Masters cancel par-3 contest ahead of this year’s tournament

Absence of guests and fans cited as reasons behind decision by Augusta officials

Rory McIlroy laughs with his wife Erica during the par-3 contest at the 2018 US Masters at Augusta National. Photograph: Patrick Smith/Getty Images

The pre-tournament par-3 contest at this year’s Masters has been cancelled, tournament officials have announced.

"The fun and excitement of watching Masters competitors with their friends and family is what makes the par-3 contest such a special part of Masters week," Augusta National chairman Fred Ridley said.

“We know that experience could not have been replicated without guests and patrons at Augusta National, and we eagerly anticipate the opportunity to bring back this signature tradition.”

Since the pre-tournament contest started in 1960, nobody has ever become par-3 and Masters champion in the same week.


England's Matt Wallace defeated 1988 Masters champion Sandy Lyle in a playoff in the par-3 contest last year and missed the cut in the tournament proper.

Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player will continue in their roles as honorary starters by hitting a tee shot on the first hole, but a lack of daylight in November means players will start from the first and 10th holes in the first two rounds.