Jordan Spieth’s steady play in his record-setting Masters victory was nowhere more evident than at the four par-5 holes at Augusta National Golf Club, where he led the field with 13 birdies in 16 chances.
Spieth finished a total of 12 under par on the par-5s, two-thirds of his winning score of 18 under that tied the Masters record set by Tiger Woods in 1997.
Since Woods claimed his first major championship title that year at Augusta National, Masters winners are a combined 162 under on the course’s four par-5 holes. They’re 40 under on the other 14 par-3 and par-4 holes.
Only three golfers scored better overall on the par-5 holes than Spieth. Phil Mickelson, who tied for second place, scored a combined 15 under, while Rory McIlroy (tied for fourth) and Dustin Johnson (tied for sixth) were 14 under.
Johnson had three eagles on the par-5’s. Mickelson and McIlroy had two each. Spieth didn’t have an eagle, though his birdie percentage of 81.25 on the par-5s was more than 12 percent higher than anyone else in the field.
The first of golf’s four major championships, the Masters is unique in that it’s been played on the same par-72 course since the tournament founded by Bobby Jones debuted in 1934.
With its four par-5s -- holes longer than 500 yards (457 meters) that typically require three shots to reach the green -- it’s become an outlier in modern major championship golf.
The U.S. Open hasn’t been played on a par-72 course since 1992, with 11 of the past 14 tournaments having just two par-5 holes. The PGA Championship has been played on par-70 or 71 courses in 11 of the past 20 years. The British Open over the past two decades has been played on a par-72 course only six times, four of those at St. Andrews Golf Club in Scotland.