Charity challenge is on to beat course's toughest test

Aug 18, 2014

OVER the past 18 months it has beaten more than 20,000 players who have stepped up to the tee and driven their shot down the fairway hoping to hit a perfect hole-in-one.

But hole nine, at the Footgolf Yorkshire course in National Avenue, Hull, has so far proved too tricky for all-comers to achieve that elusive ace – and now the search is on to find the player with the perfect strike.

Opened in March 2013 as the UK’s first fully affiliated Footgolf course, all other eight holes on the course have seen numerous perfect shots from the tee.

But the notorious ninth – which is just 98 yards long but demands an accurate right to left curling drive which avoids four strategically placed trees on the fairway to reach the pin – has proved beyond all-comers.

“Hole nine is the talking point of the Footgolf course, it has beaten every player to play it over an 18-month period, and we want to see the hole-in-one achieved now, as we know it must be possible,” said manager Ben Rozenbroek.

To mark the start of the new Premier League season, we are offering an initial prize of £200 for the perfect shot, with £1 added to the jackpot for every player that takes on the challenge.

The first to achieve the challenge will split the money with a charity of their choice, and while the initial prize on offer is quite modest, it could be a much higher by the time that elusive hole in one is achieved.

“The jackpot is pretty small to start with, but had we started this challenge from day one it would now be worth over £20,000,” added Mr Rozenbroek.

 “The amazing thing about it is the hole is not much longer than any other on the course, and when every player stands on the tee, they all think they can be the first to do it.

“Given the fact it has beaten so many people, we thought we’d put a cash prize on offer, which rises every time somebody plays, and hopefully raise some good money for a local charity when the hole is finally beaten.”

Mr Rozenbroek, who has studied players’ approach to the hole day after day, does have a couple of tips for those looking to take up the challenge.

“It’s a risky approach, but I think a brave player who looks to strike his ball over the top of one of the trees, swinging round towards the hole, is a better bet than those who look to strike straight down the fairway and between the trees,” he said.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if the first person to do it is a goalkeeper, as they can get good distance and a good clean strike on the ball.”

With a local charity set to benefit from a bigger donation the longer the hole gets the better of players, Mr Rozenbroek is hoping hole nine continues to frustrate his customers for some time.

“Hopefully hole nine will continue to deny players for a good while yet so that we can raise some good money for a charity,” he said.

“It’s a fun challenge for everybody that comes to our course and adds that extra bit of excitement, and it is something which could raise a lot of money for charity in the long run.”

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