Perry Arthur of Plano, Texas and Mark Kirk of East Aurora, N.Y., each recorded a hole-in-one on the par-3 17th hole – coming 90 minutes apart – at Creighton Farms during Saturday’s third round of the 23rd Southworth Senior PGA Professional National Championship.
Both players used a 5-iron from 197 yards to secure the first two aces of the week.
It was the first ace in competition for Kirk, a PGA assistant professional at Crag Burn Golf Club in East Aurora, N.Y.
“There was a lot of luck involved,” said Kirk. “I didn’t see it go in, but I knew I hit a good shot. The ladies started yelling at the green and that was when I knew it went in the hole.”
Arthur, a PGA teaching professional at Sherrill Park Golf Course in Richardson, Texas, posted his ninth race in competition and 11th overall.
“It was a low draw, the green slopes just that way and the pin was the middle so everything funneled right to it,” said Arthur. “When we walked up we started wondering if it had gone in, and sure enough it was sitting at the bottom of the cup.”
The Championship, which ends Sunday, is composed of Senior PGA Professionals representing the 41 PGA Sections and 42 states, will compete for a total purse of $285,000. Southworth Development, with headquarters in Newton, Mass., is in its first year of title sponsorship. Mercedes-Benz is a presenting sponsor.
Begun in 1989, the Senior PGA Professional National Championship is modeled after the PGA Professional National Championship, with a field of 50-and-older senior PGA Professionals who advanced through 41 Section Championships conducted from July through September this year.
The top 35 finishers in the National Championship earn a berth in the 73rd Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid, which will be conducted May 24-27, 2012, at Harbor Shores in Benton Harbor, Mich.
The top eight finishers, including ties, will receive exemptions into the 2012 Southworth Senior PGA Professional National Championship. The top five finishers earn an exemption into the final stage of the 2011 Champions Tour National Finals.