Ten Notes to Know: Koepka heads to Royal Portrush

July 14, 2019
Justin Ray
  1. Brooks Koepka has finished second (Masters), first (PGA) and second (U.S. Open) in the three major championships played so far in 2019. He is the first player to finish top-two in the first three majors of a season since Tiger Woods in 2005. Since the first Masters was held in 1934, it’s just the eighth instance of a player doing this.
  1. No player in the modern era has finished in the top-two in all four majors in the same season – Brooks could become the first to do it at Royal Portrush. It should be noted that in 1953, Ben Hogan won all three majors he played – he did not compete in the PGA Championship that year.
  1. Koepka is a combined 30-under-par this season in majors, 13 strokes better than any other player (Dustin Johnson is second, at -17). Since the beginning of 2017, Brooks is a combined 64-under-par in major championships – 35 strokes better than anyone else in that span (Rickie Fowler is second, at -29).
  1. Dating to the 2018 PGA at Bellerive, Koepka has won two majors and finished runner-up in the other two. In that span, there have been a combined 551 other players in those fields – two have finished ahead of him (Woods at the Masters & Gary Woodland at the U.S. Open).
  1. Brooks has either led or co-led following 13 major championship rounds since the beginning of 2017. That is more than twice as many as any other player during that stretch: Kevin Kisner and Jordan Spieth are tied for second during that span, with six apiece.
  1. There have been 16 major rounds contested since the 2018 PGA Championship began. Brooks has been in the top-four of the leaderboard following 13 of them.
  1. Without question, Brooks elevates his game in the major championships. Over his last ten worldwide starts, his scoring average in non-majors is 69.7. It’s more than a full stroke better – 68.5 – in the majors during that stretch. In Koepka’s last three non-major starts, he has not finished better than 50th.
  1. Of the 13 major championship rounds Brooks Koepka has either led or co-led, only one came at The Open – the first round back in 2017 when Brooks shot 65. He would finish tied for sixth that week.
  1. Earlier this season, Koepka became the first player in modern golf history to hold two back-to-back major championship titles concurrently (the 2017-18 U.S. Open and 2018-19 PGA Championship). There have been six instances of a player winning The Open and the PGA Championship in the same season, the last being Rory McIlroy in 2014.
  1. Koepka is the number one ranked player in the world. Since the inception of the Official World Golf Ranking in 1986, only one player has won The Open while occupying the top spot: Woods, in 2000, 2005 and 2006.