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I Broke 90 Today; What Is Next?


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#16 Monty85

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Posted 21 January 2019 - 10:25 AM

 

Around 5 shots were duds, so I think maybe I should set my next goal at 85. 

It should be achievable in 6 months maybe? What say you?

 

Always good to set a goal. From what I see on the course, just making some better decisions will improve a lot of scores for higher handicap golfers. It’s quite remarkable how many drivers off the deck C graders hit out of the trees.

 

I would aim for some goals that aren’t score related. No double bogeys and no 3 putts in a round.

 

Playing a bit smarter, those 2 things aren’t that difficult to achieve and without them breaking 90 will come with ease.


Edited by Monty85, 21 January 2019 - 10:25 AM.

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#17 xrman1954

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Posted 21 January 2019 - 10:07 PM

More good advice, thanks Monty85.

 

Now that I understand putter design a bit more, I can see why I was shite at it to begin with. I was trying to arc put with a nearly balanced faced putter. The Power Bilt semi mallet is ever so slightly toe down. Once I started to use it in a straight back and through method, it was quite good.

 

I had been using a Gravity Golf arc master putter with a lot of success in my longer putts. However when I was close to the hole I was trying to "straight back and through" with it and missing left or right, depending on the swing and ball position. The arc putter is very toe down weighted. Three putts were common. The first one I would get close and then miss the short second one!

 

The Rife putter did arrive today, so I am anxious to get out first thing in the morning to try it. I am on grandpa duty for much of this week, so no competition mid- week.

 

One thing that has become obvious  since I have been spending more time  on the short game is statistically being a more accurate chipper  makes you a better putter. The putts are shorter and therefore I miss fewer and three putts rarely happen now.


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#18 xrman1954

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Posted 24 January 2019 - 02:10 PM

It was hot today and so was my score on the front 9 ( 42) . Then my water ran out and my mojo deserted me. Army golf . 55 on the back nine. Crap. I realized that I wasn't staying in posture on my tee shots and they were going left and not fading back at all. Chipping and putting was poor. Thankfully my irons worked fine. Back to the drawing board! 



#19 xrman1954

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Posted 29 January 2019 - 06:12 AM

Another tale of two halves at Hamilton golf club yesterday. It was a great day with blues skies and a gentle breeze keeping the temperature in the low 30's. Through the greens the course was in good condition, but a bit sparse ground cover off in the rough.

 

I started quite well, deciding to keep the driver in the bag and used my 15 degree 3 wood off the tee. 23 points on the first 9 ( 42 strokes). The new ( to me) Rife putter was on fire and I even managed a birdie with a chip into the hole from just off the green. 

 

Into the second nine I broke out the Driver when I thought the risk/reward ration was acceptable. I missed a few fairways, one even when I used a 19 degree hybrid to keep it low. Using the same club I managed to spray one into the trees to the right. Knowing how hard it had been to locate balls in the leaf litter I hit a provisional, which after three minutes searching I had to use.

 

The final score was 94 and 14 more points on the second 9= 37. My putting went off a bit as did my chipping. Maybe I just need to get fitter to avoid the second half fade, but in my defence I was sleep deprived having driven my pregnant daughter 200 km to the hospital at midnight.


Edited by xrman1954, 29 January 2019 - 06:42 AM.


#20 xrman1954

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Posted 29 January 2019 - 06:58 AM

Risk /reward ratio not ration!

 

I try and work out what will happen if my shot goes left/straight/right. My driver skill is still not predictable.

 

On one occasion when I elected to use driver to reach the dog leg right, I managed to pull hook it onto the adjacent fairway area.  A good hit but 30 degrees off course.The ball ended up in a divot on the rough verge area. I had a clear shot 155 m to the green, so I had a go and managed a low drawer that  ended up just left of the green. Thankfully my Cobra F7 one lengths did the job all day.Well up until the approach shot on 18 when I shanked the bloody thing! "Crap, concentrate you idiot."



#21 xrman1954

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Posted 21 February 2019 - 09:27 PM

I played at Portland today with three much better players than I. They are younger and way more experienced than me. How I admired some of their long elegant drives!

 

I hit 91 strokes/ 39 points. I missed two fairways; one was a drive that faded too far right and ended up in the right rough, under a tree, the other I hit two 5 iron tee shots out of bounds ( stupidity). I have been trying the Moe Norman single plane swing concept on my tee shots. It is working better than my previous attempts at straight/drawer shots.

