Augusta, GA — A few months after winning his first Masters tournament last year, Scotty Schaeffler received a package from Georgia.
“I didn’t know exactly how it would turn out,” Schaeffler recalled over the winter. “They have the trophy in the clubhouse and it’s really big.”
Composed of nearly 900 pieces of sterling silver and weighing at least 100 pounds, the trophy never left the Augusta National Golf Club. So was the smaller, equally austere sterling silver trophy.
Stamped in the UK and packaged in a felt-lined box fit for a Head of State, it is painstakingly personalized as it contains the signatures of all the players at that year’s Masters Field.Augusta National The trophy, which features the clubhouse of the Green Jacket, is earned by the winner. But players traditionally only take the blazer off of his National Augusta in a year reigning as the winner. As such, the trophy is a spectacular eye-catcher that a Masters he champion can actually hold.
2013 tournament winner Adam Scott said: The details like the clubhouse and the sign are great. ”
Thirty years after Bernhard Langer became the first winner to receive a replica trophy, this year’s competition will conclude on Sunday, weather permitting. However, the process of preparing one prize has already begun. Once players arrived at the tournament, organizers collected signatures that would be used for trophies.
Golf isn’t the only sport Augusta National awards trophies for. Golf is largely an individual sport, and there are plenty of photos of champions reveling in hardware. At last summer’s British Open, Cameron Smith estimated that his mug of winning claret would be filled with two cans of beer, and his name was carved minutes after the tournament ended.
But the Claret Jug is the symbol of the Open, just as the Wanamaker Trophy is the emblem of the PGA Championship and the US Open Championship Trophy has been a fixture in the game since 1895. At the Masters, the trophy is essentially an afterthought of the green jacket, ironically given the limited amount of time the winner has to pick up the tailor’s prize.
Bubba Watson, who won Augusta in 2012 and 2014, said, “As a child and as an adult, I focus on one thing: the green jacket. I don’t know what else comes with it. Trophies. You don’t think about the gold coins, you don’t think about the privilege of being able to play there When you were a kid, when you were 10, 12, when you dreamed of making putts, everything was It was on my green jacket.”
Phil Mickelson, who recorded the first of three Masters titles in 2004, said he “thought” the winner would have the trophy but knew little about it before he started receiving clubhouse replicas. .
“There’s a lot of really nuanced stuff about Bobby Jones and Cliff Roberts and the feeling that they created this event and created this special club,” Mickelson said. .
In addition to money ($18 million in prize money this year), Augusta National offers players a variety of prizes for various achievements. In 2022, Rory McIlroy received a silver medal and a sterling silver tray for runner-up and a crystal highball glass for making an eagle. Sungjae Im got the crystal vase because he shot the lowest score in the first round. Stewart Sink won the Crystal Bowl for a hole-in-one in 16th place.
“I have a lot of goblets from Augusta,” Mickelson said, referring to the award the club was giving the Eagles. I dealt with having a bathrobe “that I wear quite often” from an old stay at a certain Crow’s Nest.)
However, trophies are often a novelty due to their rarity and relative inconspicuousness.
“When you open it up and see the trophy, it hits you,” said 2018 winner Patrick Reed. Is it?”
This is a relatively recent conundrum as replica trophies are a relatively new tradition by the standards of the mythical Masters, an event first held in 1934. and the ritual continues today. Private dinners for past champions began in 1952 with his 11th, 12th and 13th holes named after Amen Corner. 1958 Sports Illustrated.
In 1955, between the start of dinner and the christening of the corner, Augusta National began presenting the winner with a silver cigarette box engraved with the player’s signature. Six years later, the club debuted a permanent trophy that overwhelmed players with its enormity. For each shutter he is a striking silver replica of the clubhouse rendered in such vivid detail that it has 24 louvres. Each year, sculptors added the names of the winners and runners-up to the bands on the bass, but the winners themselves received a replica of the bas-relief and a packet of cigarettes.
However, in 1993, Augusta National abandoned the cigarette box and bas-relief in favor of the replica trophy idea. Tournament organizers have determined that the replica trophies look a lot like the ones on display in the clubhouse. However, we also decided that the base would include Field’s signature, reflecting our cigarette pack tradition. Organizers collect signatures when players arrive at the tournament.
“Since you’re in Augusta, you always make sure you’re doing a nice sign. If it wasn’t good, they probably made you start over,” says 2020 winner. said Dustin Johnson, who laughs. Scott suggested:
Mickelson has the Masters Trophy along with prizes from other major tournaments. Watson installed his first trophy at the office and the second at his alma mater, the University of Georgia. When Scott is away from home in Australia, his parents usually look after him. I had the lead in my living room before moving to the office.
“It shines like no other,” he said. “It’s a reminder of all the hard work and how it paid off. But it’s also a reminder that I want that feeling, so I actually use it as motivation.” , practicing harder and trying to get back to that point.”
And it turns out that people don’t want to touch it. But he does sometimes.