The objective was simple for Edoardo Molinari. You've got 500 swings; make one ace.
Molinari has been a professional since 2006, and according to the European Tour, the odds of a pro making a hole-in-one are 2500-1. Up against the odds, the Tour decided to give Molinari a chance to beat them: 500 balls on a 145-yard par 3. Could he jar one? The session certainly started out promisingly. Molinari’s first attempt ends up a mere four inches from the cup. This task should be complete in no time. Or would it?
Shot 74 lands short of the hole and rolled just past, grazing the edge of the cup. Close, but no cigar. Shot 153 hits the flagstick. Molinari can’t believe it. He punctuates his frustration with a series of expletives. No worries—there are 347 attempts to go.
"In a couple of hours, this is not going to be fun," he quips.
Shot 247 bounces over the cup and swings back toward the hole, but misses on the left. Molinari verbally wills himself to stay positive, but it’s got to be taxing to come so close so many times. Shot 361 feels great, and looks it. Molinari steeples his fingers in prayer posture, but again, the shot ends up inches from the cup, and he sinks to the ground in roll of agony.
"I’m about to cry, I promise you," an exasperated Molinari says. "What did you do today?" he continues. "I hit 9-iron all day. Did you make one? No, I didn’t!"
This is getting hard to watch. Shot 420 ends up inches away. By the 500th and final attempt, the sun is setting, and Molinari has been hitting the same shot for 12 hours.
"This is the one," Molinari says. "It either goes in, or we’re done."
It doesn’t. The exhausted pro can’t believe it. From the ground, he signals to the camera: "Caput."
You can watch the brutal near-misses below. We’ll continue to root for you, Edoardo!