Long-time Randpark member Jurie van der Nest used a seven-wood to ace Firethorn’s 17th hole in the Senior competition’s individual Stableford on Tuesday.
Yes, there were high fives with his playing partners but it was not as if this was his first hole-in-one. Far from it. This was Jurie’s 11th! Clearly, making aces is pretty much old hat for this sweet-swinger.
He’s had six aces on Bushwillow – three of these on the 15th – while Firethorn’s 17th was a first for him. He has scored his other holes-in-one at Huddle Park, the Sabie River Bungalows course, Crown Mines and Walmer Country Club in Port Elizabeth.
Looking back on his history of aces, the 74-year-old – who heads up the club’s Tats senior society – remembers with fondness his ace at Bushwillow’s 15th in 2021. “I was playing in a Wednesday afternoon competition and in the same competition, Wim Hanke (a fellow Tat) scored an albatross two at the par-5 first hole. Meanwhile, my wife Marlene (also a Tat), who was playing in the Ladies Open in the morning, had an eagle two at her last hole, which was Bushwillow’s ninth. And my ace, Marlene’s eagle and Wim’s albatross all occurred within an hour of each other. Amazing. really!”
Another ace Jurie remembers well was the one he scored from the yellow back markers on Bushwillow’s 13th back in the mid-1980s. “It was from 194 metres so it was my longest hole-in-one but I remember it particularly well as it was our wedding anniversary.”
When he’s not scoring all his aces, Jurie does a wonderful job heading up the Tats who play on Tuesday and Thursday mornings throughout the year (Tuesdays with the rest of Randpark’s seniors) and Thursdays just Tats by themselves.
Jurie loves stats and he keeps detailed records of every competition and what every one of the 58 players in this club within the club achieves from year to year down to the last decimal point. There’s a money list, two-clubs are noted and the list goes on and on. He runs Tats pretty much like the US PGA Tour is run! Like clockwork.
Fellow Tats reckons all the aces he makes may just be a reward for all the hard work he puts in.
Jurie joined Randpark 40 years ago when he was good enough to occasionally break 70 (67 his best score ever). And at 74 he’s still pretty handy with club in hand.
Finally, the big question. Can anyone at Randpark match or beat Jurie’s 11 aces? If you can, or if you’ve got an interesting story to tell, please contact us at email@example.com.
Written by Randpark member Grant Winter.