Golf fans will never forget Payne Stewart’s dramatic battle with Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, and others at Pinehurst No. 2 en route to his second U.S. Open victory in 1999. See how it unfolded for Stewart across all four days of action.
Payne Stewart’s Memorable Victory: The 1999 U.S. Open at Pinehurst Resort
The year 1999 marked a significant chapter in golf history as the 99th U.S. Open unfolded at the Pinehurst Resort Course No. 2 in Pinehurst, North Carolina.
The championship brought forth intense competition, memorable moments, and an emotional victory by Payne Stewart.
Payne Stewart’s Redemption
The stage was set for a thrilling showdown at Pinehurst, and it did not disappoint. Payne Stewart, a seasoned golfer with an impressive track record, emerged as the victor.
He secured his victory with a remarkable performance, sinking a 15-foot (5 m) par putt on the final hole for a total score of 279 (−1). This clutch putt allowed him to finish one stroke ahead of the runner-up, Phil Mickelson.
Stewart’s triumph was particularly sweet as it marked his redemption after a heartbreaking loss the previous year in San Francisco.
In 1998, he had lost a four-stroke lead after 54 holes, a memory that surely fueled his determination to excel at the 1999 U.S. Open. Little did he know that this would be his final major victory.
A Bittersweet Victory
Unfortunately, Payne Stewart’s U.S. Open victory in 1999 would be his last.
Just four months after this triumphant moment, tragedy struck as Stewart lost his life in a plane crash. His eleventh and final PGA Tour win, the 1999 U.S. Open, became a poignant testament to his skill and determination on the golf course.
Tiger Woods and Vijay Singh in Contention
The 1999 U.S. Open was not short on star power, with major winners Tiger Woods and Vijay Singh making their presence known.
Both Woods and Singh found themselves in contention late in their final rounds, raising hopes of a dramatic finish.
However, as fate would have it, both golfers faltered, each bogeying their way to finish two strokes behind Stewart, tied for third place.
Pinehurst’s Golfing Legacy
The 1999 U.S. Open was significant for more than just the thrilling competition. It marked the first time that Pinehurst hosted the U.S. Open, setting the stage for future championships at this historic venue.
Pinehurst would go on to host the U.S. Open again in 2005 and 2014, solidifying its reputation as a premier golfing destination.
But Pinehurst’s golfing heritage runs deep. Prior to the U.S. Open, the resort had hosted the PGA Championship in 1936, the Ryder Cup in 1951, and the North and South Open from 1902 through 1951. More recently, it had been the site of the season-ending Tour Championship in 1991 and 1992.