AUGUSTA, Ga.—Sergio Garcia's 15th hole was an adventure, and not of the, "And then we found the buried treasure!" variety. More like, "So after our car broke down for the third time, we resigned ourselves to sleeping in the Denny's parking lot." Garcia did his best Roy McAvoy impersonation, sending five shots into the pond to walk away with an octuple-bogey 13. It was the highest score ever recorded on the 15th, and worst first round by a defending champion in Masters history.
With Garcia effectively out of the green jacket running—he's 15 shots behind Jordan Spieth, and only ahead of amateur Harry Ellis—Paddy's Power, an Irish bookmaker, is lending a shoulder to deflated gamblers by refunding those who placed bets on the Spaniard.
"Garcia went from a Masters winner to playing like me at a crazy golf course," said a Paddy Power spokesman. "We decided to reward punters who wagered on him winning back-to-back at Augusta, because we’re nice like that."
Well, not that nice: betters won't get their money back. Instead, the book will offer them a free wager with the same allowance.
For those looking for a do-over, first-round leader Jordan Spieth is now listed at 2/1, followed by Rory McIlroy (5/1), Matt Kuchar and Phil Mickelson (14/1), and Henrik Stenson (16/1).