Fun Golf Facts And Records
Golf originated in Scotland back in the 15th century, although the game has much more ancient origins. Many people around the world play golf, both casually and professionally, and golf courses can be found in every country. If you’re a fan of the sport, you might enjoy this list of interesting golf facts and records we’ve compiled:
- The United States has the world’s most golf courses, with a total of 15,372 spread across the country: That’s approximately 1 course for every 21,000 Americans. Japan, Canada and England all have more than 2,000 courses.
- However, if you look at the golf course to population ratio, then Scotland comes out as having the highest number of courses per capita: Scotland has 552 courses, which works out to 1 course per 9,500 residents.
- Despite the high number of courses around the world, golf is a sport that’s in decline: Data shows that the number of regular players declined by almost a third between 2000 and 2005.
- Golf has been played in every place imaginable on Earth, but did you know it has even been played on other planets? An American astronaut named Alan Shepard smuggled a home-made club and two balls during a lunar mission in 1971 and made full use of the moon’s low gravity to fire a shot over 200 yards.
- Professional golf is a very rich sport, with prize money on the PGA Tour of US$800,000 for first prize – or more: In career earnings, Tiger Woods is the clear leader, having banked over US$110 million during his tour participation.
- How long was the world’s longest recorded hole-in-one? There’s a variety of contenders, but most seem to agree that Mike Crean’s 517 yard (473 metre) effort at a course in Denver in 2002 holds the title for a Par 5 hole-in-one.
- The odds of hitting a hole-in-one are pretty slim: For the average golfer, it’s less than 1 in every 12,500 attempts. A pro golfer has better odds, but still very rare at just 1 in every 2,500 shots.
- Who is the most successful golfer in the world? In recent times, Tiger Woods would have a clear advantage in this discussion, having won 14 majors between 1997 to 2008. However, the current record holder is Jack Nicklaus, with 18 titles between 1962 to 1986.
- How about duration at the number one position in the world? If you go by that metric, then Woods is the undisputed best, holding an amazing 683 weeks as world number one. Behind that is Australian Greg Norman, with just 331 weeks in top spot.
- The world’s longest golf course is in Australia, and we must warn any prospective golfers, it is HUGE: The Nullarbor Links stretches along a highway in southern Australia over a span of 848 miles (1365 kms). This massive course opened in 2009 and does, surprisingly, attract some players from around the world.