Height: 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight: 215 lb (98 kg; 15.4 st)
Birthday: 14 August 1968
College: Wake Forest University
Year turned pro: 1990
Birthplace: Dungannon, County Tyrone, Northern Ireland
Country: Northern Ireland
Sponsor: Audemars Piguet, Dunlop Collection, TaylorMade, The Astbury, Your Golf Channel.
Born in Dungannon, County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, Clarke played golf from a young age, at school in Northern Ireland, before playing college golf in the US, at Wake Forest University. After turning professional in 1990, Clarke played his first full season on the European Tour in 1991. That same year he played in his first Major, at the Open Championship, where he finished in joint 64th place. The following year he finished in 41st place on the European Tour Order of Merit.
In 1993, Clarke won his first event on the European Tour, at the Alfred Dunhill Open in Belgium. That season he made the cut in 24 out of 30 finishes. Although Clarke had a solid season in 1994, and played well in 1995, it was 1996 before he achieved his second win on the European Tour, at the Linde German Masters. He also finished in joint 11th place at the Open Championship, and finished the season in 8thplace on the Order of Merit. Clarke improved this position at the end of the 1997 season when he finished in 4th place.
The following season he made his first appearance at The Masters, where he finished in a tie for 8th position. He also achieved his third win on the European Tour that year, at the Benson & Hedges International Open. After a fourth European Tour win that year, Clarke achieved a fifth in 1999, when he also finished in a tie for 10th place at the US Open.
In 2000, Clarke won his first World Golf Championship event, at the WGC-Andersen Consulting Match Play Championship at La Costa Resort and Spa. He also finished in a tie for 9th place at the PGA Championship. After achieving a further win on the European Tour in 2001, Clarke spent 2002 playing on both the European Tour, and the PGA Tour. After a relatively successful couple of seasons, Clarke did not win an event on either the European Tour or the PGA Tour, in 2004.
Clarke’s run of no wins continued, although he did make a valuable contribution to the performance of the European Ryder Cup team, in 2006, not long after the death of his wife, Heather. 2007 was a really bad year for Clarke, and he finished the season in 143rd place on the European Tour Order of Merit. After five years with no wins, Clarke finally won again in 2008, at the BMW Asian Open. The lean spell seemed to come to an end in a season when he finished in 13th place on the European Tour Order of Merit. Clarke continued his steady return to form throughout 2009 and 2010. In 2011 an emotional Clarke dedicated his win at the Open Championship to his late wife and their children.
Clarke married Heather in 1996. The couple had two sons, and lived at Sunningdale, Berkshire, UK, until Heather’s death in 2006, from cancer. After his wife’s death Clarke moved back to Northern Ireland with his sons, and in 2012 he married Alison Campbell.
As of the end of 2014, Clarke had won three events on the PGA tour, amassing total prize money of $8,619,465.