On a typical day at the office, Bill Loeffler brings his three dogs to work with him. He doesn’t wear a tie. He tried that life once. His office is …
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On a typical day at the office, Bill Loeffler brings his three
dogs to work with him.
He doesn’t wear a tie. He tried that life once.
His office is the Highlands Ranch Golf Club, where he has been
the owner and operator with his wife, Sandy, since its inception in
“It’s a very casual place,” Sandy Loeffler said. “You get to
Comfortably attired, but wearing long pants on a breezy, cool
early-May afternoon, Bill Loeffler says he’s a fortunate man.
You’ll really believe him when you hear this: He’s made a hole
in one — 14 times.
“It’s so lucky and haphazard,” the Castle Rock resident said,
sipping a diet Coke in the club’s restaurant.
Luck might help carry a tiny white ball into a small hole from
180 yards away, but it won’t qualify you to play in the Senior PGA
Loeffler earned a spot in the tournament for the third time by
finishing in the top 35 last fall at the national senior club pro
championship, an event he won in 2007.
He will be among the more than 150 competitors who will tee it
up May 27 at the 2010 Senior PGA Championship in Parker.
While he isn’t considered one of the favorites to win in a field
that includes Champions Tour rookie sensation Fred Couples,
Loeffler, 53, is very much a prominent figure in Colorado golf.
Coming up aces
The former Cherry Creek High School and Arizona State standout
is a member of the Colorado Golf Hall of Fame. He’s a three-time
Colorado Open champion. Loeffler won the senior version of that
event by five strokes last September.
“Growing up, the Colorado Open was always the premier event,”
the Centennial State native said. “When the senior open came along
and I turned 50, it was just natural that I wanted to win it. And I
finally did last year after a couple of tries.
“It’s a blast when you finally get lucky enough to be on
Loeffler’s career path took a brief detour nearly 30 years
He played on the PGA Tour for a few years in the early 1980s,
with limited success. After that, he tried his hand at various
jobs. He was a sales representative for a golf apparel company. He
worked as a stock broker. He learned he didn’t enjoy making cold
calls or working indoors and wearing a tie.
Loeffler missed the competition.
After regaining his amateur status, he won the 1986 U.S.
Mid-Amateur Championship and was a member of the 1987 U.S. Walker
Cup team that won in England.
In 1991, he won his first Colorado Open, still a memorable
“It was the last tournament my dad saw me play before he died,”
Still going strong
More than four decades after he first picked up a club and
“messed around on the putting greens” as a 10-year-old, Loeffler
continues to play the game he loves.
Moreover, he’s among the growing ranks of players older than 50
who are finding they can still compete at a high level.
Fitness is an important factor, Loeffler said. Yoga, light
weightlifting, walking and hiking help keep him in shape.
“I think the seniors have learned from the younger guys,” he
said. “If you maintain your body, your flexibility, watch what you
eat, don’t consume all the beer in the world, you can have
longevity in the game.”
Improved fitness combined with advancements in equipment
technology have senior players slamming the ball.
For example, Tom Watson is hitting it farther — averaging 283
yards per drive — at age 60 than he did when he was winning major
championships in his 30s.
Loeffler is not a big hitter, but he is accurate with his irons.
In winning the Colorado Senior Open, he fired a tournament
final-round record 66.
As far as balancing his time between playing golf and the
business of the game, Loeffler gets plenty of help. He says his
wife is the one who manages most day-to-day operations at the club
and at their other property, The Links Golf Course, also in
That frees Loeffler up to work on his game. He can take an hour
to hit balls at the driving range, or travel out of state for a few
days to practice in warmer weather.
“He’s been playing competitive golf since he was 15,” Sandy
Loeffler said. “It’s kind of hard to picture your life without
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