Archive for June 17th, 2009

Why aren’t American golfers under 35 any good?

Apologies to Anthony Kim and other American golfers under 35(other than Tiger), but they usually don’t make the list of the top 5 or even 10 guys picked to win a given Major.

It’s Open week and I can’t think of an American under 35 that is being talked about very much to win at Beth Page and I have a theory why and it’s very personal.

When I was growing up playing, we didn’t know anything about plane, square to square putting stokes, or other mechanical pursuits that are common today. We had contests on who could hit the biggest slices and who could get it up and down out of the bunker after we stepped on it. You know what? We could all play the game.

Nobody knows how to play the game anymore. Everyone knows how to bomb it dead straight 300 yards. Everyone knows how to hit an iron dead at an accessible pin and everyone knows how to make a perfect stroke and knock in 10 footers with no break…all day long. That’s why when the Tour plays a new fangled golf course, half the field shoots 20 under par for 4 days.

Younger players know how to execute swings, chipping motions and putting strokes, but they don’t know how to play shots as well the the older guys. It’s not their fault, it’s how they were taught.

JB Holmes, Bubba Watson, Dustin Johnson and Boo Weekly don’t look mechanical, but it’s a mindset that is lacking in today’s young players. Actually, Bubba does know how to play shots and that’s why he is as good as he is and has contended in majors with such a wild game and temper. Anthony Kim might, and I say might change the dynamic. The reason why this is so clear to me is I used to be a player of golf who hit the ball far. I then tried to become a golfer who tried to execute proper motions and I became a duck and a chop.

Tiger practices shots on the range, it is part of his routine. High, medium and low fades, followed by high, medium and low draws. Foreign players practice shots because golf on foreign tours require more imagination. Most American players lack the imagination that is required to win at the majors. I have lost that imagination myself and I am trying to get it back. I hope all of the young players I mentioned get back to playing the game versus executing it.

Don’t misunderstand, I am not saying that the young players can’t hit these shots. I am saying it’s not a priority to play shots, it’s a priority to perfect swing, chipping and putting mechanics.

Good luck guys, prove me wrong and let’s see some real golf and not this manufactured perfection we have been brainwashed into thinking is the new wave.

Cleveland CG4 and HiBore driver review

This was the first request for an equipment review, so I went and hit some.

I was a Cleveland staff member back in the day where they made us play those gardening tools, also known as VAS. One of my greatest achievements was a top 10 finish on the Nationwide Tour using VAS irons and a VAS driver.

Anyway, compared to the VAS, the CG4’s are pure looking. Compared to a forged blade, they look like something better used to beat slow players. The offset actually isn’t too bad, but the top line is way too thick for my taste. The ball also comes off kind of soft, which is good for a lower handicap or pro, but someone like that doesn’t want something kind of ugly.

All kidding aside, if you don’t mind the thick top line and you don’t like the hard click you get off most irons, you will like the the CG4’s.

As for the HiBore driver, this is going to be a good driver for high handicappers. The sweet spot seemed huge to me. I couldn’t tell how far the ball went, as any demo club won’t be stiff enough for me and I hit high balloon balls with it.

As far as the prov1x is concerned, unless you are a very high ball hitter, or a very long ball hitter who spins it too much with driver (hey that describes me), then stick with the regular prov1, IMO.

PS-requests for equipment reviews will stay up on that page until I do the review, then it will be deleted.