Tony Lema was famously known as "Champagne Tony" after joking with the press that he'd buy them all champagne if we won the golf tournament the next day. Tony Lema, and his Champagne Tony moniker, became household names a couple years later when he won the 1964 Open Championship at St Andrews. Unfortunately, just 2 years later Tony Lema perished in a plane crash when leaving the 1966 PGA Championship.
Because of this, Tony Lema autographs are scarce. Offered here is perhaps the finest Tony Lema piece of memorabilia in existence - an empty bottle fo Moet & Chandon Champagne that is autographed by Champagne Tony himself.
This bottle comes from the Estate of Mickey Powell, who personally knew Tony Lema. The the exact story of the origins of this empty bottle may have been lost with time, but this Tony Lema autographed champagne bottle was prominently on display in Mickey's home office for decades.
Mickey Powell Collection
The offered item in this lot comes from the Estate of former PGA of America President Mickey Powell. Long before Powell spent more than 55 years in professional golf, he began as a 13 year old caddie at the Country Club of Indianapolis. His first-ever loop was for a couple named Pete and Alice Dye, who went on to become a driving force in golf course design. Powell is credited with setting the Ryder Cup on its path towards increased prominence when he convinced his friend Jack Nicklaus to return as Captain for the 1987 Ryder Cup at his home course Muirfield Village. Mickey Powell was an avid collector throughout his life - baseball cards, coins, and, yes, golf memorabilia. We considered Mickey Powell a friend, and his passion for the game of golf was unmatched. We are excited to place pieces of his collection into the hands of collectors across the globe.