Golf 101
April 17, 2020

Did you know: There has only been one hole-in-one on a par 4 in PGA Tour history—and it was a real doozy

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The coronavirus pandemic has hit a giant pause button on fans being able to watch golf on TV, and in some cases, even kept people off courses. But while we hunker down and hope for a speedy return to normalcy, we can also use this time as an opportunity to learn more about the game we love. Here’s our latest installment of “Did you know?”

Andrew Magee was a three-time All-American at Oklahoma and a four-time winner on the PGA Tour, but he'll forever be known for the one-time thing he did nearly two decades ago. That's because Magee's hole-in-one at the 2001 Phoenix Open remains the lone ace on a par 4 in PGA Tour history. And boy, was it a doozy.

As Magee tells it, he was a little ticked after making bogey on the easy par-5 15th at TPC Scottsdale, but he bounced back by draining a long birdie on the famed par-3 16th—you know, the one with all the drunk fans. Stepping to the tee on No. 17, he was still a bit steamed and he launched a driver on the 332-yard par 4 that he'd never come close to reaching. But adrenaline is a heckuva drug and Magee's golf ball bounded up onto the putting surface and into the group in front. That's where things got really wacky.

Magee's ball narrowly missed hitting Steve Pate but it couldn't avoid one of his playing partners. Tom Byrum was lining up an eight-footer and wouldn't you know it, but Magee's ball caromed perfectly off his putter and into the hole for the craziest ace in PGA Tour history. Talk about being in the right place at the right time. Well, for Magee, that is.

Sounds too unbelievable to be real? See for yourself! Wait. . . um. . . about that. . . sadly, no good video of the shot exists. Seriously. You'd think this happened in 1901 instead of 2001. Anyway, the best clip out there is this slow-mo look of Pate nearly getting hit by a bouncing ball and Magee narrating how it all went down. Here it is:

An ace albatross! An ACEatross! Amazing.

As Andrew says in the video, he wasn't sure what had happened—or if it would even count. Obviously, it did, though, or we wouldn't be talking so much today about a guy who hasn't even played on the senior tour in six years.

But while Magee's is the only one on the PGA Tour, it has happened on other major tours in competition. Ha Na Jang and Minjee Lee have done it on the LPGA, while Rahil Ganjee and Chip Beck have pulled it off on the Korn Ferry Tour. And those players were all lucky enough to have their feats caught on camera. Must be nice.

But back to Magee, thanks to his memorable hole-in-one, he shot a first-round 66, which kickstarted a not-so-memorable T-44 finish. More importantly, we're guessing it set off quite a celebration at TPC Scottsdale's 19th hole. In any event, Andrew Magee is still dining off that tale nearly 20 years later. And Tom Byrum is probably still drinking on Magee's tab.


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