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US Masters Tournament - Augusta National

willett Masters WinThe first of the year's major championships, the Masters is the only major played over the same course every year. The gorgeous Augusta National layout proving the perfect venue for the staging of this famous and most dramatic of events. In 2016, defending champion Jordan Spieth held a five shot lead at the half way point of the final round but bogeys on 10 and 11 and an unbelievable 7 on the par three 12th, saw him drop to 4th place and he wasn't able to recover. Meanwhile England's Danny Willett recorded a flawless closing round 67 to win his first major title.
To read our 2016 summary - Click here

Past Champions

Year Winner Score Runner-up
1934  Horton Smith 284 Craig Wood
1935  Gene Sarazen (144) 282 Craig Wood (149)
1936  Horton Smith 285 Harry Cooper
1937  Byron Nelson 283 Ralph Guldahl
1938  Henry Picard 285 Ralph Guldahl, Harry Cooper
1939  Ralph Guldahl 279 Sam Snead
1940  Jimmy Demaret 280 Lloyd Mangrum
1941  Craig Wood 280 Byron Nelson
1942  Byron Nelson (69) 280 Ben Hogan (70)
1943 No Tournament-World War II
1944 No Tournament-World War II
1945 No Tournament-World War II
1946  Herman Keiser 282 Ben Hogan
1947  Jimmy Demaret 281 Byron Nelson, Frank Stranahan
1948  Claude Harmon 279 Cary Middlecoff
1949  Sam Snead 282 Johnny Buila, Lloyd Mangrum
1950  Jimmy Demaret 283 Jim Ferrier
1951  Ben Hogan 280 Skee Riegel
1952  Sam Snead 286 Jack Burke, Jr
1953  Ben Hogan 274 Ed Oliver, Jr
1954  Sam Snead (70) 289 Ben Hogan (71)
1955  Cary Middlecoff 279 Ben Hogan
1956  Jack Burke, Jr 289 Ken Venturi
1957  Doug Ford 282 Sam Snead
1958  Arnold Palmer 284 Doug Ford, Fred Hawkins
1959  Art Wall, Jr 284 Cary Middlecoff
1960  Arnold Palmer 282 Ken Venturi (283)
1961  Gary Player 280 Charles R. Coe, Arnold Palmer
1962  Arnold Palmer (68) 280 Gary Player (71),
Dow Finsterwald (77)
1963  Jack Nicklaus 286 Tony Lema
1964  Arnold Palmer 276 Dave Marr, Jack Nicklaus
1965  Jack Nicklaus 271 Arnold Palmer, Gary Player
1966  Jack Nicklaus (70) 288 Tommy Jacobs (72),
Gay Brewer Jr. (78)
1967  Gay Brewer, Jr 280 Bobby Nichols
1968  Bob Goalby 277 Roberto DeVicenzo
1969  George Archer 281 Billy Casper, George Knudson,
Tom Weiskopf
1970  Billy Casper (69) 279 Gene Littler (74)
1971  Charles Coody 279 Johnny Miller, Jack Nicklaus
1972  Jack Nicklaus 286 Bruce Crampton, Bobby Mitchell, Tom Weiskopf
1973  Tommy Aaron 283 J. C. Snead
1974  Gary Player 278 Tom Weiskopf, Dave Stockton
1975  Jack Nicklaus 276 Johnny Miller, Tom Weiskopf
1976  Ray Floyd 271 Ben Crenshaw
1977  Tom Watson 276 Jack Nicklaus
1978  Gary Player 277 Hubert Green, Rod Funseth, Tom Watson
1979  Fuzzy Zoeller 280 Ed Sneed, Tom Watson
1980  Seve Ballesteros 275 Gibby Gilbert. Jack Newton
1981  Tom Watson 280 Johnny Miller, Jack Nicklaus
1982  Craig Stadler 284 Dan Pohl
1983  Seve Ballesteros 280 Ben Crenshaw, Tom Kite
1984  Ben Crenshaw 277 Tom Watson
1985  Bernhard Langer 282 Curtis Strange, Seve Ballesteros,
Ray Floyd
1986  Jack Nicklaus 279 Greg Norman, Tom Kite
1987  Larry Mize 285 Seve Ballesteros, Greg Norman
1988  Sandy Lyle 281 Mark Calcavecchia
1989  Nick Faldo 283 Scott Hoch
1990  Nick Faldo 278 Ray Floyd
1991  Ian Woosnam 277 José Maria Olazábal
1992  Fred Couples 275 Ray Floyd
1993  Bernhard Langer 277 Chip Beck
1994  José Maria Olazábal 279 Tom Lehman
1995  Ben Crenshaw 274 Davis Love III
1996  Nick Faldo 276 Greg Norman
1997  Tiger Woods 270 Tom Kite
1998  Mark O'Meara 279 David Duval, Fred Couples
1999  José Maria Olazábal 280 Davis Love III
2000   Vijay Singh 278 Ernie Els
2001  Tiger Woods 272 David Duval
2002  Tiger Woods 276 Retief Goosen
2003  Mike Weir 281 Len Mattiace
2004  Phil Mickelson 279 Ernie Els
2005  Tiger Woods 276 Chris DiMarco
2006  Phil Mickelson 281 Tim Clark
2007  Zach Johnson 289 Retief Goosen, Tiger Woods, Rory Sabbatini
2008  Trevor Immelman 280 Tiger Woods
2009  Angel Cabrera 276 Kenny Perry, Chad Campbell
2010  Phil Mickelson 272 Lee Westwood
2011  Charl Schwartzel 274 Adam Scott, Jason Day
2012  Bubba Watson 278 Louis Oosthuizen
2013  Adam Scott 279 Angel Cabrera (2nd playoff hole)
2014  Bubba Watson 280 Jonas Blixt, Jordan Spieth
2015  Jordan Speith 270 Phil Mickelson, Justin Rose
2016 Danny Willett 283 Jordan Spieth, Lee Westwood
Figures in parentheses indicate scores of playoff
   
