Approximately 150,000 hole-in-ones are made each year. 0 hole-in-ones have been made by this golfer. Let’s do some quick math. The unofficial estimated odds for a low handicapper making a hole are 5,000:1. I have played an estimated 2,000 rounds of golf with approximately 4 par 3’s per round of golf. That put’s my total at 8,000 or so hole-in-one attempts. Mathematically, I am overdue.
Within the past 10 years or so, I have started the Ace Cam campaign, which is my personal attempt to capture my very first hole in one on amateur video. So far, the only good ones, are the really bad ones. Here I will recap some of my closest and most interesting calls.
- June 1991 Arlington Park Golf Course, 5th hole, 130 yards: My 7 iron was struck pure and true. However, my Pinnacle Gold came to rest overhanging the edge of the cup. I got down on my hands and knees, stared at the ball, and blew it into the hole. I recorded an unofficial score of 1.5. I was only 11, but the ace hunt was on!!
- Sometime in 1994, Swan Lake Golf Club, 5th hole, 172 yards: I hit a high floater into a stiff wind. The ball was on a string to the hole, this one was going in. When the golf ball hit the green it bounced very high, like it had hit a cart path, and settled a couple feet from the hole. That was odd, we thought. When we arrived on the green, we realized that the ball had landed directly into the hole and bounced out. Shattered parts of the cup were all over the green. I remember hanging onto one of those pieces of the broken cup as some sort of memento to my sorrows.
- 2000, Indiana University Golf Club, 4th hole, 216 yards: One fine fall college evening, I strolled over to the University course with a couple of buddies and a couple of six packs. This half-drunk 3 iron had its eyes on making history and as it landed, it disappeared. Perhaps over the green, perhaps in the hole. Moments later several raccoons would make their way across the green. Raccoons!!! We never found that golf ball... It cannot be ruled out that the raccoons did not pluck my ball from the hole in some sort of raccoon golf prank.
- 2010, The LInks at Bodega Harbour, 7th hole, 215 yards: With a serious backup in play on the 8th hole, there were about 8 witnesses to this one. On a foggy afternoon, I ripped my tee shot right at the hole. It was an absolute laser beam and I knew it was going to be close. As my ball struck the green, I heard loud screams and yells up by the green, and for one glorious half of a second, I had finally done it, a hole in one. I was the greatest golfer to ever live!! Then I heard the sounds, “Awwwhhhhhh” and my dreams had been dashed. Upon arriving at the green to find my ball less than a foot from the hole, a kind gentleman informed me that my golf ball had horseshoed back at me, a 180 degree lip-out. I fought the urge to punch his face, as he was only the messenger. I made the 1 foot putt.
- 2012, We-Ko-Pa Cholla Course, 3rd hole, 164 yards: After convincing myself that this was the shot that finally drops, I shanked my tee shot into the desert. Not a close call, but perhaps the farthest I have ever been from an ace. Video exists, but I “lost it.”
- 2014, Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course, 12th hole, 187 yards: My buddy Xan was getting married and this was his Bachelor Party, it was the Xanvitational. Like so many balls before, my Taylor Made would peak into the cup and just say “ehh, not today.” This one happened in extra slow agonizing torture.
- 2014 Lincoln Park Golf Course, 2nd hole, 256 yards, par 4: For a while, I had actually given up on attempting to make an ace on a par 3 and was focusing exclusively on par 4’s. This of course, was bullshit, but it sounded like a pretty bad ass thing to say and do. To this day, I have no clue how my perfectly struck 3 wood did not find the bottom of the cup. The Pitch mark was 2 feet in front of the hole with the ball resting 3-4 inches directly behind the cup. Golf Magic!!
- In my latest sob story, I give you this video. I had recently told a new group of golf friends about the Ace Cam. This was my initial attempt on Sahalee's 9th hole.
No matter how many cruel bounces I receive, I shall doggedly hunt down my ace. It is out there waiting for me and I will find it, video tape it on the Ace Cam, and then celebrate it unnecessarily and excessively.
Feel free to share any of your Hole-in-One stories in the comments below. Successful or not, I want to hear them all.