IT’S A special day at Meltham Golf Club tomorrow.
Members will compete in the inaugural Billy Casper Cup competition to mark the 40th anniversary of the great American player’s visit to Thick Hollins.
To mark the occasion, club captain David Thorpe is unveiling a commemorate plaque with a life-size bust of three-time Major winner Casper, who has been made a lifetime honorary president of Meltham.
A permanent display of memorabilia of Casper’s visit in 1970 – the year he won The Masters – will also be unveiled.
Casper, now 79 but who was one of the leading players in the world at the time, set a professional course record when he played Meltham – at the invitation of former Halifax-Huddersfield Union champion Wilf Charlton, who knew a contact of Casper’s (Dennis Livesey) in the Mormon Church.
Throughout the 40th anniversary year, everyone who beats the net one under par score of Casper will receive a commemorative ‘I beat Billy Casper (off my handicap) memento.’
Casper won 51 US PGA Tour titles and added the US Opens of 1959 and 1966 to his Masters success (he was reigning Augusta champion when he played at Meltham on September 27, 1970).
One of the best putters the game has ever known, he was also fourth in the Open Championship in 1968 and second three times in the US PGA Championship. He is ranked 15th greatest player of all time.