Pinehurst has been very good to Gil Hanse. The golf-course architect and his team just completed a significant renovation of Pinehurst No. 4, redoing the layout in time for the USGA to host the U.S. Amateur on both the storied No. 2 and No. 4 courses this summer.
Hanse also built Pinehurst's nine-hole short course, The Cradle, which opened to rave reviews in Fall 2017. Now, with a bit of a personal achievement, Hanse has further cemented how much Pinehurst means to him.
The golf-course architect recorded his second hole-in-one in less than two months at The Cradle, after never having a hole-in-one in his life. Hanse aced the third hole at The Cradle, a giant punchbowl green, on Friday during his annual Caveman Cup, with many on his design team, after dunking one on the second hole in September.
The reaction of Hanse's first hole-in-one was pretty great:
Now he's a pro at this stuff:
OK, OK. Before Hanse gets a note from all the golf purists telling him he shouldn't count his ace, we can all recognize that making a hole-in-one on a short course is slightly easier than on a regulation course. The third hole at The Cradle measures just 55 yards. And the second hole is 78 yards.
Point is, The Cradle's about having fun. And making an ace is fun. We're sure Gil will quantify his aces when asked if he's ever had a hole-in-one. "I have two, but they're both on short courses."
But when he follows that up with the fact that both occurred within 52 days of each other, on a course he and his team designed, nobody can dispute that his new fact is quite special.