History Of The Ryder Cup Trophy

Take a whistle stop tour through the history of the Ryder Cup trophy in this piece.

Ryder Cup Trophy
(Image credit: Sportsfile via Getty Images)

Take a whistle stop tour through the history of the Ryder Cup trophy in this piece.

History Of The Ryder Cup Trophy

The best place to start in relation to the Ryder Cup and its trophy is with none other than Samuel Ryder himself.

Ryder was a successful businessman and an avid golfer so he commissioned a trophy be made and then donated it in 1927 as the prize for the winning side in a proposed golf match between players from the United States and Great Britain. (Obviously the British team would be expanded to include Ireland in 1973, and all of continental Europe from 1979).

At the time, it cost about £250 to make which today would be worth just over £15,000.

Created by the Mapping and Webb company, it was designed as a golden chalice and the man on top is believed to be Abe Mitchell, who was a friend of Ryder's and also his personal golf instructor. Mitchell played in three Ryder Cups, in 1929, 1931 and 1933 in which Europe won two of the three. Mitchell's personal Ryder Cup record stands at 4-2-0.

After being created, Ryder presented the trophy to the Professional Golfers' of Great Britain and Ireland.

The cup itself is 17 inches in height, measure nine inches from handle to handle and weighs only four pounds. The wooden base at the bottom has the scores of each event engraved onto it.

Leo Diegel beat Abe Mitchell 9 & 8 in the 1929 singles at Moorton Golf Club (Getty Images)

Ryder eventually gave the original trophy to the Professional Golfers Association of Great Britain. That trophy is housed at their headquarters in Britain.

The trophy that actually gets awarded to winning teams today is a replica owned by the PGA of America, and there is also another replica that is used for promotional purposes.

Additionally, each winning team also gets a slightly smaller replica to keep to commemorate their victory.

Sam Tremlett
Senior Staff Writer

A golfer for most of his life, Sam is a Senior Staff Writer for Golf Monthly. 

Working with golf gear and equipment over the last five years, Sam has quickly built outstanding knowledge and expertise on golf products ranging from drivers, to balls, to shoes. 

He also loves to test golf apparel especially if it a piece that can be used just about anywhere!

As a result he has always been the one family and friends come to for buying advice and tips.

He is a graduate of Swansea University where he studied History and American Studies, and he has been a part of the Golf Monthly team since December 2017. He also previously worked for World Soccer and Rugby World magazines.

Sam now spends most of his time testing and looking after golf gear content for the website. He also oversees all Tour player content as well. 

Unfortunately, Sam is not a member of any club at the moment but regularly gets out on the golf course to keep up the facade of having a handicap of five.