Have you ever had a chance to win a million dollars playing golf? Unless you are a professional, the chances are highly unlikely that you have. Well, just a couple of weeks ago I had this very chance.
I made my way to the Veterans Fields in North Bay and thought I would try to shoot a hole in one for a million dollars. I have 3 holes in one through my golfing career, so I thought why not me!
The rules were fairly straight forward. I obviously decided to hit 25 balls (twice as it turned out). The competition was held over 4 days and the 10 closest players to the pin would be invited back on Sunday for the play offs. During the playoffs, each player would have 10 shots each and the 5 closest players would be invited to the finals. All of these shots were from 120 yards over at 10 foot fence at the 100 yard mark and if you happened to get a hole in one during the regular play and playoffs (which there was 1 this year), you did not win the million dollars, but you won a special prize.
In the finals, they had one shot and if they happen to shoot a hole in one – they would win the million dollars! It seems like a long process, but as a fundraiser, it is always a big success in the area.
During my attempts to qualify, I switched between a PW and 9-iron. I selected position 7 so that wind was directly in my face. After a 5 ball warm-up, I started to focus hitting the ball close. As it turned out I hit about 60% of my shots around the 10 foot range, but not good enough to move up the leaderboard to be invited back!
As luck would have it, I first entered the leaderboard with a 5’5″ shot. This place me in the top ten in 8th spot. As I continued hitting balls, my closest shot was 3″2″ and a tie for 4th on Saturday. However, there was still about 6 hours left for people to qualify for Sunday.
As it turned out, I did not qualify for the playoffs. I was few inches outside the mark. I had many shots close, but not close enough. As I hit ball after ball, they had someone offering advice on short, long, left, or right. This was very helpful so I could make some minor adjustments to my swing.
It was interesting that when switching between my PW and 9-iron, I had to change my swing thoughts. The 120 yard is a natural PW shot, but with the 9-iron I had to hit knock down shots. It was interesting that my success of hitting the ball close was the same, I felt more comfortable hitting the 3/4 shot. This is something I need to bring to the range and figure out.
As it turned out, no one won the million dollars this year. I am not sure how many shots were played over the 4 day period, but I am sure it was in the 10s of thousands. I had a great time trying to win a million dollars playing golf, however it was not to be…..this year! Next year, I will go back, support the fundraiser and see if I can change my fortune hitting a little white ball.
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!