First played in 1927 and named after English seed merchant Samuel Ryder, the Ryder Cup, organized jointly by Ryder Cup Europe and PGA, is a biennial golf tournament that pits twelve-player teams of Europe and United States against each other — the U.S. counts with 25 wins against Europe’s 8. The venue for the Ryder Cup alternates between European and American cities with the last having been played at Newport, Wales in 2010 and the upcoming one at Medinah, Illinois in 2012. This week the Ryder Cup announced a new logo designed by Interbrand.
“The brand research process was a strategy that reinforced the Ryder Cup’s relevancy for the future. The Ryder Cup is a competition that has longevity, and the consensus of all within the project was that its brand must be powerful to withstand any challenge. The power of the shield is a mark that has a contemporary feel to it. It is fundamentally sound and works well in applications from merchandising to the Internet, and yet remains self-contained.”
— Press Release
The old logo was an atrocity, an adjective I don’t use often out of respect I guess, but this one definitely deserves it, especially for a tournament of this caliber. The logo has been semi consistent up to this point with the year on the right changing for each tournament and a banner somewhere carrying the name of the host city. The new logo, in contrast and even without the old as a point of departure, is quite successful. It looks sophisticated and it marries very well the crest aesthetic of European sports with the need for gradient flair and stars of American sports. The two flags are well reduced to their most recognizable elements, the cup is nicely rendered and shiny, the typography is decent — I’ve never been a fan of all caps Scala Serif and I would have probably paired it with Scala Sans but that’s just me — and the overall shape is solid and compact. The only thing that isn’t as well resolved is the gray stroke around it, something odd about it.
I know we joke a lot about “… But, will it embroider?” and in this case the question certainly applies. If there is one thing this audience loves more than a hole in one it’s a polo shirt with a logo on it and if the goal is to merchandise this logo then, yes… will it embroider?