All the glory of the 2011 British Open belongs to Darren Clarke, and rightfully so. The 42-year-old Northern Irishman set the pace at Royal St. George's, never finishing a round over par to finish atop the leaderboard at five under par.
And though this was the sixth Major in a row in which an American had failed to win, there was still plenty of reason for optimism that this dubious streak may soon come to an end next month at the 2011 PGA Championship at the Atlanta Athletic Club-Highlands Course.
Six of the top ten finishers at this year's Open were Yanks, all of whom played exceptional golf through difficult conditions over the course of the weekend to remain in contention until the very end.
With that in mind, let's have a look at how each of these six Americans managed to come so close to hoisting the Claret Jug.
Dustin Johnson had arguably the best weekend of any American at Royal St. George's.
The 27-year-old from Columbia, South Carolina got off to a rather precocious start with a hole-in-one on the 16th on Friday and carried that momentum forward rather well, shooting 68s on Friday and Saturday to come into play on Sunday at four under par.
Unfortunately, Johnson fell just a bit short in his final round, sandwiching a hot streak of three birdies in six holes between a trio of bogeys and a double bogey to finish the day with a two-over 72.
Nonetheless, the second-place finish marks Johnson's best performance in a Major thus far since he turned pro in 2007 and asserts him as one of the top Americans to watch for on the PGA Tour going forward.
Finishing in a tie for second place with Dustin Johnson was an old familiar face for golf fans in America—Phil Mickelson.
Lefty spent most of the tournament on the fringe of contention, hovering right around even par through the first three rounds before really turning on the jets on Sunday.
Mickelson kicked off his final round with as much of a bang as one can expect from a tranquil game like golf, picking up four birdies and an eagle in the first 10 holes to put himself atop the leaderboard, however brief his stay turned out to be.
Then, in truly Mickelsonian fashion, he choked away a chance to hoist his first-career Claret Jug with four bogeys in the following six holes to finish at two under par for the tournament.
In essence, Sunday's 68 was just another example of Lefty being Lefty, for better AND for worse.
Perhaps no American did more to impress at the 2011 British Open than Rickie Fowler.
The 22-year-old from Anaheim, California seemingly came of age at Royal St. George's, persevering through trying conditions to remain near the top of the leaderboard while playing about as steadily as anyone in the field.
Fowler's fifth-place finish is by far his best at a Major thus far, though, to be fair, he's only competed in seven of them and made the cut in five since he first debuted on the PGA Tour in 2008.
That being said, Fowler's strong performance at the Open may be just what he needs to ascend from being just some Justin Bieber look-alike to a serious contender with the game to match.
Like so many quality professionals playing through the era of Tiger Woods' dominance, Chad Campbell has yet to taste victory at a Major championship, though he once again came close at the 2011 British Open.
Campbell's fifth-place finish at Royal St. George's marks the fourth time in his career that he's concluded play among the top five at a Major tournament in his career and he certainly would've fared even better had it not been for a rather rough Saturday.
The big Texan suffered through a rough round on Moving Day, scoring a four-over 74 with but a single birdie while battling the elements in Sandwich, England.
Campbell managed to adjust his game well enough on Sunday to shoot a one-under 69, though that unfortunately still left him five shots short of the lead.
Anthony Kim in nearing the point in his career at which he needs to take his game to the next level, lest he be thought of as yet another young phenom who just never could put it all together at the biggest tournaments, a la Sergio Garcia.
And while Kim didn't put those worries to rest entirely with his fifth-place finish, he did give American golf fans a glimpse of what figure to be even better performances to come.
Like so many near the top of the leaderboard at the Open, Kim never strayed too far from even par, evidenced by his final score, though to do so at the British is certainly commendable.
However, had Kim taken greater advantage of the favorable conditions on Thursday, when he shot a two-over 72, he just might have been able to pull off the first Major victory of his five-year professional career.
No American turned more heads for staying in contention until the very end of the Open than did Davis Love III.
At 47 years of age, Love, who turned pro 26 years ago, snuck up on some folks when he ended play on Friday at two-under par, just two strokes off the lead.
Like so many in the field, though, the weather did Davis no favors on Saturday and Sunday, as he posted two-over 72s in each of the last two rounds at Royal St. George's to finish seven shots behind eventual champion Darren Clarke.
That being said, it was still a pleasant surprise to see Love, the consummate golf pro, add another top 10 finish to a resume sparkling with terrific performances in Majors, most of them coming during the height of his career between 1995 and 2005.