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post #253 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Originally Posted by Shanks A Million View Post
Yeah, then how come it's almost impossible to find someone with a fundamentally good swing that is more than about a 5 handicap? The fact of the matter is, short game is highly overrated. Tour pros go on and on about short game because that's what separates a winner from an also ran. But that's among players with amazing swings. But when you're a 10+ handicap, the vast majority of your improvements need to be in the long game.

High handicappers are high handicappers for one reason; their swing. They miss fairways and greens. Look at Vijay Singh. He can barely make a four-foot putt at times, but he still shoots in the mid 70s with those rounds. Johnny Miller, when his putter was so far south it was sitting on an ice cap, and 4 putted multiple greens in a round, still shot in the 70s, or at worst low 80s. These are on the PGA tour, that's still nearly scratch golf.

Short game is what separates a teaching pro from a tour pro, not a high handicapper from a low handicapper. This does have a lot to do with driving distance as well. Miss hitting the center of the clubface regularly, and you're not hitting it anywhere. Forget the marketing hype, clubs are not forgiving enough to let you hit it an inch off center and still get 260 yards, let alone 300. The full swing, in golf, is a lot. Many higher handicappers believe that they can practice chipping and putting all day and become a scratch golfer, and curse their bad short game for their handicap. It's total baloney.

A fundamentally solid full swing begets a good short game. The same fundamentals are used in each swing, even the putter. If you were able to hit every fairway and every green, but three-putted half of the holes, you'd shoot an 81. Most people here would be happy with an 81. That's an 81 with nine three putts. Even the worst putters here would likely not have nine three-putts. Go play a round, and hit one ball as normal, and take another and drop it on the green at the farthest spot from the hole sometime, and call it a green in regulation, then putt it out. I can guarantee that you will score lower with the ball you drop on the green.
Having a good short game and being a good putter is not total baloney. Eg Sunday, on my way to shooting 75 (4 over) I missed 6 greens and drove one ball in the water on the easiest par 4 on the course. I hit 4 iron off the tee to just put it at the top of the dog leg and have a 125-130 yard shot to the pin. Instead I pulled it a touch, caught a tree limb, knocked it straight down onto a severe sloping bank, where my hot and parched ball promptly rolled into the water. So no I am one in, dropping two, hitting 3 from about 135 out. I hit 9 iron with in 20-25 feet. Just trying to roll it close and make sure of no worse than par, my ball was tired of the sun and fell in the shady hole for a 4. So the point being, many golfing sins are covered up by one putts. Work on your short game, that and minimizing mistakes will get your score down quickly.
post #254 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Some kind of a charter for terminology should be in operation on this site so as to avoid confusion. I think a lot of high handicappers are liable to focus on the drives that end up in play and discount from the average those that they feel aren't representative of their capability.

Last week I played with a guy who was new enough to the game, not a rank beginner but who clearly took an interest in learning and improving. Well he probably shot 100+ on an easy enough course. On the second he went OOB, then drove in a straight 340 (downhill), on the fourth OOB Twice with slices (not banana slices but bad enough for a tight hole) but other times he drove the ball long and straight.

What do people have to gain by correcting people about their distances. Self satisfaction?
post #255 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Well said brgolf. Distance is a good thing to have. I would take 20 yards less if I were promised to be in the fairway everytime. Some of the lies you end up with in even the short rough just aren't worth the added distance. And that's my opinion. Not meant to be gospel.
post #256 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Originally Posted by scottg View Post
Having a good short game and being a good putter is not total baloney. Eg Sunday, on my way to shooting 75 (4 over) I missed 6 greens and drove one ball in the water on the easiest par 4 on the course. I hit 4 iron off the tee to just put it at the top of the dog leg and have a 125-130 yard shot to the pin. Instead I pulled it a touch, caught a tree limb, knocked it straight down onto a severe sloping bank, where my hot and parched ball promptly rolled into the water. So no I am one in, dropping two, hitting 3 from about 135 out. I hit 9 iron with in 20-25 feet. Just trying to roll it close and make sure of no worse than par, my ball was tired of the sun and fell in the shady hole for a 4. So the point being, many golfing sins are covered up by one putts. Work on your short game, that and minimizing mistakes will get your score down quickly.
You missed 6 greens. That's a phenomenal 66% GIR, equal to that of the PGA tour's better ballstrikers. How can you, with a straight face make that point with that % of GIR? The handicappers we're talking about miss about 14 greens per round. If you missed 14 greens, what do you think your score would have been? Not 76, that's for sure.

