Golf has been around for centuries, and it is still one of the most popular sports in the world. People of all ages enjoy playing golf, and there are many interesting facts about golf that you may not know. Here are seven interesting facts about golf that you may be surprised to know.
The world longest drive in competition is 515 yards achieved by Mike Austin
Mike Austin (October 7, 1912 – February 2, 2005) was an American professional golfer, best known for hitting the longest drive in competition record. It measured 515 yards (471 m), with a 46-ounce driver at the US National Seniors Open Championship in 1974 at Age 62. He also played on the PGA Tour and in Europe.
Austin is one of the few golfers to have won tournaments on all six continents sanctioned by the International Federation of PGA Tours; he won in North America, South Africa, Australia and Japan in his forties and fifties, then added a win in Europe and South America in his sixties. He has been called “the greatest long driver of all time”.
The World’s Oldest Golf Course Is in Scotland
The game of golf is believed to have been played in Scotland as early as the 15th century. In fact, the Old Course at St. Andrews is the world’s oldest golf course. The Old Course has a rich history and has been the setting for many famous tournaments, including the British Open.
The oldest golf course in the world is Mussel burgh Links in Scotland. The course was first mentioned in a 1457 act of the Scottish parliament, and Mary Queen of Scots is known to have played there. The Royal Mussel burgh Golf Club claims to be “the oldest golf club in the world” with official records dating back to 1774.
The Old Course at St Andrews, considered the “home of golf”, has been a public course since 1552, but evidence suggests golf may have been played on the site as early as the 12th century. The oldest surviving written record dates from 1457 when King James II banned the game because it interfered with archery practice.
Phil Mickelson Is Left-Handed, but He Plays Golf Right-Handed
Phil Mickelson, who has won five major golf tournaments, is about to turn 50. He’s still competing in the sport at a high level, currently ranked 11th in the world. And he does it all as a lefty — except for when he’s swinging a golf club.
Mickelson is the most famous example of a golfer who plays right-handed but favors his left hand for everything else. He is not alone: Bubba Watson and Mike Weir are other lefties who play right-handed. According to Golf Digest, there are more than 150 players on the PGA Tour who play right-handed despite being naturally left-handed.
You Can’t Play a Round at Augusta National Without Being Invited
Augusta National Golf Club, home of the Masters tournament, is one of the most exclusive golf clubs anywhere. It has fewer than 300 members, and only a handful of non-members get to play there each year.
Augusta National is famously private and notoriously doesn’t want any publicity. It doesn’t do interviews, isn’t mentioned by name in the media and keeps its membership list hidden from the public. The club also does not allow spectators on the course during practice rounds or tournaments.
The only way to play Augusta National is to become a member or be invited by a member to play as a guest.
Tiger Woods Has His Own Island Off the Coast of Florida
Tiger Woods has been an extremely wealthy man for almost as long as he’s been a phenomenon. His net worth is estimated to be around $740 million. While he’s been generous with his wealth, he’s always been savvy about how he spends it.
For example, Tiger Woods owns his own island.
Tiger’s Island is a 164-acre private island just off the coast of Florida and near the Bahamas, which is where it gets its name. The Bahamas are known to be a tax haven for the rich. But Tiger’s Island is not actually in the Bahamas It’s in the United States.
There’s Only One Hole-in-One on a Par-6 Hole Ever Recorded
There’s a “par” for every hole on a golf course. A “par-3” hole is meant to take three strokes to complete. A par-4, four strokes, and so on.
There’s only one par-6 in the world at the Sano Course at Satsuki Golf Club in Japan and only one person has ever recorded a hole-in-one on it.
On April 5, 2002, Ryo Ishmoto was playing at Satsuki when he aced the 617-yard hole with a drive of his driver and a 5-iron for his second shot, per legend status. He then completed the hole with five more shots to finish with a 5-under par round of 61.
Scotland Is Home to the Oldest Club, Ball and Course
One of the many reasons the Scots are so proud of the game of golf is that their country is home to its firsts. The oldest club ball and course in the world were all created there, and all three look remarkably different from what we are used to today.
The Oldest Club
The earliest known club was found in a Scottish bog where it had been for a few hundred years. It dates back to around 1480 and is believed to be the oldest known club in the world.
The club is made out of roughly hewn hardwood and the head is bound with rawhide straps. It’s very unlike modern clubs, but it’s not all that different from some you might see on your local course today. Especially if you play at a public track where people bring their own hickory-shafted clubs.
The Oldest Ball
The oldest golf ball discovered was also found in Scotland. A leather ball stuffed with feathers dating back to 1552 was found at Edinburgh Castle by soldiers digging trenches during World War I. No word on whether they got a mulligan before firing their rifles in anger.
That is not the only old golf ball ever discovered in Scotland. During a renovation project at Prestwick Golf Club, workers
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