John Spotts New PPA National Champion

Cleveland, OH - 5-7 July 1963 - Twenty-year old John Spotts of Indianapolis, Indiana, outlasted a strong field of eager putting pros to cop first place money of $10,000 to become PPA's 1963 National Champion. The "sure-putting" Spotts shot a sizzling 346 - 86-under par in getting the job done. Young Spotts, a new face on the PPA tour, entered the final day's competition six strokes off the pace. He wasted no time in getting down to business as he fired a 28-28-29-25 to squeeze out his victory. Staying right on his heels all the way, making a strong bid for the lead, was Ralph Sapp of August, GA. Ralph finished one stroke off the pace with an 85-under par, 347, good for second place and $5,000. Third and fourth places proved to be an exciting battle as Tracy Moore of Augusta, GA, and Charles Gatewood of Mississippi City, MS, battled all the way down to the wire, tying with a 349.

Tracy Moore, a constant face on the PPA tour since its infancy, played his final round under heavy pressure. First and 2nd place winners, Spotts and Sapp, entered the final round 75 under par. Tracy Moore entered his final round 79 under par. With the leading score (86 under) already in, Moore had to fire a 29 to tie or 28 to win. The putts just wouldn't fall, and a disappointed Moore had to settle for a third place tie. The entire field for the pro division consisted of 231 pros, the largest ever gathered for a PPA event.

Young Joe Gehling of Cincinnati, Ohio came to Cleveland with a hot putter and put it to work in the amateur division by firing a 358, 74-under par, to claim the first place trophy. In second place, 9 strokes off the pace, was Jerry Pruitt of Atlanta, GA. Pruitt fired a 367, 65-under par. Shooting scores in the 20's was not confined to the pro division. In taking first place in the amateur division, Gehling fired 3 rounds of 29, one of 28, and a sizzling 25. A field of 67 amateurs started the first day's competition. The field was cut to the top 30 after the 2nd day's competition.

Many of the men in the putting spectacular will now move on to Indianapolis, IN; Charlotte, NC; Atlanta, GA; and Lake Charles, LA, to complete the 1963 circuit. Although the 1963 National Championship has ended, hundred upon hundreds of people who witnessed the event will remember it for a long time to come.

