Popular PGA Tour star Martin Laird collected an Honorary Membership from the club on Saturday 20th December 2008. Martin is a former Junior Captain and two times Junior Champion of the club who turned professional in 2004, and has become one of the most successful Scottish golfers ever on the US PGA Tour.
During seasons 2004 to 2007 Martin concentrated on the Nationwide tour and in 2007 had one win at the Athens Regional Foundation Classic. His 13th overall place on the Tour that year earned him his PGA Tour card for 2008. He also qualified for the US Open in 2007 held at Oakmont Country Club which was won by Angel Cabrera, with Jim Furyk and Tiger Woods tied in second place.
During his rookie season on the PGA Tour 2008, Martin secured a place in the the following season's British Open after making it through the American qualifier in Texas. He ended the year ranked 268 on the World rankings and 67th on the FedEx Cup standings.
2009 PGA Tour Breakthrough year
Martin finished 10th in the Scottish Open which was held at Loch Lomond Golf Club, the winner being Martin Kaymer. He also qualified for the 2010 US Open to be held at Bethpage Black course in New York State. However later that year Martin secured the first of his PGA Tour titles at the Justin Timberlake Shriners Open played at Las Vegas securing his Tour card for 2010 and 2011. By winning that tournament Martin became the first Scot to win a PGA Tour event in America since Sandy Lyle won the 1988 Masters Tournament.
Season 2010 PGA Tour
Martin returned to Las Vegas to defend the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open title that he won in 2009. Laird missed a 25-foot putt on the 72nd hole. A three-man playoff then ensued with Laird being joined by Cameron Percy and Jonathan Byrd. Martin had more chances to win but missed putts of varying lengths at the first three sudden-death playoff holes. This was to prove costly as on the 4th playoff hole, Byrd, who had the honour, made the first ever hole in one in a playoff in PGA Tour history to win the title. The tie for 2nd place lifted Laird to a career high world ranking of 55.
On 27 March 2011, Laird claimed the biggest title of his career at Bay Hill's Arnold Palmer Invitational taking the first prize of $1,080,000. After three rounds of 70, 65 and 70 Laird had a two shot lead over Spencer Levin with Steve Marino and Bubba Watson a further two strokes behind. Laird dropped three shots on the front nine and then had a double-bogey at the 11th. At this stage Levin was also five over par for his round but Marino was two under par, resulting in a seven shot swing and leaving Laird three shots behind Marino. Laird scored three birdies and a bogey in the next five holes, while Marino scored a bogey and then a double-bogey at the par three 17th hole, leaving Laird now with a two shot lead. However Marino birdied the 18th, after holing an eight-foot putt, leaving Laird needing to par the last hole to win. His second shot was on the green but eighty three feet away. He two-putted for the victory. This ensured that he became first ever European winner of the Arnold Palmer Invitational. After the tournament his world ranking rose to 21.
Martin had a second place finish at the Hyundia Tournament of Champions and another second place later that year at The Players Championship fnishing two strokes behind winner Matt Kucher.
On 7th April Laird won his third career PGA Tour event, the Valero Texas Open, by two strokes from Rory McIlroy. Starting the final round five shots behind overnight leader Billy Horschel, Laird fired a nine-under-par 63, including birdies at his last three holes, to take the title. The win meant that Laird was the last person to gain entry into the 2013 Masters Tournament, ending the streak of 16 consecutive American wins on the PGA Tour, 14 of them in the 2013 season.
Martin has had three good finishes in 2018, having tied 9th at the Phoenix Waste Management, also tied 9th at the Genisis Open, and tied 17th at the Safeway Open.
Martin Laird holed a 22-foot birdie putt to claim his first PGA Tour title in more than seven years at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. He shared the lead going into the final round, bogeyed the 18th hole to finish on 23 under and drop into a play-off with American pair Austin Cook and Matthew Wolff. All three made par on the first extra hole before Laird won it at the next. Watch the highlights of the final round and playoff here