HAVEN, Wis. – The Masters is a tradition unlike any other. Now, the Ryder Cup has a tradition all its own: the captain tattoo.
European Ryder Cup Captain Padraig Harrington confirmed that he will get a tattoo with the winning score if his 12-man team retains the Cup this week at the 43rd playing of the international team competition.
Dane Thomas Bjorn started this tradition in 2018 when his team rolled Team USA to the tune of a 17 ½ -10 ½ beat down at Le Golf National in Paris. How much added incentive this gave to Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Tommy Fleetwood and the lot, we’ll never know, but it clearly mattered to the team, who were quick to point out it out during the winner’s press conference.
In December 2018, Bjorn delivered on his promise to his team and inked the winning score to his backside, “somewhere only Grace could see,” he said during his winner’s press conference, a reference to girlfriend Grace Barber.
During his Wednesday press conference, Harrington, 50 and a six-time Ryder Cup participant as a player, was asked if he would do the same.
— Ryder Cup Europe (@RyderCupEurope) December 24, 2018
“I am delighted that that’s all they ask for, but I’d have given up a lot more. So yes, I will be getting a tattoo. If my team produce a winning week, I will be getting a tattoo to mark the occasion, and very comfortable that they only asked that much of me because I would have given more.”
Did his players ask him to reprise Bjorn’s deal?
“I think it’s an unwritten rule, so it has come up, yes, in conversation. Maybe they didn’t ask. Maybe I offered and they felt that was enough. But definitely, yeah, it’s a given now in Europe. Captain has to get a tattoo,” Harrington said.
He added: “And I don’t have any other tattoos at this stage, so it would be a new experience for me. Where on the body? I don’t know.”