Professional Division of the $50,000 1963 PPA National Championship

First Second Third Prize
Player City 72-Holes 72-Holes 72-Holes Total Money
1 John Spotts Indianapolis, IN 125 111 110 346 $ 10,000
2 Ralph Sapp Augusta, GA 119 118 111 347 $ 5,000
3 Charles Gatewood Mississippi City, MS 120 112 117 349 $ 2,500
Tracy Moore Augusta, GA 116 115 118 349 $ 2,500
5 Vance Randall Asheville, NC 119 115 117 351 $ 1,000
6 Pete Reed Atlanta, GA 118 116 118 352 $ 1,000
7 Sam Schafer Augusta, GA 123 116 114 353 $ 1,000
Charles Hayes Winston-Salem, NC 116 126 121 353 $ 1,000
9 Ron Slocumb Columbus, GA 114 120 120 354 $ 1,000
Daryl Freeman Bristol, VA 115 120 119 354 $ 1,000
11 Ken Boy Bristol, TN 121 110 124 355 $ 1,000
John Connor Greenville, SC 117 124 114 355 $ 1,000
13 Buddy Taylor Baltimore, MD 116 122 118 356 $ 1,000
Chuck Schafer Long Island, NY 117 115 124 356 $ 1,000
15 Ted Brown High Point, NC 120 120 117 357 $ 1,000
Fred Scott Bristol, TN 123 119 115 357 $ 1,000
Charles McInstosh Birmingham, AL 118 116 123 357 $ 1,000
18 Gene VonWaldner Savannah, GA 119 123 116 358 $ 1,000
Claude Staggs Manassas, VA 118 122 118 358 $ 1,000
Ken Miller Birmingham, AL 117 113 128 358 $ 1,000
21 Bob Duncan Lynchburg, VA 114 118 127 259 $ 1,000
22 Roy Collinsworth Macon, GA 116 119 125 360 $ 1,000
Ron Nixon Columbus, GA 114 125 121 360 $ 1,000
Jimmy Bryan Atlanta, GA 118 121 121 360 $ 1,000
Paul Gordon Shreveport, LA 117 123 120 360 $ 1,000
Harold Hardester Orlando, FL 121 124 115 360 $ 1,000
Glenn Garvin Pensacola, FL 120 125 115 360 $ 1,000
28 Larry Rich Pensacola, FL 123 125 113 361 $ 1,000
George Salter Savannah, GA 117 126 118 361 $ 1,000
John Helmas Charlotte, NC 123 117 121 361 $ 1,000
Bob McDowell High Point, NC 114 127 120 361 $ 1,000
Carl Strickland Macon, GA 116 126 119 361 $ 1,000
Al Kalishman Pensacola, FL 126 112 123 361 $ 1,000
Lockland Bryant Jacksonville, FL 123 116 122 361 $ 1,000
35 Mike Lafleur Lake Charles, LA 362
Earl Fritts Savannah, GA 362
37 Tom Myers Savannah, GA 363
Neil Connor Greenville, SC 363
Gene McDonald Savannah, GA 363
40 Joe Mazie Cleveland, OH 364
41 Paul Garrison Indianapolis, IN 365
Gary Ganim Parma, OH 365
Warren Gray Indianapolis, IN 365
Dennis Strauss Cleveland, OH 365
Lenny Marlow Indianapolis, IN 365
LeRoy Cooper East Point, GA 365
47 Clarence Kurtz Washington, DC 366
Frank Reid Atlanta, GA 366
Roy Estes Kingsport, TN 366
Lehman Key Lake Charles, LA 366
Herb Seaton Gatlinburg, TN 366
Melvin Sapp Augusta, GA 366
Eugene Hull Indianapolis, IN 366
54 Bill Rettig Cincinnati, OH 367
Bud Garren Greenville, SC 367
John Roessner Indianapolis, IN 367
57 Donald Elmore Shelby, NC 368
58 Gary Puckett Atlanta, GA 369
Don Alexander Mobile, AL 369
Howard Weekly Brookpark, OH 369
Bill Crays Indianapolis, IN 369
62 Bob Bower Roanoke, VA 370
Lee Weldy Savannah, GA 370
64 Harley Baker Jackson, TN 371
Richard Benton Miami, FL 371
Ashley Slocumb Columbus, GA 371
Tom Bennett Fayetteville, NC 371
68 Nick Long Burlington, IA 372
Dan Mescall Indianapolis, IN 372
Bob Williamson Jacksonville, FL 372
Wilbur Hildebrand Greensboro, NC 372
Bob Agee Jacksonville, FL 372
73 Willie Edwards Winston-Salem, NC 373
Jim Garrison Indianapolis, IN 373
James Barry St. Louis, MO 373
76 Frank Sarver Lake Charles, LA 375
77 David Asher St. Louis, MO 376
Wayne Perdue Roanoke, VA 376
Jack Wood Lynchburg, VA 376
Lamar Brown Atlanta, GA 376
Jan Bowman Bristol, TN 376
82 Justine Colley Westminster, CO 377
Don Martin Lynchburg, VA 377
Fred Schafer Jacksonville, FL 377
Eugene Wright Holliman, TX 377
Pat McMasters Greenville, SC 377
Frank Kelly New Orleans, LA 377
Bob Potter Islip, NY 377
89 Pat Youmans Savannah, GA 378
Jerry Williams Tuscaloosa, AL 378
Jack Melton Atlanta, GA 378
92 John Thomas Memphis, TN 379
93 Jim Welker Miami, FL 380
Condy Roberson Savannah, GA 380
95 Roger Holbrook Greensboro, NC 381
Howard Fellows Warren, OH 381
John Crowell Washington, DC 381
Leonard Peak Atlanta, GA 381
99 Paul Harrigal Cleveland, OH 382
Tom Teddy Memphis, TN 382
Charles Connor, Sr. Greenville, SC 382
George Bearden Savannah, GA 382
Fred Garrison Indianapolis, IN 382
104 Bob Poltis Cleveland, OH 383
Dean Stonier Rantoul, IL 383
106 Bill Lewis Charlotte, NC 384
Bill Padgett Charlotte, NC 384
108 Vernon Taylor High Point, NC 385
Tom Cummins Louisville, KY 385
110 Howell Smith Atlanta, GA 387
111 Cal Skidmore Baltimore, MD 389
Irvin Hales Goldsboro, NC 389
113 Hank Smith Hopeville, GA 390
Ken Johnson Denver, CO 390
Don Posey Winston-Salem, NC 390
116 Jack Hoffman Asheville, NC 391
Paul Conkle Findlay, OH 391
118 Bud Ireland Houston, TX 392
119 Ben Farrar Houston, TX 398
120 Walt Moore Cincinnati, OH 399

** All other contestants were eliminated after 144 holes of medal-play in qualifying rounds.

Amateur Division of the $50,000 1963 PPA National Championship

First Second Third
Player City 72-Holes 72-Holes 72-Holes Total
1 Joe Gehling Cincinnati, OH 121 123 114 358
2 Jerry Pruitt Atlanta, GA 127 123 117 367
3 Dick Florin Akron, OH 370
4 James Fishell Raleigh, NC 371
5 David Marsh Atlanta, GA 372
Ray Wingester New Orleans, LA 372
7 Joe Shaedler Atlanta, GA 373
Tommy Von Gossen Lake Charles, LA 373
9 Charles Price Shreveport, LA 374
10 Terry Grady N. Olmstead, OH 375
11 Joe Jessup Greensboro, NC 377
12 Joe Cox High Point, NC 378
13 Bill Stowe Gastonia, NC 379
14 Tom Kehl Cleveland, OH 380
Bill Brunck Hamilton, OH 380
16 Steve Head Columbia, IN 382
17 Jay Simececk Cleveland, OH 384
Tom Jones New Middletown, OH 384
19 Tom Hoag Jacksonville, FL 385
Larry Anderson Levittown, NY 385
21 Dave Neely Ashland, OH 386
22 John Kolodziej Quincy, IL 387
23 Dave Evans Winston-Salem, NC 392
24 Tom Adelman Norwalk, OH 393
Joe Mazzali Louisville, KY 393
26 Philip Clemmer Durham, NC 394
27 Tom Padgett Charlotte, NC 395
28 Ronny Brunett Atlanta, GA 399
29 Larry Burney Hamilton, OH 404
30 Junior Wood Wilmington, DE 405

** All other contestants were eliminated after 144 holes of medal-play in qualifying rounds.

Notice

The winner of the first Vacation Fun Festival trip to Peru is: Greg Yandle, 418 Barnett Street, Lake Charles, LA.

All score, statistics and descriptions taken from the Putt-Putt Professional Putters Association Newsletter, Volume 4, Number 1, July 9, 1963.

 

 

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