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USGA/R&A Distance Insights Project

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2 hours ago, Typhoon92 said:

Golf, penalize you with if you can play a par 4 and your drive in under 300 yards it’s a par 4.  If you hit one 310 you get penalized for distance by having the hole a par 3.5.  So if you hit it 310 and make a 4, your are a half stroke over par.

I still don’t understand what you’re saying. Par is par. It could be 4, 3.5, or pi for all it matters. It has nothing to do with the score the player makes on the hole.

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3 hours ago, Typhoon92 said:

I know they haven’t proposed anything but they are talking about the distance problem and doing something about it.

Never say never either, back in the late 1960’s did any of us think basketball would have a 3 point line?

Your post still made no sense at all.

They're not going to change the par on a hole for some longer players to be different than for other players, and even if they change the par for everyone, it's the same for everyone.

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5 hours ago, Typhoon92 said:

I used to watch NASCAR back in the Jeff Gordon days.  You qualified for a position, you started there and then raced the 500 laps and then there was prize money.

 Since then with points for this, points for that, changing the Daytona 500, I’ve stopped watching.  I saw the last 10 laps last night where it seemed nobody could drive a half lap without a crash trying to garner points.

I can’t help but see the day where in golf is you hit your tee shot 300 yards the par on that hole for that player becomes 3.5 instead of 4.   I can see people losing interest.

Nobody is going to change the core structure of how golf is played. And they’re not going to ever penalize a player for being better skilled than his/her peers.

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So par on a hole should change for individuals on the fly based on how far you hit it??? And that somehow would discourage players from hitting too far???

If I am interpreting this right then Im gonna say Dilbert would be proud of your outside the box thinking.

 

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58 minutes ago, GolfLug said:

So par on a hole should change for individuals on the fly based on how far you hit it??? And that somehow would discourage players from hitting too far???

If I am interpreting this right then Im gonna say Dilbert would be proud of your outside the box thinking.

 

Exactly.  This way manufacturers could keep on doing what they are doing.  Courses could still be set up the way they have been doing it.  “ Bomb and Gouge” would be up to the player.

Yes, just out of the box thinking.  Man, it seemed simple to me, I thought I was explaining it wrong.

So at the end of a round, if Corey Pavin kept everything under the distance threshold he would shoot even par 72.  If DJ hit numerous drives over the distance threshold he might shoot 65 but that would still be even par because of the distance adjustment.  DJ and Pavin would be tied.  Almost like a handicap.

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52 minutes ago, Typhoon92 said:

So at the end of a round, if Corey Pavin kept everything under the distance threshold he would shoot even par 72.  If DJ hit numerous drives over the distance threshold he might shoot 65 but that would still be even par because of the distance adjustment.  DJ and Pavin would be tied.  Almost like a handicap.

Yeah, no. C'mon man.

You didn't explain it wrong, it's just a really bad idea.

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53 minutes ago, iacas said:

Yeah, no. C'mon man.

You didn't explain it wrong, it's just a really bad idea.

Hahaha... well Iacas, it’s just an idea...nobody said it had to be a good one.  It’s all opinion,  just like the ideas on the other 11 pages.  I know they’d never do it!

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13 hours ago, iacas said:

@ncates00, driving distance correlates to success only a little more than it did in 1984.

distance_dark_mode.png

Analyzing performance trends from 1984-2019.

Furthermore, on the PGA Tour, the rough is still about a 70-yard penalty when you look at the resulting approach shot.

Gotta give credit where credit is due--you provided data that addressed my concern--right on the button.  Of course distance is and has always been a big advantage; but, I'm surprised that it has become a much larger advantage (via strokes gained) over the years, relatively speaking.  

Is it possible that distance doesn't make up as many strokes now simply because the entire field is better and longer--making it harder to gain strokes through distance?  

