Ultimate Outcome Probability: How It Works
The 43rd Ryder Cup is about to begin, and the speculation is rampant around Whistling Straits: which team will notch the first point? Which side will hold an advantage after the opening session? Who holds the edge in Foursomes or Four-Balls?
Those questions will all be answered over the next three days, as the U.S. and European Teams take center stage, but this year fans will have an extra asset as they look to understand who might have the upper hand at any given moment.
Created and developed by the Twenty First Group, this year fans will be able to tap into the Ultimate Outcome Probability tool as part of match scoring at www.RyderCup.com/scoring. Each match will be analyzed by a proprietary algorithm to help determine both who has the advantage before the match begins, and where that balance lies from hole to hole.
The functionality features analysis from several static elements, including:
Current skill level
Twenty First Group’s “Performance Index” has rated each of the 24 players against the baseline performance of an average PGA Tour player. The metric will help determine which pairings create the optimal combination, and which ones might be trailing before a shot is struck.
Style of play
The Performance Index also takes into account the strengths and weaknesses of each individual player, and how those might match up with a potential partner – critical information for analyzing Foursome matches, when each player won’t hit every shot.
It comes into play every time at the Ryder Cup. The algorithm includes a weighted factor evaluating the Ryder Cup experience (or lack thereof) for each individual player and how that might impact a player or team performance.
But as Ryder Cup fans know quite well, these matches aren’t won or lost on paper. Dynamic calculations are also computed throughout each match, with various factors tabulated to assess how each side is performing in a given matchup. Add it all up and you’ll have an overall outcome probability for each of the 28 matches played this week, all of which will likely change one hole at a time.
It’s a new era for analytics at the Ryder Cup, and it means fans have more information than ever to help them understand the momentum swings that are inevitable whenever these two sides square off.