Again, I've never met a high handicap with a fundamentally sound swing. I've heard about it countless times, but I go to the golf course 3 hours a day, and see hundreds of swings, and have yet to see it. Fairways and Greens are the most important part of scoring in golf. A good, solid swing is the most important thing to have in golf. I've always been a great putter and chipper, but back when my swing sucked, it took me 3 shots just to get near the green on a par 4. By the time I was putting, it was for double bogey or worse. When I learned to hit the ball better, I was putting for birdie much more often.
post #257 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Originally Posted by Shanks A Million View Post
You missed 6 greens. That's a phenomenal 66% GIR, equal to that of the PGA tour's better ballstrikers. How can you, with a straight face make that point with that % of GIR? The handicappers we're talking about miss about 14 greens per round. If you missed 14 greens, what do you think your score would have been? Not 76, that's for sure.

Again, I've never met a high handicap with a fundamentally sound swing. I've heard about it countless times, but I go to the golf course 3 hours a day, and see hundreds of swings, and have yet to see it. Fairways and Greens are the most important part of scoring in golf. A good, solid swing is the most important thing to have in golf. I've always been a great putter and chipper, but back when my swing sucked, it took me 3 shots just to get near the green on a par 4. By the time I was putting, it was for double bogey or worse. When I learned to hit the ball better, I was putting for birdie much more often.
Truth. I dropped from mid-teens to a single digit last year, and the one thing that didn't improve much was my putting. Ballstriking, ballstriking, ballstriking. I've had rounds where I was mediocre off the tee or on approach shots, and I chipped and pitched my way to 8-10 over, but they are rare. My best rounds happen when I'm clean and relatively strait off the tee.

I'd be perfectly content with nothing more than 250 yd drives if I was in the middle of the fairway everytime, but no shorter. I'd rather knock it 275-280 in reasonable rough than 215-220 in the fairway, it just makes my approach shot that much more manageable.

That being said, the next step is putting. I don't see myself improving much, if at all, I don't start increasing 1 putts from 5-12 feet, and eliminating 3 putts altogether.
post #258 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Originally Posted by brgolf View Post
Some kind of a charter for terminology should be in operation on this site so as to avoid confusion. I think a lot of high handicappers are liable to focus on the drives that end up in play and discount from the average those that they feel aren't representative of their capability.

Last week I played with a guy who was new enough to the game, not a rank beginner but who clearly took an interest in learning and improving. Well he probably shot 100+ on an easy enough course. On the second he went OOB, then drove in a straight 340 (downhill), on the fourth OOB Twice with slices (not banana slices but bad enough for a tight hole) but other times he drove the ball long and straight.

What do people have to gain by correcting people about their distances. Self satisfaction?
Because we are talking average. 250 is a very very very respectable average carry distance. Sure, if that guy can swing the club 120 mph he can hit the occasional 340 yarder downhill, but it's when people say "yeah, I average about 280 with the driver" and they sport a 17 handicap, there is some correcting to be done. If you want to create a "What Is Your Normal Carry Distance On Reasonably Struck Shots", go for it.
post #259 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Originally Posted by jamo View Post
Because we are talking average. 250 is a very very very respectable average carry distance. Sure, if that guy can swing the club 120 mph he can hit the occasional 340 yarder downhill, but it's when people say "yeah, I average about 280 with the driver" and they sport a 17 handicap, there is some correcting to be done. If you want to create a "What Is Your Normal Carry Distance On Reasonably Struck Shots", go for it.
Somewhere along the line this thread got derailed from stock 250 yards of carry to another waving of the "average" flag. Pretty much everyone I know uses "stock distance" as their measuring stick for club selection. You can include outliers in your mean distance if you want - it's up to you. I know if I have to carry 240 yards over a pond and the ball will be in trouble if it goes > 320, that my driver stays in the bag. The odds are pretty good that a 3 wood will be somewhere between 250 and 290, even if I might dunk 1 out of 20 into that pond.
post #260 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Yeah, I only hit the ball about 220 - 250, and I shoot in the 70s reasonably frequently.
post #261 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

