2024 World Golf Hall of Fame inductee and winner of three major championships, Padraig Harrington, takes us back to the days of his youth growing up in Rathfarnham, Ireland during the time of "The Troubles" in the North. Coming from a sporting family, Padraig competed in Gaelic football, soccer and hurling but was drawn to golf while growing up on the course his father and mates built in the southern hills of Dublin. Playing with a handful of clubs, he honed his short game at Stackstown GC and played in all levels of competition in Ireland and the UK. He reflects back on his start at accountancy studies before realizing his true passion, "FORE the Good of the Game."
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"FORE the Good of the Game” is a golf podcast featuring interviews with World Golf Hall of Fame members, winners of major championships and other people of influence in and around the game of golf. Highlighting the positive aspects of the game, we aim to create and provide an engaging and timeless repository of content that listeners can enjoy now and forever. Co-hosted by PGA Tour star Bruce Devlin, our podcast focuses on telling their life stories, in their voices. Join Bruce and Mike Gonzalez “FORE the Good of the Game.”
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Following a successful amateur career, including winning the Walker Cup in 1995 at Royal Porthcawl in one of his three Walker Cup appearances, Padraig turned professional in September 1995 and immediately secured his European Tour card, shortly before gaining his maiden tour victory at the 1996 Spanish Open after only 10 events as a professional.
In 1999 he fulfilled one of his career ambitions, qualifying for the European Ryder Cup team, thus beginning an association with the famous trophy that lasted for over 20 years.
After achieving the European number one ranking and securing the Harry Vardon Trophy in 2006, the following year Padraig won the Irish Open at Adare Manor, the first Irishman to win the national title for 25 years, emulating the victory of John O’Leary in 1982. A few months later he became the first European to win a Major Championship since 1999 and the first player from Ireland in 60 years since Fred Daly at Hoylake in 1947 to capture the Claret Jug, when he was victorious at the Open Championship at Carnoustie.
The following year he became the first European since James Braid in 1906 to successfully defend his title, retaining the Open Championship title at Royal Birkdale, becoming only the 16th player to defend The Open and the 24th player to record multiple Open victories. Only three weeks later, Padraig won the PGA Championship at Oakland Hills, Michigan, in the process becoming the first European since Scotland’s Tommy Armour in 1930 to acquire back-to-back Major titles.
The three Major victories in the space of 13 months helped him to reach a career high of third in the World Rankings and earned him the European Tour, PGA Tour and PGA of America Player of the Year awards. In addition, he won the Golf Writers’ trophies on both sides of the Atlantic and the European Tour Shot of the Year.
With a career total of 31 victories around the world, Padraig continues to compete at the elite level and achieved the great distinction of been appointed Captain of the European team for the 2020 Ryder Cup, which took place at Whistling Straits in September. As a player, he was a regular in the side for over a decade, winning on four occasions, and was also a Vice-Captain for three Ryder Cups.
Born in Dublin, Padraig is a proud family man and is married to Caroline with two children, Patrick and Ciaran.