The All Elusive Ace
Have you ever wondered if you are the only one in the world to not get an ace? We’re going to dive into the cold, hard statistics from this years State of Disc Golf survey to find out how often aces happen, and who they come from most often. First, we’ll look at the straight data to see how many hole-in-ones occurred in 2018.
Alright! So we see that most of you did not card an ace last year. In fact, if we pit the aces against the no-aces, this is what it looks like:
55.8% of survey respondents did not ace in 2018, leaving 44.2% with the excitement of a hole in one! So it seems the disc golf ace might not be all-elusive after all. In fact, there’s a good chance you’ll get an ace this year!
As expected, this is quite different than the traditional golf scene. According to the National Hole-In-One Registry, only 1-2% of ball golfers will capture an ace in a given year. With an estimated 20+ million golfers playing 450 million rounds a year, we see that aces are far more rare.
In contrast, we turn to disc golf and see people reporting 8, 9, and 10+ aces in 2018. But it’s no big surprise aces in disc golf are far more common. Even in disc golf’s top events, several aces are captured on camera each year.
Who Takes the Ace?
Let’s do some cross comparison and see made all of these aces in 2018. Maybe it’ll give us clues on how to snag one ourselves…
Aces by Division
This likely also won’t come as a surprise, but the data backs it up: the higher division you play, the more likely you are to have an ace. About 81% of beginners did not ace in 2018, while only 16% of professionals didn’t. There’s something to be said for skill level and hitting the basket on your first throw.
Aces by Amount Played
No big surprises here either! The more rounds you play in a year, the more likely you are to have an ace. If you only play once a week or less, your chances of an ace are only 21% (still 10 times higher than that of ball golf). If you play every day, there’s only an 18% chance you won’t get an ace. At about 10-14 rounds a month is where you’ll hit the 50/50 chance of getting an ace.
Of course, this all depends on where you play as well.
Aces by Region
Aces by State
The number of reported aces from each state on the State of Disc Golf survey.
This map shows us the raw data of where the most aces occurred based on survey results. Michigan took first, Texas second, then California and Colorado. Pennsylvania had more survey takers than Colorado, but the rate of aces reported was much higher in Colorado, causing it to take fourth place in aces reported. This map coincides almost perfectly with survey data on # of course and players in each state.
Aces Per Capita of Survey Respondents
The number of aces reported per state, divided by the number of respondents per state.
This map is a little fun, and likely not the best way to pick where to hunt your next ace. This map takes the number of aces reported in each state and divides it by the number of survey takers in that state. North Dakota took the number one spot with a reported 17 aces, yet only 9 survey takers, yielding nearly 2 aces per person. Now does this extend to all disc golfers in North Dakota? Probably not. Alaska had a similar story with 27 aces and 16 respondents.
The top dogs in the previous map (Texas, Michigan, California) were taken right back down to normal levels in this map, having less aces than survey respondents.
Thanks for taking time to join us on this ace adventure, and thank you for taking the State of Disc Golf survey and helping us with the data to process. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m packing my bags for North Dakota to get some aces.