What defines golf’s Grand Slam is an evolving thing. It’s changed over time, for both men and women, for myriad reasons.
Men’s career Grand Slam
In men’s golf history, only six tournaments have ever been considered majors, including the four current professional majors and the U.S. Amateur and British Amateur championships. However, pro golf has formally recognized just the existing four.
Only six players have ever completed the career Grand Slam: Bobby Jones (U.S. Open, U.S. Amateur, British Open, British Amateur), Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player, Tiger Woods, Ben Hogan and Gene Sarazen.
- Tiger Woods: 1997 Masters, 2000 US Open, 2000 Open Championship, 2000 PGA Championship
- Jack Nicklaus: 1962 US Open, 1963 Masters, 1963 PGA Championship, 1966 Open Championship
- Gary Player: 1959 Open Championship, 1961 Masters, 1962 PGA Championship, 1965 US Open
- Ben Hogan: 1946 PGA Championship, 1948 US Open, 1951 Masters, 1953 Open Championship
- Gene Sarazen: 1922 US Open, 1922 PGA Championship, 1932 Open Championship, 1935 Masters
Women’s career Grand Slam
When Inbee Park polished off her seventh major title at the 2015 Ricoh Women’s British Open, some folks were confused to hear the ESPN commentators say Park had completed the career Grand Slam. After all, the LPGA recognizes five majors: the ANA Inspiration (formerly the Kraft Nabisco Championship and Nabisco Dinah Shore), the Women’s PGA Championship (formerly the LPGA Championship), the U.S. Women’s Open, Women’s British Open and, since 2013, the Evian Championship in France.
As far as the LPGA is concerned, they consider a player to have completed the career Grand Slam when they win any four tournaments that, at the time, were considered majors. Park has won the ANA Inspiration, a pair of U.S. Women’s Opens, three consecutive Women’s PGA Championships and now the Ricoh Women’s British Open. She’s also won the Evian, too, but that win came the year before the official major designation.
If Park wins The Evian Championship, she will have completed the career Super Grand Slam, which the LPGA defines as having won any five tournaments that, at the time, are considered majors. Only Karrie Webb has accomplished that feat, having won the ANA Inspiration, U.S. Women’s Open, Women’s British Open, Women’s PGA Championship and the du Maurier Classic (now the Canadian Women’s Open), back when it was a major. Webb is also the only player who could conceivably win six tournaments considered majors.
In LPGA history, eight tournaments have been considered official majors: the current five, the du Maurier Classic, as well the Titleholders and Western Open, which were majors in the earlier years of the LPGA.
The following players have completed the career Grand Slam under the LPGA definition:
- Louise Suggs: Women’s Western Open, U.S. Women’s Open, Titleholders, LPGA Championship
- Mickey Wright: Women’s Western Open, U.S. Women’s Open, Titleholders, LPGA Championship
- Pat Bradley: Nabisco Dinah Shore, U.S. Women’s Open, LPGA Championship, du Maurier Classic
- Juli Inkster: Kraft Nabisco Championship, U.S. Women’s Open, LPGA Championship, du Maurier Classic
- Annika Sorenstam: Kraft Nabisco Championship, U.S. Women’s Open, LPGA Championship, Women’s British Open
- Karrie Webb: Kraft Nabisco Championship, U.S. Women’s Open, LPGA Championship, Women’s British Open, du Maurier Classic
- Inbee Park: ANA Inspiration, U.S. Women’s Open, Ricoh Women’s British Open, Women’s PGA Championship