Larry Nelson, Henry Picard to Enter World Golf Hall of Fame
Savannah, GA. (April 19, 2006) - Larry Nelson and Henry Picard will become members of the World Golf Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 2006. Nelson was elected on the PGA TOUR ballot, securing 65 percent of the vote, and Picard was selected in the Veteran’s category by the World Golf Foundation Board of Directors Selection Committee. The 2006 Induction Ceremony is set for October 30.
Hall of Fame members Hale Irwin, Tony Jacklin, Tom Kite, Carol Mann and Charlie Sifford joined Nelson today for the announcement at Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf in Savannah, Ga.
“When I was informed that I had received enough votes to be inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame, I was flooded with emotions,” said Nelson. “Being honored in this way brings feelings of gratitude and humbleness of a depth impossible to express. I look forward to sharing this blessing with family and friends.”
“Larry Nelson and Henry Picard are most deserving of this high honor,” said Timothy W. Finchem, PGA TOUR Commissioner and Chairman of the World Golf Foundation. “Larry’s success was impressive both on the PGA TOUR where, despite taking up the game at a relatively late age, he picked up a career-defining three major victories, and on the Champions Tour, where he continues to add to his already considerable resume.
“Henry Picard was one of the country’s brightest stars in the decade leading up to World War II, where his victory total compares favorably to the likes of Sam Snead during that span,” Finchem continued. “His name is inexorably linked—both personally and professionally—to some of the game’s greatest players, including Snead, Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson, the latter of whom he out-dueled in a playoff to win the 1939 PGA Championship.”
Longtime Georgia resident Nelson, 58, has three major championships to his credit: the 1981 and 1987 PGA Championships and the 1983 U.S. Open. His record includes seven additional PGA TOUR victories and 19 Champions Tour victories to date. Nelson has participated on three U.S. Ryder Cup teams with a 9-3-1 record. Nelson began playing golf at age 21, following his time in the military in Vietnam.
Picard captured 26 PGA TOUR victories, including the 1938 Masters Tournament and the 1939 PGA Championship. He also participated on two U.S. Ryder Cup teams. Twenty of his 26 victories came between 1935 and 1939, including six wins in 1939, when he led the TOUR in earnings. Among Picard’s contemporaries was Hogan, at the time an aspiring young pro, whom Picard encouraged and supported unconditionally. Hogan later dedicated his first instructional book, “Ben Hogan’s Power Golf,” to Picard. He was also instrumental in encouraging Snead to join the professional tour. Born Nov. 28, 1906 in Plymouth, Mass., Picard lived much of his life in Charleston, SC, before passing away on April 30, 1997.
“Each year brings with it opportunity to share new stories from this grand game of golf,” said Jack Peter, Sr. Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the Hall of Fame. “We look forward to having Larry and Henry take their places this October alongside the 109 current members of the Hall.”
Nelson will join Vijay Singh on October 30 for the Induction Ceremony, which will also recognize Picard posthumously. Singh was elected on the PGA TOUR ballot in 2005 but deferred his induction due to a scheduling conflict. An announcement for the Lifetime Achievement category will take place later this spring. At this time, no LPGA players have qualified for induction in 2006. And while 75 percent of the International ballots were returned, no candidates reached the minimum percentage required for induction.
Approximately 80 percent of the PGA TOUR ballots and 75 percent of the International ballots sent out were returned. A complete list of percentages of the ballot candidates is below.
For more information, call 904-940-4123 or visit www.wgv.com
About the World Golf Hall of Fame
World Golf Hall of Fame is the ultimate destination for the celebration and recognition of golf’s greatest players and contributors and an inspiration to golfers and fans throughout the world. A collaboration of 26 national and international golf organizations support the Hall of Fame, including the PGA TOUR, LPGA, USGA, Augusta National, PGA of America, The European Tour and The R&A. The museum houses interactive exhibits and historic and personal artifacts that tell the stories of its members and the game of golf. The Hall of Fame is located at World Golf Village, a resort destination celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2008. For more information, visit http://www.WorldGolfHallofFame.org.
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As sole founding partner of World Golf Hall of Fame, The First Tee and World Golf Village, Shell Oil Company provides financial support and plays the lead role in charitable initiatives aimed at introducing golf to young people, and through the golf experience promotes scholastic achievement, community service and those values intrinsic to the game of golf: honesty, integrity and sportsmanship.
2006 PGA TOUR Ballot
2006 International Ballot