The Ryder Cup is the biggest international golf betting event by far. In a rivalry that stretches back over one hundred years, America and Europe’s best take each other on in matchplay every 2 years. While the event was contested between America and Great Britain & Ireland since the early 1900s, it wasn’t until 1979 that the latter team was consolidated to include European players due to American dominance in the tournament.
From that point onwards, Europe has won ten times outright and retained the Cup once. American has won nine times over that period. Similar to the Presidents Cup, a tournament between America and every continent minus Europe, the players in the Ryder Cup do not receive prize money.
Venues at the Ryder Cup differ year-on-year, but each must be able to hold tends of thousands of golf fans. Golf is a sport generally known for its quiet and conservative atmosphere, but when the Ryder Cup is on supporters tend to be much more vocal than at other traditional tournaments. Ryder Cup betting is a rite of passage for any golf gambler. The competition cleans up at top online bookmakers every year.
Recommended Ryder Cup Sites
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Learn the Format | This first tip may seem obvious, but learning exactly how the Ryder Cup is played will give you the winning edge. There are three separate formats over the course of the 3 days – Foursomes, Fourballs and Singles Matchups. Be sure to study these formats and the players involved.
Know the Venue | The venue for The Ryder Cup will have a huge role to play in deciding the outcome of the event. Is the course long? Short? Is it wide? narrow? And does this particularly favour the majority of the Europe side or the US?
Form of Players | Placing a bet on one of the world’s top players is not necessarily the best option. Keep an eye on players’ form leading up to the event. Odds for players outside the world’s Top 10 come as a pleasant surprise.
How The Ryder Cup is Played
The Ryder Cup is made up of 12 players on each side who are selected and led by their captain, usually a senior champion golfer or one that has recently retired. The 12 best golfers in the US take on the 12 best from Europe in a variety of formats over the course of three days.
Day 1 & 2: Foursomes & Fourballs
The first two days of The Ryder Cup consists of four matches of foursomes and four matches of fourballs, each a variation of match-play golf.
Foursomes – in this format, each two-player team takes turns playing just one ball per hole until the whole is complete.
Fourballs – each player of the two-man team plays his own ball, resulting in four balls being played. The lowest score on the hole for each team is compared against the opponents, and the lowest wins that hole.
Each match is played over 18 holes unless one side gains a lead which cannot be equalled or beaten over the remainder of the holes.
Day 3: Singles Matchplay
On the final day of the event, each of the twelve players play separately against each of the opposite side in a 1v1. The captain of each side tactically sends out his players in the order by which he decides.
With more and more ways to gamble becoming available, placing a bet on the Ryder Cup is easier than ever:
Online - Desktop | Betting on a desktop computer is a classic method used for the Ryder Cup. You can sign up for an account with top online sites in seconds.
Online - Mobile | With the relatively recent introduction of mobile gambling you can now enjoy Ryder Cup betting anywhere, and at any time during the competition. The majority of online bookmakers now offer mobile apps to complement their desktop offerings. These apps are generally available for Apple and Android.
Online - In-Play | In-Play betting is becoming increasingly popular for the Ryder Cup. You can place a bet at any time during the middle of a match, either through desktop or mobile.
By Phone | This one speaks for itself. Ring your local bookie while the Ryder Cup is on and they will be able to take a bet over the phone for you.
In a Bookmaker | The atmosphere in a bookmaker is always jovial during the Ryder Cup. Write your bet on a slip and give it to the cashier.
Ryder Cup Holes in One Market
The days of receiving odds of 100/1 for a hole in one in a tournament no longer exist. Golfers technical skill continues to increase and bookies have long since wised up to the fact that a hole in one occurring during a tournament is actually more likely than you would think.
The odds of a hole in one occurring at a standard tournament are 5/4 - approximately 44% probability. If the Ryder Cup is taking place on a course with a large amount of par 3’s, the chances of a hole in one being struck increases. But keep in mind for your golf betting strategy - only six players have ever managed to do so in the tournament’s illustrious 90 year history:
Peter Butler - Muirfield 1973 | The first ever ace at the Ryder Cup was a sweet one. Butler was lucky to hit it though, as he was only called in to team up with Brian Barnes after Bernard Gallacher got food poisoning. He used a 3-iron to tee off the 16th hole. It was the seventh hole in one of Butler’s career, coming it at a distance of 188 yards.
Nick Faldo - The Belfry 1993 | A six iron on the 14th was the tool of choice for Faldo’s famous hole in one. His ball carried over the greenside bunker, pitched and then rolled straight into the hole. Incredibly, Faldo announced that he was going to get a hole in one in the Ryder Cup a week before this effort, making the occasion that much more special.
Constantino Rocca - Oak Hill 1995 | The jovial Italian managed to score his ace with the help of an excellent five-iron which rolled in from 12 feet.
Howard Clark - Oak Hill 1995 | Amazingly, Rocca’s hole in one was not alone at the Oak Hill competition in ‘95. The day after, Howard Clark managed a 176-yard six-iron ace on the 11th.
Paul Casey - K Club 2006 | A 213 yard four-iron was the fourth hole in one ever scored at the Ryder Cup. The shot sealed a 5&4 victory for Casey and David Howell over Zach Johnson and Stewart Cink.
Scott Verplank - K Club 2006 | Verplank is the only American to have scored a hole in one at the Ryder Cup. Coincidentally, his hole in one happened on the same hole just 24 hours after Casey’s.
The Ryder Cup has been played at some beautiful courses throughout the years. Some have proved to be more challenging than others and it is without doubt that the tournament, regardless of where it’s played, always provides an electric atmosphere for golf fans.
Royal Birkdale, England | This course is situated on the golden links of the coast in Southport and is one of the most magnificent in all of England. It hosted the first tie in Ryder Cup history. Jack Nicklaus infamously conceded a putt on the 18th hole to Tony Jacklin, causing some minor controversy.
Pinehurst, USA | North Carolina has some great golf courses, but none much more picturesque than Pinehurst. The course has been deemed a National Landmark and has hosted numerous championships.
Wentworth, England | Arguably the most expensive golf course on the planet, it can cost upwards of £350 for a round at Wentworth. With three 18 hole courses, golf fans are spoiled for choice here.
Valderrama, Spain | Situated in the gorgeous Spanish countryside in Cadiz, this course is renowned for its extreme beauty.
Ryder Cup History
Prior to the birth of what we now know as the Ryder Cup, there were two unofficial matches between English and American professionals, both of which were won by the British. The first was played at Gleneagles in 1921, but the second tournament, played at Wentworth in 1926 was undoubtedly the most significant, as it was attended by a man named Samuel Ryder.
Ryder fell in love with the idea of America and Great Britain facing off. After marvelling at the Wentworth competition he opted to donate a gold trophy, known to this day as ‘The Ryder Cup’ to the spectacle. The foundation for the modern day tournament was thenceforth set.