Girish Mahajan (Editor)

Arnold Palmer Invitational

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Location  Bay Hill, Florida
Par  72
Format  Stroke play
Established  1966, 51 years ago
Length  7,381 yards (6,749 m)
Prize fund  $6.3 million
Arnold Palmer Invitational
Address  9000 Bay Hill Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819, USA
Course  Arnold Palmer's Bay Hill Club & Lodge
Course  Arnold Palmer's Bay Hill Club & Lodge
Hours  Open today · 7AM–6PMWednesday7AM–6PMThursday6:30AM–6PMFriday6:30AM–6PMSaturday6:30AM–6PMSunday6:30AM–2PMMonday7AM–6PMTuesday7AM–6PM
Similar  Arnold Palmer's Bay Hill C, Villas Of Grand Cypress, Shingle Creek Golf Club, Orange Tree Golf Club, Isleworth Golf & Country

Arnold palmer invitational preview

The Arnold Palmer Invitational is a professional golf tournament on the PGA Tour. It is played each March at the Bay Hill Club and Lodge, a private golf resort owned since 1974 by Arnold Palmer in Bay Hill, Florida, a suburb southwest of Orlando. The event was founded in 1979 as a successor to the Florida Citrus Open Invitational, which debuted in 1966 and was played at Rio Pinar Country Club, east of Orlando. It has had a number of different names since then, most of them including "Bay Hill," but has played under the Palmer name since 2007. On March 21, 2012, the Arnold Palmer Invitational and MasterCard Worldwide announced an extension to MasterCard's "Presented by" sponsorship until the 2016 tournament.


As a restricted field event on the PGA Tour, only the first 70 players on the previous year's money-list are guaranteed invitations.

Tiger Woods won what was then known as the Bay Hill Invitational four years in a row from 2000 to 2003. This is one of only four occasions that a golfer has won the same event four times in a row on the Tour. In 2004 he was one shot off the lead after opening with a 67, but followed up with back-to-back 74s on the Friday and Saturday, and ended the final round on Sunday in a tie for 46th place. Woods also won the 2008 and 2009 tournaments, both times with birdie putts on the final hole. He then won the tournament in 2012 by 5 shots, his first official PGA Tour win in 924 days and his seventh win at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. He repeated in 2013 for his eighth victory at the tournament. Two days before the 2014 event, defending champion Woods withdrew from the tournament, citing a bad back, and underwent surgery shortly after.

Tiger woods best at 2013 arnold palmer invitational

Invitational status

The Arnold Palmer Invitational is one of only five tournaments given "invitational" status by the PGA Tour, and consequently it has a reduced field of only 120 players (as opposed to most full-field open tournaments with a field of 156 players). The other four tournaments with invitational status are the RBC Heritage, the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial, the Memorial Tournament, and the Quicken Loans National. Invitational tournaments have smaller fields (between 120 and 132 players), and have more freedom than full-field open tournaments in determining which players are eligible to participate in their event, as invitational tournaments are not required to fill their fields using the PGA Tour Priority Ranking System. Furthermore, unlike full-field open tournaments, invitational tournaments do not offer open qualifying (aka Monday qualifying).

In June 2014, the PGA Tour approved a resolution to grant the winner a three-year exemption, one more than other regular Tour events and on par with winners of the World Golf Championships, The Tour Championship, and the Memorial Tournament.


The field consists of 120 players invited using the following criteria:

  1. Arnold Palmer Invitational winners prior to 2000 and in the last five years
  2. The Players Championship and major championship winners in the last five years
  3. The Tour Championship, World Golf Championships, and Memorial Tournament winners in the past three years
  4. Tournament winners in the past year
  5. Playing member of last named U.S. Ryder Cup team; current PGA Tour members who were playing members on last named European Ryder Cup team, U.S. Presidents Cup team, and International Presidents Cup team
  6. Prior year U.S. Amateur winner (if still an amateur)
  7. Top 50 Official World Golf Ranking (as of Friday prior)
  8. PGA Tour life members
  9. 18 sponsors exemptions– 2 from Tour finals, 8 members not otherwise exempt, and 8 unrestricted
  10. Top 70 from prior year's FedEx Cup points list
  11. Members in top 125 non-member category whose prior year non-WGC points equal or exceed the 70th position on the prior year FedEx Cup points list
  12. Top 70 from current year's FedEx Cup points list
  13. PGA Section champion/player of the year
  14. Remaining positions filled from current year's FedEx Cup points list

Arnold Palmer had a lifetime invitation.

Course layout



* rain-shortened to 54 holes
Note: Green highlight indicates scoring records.

Multiple winners

Seven men have won this tournament more than once through 2016.

