Masters weather: Thursday storm threatens to delay first round

Rain at the 2020 Masters.

Thunderstorms forecasted for Thursday morning in Augusta, Ga., threaten to delay the first round of the Masters at Augusta National.

Stephen Denton

AUGUSTA, Ga. — The Masters had to battle a stretch of rough weather last year, and Augusta National might have to dodge an ominous forecast for its opening round on Thursday as well.

According to, Thursday calls for morning thunderstorms, a 100 percent chance of rain and winds hovering between 15 and 25 mph, including the potential for strong gusty winds in the Augusta, Ga., area.

The hour-by-hour forecast says there’s about a 50 percent chance of showers beginning around midnight on Wednesday. The chance of rain slowly increases on Thursday morning, with the forecast escalating to thunderstorms and a 99 percent chance of rain by 5 a.m. Thursday.

Thunderstorms, a strong chance of rain and wind around 16-18 mph are present until about 11 a.m., when the forecast begins to improve. After 2 p.m., the rest of the day will be partly cloudy, with little chance of rain and winds around 17 mph.

Honorary starters Gary Player, Jack Nicklaus and Tom Watson are scheduled to kick off the Masters at 7:40 a.m. on Thursday, with the first tee time going off at 8 a.m.

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The good news? The rest of the week looks excellent, and even a delayed start on Thursday won’t be much of an issue to get the field back on track. Friday will be a touch windier than the weekend, but after Thursday, it should be mostly sunny skies, almost zero chance of rain and wind under 9 mph. On Sunday, when we’ll crown a Masters champion, it will be mostly sunny with a high of 85 degrees.

Last year, the Masters dealt with delays on both Friday and Saturday. Three trees toppled over during a storm in the second round, and on Saturday the weather was even worse, stopping play for the day at 3:15 p.m. ET. That set the stage for a busy Sunday, where half the field needed to play at least 27 holes. They got it in, and Jon Rahm hoisted the trophy.

Luckily, it takes a lot of rain to really wreak havoc on the Masters, in large part due to the course’s famous SubAir system.

As one superintendent working the 2023 Masters told last year: “The bottom line is that where two to four inches of rain in a 24-hour period would create havoc at another tournament, at the Masters, it barely causes a shrug.”

Josh Berhow Editor

As’s managing editor, Berhow handles the day-to-day and long-term planning of one of the sport’s most-read news and service websites. He spends most of his days writing, editing, planning and wondering if he’ll ever break 80. Before joining in 2015, he worked at newspapers in Minnesota and Iowa. A graduate of Minnesota State University in Mankato, Minn., he resides in the Twin Cities with his wife and two kids. You can reach him at

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