Only two days remain until the elite of world golf descend upon Augusta National Golf Club for the 2017 Masters Tournament, and the odds show Americans have a particularly bright chance of emerging victorious.
Given that the competition takes places in Georgia, it’s no surprise 59 of the 81 previous champions have originated from the United States, but the modern era has caused a curtail in that ratio.
After crunching the numbers from each championship since 1990, our research found that Americans are still the dominant breed at the Masters despite golf’s globalisation in recent decades, posing good omens for the likes of favourites Dustin Johnson and Jordan Spieth.
That being said, one could alternatively accumulate the data by continent, so while America may still be the dominant force, it’s worth noting Europe account for a more impressive seven of those 27 titles.
Based on the victors in the past 27 tournaments, we can see the United States has produced a convincing 14 of those champions, which is almost five times as much as the next most heavily represented nation, England.
Furthermore, the vice grip of the United States looks even more convincing if we were to only include results from 2000. The Americans—including Canadian Mike Weir’s win in 2003—have won 10 of the 17 championships on offer since then, although it’s worth noting multiple-time champions Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and Bubba Watson account for eight of those—or 80%—between them.
From this, we can gauge North America is a little more than twice as likely—2.14 times, to be exact—as any other continent to create a champion at Augusta, with Europe accounting for seven in that space of time—equal to 46% of North America’s tally.
Conversely, the odds don’t look bright for players from Oceania (includes Australia), Africa or South America, with those three continents having produced just five champions between them since 1990.
Of those, South America has had the littlest success at the Masters, thanks to Argentinian Angel Cabrera’s shock win in 2009.
Despite the United States’ hold over the competition in general, however, the tide may be turning in favour of non-Americans nowadays, considering three of the past seven champions have come from outside the home nation.
Only three times since 1990 has the Masters produced back-to-back non-American champions, however, meaning after Willett’s 2016 triumph, we could be in store for a return to home comforts in 2017.