 2016||Pacific Links Bear Mountain Championship||−15 (67-64-67=198)||Playoff||Scott McCarron|
|5||10 Sep 2017||Japan Airlines Championship||−14 (69-66-67=202)||1 stroke||Billy Mayfair, Scott McCarron|
|6||15 Oct 2017||SAS Championship||−16 (69-67-64=200)||3 strokes||Doug Garwood, Vijay Singh|
PGA Tour Champions playoff record (2–0)
|1||2014||U.S. Senior Open||Gene Sauers||Won three-hole aggregate play off: (Montgomerie 5-3-4=12, Sauers 5-4-X)|
|2||2016||Pacific Links Bear Mountain Championship||Scott McCarron||Won with birdie on third extra hole|
|No.||Date||Tournament||Winning score||Margin of
|1||1 Sep 2013||Travis Perkins plc Senior Masters||−10 (68-68-70=206)||6 strokes||Miguel Ángel Martín, Paul Wesselingh|
|2||25 May 2014||Senior PGA Championship||−13 (69-69-68-65=271)||4 strokes||Tom Watson|
|3||13 Jul 2014||U.S. Senior Open||−5 (65-71-74-69=279)||Playoff||Gene Sauers|
|4||31 Aug 2014||Travis Perkins Masters (2)||−12 (68-69-67=204)||10 strokes|| André Bossert, Gordon Manson
|5||7 Sep 2014||Russian Open Golf Championship (Senior)||−14 (69-68-65=202)||3 strokes||Rick Gibson|
|6||24 May 2015||Senior PGA Championship (2)||−8 (72-69-70-69=280)||4 strokes||Esteban Toledo|
|7||6 Sep 2015||Travis Perkins Masters (3)||−5 (73-67-71=211)||Playoff||Ross Drummond|
|8||13 Dec 2015||MCB Tour Championship||−15 (68-64-69=201)||3 strokes||David Frost|
|The Open Championship||T48||T26||CUT||CUT||T8||CUT||CUT||T24||CUT||T15|
|The Open Championship||T26||T13||82||WD||T25||2||CUT||CUT||T58||CUT|
|The Open Championship||T68||78|
CUT = missed the half-way cut
WD = withdrew
DQ = disqualified
"T" = tied
|The Open Championship||0||1||0||1||2||6||22||13|
|Accenture Match Play Championship||R64||R32||R64||R64||R16||R32||R32||R16|
1Cancelled due to 9/11
WD = Withdrew
QF, R16, R32, R64 = Round in which player lost in match play
"T" = tied
NT = No Tournament
|Year||Championship||54 holes||Winning score||Margin||Runner-up|
|2014||Senior PGA Championship||1 shot lead||−13 (69-69-68-65=271)||4 strokes||Tom Watson|
|2014||U.S. Senior Open||4 shot deficit||−5 (65-71-74-69=279)||Playoff1||Gene Sauers|
|2015||Senior PGA Championship (2)||3 shot lead||−8 (72-69-70-69=280)||4 strokes||Esteban Toledo|
1Defeated Gene Sauers in a three-hole playoff: Montgomerie (5-3-4=12) and Sauers (5-4-x)
Results are not in chronological order before 2017.
|Senior PGA Championship||–||1||1||2||T17|
|U.S. Senior Open||T30||1||2||T11||T42|
|Senior Players Championship||T9||T15||T3||T13||T6|
|The Senior Open Championship||T21||2||3||CUT||T23|
DNP = did not play
CUT = missed the halfway cut
"T" indicates a tie for a place
Green background for wins. Yellow background for top-10.