The Clown Prince of Golf

When golf nut David Larible (a.k.a. the World's Greatest Circus Clown) hits the links, the funny business is over--sort of
March 07, 2005

What do golf and clowns have in common? Funny shoes and David Larible, who as the Prince of Laughter is the headline performer in the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus. He's the only clown in the troupe's 134-year history to be the star attraction and the only clown from any circus to win the Golden Clown, the world's most prestigious award for circus performers. Whenever Larible, 47, gets a break from the serious world of clowning, he heads for the course. "Golf is the perfect release for the stress of circus life," says Larible. His goal: win the annual Ringling Ryder Cup. "I try to make my opponents laugh so they play poorly," he says.

COLOR PHOTOPhotographs by Heinz Kluetmeier COLOR PHOTOPhotographs by Heinz Kluetmeier PLAYING FOR PEANUTS On the road, Larible plays with whomever and whenever he can. COLOR PHOTOPhotographs by Heinz Kluetmeier JUMP SHOT A fellow circus member introduced Larible to the sport in 1981.
COLOR PHOTOPhotographs by Heinz Kluetmeier ACT IV Daughter Shirley (left), son David and wife America also perform. TWO COLOR PHOTOSPhotographs by Heinz Kluetmeier HARD LINE Larible even works a gravity-defying display of putting into his routine on the high wire. COLOR PHOTOPhotographs by Heinz Kluetmeier BEACH OUTING A 22 handicap, Larible gets in about 80 rounds a year. COLOR PHOTOPhotographs by Heinz Kluetmeier TRICK SHOT A clown comes across obstacles other golfers don't usually see. COLOR PHOTOPhotographs by Heinz Kluetmeier SKILL SET The ultratalented Larible speaks five languages and plays seven instruments. COLOR PHOTOPhotographs by Heinz Kluetmeier TOUGH GAME "I can ruin the show," Larible says. "There's nothing sadder than an unfunny clown." COLOR PHOTOPhotographs by Heinz Kluetmeier HOME TRACK Most of the year the Laribles live in a four-bedroom train car.

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)