Distance continues to be a hot topic of discussion on all professional golf tours around the world. Players are hitting the golf ball further and further and many in the industry are questioning whether or not limits should be placed on golf ball and club designs.
But until any restrictions are enforced by either the R&A or USGA players are going to hit the golf ball further than ever which makes for very interesting viewing.
- The 10 longest drives off all-time in tournament play:
- Longest drives on the PGA Tour in 2020
- Average driving distance on the PGA Tour for the 2020 season
- Longest drive on the European Tour
- Longest drive by a long drive professional
- The 5 longest recorded drives on the LPGA Tour
- Longest drive by a female long drive professional
- Final thoughts
The 10 longest drives off all-time in tournament play:
1. Carl Cooper
- Distance: 787 yards
- Tournament: 1992 Texas Open
- Golf course: Oak Hills Country Club
- Hole: 3rd hole
The longest golf drive ever recorded was 787 yards by Carl Cooper at the 1992 Texas Open. This monster drive got some assistance from a cart path and a steep downhill, it can be argued that it doesn’t count but technically it does since there is no remarks column in the rules book.
Unfortunately for Cooper, this mammoth drive ended up a long way away from the green and he ended up making a double bogey on the hole.
2. Mike Dobbyn
- Distance: 551 yards
- Tournament: Butch Harmon’s Pro Tour (Mini-tour)
- Golf course: Dragon Ridge Country Club
- Hole: 18th
Mike Dobbyn broke Mike Austin’s record in 2007 in Henderson, Nevada. Dobbyn, a long drive professional, was playing a mini-tour event at Dragon Ridge Country Club when he managed to hit a 551-yard drive down the par 5, 18th hole. Dobbyn recalls that the tee shot was slightly downwind and thanks to the high desert temperatures the ball was traveling a mile. His record-breaking drive landed on a downslope which propelled it forward with the ball coming to rest pin high about 40 yards to the right of the green. In a bizarre twist to the story, Dobbyn’s drive shaft broke in half on his follow-through.
3. Mike Austin
- Distance: 515 yards
- Tournament: 1974 National Seniors Open Championship
- Golf course: Winterwood Golf Course
- Hole: 5th hole
Carl Cooper stole the top spot from Mike Austin in 1992 but Austin’s drive is arguably the most impressive one out of the two. Due to the validity of Cooper’s hit Austin still held the record for the longest golf drive in a tournament in the Guinness Book of World Records until that record was broken in 2007 by Mike Dobbyn.
A 515-yard drive is very impressive, what’s more, impressive is the fact that Austin was 64 when he hit this drive and it was with a persimmon wood and an old-school balata golf ball. Austin did have a 35 mph wind that was assisting him, but regardless it is still a very impressive feat.
4. Tiger Woods
- Distance: 498 yards
- Tournament: 2002 Mercedes Championship
- Golf course: Kapalua Plantation Course
- Hole: 18th hole
Tiger has had his injury struggles over the last decade but even with those struggles Tiger still hits it a long way off of the tee. His longest tee shot however came all the way back in 2002 at the Mercedes Championship in Hawaii. Tiger unleashed a drive down the 18th hole at the Plantation Course at Kapalua that went a mammoth 498 yards. This drive by Tiger was the longest drive on the PGA Tour in nearly 40 years and to this day it is still one of the longest drives ever hit by a professional golfer.
5. Dustin Johnson
- Distance: 489 yards
- Tournament: 2018 WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play
- Golf course: Austin Country Club
- Hole: 12th holes
Dustin Johnson is known for his length off of the tee. DJ doesn’t hold back with driver in hand and he definitely didn’t do that on the 12th hole at the 2018 WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play event in Austin, Texas when he hit it a massive 489 yards.
The 12th hole does play downhill and the hole runs away from you, but regardless of those assisting factors it still requires a huge hit to advance the golf ball nearly 500 yards. Unfortunately, this sweetly struck drive wasn’t recorded on camera.
6. Davis Love III
- Distance: 476 yards
- Tournament: 2004 Mercedes Championship
- Golf course: Kapalua Plantation Course
- Hole: 18th hole
Davis Love III isn’t known for overpowering golf courses off of the tee, but Davis managed to raise some eyebrows when he drove it 476 yards down the 18th hole at the Plantation Course at Kapalua in the 2004 Mercedes Benz Championship. The 18th at the Plantation course with its steep downhill fairway has seen many long drives in its time, but only Tiger has managed to hit it further than Davis on this driver-friendly hole.
7. Jeff Sluman
- Distance: 473 yards
- Tournament: 2003 Bob Hope Chrysler Classic
- Golf course: PGA West, Palmer Course
- Hole: 14th hole
Jeff Sluman was a regular on the PGA Tour in the 2000s. Sluman wasn’t always at the top of the leaderboard, but he was one of the longest hitters on tour. Sluman, a former PGA Championship winner, launched one of the longest drives ever at the 2003 Bob Hope Chrysler Classic at PGA West with an unprecedented 473-yard drive.
