Seven golfers shot hole-in-ones at the 2009 Canadian Open.
The most unusual hole-in-one belonged to Leif Olson – see video below. Olson managed to hit a hole-in-one on the par-3, 132-yard 15th hole. Olson’s ball bounced off playing partner Kris Blanks’ ball and rolled into the hole, winning Olson a 2009 BMW Z4 Roadster. Three other players won cars on the same hole.
Seven hole-in-ones at one tournament has to be a record, although, apparently records weren’t kept pre-1971 on this type of accomplishment.
The odds of hitting a hole-in-one vary depend on who you listen to. For an amateur, some folks estimate the odds at about 1 in 12,000 while others list the odds as high as 1 in 45,000. For a professional golfer, the odds come down significantly. One source lists the odds at about 1 in 4000 for a pro golfer. But, 7 hole-in-ones in one tournament? The bartenders must’ve been busy at the clubhouse. Unbelievable!
ENJOY LEIF OLSON’S HOLE-IN-ONE VIDEO
ENJOY THIS HSBC “HOLE-IN-ONE TRADITION” COMMERCIAL
Tom Watson, the 59 year-old golfer from Kansas City, knows a thing or two about winning golf tournaments. Having won 8 majors and heading the PGA money list 5 times, his place in golf’s history is secure. As he demonstrated Sunday after his second place finish in the British Open, he also knows how to handle a loss.
On the verge of a historic win – Watson would’ve been the oldest British Open winner by 12 years – he came up short on the last hole in regulation and lost the playoff.
In Michael Bamberger’s wonderful article at Golf.com on Watson, “Tom Watson, 59 years young, captivated the golf world for four days at the British Open,” he writes,
“When Sunday’s playoff was over, Watson kept grace alive. There was his long handshake with Cink, which came only after Watson allowed the champ time to acknowledge the applause and savor the moment. There was his fifth straight session in the press tent, where, his voice hoarse after a long day in the wind and the sun, he offered no excuses. Not his age, not his man-made hip, not his infrequent play. Of his poor putt out of fluffy rough from behind the 72nd green, he said, “I gunned it.” Of his ensuing 10-footer for par that would have won him the title, he said, “Made a lousy putt.” Asked if he ran out of gas in the playoff, he replied, “It looked like it, didn’t it?” Congratulations, Tom. You’re what it’s all about.”
The ability to lose with grace needs more emphasis in sports today. Coaches and players would do well to use Tom Watson as a model.
The Duel with Jack Nicklaus in 1977
Padraig Harrington experiments with the Happy Gilmore swing video
4th grader Ryan Quinn’s golf highlight
When D.J. Gregory was born with cerebral palsy and his legs entwined, his parents were told that he’d never walk. A special feature on ESPN E:60 reports that Gregory said, “”I would be in a wheelchair for the rest of my life, and my dad and my mom, both my parents, wouldn’t take that for an answer.” Gregory had multiple surgeries on his legs, and after much physical therapy, learned to walk with the aid of a cane.
Always interested in sports, his lack of mobility prevented him from enjoying sports like basketball and football in a competitive way. But, in golf, he felt he could compete. He developed his own one-armed swing that enabled him to use his cane for balance. As his love for golf grew, he came up with an idea. Since walking didn’t hold him back, could he walk every hole of every round of every event on the 2008 PGA tour? That’s what he set out to do.
He ended up walking 44 tournaments — some 988 miles — in 45 weeks. The PGA and individual players rallied around his effort. Along the way, he interviewed players at the tournaments and reported on his blog. Gregory’s determination to meet his goal inspired many, including several golf professionals. Gregory realized that he would fall along the way, but the important thing was to always get back up.
D.J. Gregory’s story on ESPN E:60
After winning the U.S. Open at Torrey Pines last June, Tiger Woods underwent reconstructive surgery on his left knee. The Accenture Match Play Championship in Tuscon will be the site of his return to the game on Wednesday after a 8 month layoff. He’s the #1 seed and won the event in 2003, 2004 and 2008. Any guesses as to who is the front runner for “Comeback Player of the Year”?
ENJOY THIS VIDEO:
Note: The video opens with the famous “Bouncing Ball” Nike commercial.
Commercial director Doug Liman was quoted on CNET about the filming of the shot.
“Liman noticed Woods bouncing a ball on the edge of a club during breaks from shooting. Liman grabbed a shoulder-held camera and, away from the crew, asked Woods to bounce the balls while being filmed. Liman began to lose his patience when Woods blew the shot several times.
“I told him, ‘I can’t believe that of all people you are choking under pressure,’” Liman told the audience.
Woods glared and then bounced the ball while transferring the club through his legs behind his back and finished by smacking the ball in mid air. The shot, which became a classic, was natural, unrehearsed, and driven by imagination rather than millions of studio dollars, Liman said.”