On June 22, Bruce Carlyle reached a milestone that very few golfers can even imagine. At age 76, he shot his age (or better) for the 200th time. This is an amazing accomplishment as it has been estimated that the percentage of golfers who ever shoot their age even once is .0000089% or less than 9 per million. Each of these age or better rounds have been from the Black/Blue combo or Blue tees. At the time of this writing, he has reached 210 rounds at age or better.
Bruce first shot his age in June, 2011 at age 68 on the Falls/Palms course (now Tuscany Falls East). Just a month earlier he came so close to doing it on the Eagle’s Nest course when he found himself 4-under par going into the 18th hole. Needing to get up and down for a par from 15 feet off the green, he hit a mediocre chip and failed to make the par putt. On one hand he felt dejected, but this experience gave him confidence that he could do it.
Ever since that first time, shooting his age has been Bruce’s motivation for playing golf the best he could. He records every round where he shoots his age or better, lists the date on a golf ball as a memento and places that ball in a cabinet in his home office.
Bruce and his wife Lynne have been PebbleCreek residents for 15 years, ever since his retirement. He is a past President of the PCMGA as well as its 2007 Club Champion. Golf has been his passion as he plays just about every day or at least practices.
He did not take up golf until he was in college and not seriously until age 35. His real skill was baseball, hitting in particular. Bruce was the hitting coach for the University of Delaware from 1970 to 1989. As a player for Delaware, he was First Team All-Conference (MAC) in both baseball and football. For his dedication to the game of baseball, he was inducted into the Delaware Baseball Hall of Fame this past year. In addition, the University of Delaware named their baseball hitting practice facility after him. He is the author of Swing the Bat – a Guide to Aggressive Line Drive Hitting.
When Bruce moved to PebbleCreek he was a 9 handicap. Working hard at the game, he managed to get his handicap down to a 1.5, his lowest ever. He’s currently about a 4 or 5 handicap. Once he reached his first goal of shooting his age or better, he took his sights on ten times, then 50 times, then 100 times and recently 200 times. As he gets older, he finds it somewhat easier to do. In his 60s he needed to play bogey free and make a few birdies. Now he can make a couple bogeys and still reach his goal.
Bruce, congratulations on an amazing accomplishment. Who knows how many he may have by the time this article is published?