8. Charley Hoffman
- Distance: 467 yards
- Tournament: 2009 Texas Open
- Golf course: LaCantera Golf Club
- Hole: 1st hole
Charley Hoffman is known for his green glove that he always wears, but Hoffman also hit one of the longest drives in history at the 2009 Texas Open. This big hit has a funny story behind it, Hoffman rocked up to the 1st tee at LaCantera without hitting any golf balls on the driving range and proceeded to rip it 467 yards down the first hole, cold turkey.
9. Dustin Johnson
- Distance: 463 yards
- Tournament: 2011 Deutsche Bank
- Golf course: TPC Boston
- Hole: 7th hole
DJ is the only golfer to make the list twice which cements his name as one of the longest hitters of all time. Dustin’s second longest drive came at the 2011 Deutsche Bank Championship on the 7th hole at TPC Boston. The 7th is a par 5 that measured 600 yards, DJ ripped it 463 yards down the fairway and a wedge in from about 150 for his second shot.
10. Justin Thomas
- Distance: 457 yards
- Tournament: 2019 WGC-Mexico Championship
- Golf course: Club de Golf Chapultepec
- Hole: 10th hole
Pound for pound Justin Thomas is arguably the longest hitter in golf alongside Rory McIlroy. JT lived up to this tag when he smashed a drive 457 yards on the 10th hole at the 2019 WGC-Mexico Championship in Mexico City. Mexico City is at a very high altitude which makes the event a hot spot for big drives, but regardless that is still a very impressive drive from Thomas.
Longest drives on the PGA Tour in 2020
Let’s see how the longest drives of all time compare to the longest drives in a single year like 2020.
|Justin Thomas||449 yards|
|Rickie Fowler||431 yards|
|Bubba Watson||431 yards|
|Sergio Garcia||429 yards|
|Lanto Griffin||429 yards|
|Bryson DeChambeau||428 yards|
|Shane Lowry||417 yards|
|Jon Rahm||415 yards|
|Cameron Champ||413 yards|
|Rory McIlroy||412 yards|
Average driving distance on the PGA Tour for the 2020 season
The men on the PGA Tour hit the golf ball a long way, but to get a better understanding of how far they hit the golf ball on average let’s take a closer look at the average driving distance stats for the PGA Tour’s 202 season.
|Bryson DeChambeau||323.9 yards|
|Cameron Champ||321.3 yards|
|Ryan Brehm||315.3 yards|
|Grayson Murray||313.8 yards|
|Rory McIlroy||312.9 yards|
|Brandon Hagy||312.8 yards|
|Sam Burns||312.2 yards|
|Jason Kokrak||311.3 yards|
|Matthew Wolff||311.3 yards|
|Bubba Watson||310.5 yards|
Longest drive on the European Tour
Stat tracking on the European Tour isn’t up to the standard found on the PGA Tour. There is no doubt however about the longest drive on the European Tour, this honor belongs to Nicolas Colsaerts. The Belgian blasted a 447-yard drive down the par 5 18th hole at Celtic Manor during the Wales Open in 2014. A plaque can be found in the 18th fairway at Celtic Manor in commemoration of Colsaerts’ record breaking drive.
Longest drive by a long drive professional
American long drive professional, Scott Smith, holds the record for the longest drive by a long drive professional at a long driving event. Smith achieved this feat in 2004 when he drove the ball 539 yards. Smith was aided by a pretty strong wind, but that doesn’t take anything away from this massive drive.
The 5 longest recorded drives on the LPGA Tour
Stat tracking on the LPGA Tour isn’t up to the standard found on the PGA Tour. Driving distance is only measured on a select number of holes during the course of a round in order to establish the average driving distance of a player.
Below are the 5 longest recorded drives on the LPGA Tour.
|Georgia Hall||355 yards|
|Peiyun Chien||348 yards|
|Lexi Thompson||348 yards|
|Lexi Thompson||327 yards|
|Angel Yin||322 yards|
Longest drive by a female long drive professional
New Zealander, Phillis Meti, holds the record for the longest drive by a female golfer. Meti, a long drive professional, held the record previously before breaking it twice in one day in 2019 at the AK-Chin Smash in the Sun long drive event in Arizona. The initial record of 406 yards came in 2017 at a World Long Drive event in Colorado before improving the record to 414 yards in 2019.
Distance is the talk of the town amongst golfers and much of this has been fuelled by the likes of Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka and Justin Thomas in recent years.
Most recently Bryson Dechambeau has added nearly 40 pounds (18kg’s) of weight in a quest to add distance to his game. The bigger and buffer Bryson has sent shockwaves across the golfing world with the massive drives that he is hitting since the restart of the PGA Tour in June.
Strap yourself in because by the looks of it these guys (and girls) are only going to hit the golf ball further and further in the years to come.
This article was last updated on August 26, 2020 .