Why Europe Always Wins (And The U.S. Always Loses)
Golf Digest editors try to explain the recent run of European dominance in the Ryder Cup.
Released on 9/24/2014
|Executive Producer:||Harris Levinson|
Produced by: Emoticon Productions
(soft rhythmic music)
The American teams over the past few years,
there's just this expectation of because of who they are
they should come out and roll all over the Europeans
and I think just looking at the number
of majors they've won, the number they won,
the amount of money these guys have won.
They just seem better.
They have the unenviable position
of being the favorites constantly.
They're the best golfers, they should have the best team.
If they lose, it's an upset,
that's a lot of pressure
because I don't think they truly feel that way themselves.
And so when you're a favorite,
it's really easy to feel okay,
as long as I don't screw up we'll win,
which is the complete antithesis
to have these guys think week in and week out
of the PGA tour where they say, hey,
I gotta go beat 155 guys this week,
I have to play my absolute best.
The Europeans play to win and Americans play not to lose.
For whatever reason, maybe the pressure gets to them,
representing their country,
push them so far outside their comfort zone
that they just can't quite perform at the same level
we're used to seeing these guys perform to.
The Europeans, even when they're the clear favorites,
perceive themselves as underdogs.
They see the Americans as spoiled, as rich,
just a little bit arrogant, and you know,
they can't wait to kick that silver spoon
out of their mouths.
There's an us verses them mentality.
They still have their roots, they still have that
you know when they played with each other
as juniors over in Europe and these are guys
that have played with each other throughout their lives
and now they're trying to assemble together
and beat the other guys.
On the European side they're playing for their tour,
I think they feel like it's validating the European tour
where they play week in and week out so they feel like
they're there to represent the quality
of golf that's played.
I don't think that they wanna win the event
more than the U.S.
but I think that they're genuinely a little closer
and I think that comes through when you see the pairings
and that's why they're more successful in those pairings.
It's not just this, let's flip the switch
and be buddies this week and play for each other.
You know, I think the best way to explain the problem
with Americans perception of Europeans
goes back to an interview I did with Payne Stewart in 1999,
and he says instantly,
on paper they shouldn't be caddying for us,
but then he says, but it's not about on paper,
it's about bringing your game to the event,
and they bring it.
It just means more to them, it's how they identify
their careers, how they identify their value as players,
how did I perform in the Ryder Cup
is a big question for them.
It tells the world that we're great,
nobody ever thought we were great until the Ryder Cup.
It's the heart of golf.