Ryder Cup

The Ryder Cup has quickly become one of the biggest sporting events in the world. Held biennially, this golf tournament showcases the best golfers from Europe and USA in an exhilarating match play format. Watch golfing history unfold at Whistling Straits in the 2020 Ryder Cup, or re-live history on a golf vacation to Great Britain to play all of our Ryder Cup venues. Browse our example golf vacation packages or speak to a golf travel expert today for a quick quote on a tailor-made itinerary. 

Ryder Cup Vacation Packages

Take a look at these example packages to the 2020 Ryder Cup at Whistling Straits. We also have access to some of the best courses in the Wisconsin and Chicago areas. To book any of these packages or tailor them to your requirements one of our golf travel expert's will be happy to help.
We're already putting together some packages for the 2022 Ryder Cup at Marco Simone Golf Club in Rome, Italy. To register your interest please leave your email address below. 
From £4199
From £2999

The Ryder Cup Tour of England- Play 7 Ryder Cup courses on this bucket list golf vacation

Walton Heath
From £3299
Play on all of the following Ryder Cup Courses
  • Royal Birkdale (1965, 69)
  • Royal Lytham & St Annes (1961, 77)
  • Moortown (1929)
  • Ganton (1949)
  • Lindrick (1957)
  • Walton Heath (1981)
  • The Belfry (1985, 89, 93, 02)

Ryder Cup Venues in England

Moortown- 1929

Southport & Ainsdale- 1933, 37,

Ganton- 1949

Wentworth- 1953

Lindrick- 1957

Royal Lytham & St Annes- 1961, 77

Royal Birkdale- 1965, 69

Walton Heath- 1981

The Belfry- 1985, 89, 93, 02

Ryder Cup Venues in Scotland

Muirfield- 1973
Gleneagles- 2014

Ryder Cup Venues in Wales

Ryder Cup Venues in Ireland

K Club- 2006

Future Ryder Cup Venues

2020- Whistling Straits (Straits Course) Kohler, Wisconsin.
2022- Marco Simone Golf & Country Club, Rome, Italy
2024- Bethpage Black, Farmingdale, New York
2026- Adare Manor, County Limerick, Ireland
2028- Hazeltine National Golf Club, Chaska, Minnesota
2030- Europe - TBC
2032- The Olympic Club, San Francisco, California
2034- Europe - TBC
2036- Congressional Country Club, Bethesda, Maryland

Format of The Ryder Cup

Where is the Ryder Cup Held?

The location of The Ryder Cup alternates between the United States of America and Europe. Since The Ryder Cup is held biennially, it is only hosted by each respective team once every four years.

How are the Ryder Cup teams selected?

Each team is comprised of 12 players. Selection criteria differs for each team, here is how the 2020 Ryder Cup teams will be selected by team captains Steve Stricker and Padraig Harrington.

​Team USA

Players compete for Ryder Cup Points throughout the 2019 and 2020 seasons, the top 8 players with the most points gain automatic selection, the remaining 4 players are picked by the team captain. 

  • 2019 Major Championships- 1 point per $1000 earned

  • 2019 WGC events & The Players Championsip- 1 point per $2000

    • WGC-Mexico Championship; WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play Championship; The Players Championship; WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational; WGC-HSBC Champions

  • 2020 PGA Tour events- 1 point per $1000

    • From January 1st through the 2nd FedEx Cup Playoff, 23rd August.

  • Opposite Field PGA Tour events DO NOT earn points for Ryder Cup qualification. (When there are two tournaments being held at the same time by the same tour, the opposite field event is the smaller of the two. These usually occur at the same time as WGC events and Major Championships).

  • 2020 Major Championships- 2 Points per $1,000 earned for the Winner; 1.5 Points per $1,000 earned for all others to make the cut

Team Europe

​Team Europe for the 2020 Ryder Cup will comprise of the top 4 players in the European Ryder Cup Points List, the top 5 players in the World Ryder Cup Points List and 3 wild card picks from the team captain. 

  • European Points List (top 4 gain selection)

    • Race to Dubai 19th September 2019- 26th April 2020- Each point earned is worth 1 point on the European points list

    • Race to Dubai 30th April 2019- 13th September 2020- Each point earned is worth 1.5 points on the European points list

  • World Points list (Top 5 gain selection, not including those already selected through the European points system)

    • Each Official World Golf Ranking Point earned from 19th September 2019- 26th April 2020 = 1 point 

    • Each Official World Golf Ranking Point earned from 30th April 2020- 13th September 2020 = 1.5 points.

