By Nick Totten at Woburn
Cheers were echoing through the tree-lined fairways of Woburn on Saturday with holes-in-one flying in from all angles.
England’s Martin Poxon got the ball rolling (into the hole) when he dispatched a nine iron on the third that found the bottom of the cup, only to follow it up with an eagle two on the next.
He said: "Both were really good shots. The second shot into the fourth is blind so I knew it would be close but didn't expect it to go in as well. It took me a bit by surprise to be honest."
"But the best thing about it was the crowds. They were brilliant today."
Whispers of a double eagle circulating through the crowd may have confused any Americans present, but when Poxon’s six-iron found the hole on the fourth that is what he had, as opposed to an albatross.
Indeed not only were the record crowds at the Travis Perkins plc Senior Masters celebrating, but all his fellow competitors will also be raising a glass to Poxon’s success as Follador Wines, through their “Sharing in Success” initiative, had announced that upon the first hole-in-one this week, all competitors will receive a bottle of Follador “Brut” Prosecco, compliments of the successful player.
News of such a rare feat got back to the clubhouse fairly sharpish prompting DJ Russell, on the putting green at the time preparing for his second round, to regale one of the TV commentators with how he is the youngest player to have had a hole-in-one at a Major Championship.
In 1973 most people old enough will remember Gene Sarazen having a hole in one at Royal Troon’s 8th hole, better known as the Postage Stamp, but few will know that 45 minutes beforehand a nineteen year old Russell had made history by holing out at the same hole.
Having taken a trip down memory lane Russell headed out to the course having been told to follow his great friend Poxon into the hole, and as luck would have it a perfect pitching wedge got the perfect result on the very same hole.
He said: "On the third hole I'm usually happy with a three but it was just one of those shots. If it hadn't hit the flag when it spun back it probably would have gone of the front of the green. Thankfully it rattled in."
This season has already seen five holes in one before Saturday, none more memorable than Carl Mason’s on his way to victory at the Bad Ragaz PGA Seniors Open – especially having made a seven on the previous hole.
Defending champion Tony Johnstone is also worthy of mention having only made three holes in one in his career – all of which being during European Tour events and all winding up with him receiving the keys to a brand new car as reward.
And for anyone wondering if Poxon could make it three eagles in a row as Phil Mickelson had famously almost done at the Masters earlier this year - sadly he could only rustle up a boring old par five.