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What is an Ace in Golf

Hitting an Ace is one of the rarest and greatest achievements in golf. Whether you call it an Albatross, a double eagle, or a condor, scoring an Ace in golf requires the right mixture of skill and luck. There are many professional golfers who have never had the chance to hit one in their life, while there are some amateurs who have done so trying to avoid a bogey.

So, what exactly is an Ace in golf? And how can you achieve it? Keep reading to become the master of your game!

What is Ace in Golf?

A “Hole-in-one” AKA Ace is one of the scores in golf that is achieved only with a single stroke. In simple words, a single shot from a tee box that goes straight into a hole. However, keep in mind that when you are trying to hit an Ace, there are no Mulligans or second tries allowed. Therefore, if you manage to hit an Ace, it is a remarkable achievement!

Golfer teaching how to score an ace in golf

History of Aces in Golf

Ace has been part of the golf scoring terms since its earliest days. According to a story, the first ever record of Ace dates back to 1758 when a British officer and avid golfer named David Strath hit a hole-in-one on the Edinburgh golf course. Since then, hitting an Ace in golf is considered a great achievement.

Many countries that keep golfing records constitute an official Ace shot under different criteria. However, generally, when a golfer hits the ball from the tee directly into a hole, it is an Ace.

When is Ace achievable in golf?

When you first think about hitting the ball directly from the tee to the hole, it may sound difficult. However, there is nothing in the world that is not achievable. In fact, there is an easy way to do it!

For example

Hitting an Ace on a par 3 hole is very much doable. This is because par 3 holes have shorter distances, and they can be finished in a single blow. All you need to do is hit your ball with power and add precision to your strike.

A golfer trying to score ace in golf

Strategies for hitting an Ace in golf

Now that we know what an Ace shot is, let’s discuss different strategies that can you use to achieve one!

  • It is important that you select a proper club and judge the distance from the tee to the hole. Simply assess the strength and accuracy of your swing first when you are selecting a club.
  • Monitor the direction of wind and speed
  • Keep a sharp eye on obstacles in the way
  • Visualize where you want your ball to land before you hit it
  • According to your natural draw/fade tendency, try to aim a little left or to the right. This will help you overcome any errors in your shots if you hit off-line slightly.
  • Before trying to hit an Ace, practice with shorter clubs such as Irons instead of drivers. This will help you gain more control over distance and trajectory.
  • Stay positive throughout your training as it will increase your confidence and help you perform better on the course.

Hitting an Ace is not easy but if you follow the above-mentioned strategies, it will definitely increase your chances of success.

Other Names for Ace: Golf scoring terms

  • Two Under Par or Eagle

When an Ace is achieved on a par 3 hole is also called

  • Three under Par or Albatross

Ace achieved on a par 4 hole

  • Four under Par, Condor, Double Albatross, or Triple Eagle

Hitting an Ace on a par 5 hole

  • Five under Par or Ostrich

Ace achieved on a par 6 hole

Golfer trying an eagle on a par-3 hole

Famous Aces in golf history

Tiger woods:

Tiger Woods has achieved 20 aces in his golfing career but there are two most remarkable ones in PGA Tour history.

He hit his first Ace in his first pro tournament. It was on the 202-yard 14th hole, in the final round of the 1966 Greater Milwaukee Open. He hit his second remarkable Ace at the 1997 Phoenix Open. Muck to the delight of the crowd, he stroked it at the 152-yard 16th hole.

Tiger Woods while scoring a hole in one

Louis Oosthuizen:

This Ace holds a special place in history. Louis Oosthuizen hit it in the final round of the 2016 Masters, on the 170-yard 16th hole. The amazing part about it is how his ball got into the hole. Actually, what happened was that Louis’s ball hit playing partner JB Holmes’s ball and then it got redirected towards the hole, which was very unlikely for a hole-in-one.

Louis Oosthuizen scoring an ace in golf

Brian Harman:

Two Aces are always better than one and Brian Harman proved it in the final round of the Barclays in 2015. He hit an Ace on the 183-yard 3rd hole and then double-dipped it with another Ace on the 218-yard 14th hole. Brian is the third person to ever make double Aces in one PGA Tour round behind Yusaku Miyazato in 2006 and Amateur Bill in 1955.

Brian Harman while trying to score an ace


Yes, it’s possible to hit an Ace on a par 4 hole if the position of the hole makes it reachable from the tee.

According to golf history, there has only been one such incident when a golfer hit an Ace on a par 4 hole. This happened back in 2001 at TPC Scottsdale Phoenix Open, at the 332-yard 17th, when Andress Magee hit the ball from the tee to the hole in a single shot.

Yes, it’s possible. However, the position of the hole is important in this case as well! There are some notable examples of professional golfers who have achieved this.

Mike Crean – 2002 – 9th hole at the Green Valley Ranch G.C

Dick Hogan – 1973 – 8th hole at the Piedmont Crescent Golf Course in Burlington, N.C

Larry Bruce – 1962 – 5th hole at the Hope C.C in Arkansas

Jack Barlett – 2007 – 17th hole at the Royal Wentworth Falls C.C in New South Wales

Shaun Lynch – 2004 – 17th hole at Teign Valley G.C in Christow, England

The term “Ace” derives from the Latin word “Ace” which means a very skilled person. Therefore, to achieve an Ace means that the golfer has excelled in his skills.

Now, a “Hole-in-one” is also another term used for Ace. This refers to hitting the ball from the tee to the hole in one single shot.

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