Structure of The Ryder Cup

The first two days of The Ryder Cup includes 2 four-ball matches and 2 foursomes matches (one on each day). The order in which these matches are played in is decided by the home captain. The third day consists of 12 singles matchplay matches.

Ryder Cup Match Formats

  • Four-ball: This format, also known as "better ball" is a 2 v 2 match. Each player plays their own ball for the whole hole, the best score from the 2 players on each team counts. The lowest score wins, if both teams get the same score then the hole is halved. This format is called four-ball because 4 balls are played on each hole. 

  • Foursomes: Another 2 v 2 format, however only 2 balls are played, one for each team. Players from the same team take it in turns to hit the ball and hit alternate tee shots so that one player drives on all the even holes, whilst another does so on all the odd holes.

  • Singles: 1 v 1 format, the lowest score on each hole wins, unless scores are tied, in which case the hole is halved. 

How does a team win The Ryder Cup?

Each match is worth 1 point, with halved matches worth 1/2 a point. No matches go into extra holes. There are 28 points available, so the first team to reach 14.5 points wins the Ryder Cup. If both teams finish on 14 points, then the team who last won The Ryder Cup retains the trophy.

Ryder Cup History

The 1st official Ryder Cup Matches were held at the Worcester Country Club, Massachusetts USA in 1927. The actions of a few gentleman and their desire to globalise the game in the years leading to 1927 lead to creation of what is undoubtedly one of the biggest events in sport and most exciting shows on the planet.


It all started with the desire of James D Harnett of Golf Illustrated magazine for his home country to be better represented in The British Open, and to ultimately create an American winner of The British Open. With the approval of The PGA of America he created a fund from popular subscriptions to send a group of American players to Scotland to compete at St Andrews in The 1921 Open Championship. As a warm up the Americans played in a tournament at Gleneagles for 1000 Guineas; the idea of a potential match between America and Great Britain was suggested in The Times in May 1920. This match went ahead on The Kings Course at Gleneagles before the 1000 Guinea tournament; Great Britain won 10.5-4.5 over 5 foursomes and 10 singles matches. A poor result for the Americans, but they achieved what they ultimately came to do, with American Jock Hutchison becoming the first American to win The British Open just 2 weeks after the first match between Great Britain and USA.


By 1926 it was common for a decent number of Americans & Brits to make the transatlantic journey to play in each others respective open. In 1926 English businessman Samuel Ryder made the announcement that he would be presenting a trophy "for annual competition between British and American professionals.” The match, which finished GB 13.5- 1.5 USA, was widely reported as being “for The Ryder Cup”, however Samuel Ryder withheld the cup for a year due to uncertainty over how many Americans would be making the trip to Britain due to the general strikes. He also didn’t feel the match was official because Walter Hagen picked the American team rather than The PGA of America, and selection was only open to players who would be competing in The British Open. 


The teams in the 1927 competition had a much more formal selection process decided by each PGA association, and a Ryder Cup “Deed of Trust” was drawn up formalising the rules of the contest, making the 1927 match the first official Ryder Cup.


In order to get the British team across the pond over to America for the competition, Golf Illustrated launched a fund to raise £3,000 to send British golfers to play in the U.S. Open and the Ryder Cup. The man behind the cup Samuel Ryder initially contributed £100 and then the final remaining balance of £300 when the kitty came up short. It was the American team captain Walter Hagen who became the first to lift the Ryder Cup in victory after USA comfortably beat Britain 9.5-2.5. Sadly the cups founder Mr. Ryder was unable to make the trip to Massachusetts to watch the event due to ill health.


It was decided that making this an annual competition would not be very practical and too expensive, so it was agreed that the match would take place biennially. So in 1929 the Ryder Cup was officially hosted on British soil for the first time at Moortown golf Club in Leeds, England. The course, designed by Alister Mackenzie, better suited the Brits and it was them that lifted the trophy this time with a victory of 7-5 over the Americans. This time Mr. Ryder was there to present the Ryder Cup.


This habit of dominance on home soil continued for 5 competitions until the cup was postponed due to the Second Great War. America’s deep pool of players and golfing supremacy in the post war years led to Britains team being extended to include all of Continental Europe in 1979, prompted by the emergence of some exciting and exceptional young talent from Spain, including Seve Ballesteros.

Since 1979 Europe’s record has been the stronger, with 11 wins to America’s 8.

1929 Ryder Cup, Moortown
1957 Ryder Cup, Lindrick
samuel ryder.jpg
Samuel Ryder presents the trophy to winning captain, Great Britain's George Duncan at Moortown, 1929