Golf fans just realising how Ryder Cup got its name as USA and Europe collide

The Ryder Cup has become perhaps the greatest event in golf, but how did the competition that pits the best players from the U.S. and Europe get its name? Unlike most trophies in sports, the Ryder Cup is not named after a famous player or coach.

Instead, English entrepreneur Samuel Ryder, who made his fortune by revolutionizing the sale of seeds for plants in the early 20th century is the man behind the tournament and its name. Born in 1858, Ryder made his wealth and found his love for golf at the age of 50.

Inspired by the Walker Cup – a tournament contested between British and American amateurs – when it was founded in 1922, Ryder wanted to create a similar tournament contested by professionals. Ryder – no relation to the contemporary PGA Tour player of the same name – was friends with the top British professionals of the time, including Abe Mitchell who he employed as his instructor.

After canvassing the ideas of Mitchell and others, Ryder’s intentions were made public in newspaper reports in 1925 and within a year, he had commissioned the production of the now iconic gold trophy, with the figure on top believed to have been modeled on Mitchell.

An informal tournament between Great Britain and Team USA was held in 1926, with the Brits winning 11-1. The first official Ryder Cup took place a year later at Worcester Country Club in Massachusetts in 1927; the Americans won 9.5-2.5.

The U.S. dominated the early years of the Ryder Cup, with Great Britain winning just three times in the first 25 events across almost 60 years. But the decision to expand the British team to include players from continental Europe has transformed the event, with the team in blue winning 11 of the past 18 Ryder Cups.

We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info

Captains Zach Johnson and Luke Donald hope to have their hands on the trophy by the end of Sunday’s singles, and it promises to be a thrilling three days of world-class golf at Marco Simone Golf & Country Club in Italy.

The Americans have the Ryder Cup in their possession after a dominant victory at Whistling Straits two years ago, but they have not won on European soil for 30 years. And the home team is sure to have a significant advantage thanks to huge crowds in Rome, meaning the 44th Ryder Cup has all the ingredients to be a great one.

Source: Read Full Article