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Hardwick joined the PBA Tour in 1961, and amassed a total of 18 PBA titles during his career. He was the first player to capture the PBA career “Triple Crown,” which is achieved by winning the three primary PBA major tournaments: U. Open, PBA National Championship, and Tournament of Champions.
Hardwick captured all three between 1963 and 1969. There have been only five other Triple Crown winners since: Johnny Petraglia, Mike Aulby, Pete Weber, Norm Duke, and Chris Barnes. Hardwick was named PBA Player of the Year in both the 1963 and 1969 seasons.