HOT SPRINGS VILLAGE, Ark. – Chuck Miller has accomplished the unthinkable. The 81-year old golfer hit not one, but two hole-in-ones during the same game at the Cortez Golf Course at Hot Springs Village in southwest Arkansas. What are the odds? Something close to 67-million to one according to the National Hole-In-One Registry.
The first ace came on the 12th hole, a par three at 135-yards. “It was a great shot over the front bunker and onto the green,” said Miller. “It was perfect. It bounced once or twice and went into the cup and we all started shouting.” He had reason to celebrate too. His last hole in one was on April 20, 1974 at the Boulder Creek Golf and Country Club in California. After waiting 45-years for his second hole-in-one, he never imagined the wait for his third would only be an hour-and-a-half more.
The 17th hole is the courses’ signature hole
The 17th hole on the Cortez Golf Course is the course’s signature hole with an elevated tee overlooking the Ouachita Mountains. It was another par three. “The second hole-in-one was a complete fluke. I hit the ball on the heel of my club. It only went about 70 yards,” said Miller. He had already looked away, disappointed with the shot, but it wasn’t over yet.
The ball hit the dry turf and started to pick up speed. “It rolled another 50–60 yards. It rolled passed the bunker and onto the green and Don Stokes who I was playing with yelled ‘It’s going into the hole.’ And I’m thinking, yeah right. I already had a hole-in-one. No way, but it rolled across and went into the hole.” Miller admits a hole-in-one is about 10% skill and 90% luck, and perhaps even more luck than skill on his second ace, but he’s still celebrating that epic round on June 18.
Miller, also known as the “Travelling Guy,” moved to Hot Springs Village, Arkansas after touring every state in the country to play 141 courses in a single year for his book, Golfing the U.S.: Reflections on a 50-Week, 50-State Golf Odyssey. He stumbled across Hot Springs Village along the way with its nine courses and 153 holes of golf. After he finished his travels, he decided to relocate there from California. Miller has played over 500 rounds of golf at Hot Springs Village since and was back on the green again a few days after his double aces, but no more hole-in-ones just yet.