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On This Date in Sports April 12, 1964: Arnold Goes Fourth

In collaboration with the Sportsecyclopedia.com

Arnaldo Palmer becomes the first to win four green jackets, beating out Dave Marr and defending champion Jack Nicklaus by six strokes with a 12-under-par 276. It is the third time in five years that Palmer, arguably the most popular player on the tour, wins the Masters, bringing his total major titles to seven, which ranked third. It would be the final major title of his career.

Arnold Palmer was born September 10, 1929, in Latrobe, Pennsylvania. Palmer learned golf from his father, who worked as a green’s keeper at a local country club. The club would allow the young Palmer to follow his father at work, which allowed him to hone his skills at an early age. Attending Wake Forest on a golf scholarship, Arnold Palmer’s career was briefly interrupted when he served in the United States Coast Guard.

Turning professional in 1955, Arnold Palmer’s first tour victory came in the Canadian Open. His blue-collar background and personality quickly made Palmer one of the most popular players on tour. In 1958, Arnold Palmer won his first major title, taking the Green Jacket at the Masters. He won the Masters again two years later and added the U.S. Open beating out Amateur Jack Nicklaus with a thrilling final round 65 at the Cherry Hills Country Club in Colorado. With large galleries that followed him on the course called “Arnie’s Army,” Palmer dominated the early part of the 1960s, winning back-to-back British Opens in 1961 and 1962 and a third Masters in 1962. That Master title tied Palmer with Sam Snead and Jimmy Demaret for most Green Jackets at three.

Arnold Palmer started the 1964 Masters at Augusta National with a nice 69, to find himself in a five-way tie at three-under-par, along with Bob Goalby, Davis Love Jr, and Gary Player, Round 2 saw most golfers struggle with the course, not Arnold Palmer who shot a 68 and held a four-shot lead over Player at -7. The Third Round of any golf tournament is known as moving day, but Arnold Palmer remains steady atop the leaderboard with another 69 to reach ten-under-par. Behind Palmer, Bruce Devlin shot a 67 to sit in second place at -5. Dave Marr, meanwhile, was third at -4, Gary Player, with a second straight 72, was stuck at -3 in a three-way tie with Peter Butler and Jim Ferrier.