 

 I was trying out a 54 degree sand wedge ( single length Cobra F7) today. It was O.K. but I think I am more confident with the standard length Cobra 56 versatile grind wedge. Putting was good today; those I missed were near misses.

 

Strike on my irons was a bit erratic. Some I swept off the deck/thinned , and others I hit solidly. This needs more work!

 

 G.A. Handicap is 20,2. My target by the end of summer is 18. Within my grasp If I stop doing stupid things!

 

I had a great time playing golf with my fellow golfers today, both socially and golf wise.


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#22 xrman1954

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Posted 24 February 2019 - 12:29 PM

Two weeks. off skiing in Canada. The golf course at Panorama Resort  is a metre under snow, so no practising, unless you count watching Golf Channel on the cable service.

 

I was hoping to repeat my form above in day one of the D grade club championship.

 

Yesterday was entirely different. My chipping was short, my putts just missed ( Maxwell Smart shots) several times and my tee shots were erratic. 97 strokes /31 Stableford points.

 

I could attribute the poor shots to my Boeing virus, but I think I just had an off day. I think they should have a quarantine class on long haul flights, so infected folk can't spread their germs via the air- con system. Perhaps I should rest and then try again. There is always next week!

 

BTW I overcame my 160 m 5 iron shots over the fence /out of bounds problem. I used a 22 degree hybrid at about 80% power and rolled it up onto the fringe of the green. At least something worked!


Edited by xrman1954, 24 February 2019 - 12:36 PM.

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#23 xrman1954

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Posted 26 February 2019 - 06:08 PM

I did a bit better today. I paid the price for not fully warming up prior to playing. I managed some chipping in before the start ( it was an impromptu group of 4/ no set start time) and on the first two holes my striking was a bit erratic.

 

I managed to hit my tee shots short and then my second shot was behind a 7 m tree about 30 m out. The lie was poor, but stupid elected to fly it over the tree ( failed). Putting was not great with regard to length. In general , most of my first putts were short. as the first 9 progressed my tee shots improved, second shots with hybrids were on target, but my iron approach shots rarely went as planned. My strike is still thin ( my default sweep it off the carpet shot).

 

Second 9 went much better, which is unusual as the course is harder to play. I worked out my putting stance flaw and they started to drop. I think I need to stand further away from the hole when I do my practice strokes in the hope I don't don't leave them short. Mostly 4s and 5s on the back 9 , better than the three 7 's at least.

 

The frustrating thing is I know what to do to avoid  some of my poor shots, but I just don't always stick to a set pre-shot routine. Discipline required!

 

Score 94/34 points ; new GA handicap 20.


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#24 xrman1954

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Posted 27 February 2019 - 08:55 PM

I went out this morning before the women's competition began and did the first 5 holes on our course. Last time I scored two sevens on the first two holes , but this time it was a par ( 4)  and birdie( 3). I am beginning to think that Harry the Maltese is a good luck charm. More likely it is the effect of good tee shots and therefore no subsequent need to scramble back onto the fairway. I was overjoyed to get some compression on my iron shots, taking a divot and the ball flying to target. At last! The 2 m putt went in like it was on rails. 

 

I experimented with driver and 3 wood tee shots on the 1st and 4th holes. I have been using the three wood for accuracy for the second shot position. On the first ( dog leg left at 180m) I run the risk of going through to the right rough with driver if it runs, so early morning/winter it is safe, but not when hard/dry. The 4th is a over the crest at 180 m then slight left to the green. The 3 wood wins here for ball position.

 

Then on the practice area I kept on working on strike to get ball compression. It was resulting in 10-20 m gain in distance when I got it right. The Forte SS3 ball gave another 5 m distance compared to the Callaway Chrome Soft.

 

I also found that my 5 iron now goes as far as my 22 degree F7 Cobra hybrid ( 160 m). The hybrid flight is higher and with the baffler rails fairly easy to hit in rough lies. I was thinking I should leave the 22 degree Hybrid out of my bag and maybe add in my 65 degree C3i wedge. They have added soft sand into our bunkers, so the 4 degree bounce lob wedge I had picked up is not ideal anymore. Out of the bunkers the C3i got the ball out more reliably, so I have decided to keep the 22 Hybrid and discard the 60/04 lob wedge. 