my last round I averaged 254 carry +roll(give or take a few yards, using google earth). Round before that was 266. Max drive last round was 283 was a max drive of 289. Those damn mishits will kill your average. Take out the bad drives from last round and my average goes up to 270(9 total drives)
post #262 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Originally Posted by sean_miller View Post
Somewhere along the line this thread got derailed from stock 250 yards of carry to another waving of the "average" flag. Pretty much everyone I know uses "stock distance" as their measuring stick for club selection. You can include outliers in your mean distance if you want - it's up to you. I know if I have to carry 240 yards over a pond and the ball will be in trouble if it goes > 320, that my driver stays in the bag. The odds are pretty good that a 3 wood will be somewhere between 250 and 290, even if I might dunk 1 out of 20 into that pond.
What's stock distance?

Brandon
post #263 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Originally Posted by jamo View Post
Because we are talking average. 250 is a very very very respectable average carry distance. Sure, if that guy can swing the club 120 mph he can hit the occasional 340 yarder downhill, but it's when people say "yeah, I average about 280 with the driver" and they sport a 17 handicap, there is some correcting to be done. If you want to create a "What Is Your Normal Carry Distance On Reasonably Struck Shots", go for it.
I doubt it is used in tour statistics but mode is a type of average too, the most popular value. And to some extent everyone here is using it. How can a man measure his exact carry from a teebox 280 yards away to any better than the nearest +/- 10 yards even after picking out a landmark at which the ball seems to first bounce. Does that man note down meticulously every carry/roll figure and use a rangefinder to do it? No, he remembers where the ball tends to carry and roll to most often. Does even a low HC who once in a while hooks a drive badly consienciously count it in the average? Does a mid handicap count his duff drives in that average (mean average)? And what happens when you demand a high handicap counts his mean? He can't. The reason is because his bad drives go 240 sliced into the adjacent field and his good drive ends in the fairway. He can only measure the drives in play. Judging by the players I play with of which I count 3, one of whom I note from the card has shot 117 on a par 67, none of them were duffing drives 50 yards off the tee box. The outcomes were often wayward but those that were in play were usually long.
post #264 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Well it doesn't matter for me, if there is any upslope were the ball lands, my drives will backspin about 2 feet. Its easy to tell the past few weeks because how we it has been on ohio, so i can find were my ball landed, so i know its all carry. But once it hits summer, its harder to figure out because its impossible to find the ball mark.

Best time to measure drives, in the spring.
post #265 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Originally Posted by B-Con View Post
As a high handicapper, this is encouraging to hear. Last summer I was working on my driving consistently (for the first time ever) and at the peek I was hitting my no-name-brand 3-wood 210 yards plus roll 1 out of 4 times, and averaging about 190 yards. (The range I hit at had 50% used balls with a range strip painted on them, so they were mostly normal balls.) Not impressive, but I was pleased with myself. I just couldn't imagine switching to a driver, even a good driver, and gaining an average of more than 20, maybe 30, yards on equally good hits. I know I don't have a fast of swing, but hearing from people with 15 - 20 handicaps claiming to hit the ball 250 on average made me feel that attaining a 20 HCP was a looong way off for me.
Dude - you're doing just fine. Those guys in the 15-20 HCP range claiming to drive 250 either have the world's worst short game, can't measure distance, or can't hit the ball straight.

My 3-wood distance is somewhere around 210 (carry plus roll) with a Pro V1, playing a sea level, at about 60 degrees Farenheit. And even without a killer short game this lets me play to a 12. And there are a bunch of guys 20+ years older than me who hit the ball 15 yards less than I do and have high single digit indices.

