Bob Rankin

On Friday, November 17, 2006, the Florida State Golf Association inducted Bob Rankin into its prestigious Hall of Fame. The ceremony was held at Palma Ceia Country Club in Tampa in conjunction with the Annual Dinner.

Growing up in Zanesville, Ohio, Bob Rankin was introduced to the game by his father at the age of 12.  Rankin quickly picked up the game and dominated Zanesville Country Club, winning the Club Championship at the age of 16 and continuing to win 10 more times. 

Bob had a successful amateur career in Ohio playing at Ohio State University where he finished second individually in the Big 10 Conference his sophomore and junior years.  In 1955, he won the Ohio Amateur and also qualified for the US Amateur.  Also in 1955, he defeated 15-year-old Jack Nicklaus to win the Columbus District Golf Association title.

Bob and his family moved to Palm Harbor, Florida where he opened an insurance business and made a name for himself in amateur golf.  He is a past champion of the Florida State Amateur, having taken the title in 1969, defeating Jack Veghte who blew a four-stroke lead on the final day in that memorable vent to capture the crown. Rankin also twice captured the Gasparilla Invitational Golf Tournament, played at the Palma Ceia Golf and Country Club in Tampa.  He won the title in 1968 and 1969, and finished runner-up in 1970.

Rankin was acknowledged as one of the brightest stars in the Florida golf firmament during his time and may justly be said to have dominated the game within its borders.

Bob won the Florida Amateur in 1969 and Mid-Senior in 1972. Other FSGA Championships include the 1989 Senior Four-Ball Championship and 1992 and 1994 Senior Championship. He won the Florida State Senior Golf Association Championship four times and US Senior Challenge Championship four times (including three consecutive years). His last Florida State Senior Championship win was in 1999 when he was the oldest (70) to win in its history.  In 1992, he was named the "Man of the Year" by the US Senior Challenge after winning many events through the years. Bob, a founding member of Cypress Run Golf Club in Tarpon Springs, was inducted into the Ohio Golf Hall of Fame in 1996.

 

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