27 January 2009
Last Updated: 27 June 2013
Padraig Harrington has become the first professional golfer to conquer the world’s most amazing par three.
The three-times major winner took the helicopter to the top of Hanglip Mountain at the Legend Golf & Safari Resort on the Big 5 Entabeni Safari Conservancy in Limpopo Province in South Africa for the challenge of the Extreme 19th.
There he hit driver to the green the shape of Africa some 400m below.
After hitting four practice balls Harrington smashed his competition ball into the bunker surrounding the green before flying back down and splashing out to just about 18 inches and holing the putt for the first par by a professional.
Harrington said the Extreme 19th is one of the most amazing holes he has ever played.
“This is golf in 2010…this is the type of innovation and excitement we need to get more people playing golf. There aren’t many new innovative ways to play the game but this is certainly one of the best.
"And now I’ve got bragging rights over all the other professionals who have played this and not managed to make a three. I love everything about it.”
Harrington is the ninth of the designers from the unique 18 signature course at Legend Golf & Safari Resort to play the Extreme 19th .
The Signature Course has been designed by 18 of the world’s leading golfers, with each of them designing one hole.
The list of signatures who have been honoured to work on the project reads like a who’s who of world golf including Trevor Immelman, Sergio Garcia; Bernard Langer, Colin Montgomerie, Justin Rose, Vijay Singh, K J Choi, Retief Goosen and of course Harrington.
But Harrington is the first to conquer the Extreme 19th with a par three.
Added Harrington, who suggested the Extreme 19th would make a great hole for a specially-made- or-TV event:
“I think this hole is awesome! I love the whole experience, the helicopter, the views, the drama, the green the shape of Africa. The whole concept is fantastic and I’m looking forward to coming back and taking on the challenge of the Extreme 19th again.”