10 Notes to Know: May 11, 2020

May 11, 2020
Justin Ray

Even though the world of professional golf is on hiatus, 15th Club still wants to provide you with interesting pieces of information to get your week started. Over the weekend, we asked fans to choose between three greats of the game to be the subject of this week’s Ten Notes to Know. The choice was four-time major champion and current world number one player Rory McIlroy.

  1. At age 19, Rory McIlroy won his first European Tour title, the 2009 Dubai Desert Classic. His first PGA Tour victory came the following year, at the 2010 Quail Hollow Championship. Rory is one of two players in the modern era to win on both the PGA and European Tours before age 21 – the other is Seve Ballesteros.
  1. McIlroy won his first major, the 2011 U.S. Open, just after turning 22 years old. To this day, he is the youngest player born outside the United States to win a men’s major championship in the last 100 years.
  1. Rory won each of his first two major championships by eight strokes. He is one of two players in the modern era to win multiple majors by eight shots or more. The other is Tiger Woods, who has done it three times.
  1. Rory won his fourth major – the 2014 PGA Championship – at just 25 years old. McIlroy is one of four men in the last 100 years to win four or more majors before the age of 26. The others are Bobby Jones, Jack Nicklaus, and Woods.
  1. McIlroy was part of his fourth winning Ryder Cup team in 2018. Rory became the first player to win four majors and be on four winning Ryder Cup teams before turning 30 years old. (It should be noted that a generation ago, players needed to be on Tour for five or more years before debuting in the event.)
  1. Rory won the 2019 WGC-HSBC Champions, his 18th career PGA Tour title, at age 30. In doing so, he became the fourth player in the last 75 years to win 18 PGA Tour events, including four majors, at age 30 or younger. The others are Woods, Nicklaus, and Tom Watson.
  1. Rory McIlroy won his third career Vardon Trophy last season, the award given by the PGA of America to the PGA Tour’s season leader in scoring average. Rory is one of three players to win the award three or more times at age thirty or younger, along with Tom Watson and Woods.
  1. Since the beginning of last season, McIlroy has averaged 2.18 strokes gained tee-to-green per PGA Tour round. Not only is that the best per round average of any player in that span, there are only eight other players gaining 1.18 or more per round – meaning Rory is beating nearly the entire Tour by more than a stroke per round from tee-to-green since the beginning of the ’18-19 season.
  1. From 2010 through 2019, McIlroy led all players in worldwide victories (25), top-five finishes in majors (11), top-ten finishes in majors (18) and total World Ranking points earned (3,642). He and Brooks Koepka won the most majors in the decade, with four apiece.
  1. Over the last two PGA Tour seasons, Rory has averaged 2.55 strokes gained total per round, far-and-away best of any player. Second-best of anyone in that span is Patrick Cantlay at 1.84 per round.