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I believe the issue with distance is small and easily addressed.  Here are my thoughts:

Let's say in the not too distant future the PGA tour is made up of guys that look more like long drive competitors.  Big tall muscular athletes that instead of going to the MLB or NFL see a more viable future in golf with distance being at the forefront.   There will still be your sharp shooters that can hit a 7 iron with the same accuracy as some of the bombers hit a wedge but they will be much more rare.

When this is the case, they might have to build new longer golf courses that suit these super athletes or expand the existing ones in length.  Why is this a problem?  You only need enough courses to provide a year's worth of weekend tournament play.  These courses can have a much larger gap in the tee blocks so amateur short hitters can still play the courses if they want to see what a golf course played by the big boys feels like.  All the other golf courses in existence can remain the same because as previously mentioned they will still suit >99% of the golfing population.  If you are in the <1% of the golfing population who can hit 340+ yard drives while keeping the ball in play most of the time, then yeah, you are going to over power a lot of old golf courses, congratulations.  If you get really good maybe you can make the PGA Tour and play the big boy courses.

A lot of the old history rich courses are going to become obsolete to these new super athletes.  So the tour can do one of two things.  Stop playing there because times have changed and it is what it is.  Or they are treated as separate events with a different set of rules (equipment restrictions).

 

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The problem is easily solved. Tighten up the fairways and let the rough grow wild. We all saw what happened with such a setup in last years Ryders cup. 
 

The way most of the PGA Tour stops are set up it’s just bombs away 90% of the time.

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1 hour ago, Killa said:

The problem is easily solved. Tighten up the fairways and let the rough grow wild. We all saw what happened with such a setup in last years Ryders cup. 
 

The way most of the PGA Tour stops are set up it’s just bombs away 90% of the time.

This all day...

Make the players choose to keep the driver in the bag because 330 yards out there is a bunker. Grow the rough. Stop cutting down trees; make angles important. Penalize inaccuracy

physics will stop distance gains; there is a limit to what is possible; so let’s stop with the sky is falling. Just change the decision making process

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Another thing would be to not cut the fairway so short, and to keep to softer with water. Take away the 20-30 yards of roll and the distance would come back down,. 

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I don't think you need to lengthen the golf courses at all. Maybe change the shape/architecture of the course a little bit.  Maybe they could make the fairway from tee to green a different shape.  Just take the fairways, say from 250 yards and in to the green and make it significantly narrower with a much tougher rough and more hazards for missed fairways.  The tougher rough would start at the very edge of the fairway, not a gradual build up of the rough.  If you want to go for it and you can hit it 315 yards, that is okay, but you need to hit it accurately 315 yards to be in the fairway or you pay a price.

This would make most of the players calculate more of the risk/reward than doing what they do now.  The rough and hazards need to be really tough and could make it harder to hit GIR than hitting 2nd shot from say160 yard out.  

Just a thought that would not require the lengthening of courses or altering the performance of equipment.

 

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7 hours ago, Keep It Simple said:

When this is the case, they might have to build new longer golf courses that suit these super athletes or expand the existing ones in length.  Why is this a problem? 

New golf courses are EXPENSIVE to design, build, etc and will only continue to increase in price, and many of the existing ones are simply running out of room to move tee boxes back. FFS Augusta had to buy an entire road so they could move a tee box back recently.

7 hours ago, Keep It Simple said:

A lot of the old history rich courses are going to become obsolete to these new super athletes.  So the tour can do one of two things.  Stop playing there because times have changed and it is what it is.  

Which would absolutely suck because there are soooo many really really good golf courses that exist now that would be able to challenge all aspects of a PGA tour player's game if they didn't hit it so far. 

7 hours ago, Keep It Simple said:

Or they are treated as separate events with a different set of rules (equipment restrictions).

They don't need to be treated as separate events, the pros just need a slight distance limiter (ball, club technology, etc) that allows them to continue to play these iconic and awesome golf courses. Amateurs can buy those balls if they want, or keep playing the regular balls like now. What about upcoming high level amateurs and how would they adjust? Well the same thing exists in Baseball. Across all levels of college baseball metal bats are used. The moment a player gets drafted and signs with a professional team, instantly wood bats. The top hitters still have the ability to hit, just like the top collegiate (or h.s.) golfers would have the ability to score with a shorter ball/equipment when they move up to the next level.