Multiple-year champions
Jack Nicklaus (6) 1963, 1965, 1966, 1972, 1975, 1986
Arnold Palmer (4) 1958, 1960, 1962, 1964
Tiger Woods (4) 1997, 2001, 2002, 2005
Jimmy Demaret (3) 1940, 1947, 1950
Sam Snead (3) 1949, 1952, 1954
Gary Player (3) 1961, 1974, 1978
Nick Faldo (3) 1989, 1990, 1996
Phil Mickelson (3) 2004, 2006, 2010
Horton Smith (2) 1934, 1936
Byron Nelson (2) 1937, 1942
Ben Hogan (2) 1951,1953
Tom Watson (2) 1977,1981
Seve Ballesteros (2) 1980, 1983
Bernhard Langer (2) 1985, 1993
Ben Crenshaw (2) 1984, 1995
Jose Maria Olazabal (2) 1994, 1999
Bubba Watson (2) 2012, 2014

Tournament course record
63 Nick Price, third round, 1986
63 Greg Norman, first round, 1996

Low 72-hole score
 
270 Jordan Speith, 2015
270 Tiger Woods, 1997
271 Jack Nicklaus, 1965
271 Raymond Floyd, 1976
272 Tiger Woods, 2001
272 Phil Mickelson 2010
274 Ben Hogan, 1953
274 Ben Crenshaw, 1995
274 Charl Schwartzel, 2011
275 Seve Ballesteros, 1980
275 Fred Couples, 1992
275 Davis Love III, 1995
Largest margin of victory  
12 Tiger Woods, 1997

 

 
Champions
Most Victories 6, Jack Nicklaus (1963, 1965, 1966, 1972, 1975, 1986)
Youngest Champion Tiger Woods (21 years, 3 months, 14 days), 1997
Oldest Champion Jack Nicklaus (46 years, two months, 23 days), 1986
Oldest First-Time Winner Craig Wood (39 years, four months, 18 days), 1941
Largest Margin of Victory 12 strokes, Tiger Woods, 1997
Tallest Champion George Archer, 6-foot-5, 1969
Shortest Champion Ian Woosnam, 5-foot-4 1/2, 1991
Scoring
Lowest round 63, Nick Price, 1986 (third round)
63, Greg Norman, 1996 (first round)
Lowest front-nine score 30, Johnny Miller, 1975 (third round)
30, Greg Norman, 1988 (fourth round)
30, Phil Mickelson, 2009 (fourth round)
 
 
Lowest back-nine score 29, Mark Calcavecchia, 1992 (fourth round)
Lowest first-round score 63 (33-30), Greg Norman, 1996
Lowest second-round score 64, Miller Barber, 1979
64, Jay Haas, 1995
Lowest third-round score 63, Nick Price, 1986,
Lowest fourth-round score 64, Maurice Bembridge
64, Hale Irwin, 1975
64, Gary Player, 1978
64, Greg Norman, 1988
Lowest 36-hole score 130, Jordan Speith, 2015
Lowest 54-hole total 200, Jordan Speith, 2105
 
