Published on 25/11/2010
Hello again everyone,
Here’s a thought for you. In a world where our time is so limited do you really think that the few hours each week or each month which you devote to practice are really delivering you the best return on your time investment?
No matter if you’re a part-time leisure golfer or a serious competitive player, our level of enjoyment is still linked to how successfully we play the game. I think all of us would like to improve irrespective of where our current level is at, but here’s a thought for you – even those of us that do bother to put time and effort into practicing are not necessarily making the best use of that time. To help us understand which areas of our game we should practice, I want to look at the stats behind the PGA Tour. This will expose which parts of the game separate the good from the great.
Q: What gets you to the top? Is it;
a) Hitting more fairways?
b) Getting more distance off the tee?
c) Hitting more greens in regulation?
d) Sinking more putts?
e) Scrambling more up and downs?
Do you know who Omar Uresti and Robert Garrigus are? I’ll bet only a handful of you do! Well these two guys are top of the Driving Accuracy % and Driving Distance stats respectively. First impressions would signify that driving the ball well alone does not cut the mustard at the top. Here is an interesting stat to help you all feel better:
What is the PGA Tour average for number of fairways hit off the tee? Is it;
c) Surely not 75%?
Well no - actually it is 63%! Surprisingly low.
Here are some of the PGA Tour Average Stats:
Driving Distance: 287 yards
Driving Accuracy: 63%
Greens in Regulation: 66%
Scoring Avg: 71.04
Putts per Round: 29.40
Joe Durrant is a really interesting example of what I’m talking about. He’s ranked 2nd in Driving Accuracy and 3rd in Greens in Regulation yet he is only 124th in money earnings. Why? Because he’s ranked 166th in putting avg.
Robert Garrigus is supremely long off the tee, leaving guys like John Daly, Tiger Woods, Bubba Watson and Phil Mickelson in his shadow, however his ability to scramble an up and down from 30 yards or less leaves him in 186th place in the tour rankings along with 177th in the putting stats. Omar Uresti might be able to split the fairway more often than any other player but is 233rd in the putting rankings.
Considering Joe Durrant has earned $788,000 being 2nd and 3rd on Driving and GIR, what would you say the earnings would be for a player who is 177th in Driver Distance, 120th in Driving Accuracy and 152nd in Greens in Regulation?
Answer - $3.7 million!
Because that is exactly what Luke Donald has earned thanks to being 1st for sand saves and 3rd for putting. Is that starting to make you think differently about doing a bit of short game practice?
Matt Kuchar has a great all round game, he might only be 105th in Driving Distance but his 6th place Putting stat and 5th in Scrambling ability has helped him to no. 1 in the all round rankings and just over $4.9 million.
Don’t misunderstand me as I’m not for one moment saying that you shouldn’t practice your driving! The ability to hit long and straight is clearly a major weapon to have in your golfing tool box. But there is definitely more than a grain of truth in the old saying ‘Drive for show and putt for dough’ and I think these statistics should force all of us to re-evaluate where we spend our limited practice time. In all honestly, I too am guilty of this and the short game will be my top priority for the 2011 season.
If anyone wants to know how they can evaluate their short game please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and I will be happy to help.
In other news, I’m pleased to inform you that we will soon be installing the New Titleist Fitting System in the Proshop! In addition to the fitting bag, we will have demo clubs including Drivers, AP1 and AP2 Irons as well as the new Spin Milled wedges. Having seen the new driver fitting system with my own eyes last month I can promise you all that it’s an incredible leap forward in technology as it’s the first time a driver has been designed so that the loft can be adjusted as well as the draw/fade bias by the player themselves! http://www.titleist.co.uk/golf-clubs/drivers/default.aspx
If you’re looking for a way to offload all your Christmas Card money then feel free to email me for a quote or call 01792 299194.
Until the next time,