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Jack Nicklaus dishes on his greatest extravagance (which he hardly uses)

May 29, 2019

Welcome to You Don’t Know Jack, a five-part GOLF.com series in which — in a nod to the Memorial Tournament, being played this week at Jack’s place, Muirfield Village GC — we’re bringing you a daily dose of something you (most likely!) didn’t know about Jack Nicklaus.

Jack Nicklaus tallied a laundry list of accomplishments in his decades of dominance. There was, of course, the 18 majors, including the longest streak of top-10 finishes in majors (13). Seventy-three Tour victories. Six Ryder Cup appearances. One-hundred-sixty-seven top-three finishes. Eight-time leader in scoring average on Tour.

You get the picture.

Naturally, his wealth has accumulated due to his success on the course (and off it). In official earnings, Nicklaus totaled over $5 million on the PGA Tour alone, finishing atop the money list in eight different years — and top-five in nine other years. And that, of course, came before pros were playing for more than $1 million every week. Nicklaus later earned even bigger bucks off the course with his numerous business ventures. The Golden Bear can live comfortably, to say the least.

In 2004, Nicklaus and his wife, Barbara, put some of that wealth toward a charitable cause, founding the Nicklaus Children’s Health Care Foundation dedicated to providing strong pediatric healthcare across the country.

But still, who doesn’t live entirely without extravagance? His greatest such purchase, he says, is his boat, “the Sea Bear.”

“It’s ridiculous,” he’s said in the June issue of GOLF Magazine. “I use it about 20 days a year, and it costs a fortune. I added it up per day, and I could buy half the U.S. Navy for what it costs.”

For those curious, estimates of the Sea Bear’s worth top $10 million. Just another reminder that when you’re the greatest golfer of all-time, you get to live just a bit differently than the rest of us. Like owning a scantly-used, multi-million dollar boat, just because you can.

Nicklaus Companies and GOLF.com are affiliates of 8AM Golf.