Distance is great - I'm not going to knock it. But if you can drive 220-225, at your current HCP, your next step is either hitting the ball straight, hitting it consistently, or (most likely) stoking the short game. Best of luck to you.
post #266 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

By 250 carry, I am assuming everyone is talking about the flight distance that the ball goes through the air. That being said, I would take a drive that carries 250. Most of the time a drive that carries 250 will end up being a 270-280 yard or more drive, depending upon the terrain and if the course is dry. That would mean even on some of the longest par 4's I would be hitting 9 irons and wedges. As opposed to 6,7,8 irons. I can consistantly drive about 270 and 280. I do not try to hammer it out there. I have a little left but would rather make the smooth swing and be in the short stuff. My biggest problem in getting my handicap down is the 50-60 shot to the green. Getting them within reasonable birdie range. 15-20 feet. That is what I need to do. I guess I need to get rid of my old 4 metal that I dearly love and replace it witha 60* wedge. If someone is out there smoking the ball 235 with a 4 iron and is a 25 handicap, he either is not keeping it on the course or has the worst short game in the history of golf.
post #267 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

250 Is a respectable carry distance?

Well its more than 50 yards further than the average golfer who hits the ball a total of around 200 yards, so YES it is!

k
post #268 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

The average golfer is a 16.1 hc and the average drive 205 so unless you compare drive distance specifically with players of a similar handicap it's a worthless exercise.
post #269 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Originally Posted by Fairway_CY View Post
Last season I played with a guy a few different times. First time we were paired up we had quite a wait to reach the first tee during a tournament. He was yakking away and mentioned how he carried his driver about 240 yards. Now... we're both in the same flight (16.0+ handicap) and I'm wondering how, if he's bashing his driver that far, he's not in a lower flight because the tees we played were fairly short and I'd figure a 240 yard carry with roll of another 10 yards or so would give him a wedge into the MAJORITY of the holes on this course.

Anyway... we get to the first tee and he has honors. He hits his tee shot and pulls it pretty far left... it kicks out into the fairway off an OB hill (lucky) and rolls out. Barely reached 200 yards. I hit my driver and got a typical shot for me... ended up about 220 after the roll. This guy starts goin' on about how I must carry the ball 260ish. SERIOUSLY delusional.

I wasn't using GPS at the time, or I'd have measured it for him to shut him the hell up... but, even using the course yardages... my drives were about 220 yards. EVERY hole I was 15-30 yards beyond him. After the round, he's in the clubhouse telling everybody about this 26.4 handicap (me) who hits the ball 270 yards from the tee. I acutally had to stop him at that point because then I was getting dirty looks. In round two... I got paired with one of the guys who heard about my 270 yard drives and we laughed when he and I both ended up in the same area (about 3 yards apart) off the first tee.

I don't know HOW people measure their shots... but there are SO many people who say they hit the ball 250+ and don't even get CLOSE to it. I think in my LIFE, I may have hit two drives that got to about 270 yards... and one was with a generous bounce off the cartpath. Right now, with the better driver, I'm averaging about 225-230... and I'm MORE than happy with that.

CY
I play with a guy like that. If I hit my ball 25 yards past him I obviously hit it 300 yards, because he always hits his 275. LOL. I don't say anything, I just laugh to myself.
post #270 of 347

Re: 250 yards is a respectable carry distance

Originally Posted by brgolf View Post
The average golfer is a 16.1 hc and the average drive 205 so unless you compare drive distance specifically with players of a similar handicap it's a worthless exercise.
Handicap isn't necessarily the best indication of driving or carry distance. Some players really don't care what they score, as long as they drive it long, so they work on driving. Other players don't care how far they hit the driver as long they putt the ball in play and it get a reasonable chance to put the next shot on the green. Which group of players would you suppose tends to have the lower handicap?

There are long drivers and short drivers with higher handicaps. There are longer and shorter drivers with low(ish) handicaps too, but they know it's distance control that's important, not just distance.
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