Connecticut native hopes to set a new Guinness World Record for most golf rounds played in one year.
The next time you’re sat with your buddies or the next time you’re stood around the water cooler on Monday morning and you’re talking about your golf game over the weekend, you might want to think twice before you gloat about how many rounds you played.
Why is that you ask? Two words. Barry Gibbons.
That’s right; meet the Connecticut retiree who plans to set a new Guinness World Record for most rounds of golf played in one year. On his quest, he’s already played more golf than many of us do in a lifetime. Since the start of this year, in fact, he’s played an elbow-aching 585 rounds. By the end of this year, he hopes to have played 850 rounds of golf. Oh my.
Just in case you think we let a typo get through, I’ll spell it out. Eight-hundred and fifty rounds of golf. My legs are aching just thinking about it, and I’m 23!
Now you might think that an attempt as time consuming as that would have to be undertaken by someone who either doesn’t want to be at home or someone who’s single, well you’d be wrong. Because Mr Gibbons’ wife, Joy, has supported her 55 year old husband by playing quite a few rounds with him and even starting a website, breakthegolfrecord.com, to track Barry’s progress in his mammoth endeavour.
These numbers are seriously difficult to get my head around: as of writing this, Barry has already completed 585 rounds of golf, and will probably have completed a few more by the time you read it. To officially break the record of 611 set by retired Texan insurance executive Richard Lewis, he need only play another 26 rounds, which I imagine he can do before most of us have had our morning coffee…
If he gets to 850 rounds as he plans to, you can bet it’ll be a record that stands for a long old time. Eventually, hundreds of years from now, it’ll be broken by GolfBot3000, and even then I bet it’ll be close!
At the start of his quest in Texas, where he owns a second home, Barry was playing at a rate of almost 3 rounds per day. He carried on this eye-watering pace for the first three months before moving back to Connecticut with 350 rounds under his belt.
His pace slowed down a little once he was home, playing about 2 rounds a day. Still not bad though! At this rate I think he can afford to take a little pressure of the accelerator, as it were.
This man is a machine. According to his website; he’s walked 4325 miles with his bags around various courses. For all the astrology enthusiasts out there, he’s already walked the Earth’s radius with change left over:
“The golf isn’t the hard part, it’s the walking,” said Gibbons, who worked at IBM for 30 years before retiring. “My biggest expense is golf shoes – I’ve used 11 pairs.”
“‘Are you the guy?’ they ask me,” Gibbons told The Ridgefield Press. “Then they usually follow it up with, ‘are you the crazy guy?'”
Be sure to keep up with the progress of Barry “Iron Elbow” Gibbons, as I will now call him, and show him all the support you can, let’s hope he gets there!
American presidents are renowned for their golfing stamina:
The game of golf and the commander in chief of the United States has been a pairing more inseparable over the years than Laurel and Hardy, Bert and Ernie or Shake and Bake. When you think Barry Gibbons has played a lot of golf this year, and will continue to do so, keep in mind how many rounds some presidents have played over the years, while in office!
Okay, they may not have the same rounds to time ratio as Barry, who does? But they’re still impressive, and besides, they were sort of running the country at the same time too.
We start off with the most recent, Barack Obama. During his presidency, the former senator of Illinois has racked up a fairly reasonable 269 rounds in almost seven full years since taking office.
That works out to about one round every 10 days. Not too bad.
Obama Year In Review: Golf: 55 rounds (including today) at 18 courses in 6 states. (269 rounds since taking office.)
— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) 31 December 2015
His numbers, however, are NOTHING compared to the king of the golfing president, Woodrow Wilson, who absolutely bossed the courses of early 20th century America. Over his 3,000 days in office, the 28th president of the United States had some impressive numbers to his name, and when I say impressive, I mean impressive.
Coming in at a distant second is Dwight Eisenhower, both of whom served the same amount of time as Obama but dwarfed his round output:
“That title falls to Woodrow Wilson, who reportedly played about 1,200 rounds during his presidency. Dwight Eisenhower is the runner-up at 800, according to his memorial commission.”
NPR News on Woodrow Wilson and Dwight Eisenhower
1,200 rounds in 3,000 days, staggering!
Individuals like those mentioned, most of all Barry Gibbons, are shining examples of what can be achieved.
So you want to dust off those clubs and go play a few rounds but you just can’t find seem to the time, well Barry Gibbons did. But he’s retired? Well Woodrow Wilson wasn’t, Barack Obama isn’t, and neither was George Bush, even with all the shit on his plate, he still found time to get on the course. Say what you want about him, this is still awesome: