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Antique Golf Clubs from Scotland
Open Championship
<< 1881 1882 1883 1884 1885 1886 1887 1888 1889 1890 >>

Year Venue

1885: St Andrews

 Player Score
1Bob Martin171
2Archie Simpson172
3David Ayton173
4Willie Fernie174
 Willie Park Jnr174
 Bob Simpson174
7Jack Burns175
8Peter Paxton176
9Willie Campbell177
 J O F Morris177

The 1885 Open is best remembered for an event which never took place. Most of the golf history books wills tell you that Bob Martin beat Davie Ayton beause Ayton threw away a five shot lead with a horrendous 11 on the road hole. The source of the story was Bob Martin himself who, like many other past champions, had accepted an invitation from Golf Illustrated in 1906 to give an account of his career. The facts do not support the tale. No contemporary account made mention of it; Ayton finished third, not second; his first round score was 89, back in 44, no chance of an 11 there and, as Simpson and Martin shot 83 and 84 respectively, he was never 5 shots ahead. In fact he finished 6, 4 in his second round for an 84. Bobby Burnet in "The St Andrews Opens" suggests that the time which elapsed between the event and Martin writing about it had clouded his memory and, as a poor man, winning the championship medal in 1876 and 1885 was unlikely to stand out in his memory when compared to other more lucrative professional competitions.