  • 8 wins
  • Tiger Woods: 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2008, 2009, 2012, 2013
  • 2 wins
  • Jerry Heard: 1972, 1974
  • Gary Koch: 1977, 1984
  • Tom Kite: 1982, 1989
  • Loren Roberts: 1994, 1995
  • Ernie Els: 1998, 2010
  • Matt Every: 2014, 2015
  • Tournament highlights

  • 1966: Lionel Hebert wins the inaugural version of the tournament. He wins by two shots over Jack Nicklaus, Charles Coody, and Dick Lytle.
  • 1968: Dan Sikes breaks out of a 5-way logjam to win by one shot over Tom Weiskopf. At the end of 54 holes, Sikes had been tied for the lead with Jack Nicklaus, Bruce Devlin, Miller Barber, and Bob Charles. Officials said this was the first time there had ever been a five-way tie for the lead after 54 holes at a PGA event.
  • 1971: Arnold Palmer wins the event eight years before he becomes its host. He beats Julius Boros by one shot.
  • 1973: Vietnam War veteran Buddy Allin shoots a tournament record 23 under par to breeze to an eight shot victory over Charles Coody.
  • 1974: Jerry Heard becomes the tournament's first two-time winner. He beats Homero Blancas and Jim Jamieson by two shots.
  • 1976: Early on a Monday morning, Hale Irwin defeats Kermit Zarley on the sixth hole of a sudden death playoff after play was suspended due to darkness on Sunday. While speaking to the press on Sunday evening, Irwin blamed NBC Sports for there not being enough time to finish the playoff.
  • 1979: Bob Byman wins the first edition of the tournament to be played at Bay Hill. He defeats John Schroeder on the second hole of a sudden death playoff.
  • 1980: Dave Eichelberger wins by three shots over Leonard Thompson. The temperatures were so cold that Eichelberger wore panty hose during the final round.
  • 1982: Tom Kite chips in for birdie on the first hole of a sudden death playoff to defeat Jack Nicklaus and Denis Watson.
  • 1984: Gary Koch shoots a final round 63 before defeating George Burns on the second hole of a sudden death playoff. Koch is the only champion in the tournament's history to win both at Rio Pinar and Bay Hill.
  • 1985: Coming off back surgery less than six months previously, Fuzzy Zoeller wins at Bay Hill. He finishes two shots ahead of Tom Watson.
  • 1987: Payne Stewart, who owned a home just off Bay Hill's 12th tee, notches his third career PGA Tour title. He beats David Frost by three shots.
  • 1989: Tom Kite wins for a second time at Bay Hill by defeating Davis Love III on the second hole of a sudden death playoff. Before the playoff took place, both Kite and Love made double bogey on the tournament's 72nd hole.
  • 1990: Robert Gamez holes a 5-iron on the 72nd hole for an eagle two allowing him to win by one shot over Greg Norman.
  • 1992: Fred Couples wins by nine shots over Gene Sauers. With his win, Couples becomes the #1 ranked player in the world.
  • 1995: Loren Roberts becomes the first returning champion to successfully defend his title. He beats Brad Faxon by two shots.
  • 1996: Paul Goydos wins for the first time on the PGA Tour. He beats Jeff Maggert by one shot and Tom Purtzer by two. During the tournament's second round, Purtzer incurred a two-shot penalty by playing the wrong ball.
  • 1998: During the tournament's final round, John Daly hits six balls in the water on the sixth hole. He finishes the hole with a final score of 18.
  • 2000: Tiger Woods wins at Bay Hill for the first time. He beats Davis Love III by four shots.
  • 2003: Tiger Woods becomes the first golfer since Gene Sarazen at the 1930 Miami Open to win the same tournament in four consecutive years. He wins by 11 shots over Kirk Triplett, Stewart Cink, Kenny Perry, and Brad Faxon.
  • 2005: Kenny Perry wins by two shots over Vijay Singh and Graeme McDowell. Perry and Singh were tied for the lead until Singh made double bogey at the 72nd hole.
  • 2008: Tiger Woods sinks a 25-foot birdie putt at the 72nd hole to defeat Bart Bryant by one shot. It's Woods fifth Bay Hill triumph in addition to his winning the fifth consecutive tournament he had played in.
  • 2009: Tiger Woods wins at Bay Hill for the 2nd straight year and sixth time overall. He birdies the 72nd hole to defeat Sean O'Hair by one shot.
  • 2012: Tiger Woods wins the Arnold Palmer Invitational for the seventh time, ending a winless streak on the PGA Tour dating back 27 events to September 13, 2009.
  • 2013: Tiger Woods wins for a record-tying eighth time at the Arnold Palmer Invitational while holing three eagles during the week, the first time a player has accomplished the feat since 2001; he ascends to the number 1 ranking for the first time since October 2010.
  • 2014: With world number one Woods out of the tournament, the focus was on world number two Adam Scott. Scott led the first three rounds, but struggled in the fourth round, finishing third behind Keegan Bradley and first-time PGA Tour winner Matt Every.
  • 2015: Matt Every holed an 18-foot birdie putt on the 72nd hole to beat Henrik Stenson by one shot and become the third golfer to defend his title at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. In the third round, Daniel Berger recorded a double eagle at the par-5 6th hole, the first since the tournament moved to Bay Hill in 1979. Zach Johnson repeated the feat in the final round on the par-5 16th.
  • References

    Arnold Palmer Invitational Wikipedia