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Sunday, December 6, 2009

Raymond Floyd Talks About Distance

Ah, yes... everybody's heard about the stare. It's that look Raymond Floyd gets in his eyes when he knows he's in contention. He's something of a legend, with that loopy swing that looks like it might send the ball anywhere.

Unfortunately for his competition, "anywhere" was usually the hole. Floyd won four majors – a Masters (1976), a US Open (1986), and two PGAs (1969 & 1982).

In his book The Elements of Scoring Floyd talks about how to score with the game you've got, rather than the game you wish you had. I'm going to share a few of his tips this month, simply because they are both so basic and so often ignored by weekend golfers.
Not on a downwind, wide-open par 4 with a baked fairway, but under normal conditions, how far do your reasonably (not perfectly) struck shots carry through the air with each club?

This is a bugaboo of mine, because I see so many amateurs, particularly higher handicappers, underclub...

In the pro-ams I play in, I've hardly ever seen an amateur hit a shot long. (p.29)
Floyd has always been considered someone who got more out of his game than you would expect. If he says underclubbing is a major problem, maybe we should pay more attention to this part of our game.

This is a tip that doesn't even require any practice. All you have to do is note how far you actually hit the ball with each club and then use that info when you stand over a shot, rather than picking a club based on how far Bubba Watson hits it.

I think a tip this simple is worth trying.

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