2 hours ago, Killa said:

The problem is easily solved. Tighten up the fairways and let the rough grow wild. We all saw what happened with such a setup in last years Ryders cup. 
 

The way most of the PGA Tour stops are set up it’s just bombs away 90% of the time.

That is so BORING to watch though, and it would still be bombs away 90% of the time for the top players, and that can make the distance gap between short and long hitters even more, look at Bethpage last year. Brooks didn't care if his drive went into the rough on most holes because he had the speed to get an 8 iron through the rough and still get his approach shot to the green. A shorter hitter who carried it into the same rough as Brooks but 30 yards further back probably doesn't have enough speed to get their 5 iron through the rough so they have to lay up while Brooks was able to reach the green. 

Another example is comparing watching the Ryder Cup to the President's Cup at Royal Melbourne. The rough at Royal Melbourne wasn't super grown in and those fairways weren't super narrow at all but players still got punished when they were out of position because angles into greens actually mattered there.  

I know you didn't specifically mention it, but super long rough around the greens is really boring too and easy for the pros to handle. It stops errant shots so much quicker when they miss the green, easier for pros to open the face and slide the club underneath the ball, etc. Pros struggle so much more chipping off of very tight lies and on holes where missing the green in the wrong spot can funnel your ball further away from the hole/green, not keep it close because of the rough.

I don't think that narrower fairways and increased rough is the proper solution at all.

13 minutes ago, Osnola said:

I don't think you need to lengthen the golf courses at all. Maybe change the shape/architecture of the course a little bit.  Maybe they could make the fairway from tee to green a different shape.  

Yup, this is part of the solution IMO. Make angles into greens matter again. 

The other part IMO is equipment related. The driver is the most forgiving club in the bag, I think guys should be penalized more for off-center strikes, knowing if they hit it off the toe or heel there is a chance that ball could be off the planet O.B. Whether that's with a smaller CC driver head, lowering the max MOI, higher spin golf balls, etc I'm not sure, but I think that hitting driver really straight and really far for pros should require more skill than it does now.

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44 minutes ago, klineka said:

Well the same thing exists in Baseball.

Not accurate at all. Completely different situations.

Addressed above in my longer post.

Bifurcation is not a solution.

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19 minutes ago, iacas said:

Not accurate at all. Completely different situations.

Addressed above in my longer post.

Fair enough. I obviously missed where you addressed it earlier. Even though I was playing in college when they implemented the COR restrictions, I forgot about that and the fact that they made the metal bats more similar to wood than they were previously.

37 minutes ago, iacas said:

Bifurcation is not a solution.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but based on what I read in your longer post on page 8, it seems like you are a fan of keeping everything as it is now?

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50 minutes ago, klineka said:

Fair enough. I obviously missed where you addressed it earlier. Even though I was playing in college when they implemented the COR restrictions, I forgot about that and the fact that they made the metal bats more similar to wood than they were previously.

I think one thing that is not being addressed is that wood bats force you to change your entire approach at the plate.  It's a lot more that just the added "pop" from the sweet spot of a metal bat. which BBCor addressed a bit.   but decreased weight (increasing swing speed), a bigger sweet spot (requiring less precision). and most importantly, significantly more forgiveness on non-sweetspot hits.  specifically, but not limited to the fact that you can hit metal bats off the hands on the tapered area and not only not break your bat, but sometimes come away with a decent hit.   Once you switch to wood bats, you have to learn that you can no longer swing at pitches you have become accustomed to swinging at your whole life.  not to mention that the move to a wood bat typically signifies moving up a level where you'll have to swing a heavier bat at pitches that are coming harder.    

I believe that the comparison from baseball bats to golfers switching to a different golf ball is not as easily dismissed as some of the comments in this thread are suggesting.  

 

 

 

 

Edited by lastings

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