Entries Tagged as 'drives'

Target 2…now further away.

Weather forecast 8-15 degrees, with showers in the afternoon.  It’s a little cold early in the morning, but 15 degrees seemed to be OK.  The day started with hope.  Another stableford at Royal Hobart, the course in good  nick and no breeze. 

My first (the tenth) was a wipe with a double bogey. After leaking my first tee shot right and having to hack out square, a poor chip blew away the chance at a point.  At the turn I had gathered my wits and started to play consistent golf. Two more poor chips had not been costly and I had 16 points on the card. 

A little bit of drizzle had come and gone, but the sky was  not looking good.  Drizzle turned to downpour as we ventured down the first hole and the game got harder. Putting through casual water was standard fare for the next four holes. I coped OK for the first two, despite drives just easing right. Then it fell apart. Three points over the next five holes effectively wrote off my round. What went wrong? 

  • Tee shots -three to the right, two to the left. Three shots gone….
  • Chipping – one badly short, one long. Two shots  gone…
  • Putting – a six foot downhill putt (on a dry section) became a nine foot putt back that missed. One shot gone…

At least I finished with three pars (two realistic birdie chances) in the last four holes!


FIR: 28%  GIR: 44%  Putts: 34  Score: 28 points Handicap: 5.5/playing off 6

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  • Practice or play?

    You have two hours or less of daylight left. What do you do – practice or play?

    To relax and enjoy the evening – play nine holes or more.  To instill swing changes – practice!

    For me Tuesday was time on the range.  After hitting full iron shots it was great to strike all 15 drives well – consistent and long. I’m not sure if the measure was right but with a slight tail breeze they all ended up around or past the 250 metre mark. From there it was time spent chipping and putting.  While it is good to practice full shots  over half the game is played around the green. That’s where over half the practice should be spent.

    This Saturday’s regular competition is the next test of swing changes and work on the short game.

    Focus your practise

    Steve Stricker topped the USGA putting leader board with an average of 1.726 putts per hole, just over 31 putts per round. His scoring average was 69.5. Almost half his shots were on the green, and if the 14 drives are added 45 of his 70 shots are with driver of putter. The USPGA website records his driving accuaracy at 66.8% and Greens in regulation at 66.7% (as at 4/12/2009). That means that for about 6 holes each round he was pitching, chipping, or playing from sand bunkers.

    A little time analysing our own rounds will pay dividends and point us to the areas that need practice. For the average golfer at least 45 shots will be with driver or putter. Add the par 5’s and there are probably four long irons or fairway woods to be played. Rest of the shots will be played to or around the greens.

    So… if you want to shoot lower scores consistently practice putting, chipping and pitching, and then your driving.  All those hours spent hitting full shots with your long or mid-irons on the range may be fun, but practising your short game and putting will really improve your game.