Everyone watched as Jordan Spieth let winning a second consecutive green jacket slip through his fingers on the final day of last year’s Masters on Augusta’s infamous 12th hole. Sitting at only 155 yards, the “Golden Bell” is considered one of the most dangerous hole’s in golf.
The par-3 was giving golfer’s nightmares way before Spieth’s choke at the 2016 Masters. At less than 200 yards, this iconic hole is known for its beauty with the picturesque little bridge straddling across Rae’s Creek. It truly is a sight to behold, but for the professionals that creek can cause more heartbreak than anything else. Jordan Spieth was not the only golfer to fall prey to the pretty scene, dating all the way back to Arnold Palmer’s hay day.
Arnold Palmer, 1959
The great Arnold Palmer led by 5 shots going into the 12th hole during the 1959 Master. He then proceeded to make a triple-bogey 6 after sinking his ball into Rae’s Creek. Palmer lost by two to Art Wall that year, falling victim to the dangerous hole.
Jack Nicklaus, 1964
The hole spares no golfer when it comes to its terrors. Even Jack Nicklaus in his prime lost to Arnold Palmer after making a bogey on the hole, shanking the ball short of Rae’s Creek.
Tom Weiskopf, 1980
In comparison to Tom Weiskopf, Jordan Spieth did well on the 12th hole. Weiskopf hit five balls into the water hazard, recording the highest ever score on a hole, a disastrous 13. This became his fourth time ending as runner up at the Masters.
Larry Nelson, 1984
Nelson came up to the tee at the 12th hole, trailing the leader Ben Crenshaw by one shot. He recalls the errant shot by saying, “I didn’t know whether to tell it to get up or get down.” His double bogey 5 threw him out of contention and ended in 5th place that Masters.
Raymond Floyd, 1992
Raymond Floyd trailed Freddy Couples this Masters, and although most people remember the tournament for Freddy’s win, it might not have happened without the 12th hole. Floyd’s ball slipped down the slope, causing him to hit a double bogey and helped Couples win by two strokes.
Dan Forsman, 1993
On the final day, Forsman was pumped up by the crowd after being one shot behind Bernhard Langer. He walked up to the 12th hole with a standing ovation and left the hole with a quadruple bogey 7 after hitting two balls in the creek.
Greg Norman, 1996
Entering the 12th hole on the Sunday of that Masters was the first time Greg Norman wasn’t leading the tournament. He started the day with a six shot lead and after his double bogey with a tee shot in the water, Norman lost sight of the green jacket to Nick Faldo.
Jeff Maggart, 2003
Maggart probably had one of the most back and forth experiences on the Golden Bell. He ended up hitting his tee shot into the back of the bunker, then shanked it into the water, and then chunked the ball into the water again after dropping. He ended the hole with a quintuple-bogey 8 and finishing five shots out of a playoff.
Rocco Mediate, 2006
Unfortunately for Rocco, his three balls into the creek on that Sunday, were the only balls hit into the water that day. For him, it cost him the tournament by shooting a 10. The 12th hole strikes again.
Stuart Appleby, 2007
Appleby was tied for the lead against playing partner Tiger Woods when he reached the 12th tee, but a double bogey dropped him out of the top spot for good. He couldn’t regain his stride and ended up T-7 for the tournament.
Steve Flesch, Phil Mickelson, Fred Couples, Rory McIlroy, and Bubba Watson all fell victim to the grips of Augusta’s 12th hole as well. It seems as though Jordan Spieth is in good company when it comes to getting captured by golf’s most dangerous hole.