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British Open Golf Championship

The British Open Championship is held annually in the United Kingdom on one of nine historic links in the country. The Open Championship is the oldest of the four major championships in men's golf. Being the only major golf championship held outside the United States of America, the British Open is governed by The Royal and Ancient Golf Club, the leading body of golf outside the U.S. and Mexico. The tournament is often referred to as the British Open outside of the UK.

DateThursday 15th July 2010 to Sunday 18th July 2010
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Before the year 2002, the British Open prize fund was the lowest of the big four. Since then, it is the highest. Usually, the British Open Championship is played after the U.S. Open and the Masters and before the PGA Championship. A four-hole playoff is used for any players who have tied scores at the end of regulation. When they reach the 18th hole, if there is still a tie for first place, the 18th hole is replayed until there is a winner.

The Open began in 1860 at the Prestwick Golf Club. At that time, there were twelve holes at Prestwick, and they were played three times in the day. That first tournament was restricted to professionals and attracted eight players. The second year, the tournament was opened to eight amateurs who joined the ten professionals who played that year.

The original three years of the Open did not offer prize money, only a red Champions belt. On the fourth year, a small monetary prize of ten pounds was shared by the second, third and fourth placers. The winner still only received the red belt. In time, the prize money became significant enough to attract the best golfers. The red Champions belt was retired after Tom Morris had won it for three times in a row. He was allowed to keep the belt rather than returning it to be won again as had been done in the past.

Early winners of the Open were all Scottish professionals. There have only been six amateurs as winners of the British Open.

In 1995, the British Open Golf Championship became a part of the official schedule of the PGA Tour.

There have been several notable players in the Open as well as some outstanding records being set. Among well-known players who have participated are Tiger Woods, Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus.