The Ryder Cup is always one of the most prestigious events on the sporting calendar and the choice of team uniform has become an important decision in recent times alongside the captain’s picks for the competition.
Gone are the days of the 1990s when billowing trousers and loose-fitting jerseys were worn by the golfers, with the Ryder Cup participants now much more stylishly attired on the fairway.
Recent editions of the competition have seen the USA team lean heavily on a favored designer of their team uniform and Zach Johnson’s team should again look the part at the Marco Simone Golf & Country Club at the end of September.
USA heavy favorites to win again
The US is a heavy favorite to retain the title it won in record-breaking fashion at Whistling Straits two years ago and is a general -190 shot for those betting on golf. Europe is a +200 chance to win on home soil for the seventh time straight and the tie is +1200. US players may not dominate the Open odds for the final Major of the year with Rory McIlroy leading the way at +750, but they will be expected to do so in Italy in the fall.
— Ryder Cup USA (@RyderCupUSA) June 27, 2023
And the players will be expected to do it in style, in terms of both the result and what they are wearing.
The US team has not always been noted for its elegant choice of clothing at the Ryder Cup, with beige previously a common feature, either for jerseys or trousers, while the 1999 team wore shirts designed with images of previous Ryder Cup teams on them.
The sweatsuits worn at the 2010 Ryder Cup were at least not a regular feature on the fairway as they only came out in bad weather, but it shows how much progress has been made in recent years that golf fashion is now talked about much more positively.
The 2014 Ryder Cup uniforms for the USA gave an indication of what could be achieved, so long as you overlook the sweaters with a huge Ryder Cup trophy on them. But the clean lines of the sharp design of the t-shirts worn over the three days, especially the red and blue horizontal stripes for the Sunday singles, brought the fashion more into the modern day.
Stars and Stripes used as color base for uniforms
The last Ryder Cup in 2021, when the US team won by the biggest margin in the competition’s history, was another strong showing from a fashion viewpoint as the uniforms stylishly mixed the red, white and blue of the Stars and Stripes to neat effect.
The plus-fours worn by golfers around the 1920s, and favored by the late Payne Stewart, are unlikely to make a comeback in Rome, and whether Bryson DeChambeau and his driving cap will feature will depend on whether the LIV golfers are picked, but it seems certain the US will look in great shape on the course.
The last Ryder Cup not only demonstrated the strength of the US team and calibre of player it has available but also the strength of its uniform designers. It should be the same again in September.