The eyes of the golfing world turn their attention to Augusta, GA, this week for the annual Masters Tournament.
While dads around the country are rejoicing, it might be hard for some casual golf fans to latch onto a golfer to root for. After all, some of the past champions and more recognizable names are now too controversial due to their affiliation with the LIV Golf Tour.
Well, if you are stuck wondering what you should focus on during the tournament, here is something to look out for.
The Difficulty Of An Ace
The Masters has gone on every year since 1934 (except from 1942 to 1945 due to World War II.) I thought someone could go crazy looking at the tournament’s history and diving into rabbit hole after rabbit hole. Luckily, I did all the heavy lifting for you and identified something unique.
Arguably the hardest thing to do in golf is record a hole-in-one, even though I would argue that it is harder to hit into sand bunkers on seven consecutive holes (because I did last weekend). The average golfer’s odds of getting a hole-in-one stand at 12,000 to one. Although slightly more probable for the professionals, the odds are still around 2,500 to one. Factor that into Augusta National’ Golf Clubs difficulty, and it might be fair to say that getting a hole-in-one at the Masters might be the hardest thing possible.
Hole-In-Ones At The Masters
The first hole-in-one came in the very first tournament. The year was 1934, and Ross Sommerville snuck his tee shot in the hole swinging a “mashie niblick” (apparently, a 1934-era iron). It probably lacked the same gallery roar that a Tiger Woods would receive, but still an incredible accomplishment.
What has transpired since is fascinating. From 1934 to 1988, there were only nine record hole-in-ones during the Masters—three at each par three’s, holes six, twelve, and sixteen. The floodgates opened in 1992. Not only was that the year that Jeff Sluman recorded a 213-yard hole-in-one on the par-four fourth hole (Still the only one to happen at number four). In just thirty years, there have been twenty-five hole-in-ones at the Masters.
More This Year?
The frequency has risen so much in the last twenty-five years that there have even been six instances where multiple hole-in-ones have happened in the same tournament. The sixteenth hole is where the hole-in-ones happen most frequently, with seventy percent of them taking place at the famous hole.
Let me add more detail if you need more than this to persuade you. Since 2010 there have been sixteen hole-in-ones. That’s over a hole-in-one per tournament.
Forever the course has been revered as unforgiving, but is it crazy to say that the Masters might have a hole-in-one problem? Of course not. We want more aces.