Ryder Cup 1997 - History

Ryder Cup 1997 - Valderrama

Ryder Cup 1997 Logo

This article was first published in Andalucia Magazine in 1996 and is archived here for its historical value.

The countdown begins..

The most important golf event in the world, played out between Europe and the USA will be held for the first time outside of Great Britain. The golf course in Valderrama, Spain will host the upcoming tournament of the Ryder Cup. From now until the celebration of this tournament which will take place in 1997, Andalucía Magazine will be publishing interviews with various personalities from the PGA European Tour, Ryder Cup Limited, Amen Corner S.A. and the Real Club Valderrama, Sotogrande , in order to inform you about the Ryder Cup preparation.

The History of the Ryder Cup



The origins of the Ryder Cup go back to the year 1858 in Preston, England, the town where Samuel Ryder was born. Ryder was a seed merchant who made his fortune in the seed trade. When Ryder was in his fifties a friend advised him to work less and take up a sport to improve his health. He discovered golf and almost immediately became one of its chief promoters.

Ryder began to actively work for the development of the sport, being especially concerned with improving the situation of professional golfers in Great Britain. One of his greatest achievements was the introduction of an annual trophy for a competition between a North American and a British team of golfers. This was called the Ryder Cup.

Since 1927 when the tournament was officially created, it has gone through many changes, the most important, perhaps, the inclusion of European players in the British team in 1979. The first to participate were Severiano Ballesteros and Antonio Garrido, followed by other excellent players, such as the German, Bernhard Langer; the Spaniards, Manuel Piñero and Olazábal and the Italian, Constantino Rocca.



Today, the Ryder Cup is a competition held every two years between Europe and the USA. Each team comprises twelve players and a captain (who does not play). The tournament lasts three days. On the first and second day, eight doubles, four foursomes and four matches are played and on the third day twelve individual matches are played.

The winners get to keep the original trophy, a gold cup with the image of Abe Mitchell, a professional player and Samuel Ryder's teacher, before risking it again in the next tournament. Until 1995, the Ryder Cup was played alternatively in the USA or Great Britain but next year it will be held for the first time out of the UK. Valderrama, Spain will host the Ryder Cup tournament in 1997.