US Open First Major In History To Have $20m Purse

The Los Angeles Country Club tournament marks the first time a Major will have a purse as high as $20m

Matt Fitzpatrick with the trophy after winning the 2022 US Open
Matt Fitzpatrick will win $3.6m if he successfully defends his US Open title
(Image credit: Getty Images)

As one of the most eagerly anticipated tournaments of the year, the US Open has had plenty of talking points during the build-up, including the venue, Los Angeles Country Club, which is hosting a Major for the first time.

The tournament will be breaking new ground in another area, too – the prize money, which has been confirmed by USGA CEO Mike Whan as $20m. That’s the largest in Major championship history.

Last year’s tournament featured a top prize of $17.5m, with $3.15m handed to eventual winner Matt Fitzpatrick. However, this year, the winner will receive an even more eye-catching $3.6m.

The increase also means that in just two years, the US Open purse has swelled by an incredible $7.5m, or 62.5%, since Jon Rahm lifted the trophy at Torrey Pines in 2021.  

That is surely another sign of the changing times the golf world is in the midst of, with the money entering the game remaining a hot topic following the emergence of LIV Golf

While that circuit's tournaments routinely offer $25m, the PGA Tour was forced to rethink its prize funds to persuade its best players to stay. That means many of its tournaments are now designated events, which generally offer an identical sum to the purse in this week’s Major. Continuing that theme of familiarity, those events also tend to offer $3.6m to the winner.

The two previous Majors in 2023 offered considerably smaller sums than this week's tournament. The Masters at Augusta National had a purse of $18 million, of which winner Jon Rahm claimed $3.24m, while the PGA Championship at Oak Hill the following month had a $17.5m prize fund, earning champion Brooks Koepka $3.15m.

As well as considerably boosting his bank balance, the winner will enjoy several more perks for his victory, including keeping the trophy for a year, receiving the Jack Nicklaus Medal and earning an exemption into the tournament for the next 10 years.

Mike Hall

Mike has over 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on a range of sports throughout that time, such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance staff writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the game's most newsworthy stories. 

He has written hundreds of articles on the game, from features offering insights into how members of the public can play some of the world's most revered courses, to breaking news stories affecting everything from the PGA Tour and LIV Golf to developmental Tours and the amateur game. 

Mike grew up in East Yorkshire and began his career in journalism in 1997. He then moved to London in 2003 as his career flourished, and nowadays resides in New Brunswick, Canada, where he and his wife raise their young family less than a mile from his local course. 

Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.