The irons and wedges Tiger Woods used to complete the “Tiger Slam” in 2000-01 have sold at auction, and the bidding far exceeded expectation.
The clubs had a starting bid of $25,000 on March 23, and the bidding closed late Saturday night at $5,156,162.40.
It’s the first time the clubs have sold since 2010, when Todd Brock, a private equity investor, fetched a mere $57,242 for the famous Titleist 681-T iron set.
The clubs were listed by Golden Age Auctions, which also sold one of Woods’ backup Scotty Cameron putters last year for $393,300.
Tiger used the clubs for the four consecutive major victories that make up the “Tiger Slam” – the 2000 U.S. Open, Open Championship, PGA Championship and 2001 Masters – before switching to a new set seven weeks after the '01 Masters. At that point, he gave the iconic clubs to former Titleist director of player promotions Rick Nelson and Titleist VP of player promotions Steve Mata.
Mata took the clubs home with him and owned them until he put them up for auction in 2010.
Golden Age Auctions has affidavits from both Nelson and Mata verifying their authenticity. They also have the results of a 2010 polygraph test from Mata and a copy of a September 2000 Golfweek magazine article, which detailed the exact specs of Tiger's clubs used to win the 2000 PGA Championship. The article perfectly matches the description of the clubs, including the 58-degree wedge being bent to 56 degrees.
Horton Smith’s green jacket from the inaugural Masters previously held the record for most expensive piece of golf memorabilia, when it sold for $682,000 in 2013.