Lowest 72-hole score 270, Tiger Woods, 1997, Jordan Speith, 2015
Most Birdies, one round 11 Anthony Kim, 2009 (second round)
10, Nick Price, 1986 (third round)
Most Eagles, career 22, Jack Nicklaus
(3 on Par 4s, 19 on Par 5s)
Most Subpar Rounds, career 67, Jack Nicklaus
Most Rounds under 70, career 38, Jack Nicklaus
Highest Score, one hole 13, Tom Weiskopf, 1980 (number 12)
13, Tommy Nakajima, 1978 (number 13)

THE TRADITIONS

The Green Jacket
This tradition began in 1937 when members of Augusta National wore the jackets so patrons could identify a reliable source of information during The Masters.

However, it was not until 1949 that the first green jacket was awarded to the tournament champion, that year Sam Snead.  Traditionally, the champion takes his jacket home with him for one year and returns it to Augusta National when he returns for the Tournament. The jacket is then stored at Augusta and made available whenever the champion visits.

The Founders
Robert (Bob) Tyre Jones Jnr. was the dominant player in the world throughout the 1920s.  At a time when the 'major' championships were considered to be the Open Championships and Amateur Championships of the United States and Britain, Jones claimed 13 of the 21 he entered in that period.  In 1926 he became the first man to win both Opens in the same year before in 1930 capturing all four Championships and arguably golf's first grand slam.

Jones retired from competitive golf that year before completing degrees in Mechanical Engineering, English Literature (from Harvard no less!) and Law.  He continued to be involved in the game of golf, writing numerous books and articles and in 1932 founded Augusta National Golf Club and in 1934 what is now The Masters Tournament.

Clifford Roberts was the co-founder of Augusta National and The Masters Tournament along with Bobby Jones.  It was with Roberts' involvement that the Masters instituted a number of innovative changes to
enhance the tournament experience for their patrons.  Improved mounding for spectator viewing, leaderboards throughout the course and a cumulative scoring system (red numbers = under par, green zero = even par and green numbers = over par) are all now commonplace but had their start in Augusta.

Roberts would go on to become a political and financial adviser to President Dwight Eisenhower, later to become a club member, and was honoured by organisations including the PGA of America, the USGA and the World Golf Hall of Fame.

The Course
The Augusta National Golf Club, designed by Alister McKenzie and Bobby Jones, is arguably the most famous in golf. Built on what were the Fruitlands Nurseries, the course is revered for the beauty of its trees and shrubs.  Along with Bob Jones and Clifford Roberts, Louis Alphonse Berckmans was responsible for planting each of the eighteen holes with a unique plant for which each hole was then named. Examples include Pink Dogwood (Hole 2), Flowering Peach (Hole 3), Magnolia (Hole 5), Azalea (Hole 13) and Holly (Hole 18).

Some of the prominent features of the course include;

* Amen Corner referring to holes number 11, 12 and 13.  A journalist from Sports Illustrated coined the phrase in 1958 to describe the stretch where the critical plays had taken place that year.  What most people do not know is that the name is taken from a jazz song of the era.

* Rae's Creek is another prominent feature of the golf course, running in front of the twelfth green, showing a tributary at the thirteenth tee before running past the back of the eleventh green.  Its place protecting the twelfth green ensures that it will once again be part of the action in 2000.

* Magnolia Lane.  One of the most visible features of The Masters is the more than sixty huge magnolia trees that line each side of Magnolia Lane, the entrance to Augusta National.  The Berckman family planted the trees in the late 1850's, some eighty years before the golf course was developed.

The Cut
The cut was instituted at The Masters Tournament in 1957, whereby the field was cut to the low forty players and ties for the weekend.  Since 1962, the field has been cut so the low 44 players and ties and those within ten strokes of the leader qualify for the final 36 holes.

Of interest......

* in 2000 was the first time ever, tee times were allocated so that each player goes off in one morning time and one afternoon time in the first two rounds. Until 1999, tee times for the second round were based on scores after the first day.

* Tickets anyone...??  Tickets to The Masters Tournament are sold on a patron subscription basis only.  The bad news if you are free next April is that the patrons list closed in 1972 and the waiting list for the patrons list closed in 1978!

 

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