The first Major of 2018 takes place at Augusta National with Sergio Garcia returning to defend the title he won in his 74th Major appearance.
1 – Fuzzy Zoeller is the only golfer in the past 83 years (since 1935) to have won The Masters the first time he teed up at the event, in
1979. That doesn’t augur well for any debutant in 2018.
3 – Nor do you want to win the Par 3 Contest. No one has ever won the Wednesday event and The Masters in the same year. However, 11 golfers who have won the Par 3 Contest have also won The Masters at some stage. The 2016 winner was Jimmy Walker … who went on to claim his first Major a few months later, The PGA Championship. In 2017 the Par 3 Contest was cancelled due to bad weather.
3 – The number of South African golfers to have won the Par 3 Contest – in three consecutive years from 2008 to 2010. Rory Sabbatini, Tim Clark and Louis Oosthuizen were the men to do so.
3 – Augusta National is known as something of a conservative ‘old boys club’. And with good reason. There are only three known women members at Augusta National: Condoleezza Rice, Darla Moore and Ginni Rometty. There is a total membership of around 300.
4 – The maximum number of minutes allocated to television commercials per hour at The Masters. This is coupled with a 620% increase in live telecast hours for the event from 1956 (two and a half hours) to 2018 (18 hours). For the final round on Sunday, there is an estimated audience of 12.4 million watching the coverage on US telecaster CBS.
5 – The number of golfers who have led from the first round and gone on to win – Craig Wood (1941), Arnold Palmer (1960), Jack Nicklaus (1972), Raymond Floyd (1976) and Jordan Spieth (2015).
5 – Shots under par England’s maiden Major winner Danny Willett recorded in 2016. The 72-hole total of 283 was the highest winning score since 2007 when Zach Johnson shot a one-over 289. In 2017 Sergio Garcia and Justin Rose finished on nine-under 279, with Charl Schwartzel third on six-under 282.
1 366 – The average resale price, in dollars, for a ticket to the final round of the 2017 Masters, the cheapest of the four rounds.
1 566 – The average resale price, in dollars, for a ticket to the first round of the 2017 Masters, the most expensive of the four rounds.
1937 – The year in which Green Jackets from Brooks Uniform Co in New York were first worn by members to make them recognisable. Sam Snead was the first champion to receive one as a prize, in 1949.
11 – The number of countries to have produced a Masters champion. The United States (59 wins) leads the list, followed by South Africa and Spain (5), England (4) and then Germany, Scotland, Wales, Fiji, Canada, Argentina and Australia, which have all been represented once.
46 – The age of Jack Nicklaus in 1986 when he became the oldest man to win The Masters. He picked up his sixth Green Jacket.
71.94 – Among golfers who have played 100 or more Masters rounds, Fred Couples has the best career scoring average, 71.94 (.04 better than 18-time Major winner Jack Nicklaus.
$162-billion – The reported estimated net worth of Augusta National’s two richest members, Bill Gates ($86.5-bn) and Warren Buffett ($75.4-bn). There are three other billionaire members: Stanley Druckenmiller, Warren Stephens and Dirk Ziff.
Guests must be accompanied by members at all times. Autograph requests are forbidden. In recent years, the club has acquired an estimated $55-million in real estate surrounding its courses, clubhouse and cabins, creating a bigger buffer zone to insulate its members, and to better control The Masters experience.
There’s no official public list of Augusta members.
In 2010 former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice (above) was awarded membership, becoming the first female to receive one. Said the club’s chairman, Billy Payne: ‘This is a joyous occasion. Consideration with regard to any candidate is deliberate, held in strict confidence and always takes place over an extended period of time. The process for Condoleezza and Darla Moore was no different.’