The bridge was dedicated to Gene Sarazen for his magical second shot on the 15th in 1935 and was the first bridge at Augusta to be dedicated to a player
The Sarazen Bridge at Augusta National
The Sarazen Bridge at August National Golf Club commemorates the ‘shot that was heard around the world’.
The Bridge crosses the pond in front of the 15th green at Augusta.
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The US Masters was at first a little-regarded tournament, so when in 1935 Gene Sarazen holed out in two on the par-5 15th and this boosted coverage of the tournament and helped to get it talked about.
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In the fourth round that year, Gene Sarazen holed a 4-wood from 235 yards on the then 485-yard 15th hole. Sarazen had gone into the final round three shots behind Craig Wood, and this 4-wood shot helped him to tie with Wood after 72 holes.
A 36-hole play-off was thereby held on the Monday and Sarazen won this in even par to Wood’s 5-over par. Rare was it in this play-off that any hole was played other than in par. Sarazen made three birdies and two bogeys; Wood two birdies and seven bogeys.
The bridge was dedicated in 1955 – a day short of the 20th anniversary of Sarazen’s albatross, when a plaque was unveiled. Unlike both the Hogan Bridge and the Nelson Bridge this plaque is actually fixed onto the bridge itself.
The dedication on it reads:
“Erected to commemorate the twentieth anniversary of the famous “double eagle” scored by Gene Sarazen on this hole, April 7, 1935, which gained him a tie for first place with Craig Wood and in the play-off won the second Masters Tournament. Dedicated April 6, 1955.”
It was the first bridge at Augusta to be dedicated to a player – subsequently Augusta National has also dedicated bridges to Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson.
Like the Hogan and Nelson Bridges, it is constructed of stone, but unlike those two bridges, the Sarazen Bridge is not arched. For that reason, unlike those two, it is not considered necessary to cover it in artificial turf to give the players’ studs traction.