Who holds the longest golf drive in history?
It’s s simple, straightforward question. But the answer is a little more complicated than you might think. In fact, if you ask around, it wouldn’t be too hard to find two people who adamantly argue different answers.
Keep reading to find out who holds the record and why it’s disputed by some.
Official Record Holder
According to both the PGA and the Guinness Book Of World Records, Mike Austin holds the official record for longest golf drive in history.
Austin set the record at the U.S. Nationals Senior Open Championship in 1974 with a 515-yard drive with a 27mph wind. The tournament took place at the Winterwood Golf Course in Las Vegas, Nevada. He was 64 years old at the time.
Austin was born in 1910 and passed away in 2005 at the age of 95 years old. He was born on Guernsey in Britain’s Channel Islands. He spent time living in Scotland, Austin, and Atlanta before making the move to LA in 1939.
Despite the world record, Austin never made it big time as a professional golfer. He had a few short stints, with his best finish taking place in 1961 Ontario Open in Canada. There he finished 37th.
However, despite his mediocre success in professional tournaments, Austin was still well known around the golf world. He earned the nickname “The Golfing Bandit” due to the many stunts and exploits he’d pull on the golf course.
During the winter, Austin would head down to South Florida to play games against vacationing gangsters from Chicago. Realising they didn’t stand a chance against him, the gangsters didn’t want to play him after the first year.
So, to keep the gangsters and others interested, Austin would handicap himself and use left-handed clubs or only swing with one hand. He would also come up with impossible sounding side bets. Once, for example, he won $5000 by making par hitting with a Coke bottle.
Austin had a doctorate in kinesiology from Georgia Tech and was able to use his educational background to develop his swing. He also taught golf pretty much all his life, even up to two weeks before his death.
Others Who Came Close to Longest Golf Drive
A golfer you’ve probably never even heard of actually hit a drive that was 787-yards long.
The golfer was Carl Cooper. Cooper hit the drive at the 1992 Texas Open in San Antonio.
As you could probably guess, the drive took some strange bounces and couldn’t be measured properly. The longest golf drive record that year ended up going to John Daly, who hit a 308-yard drive.
The 787-yard number was considered the real length because that’s what his caddie estimated, although some swear it was over 800-yards.
Davis Love is the next closest to Austin’s record, with a 476-yard drive at the 2004 Mercedes Champ. Then it’s Jeff Sluman with a 473-yard drive at the 2003 Bob Hope Champ. Followed by Charley Hoffman with a 467-yard drive at the 2009 Texas Open.
Also, WWE wrestler turned Hollywood star, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson claims to have hit a 490-yard drive during a break while filming for a show.
Whether you’re like The Rock and you think you got what it takes to hit the longest golf drive, or you just want to practice your swing, be sure to check out our improvement guides.
The smallest tweak can make all the difference when it comes to improving your game.