Although the British Open has produced a prestigious list of champions over the years, the winners at Royal Birkdale have been a special lot.
Some of golf's biggest names, Arnold Palmer, Lee Trevino, Johnny Miller and Tom Watson are among the winners at Birkdale. Other winners include Australians Ian Baker-Finch and Peter Thomson, who won two of his five Open titles at Birkdale in 1954 and 1965.In 1961, Palmer won his first British Open thanks in large part to a shot he made out of the long grass along the 16th hole that helped him save par and the championship. A plaque with Palmer's name and the date - 14th July 1961 - commemorates the spot of the remarkable shot.
In 1971, Trevino captured the British Open at Birkdale, completing a remarkable string of wins in less than a month that included the U.S. Open and the Canadian Open.
The 1976 tournament at Birkdale marked the first international splash of a young 19-year-old Spaniard named Seve Ballesteros. He led for three rounds, before being overtaken in the final round by Miller, who fired a 66 to win by six. That victory marked the end of Miller's dominance as he fell into a slump the following year and didn't win again until the 1980s.
In 1983, Tom Watson won the fifth of his British Open titles, which tied him with Thomson for most British Open victories.
The last champion at Birkdale, Baker-Finch, captured the 1991 tournament thanks to a 29 he constructed on the front nine on the final day. But the Australian fell into a terrible slump in the mid-1990s and at one point missed 32 straight tournament cuts. Last year after opening with a embarrassing 92 in the British Open at Troon, he decided to retire from competitive golf and will be at Birkdale as a television commentator for ABC.