 

It will be a hot day on Saturday for part 2 of the club championships. I am in D grade 19+ handicap. Who knows I might be able to play better, even without Harry the Maltese caddy!


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#25 xrman1954

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Posted 02 March 2019 - 03:54 PM

Crikey it was hot playing today!

 

I warmed up a bit ( it was already 26 degrees at 8-30) before playing and managed not to muck up the first two holes like last time.

 

My tee shots were adequate in that i had a clear second shot until #4, where I pulled my 3 wood shot slightly left and hit a tree. I got an unfavorable bounce left deeper into trouble. I bumped it out with my hybrid.

 

The tee shot on #5 my Driver gave me a shot that was long and straight at the pin. Wow in fact it went well past 200m and kept running out the back and over the elevated tee bank. I should have used the 3 wood! I broke out the 3Ci 65 lob wedge and put the ball back just below the pin. That thing is magic on down hill pitch/chip shots.

 

For the next few holes my tee shots worked well, until #9 where my attempted fade went straight , not left and then faded into the trees of the dog leg right course. I still managed a shot over the trees, but managed to duff a chip shot with my one length GW (hit it fat)

 

So first nine I scored 47. It was getting bloody hot by now, even in usually cool Portland. 

On review my chipping was off distance ( short) and direction wise( left) leaving me with long first putts. The Rife putter was working fairly well, but a few Maxwell Smart outcomes. "Missed it by that much."

 

Then we started the back nine. I have had trouble staying in bounds on the 11th before, but today #10 got me. I pulled mt 3 wood tee shot towards the dam bank. It ended up under a short shrubby tree. I had a shot through the low hanging foliage, so I tried a low 5 iron draw punch shot. It went too far and too far left into more rough 100 m further up. Then I shanked my GW shot over to the right. Bugger! Then my simple bump out behind another tree with a hybrid hit a stick and stopped dead 10 m ahead. !!!!!bother. Then my SW shot landed poorly on the green bank and rolled away from the hole. Result 8 shots ( par 4). The rest of the back 9 was free from major disasters, even on the longer par 5 holes ( par 1, bogey1). Score 49; so 96 off the stick minus 21 daily handicap =75 nett. 34 points.

 

Review:

Tee shots mostly good with length and accuracy with being in play.

Fairway shots good outcomes mainly with hybrids 18/22 degrees

Iron shots fairly accurate distance wise , but still going a bit left of target ( could be the off set in the F7 one length/ or maybe I didn't allow for the 20 kph wind enough)

Short game: I am leaving my chips too short when I use the SW at less than full length shots (63m).

I am thinking that I need to be more aware of the distance 9-3 swing goes and , say my 8-4 swing goes and try using that idea. I have a laser range finder now after all. Other than that, perhaps I should try using my GW and PW more from further out to get a bit more run on the green. I am not that bad in judging close to the green chips length. I worked on the rule of 12 idea and got that to be useful. It is mainly when I have to chip from say 20-30 m out from the green that I am struggling. Ideas? How times change. When I started 2 years ago, I was happy to hit the green anywhere!

Putting: see comments re; Max Smart above. Almost, but no cigar.

 

I have Mr. Short Game's 14 day practice schedule to lose 5 strokes and I plan to start on that this week, baby sitting duties allowing that is. All those of you who think your children are off your hands when they leave home, think again. They come back and they leave their children!

 

Up side of today is we played with a bloke who is just starting to play again off 3. What a beautiful ball striker! He has played since his teens. His hips are shot, but he still can play well. BTW our course is in pristine condition and should stay that way until winter. Portland is a great place for a long weekend, rugged coastal scenery , great walks in the forests and coastal areas and good eating/ fresh fish off the trawlers. it is just past over crowded over rated Pt Fairy.



#26 xrman1954

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Posted 03 March 2019 - 03:07 PM

Update: I made it to the elimination finals in 2 weeks time for D grade (over handicap 19). We have to play two games in one day , assuming I win the morning round that is. If it is stinking hot I will probably rent a golf cart that day.

 

I went out this morning to the practice area and worked on club selection for various chip shots at distances up to 50 m out from the pin. Trying to eyeball them and do it by feel just isn't cutting it for me at my level of skill. I can test the theory out at the Veterans golf at Heywood tomorrow. The course there is quite a bit harder surfaced , so I might have to adjust up and down my list a bit.


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#27 xrman1954

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Posted 04 March 2019 - 04:55 PM

The list of clubs /swings/distances worked out fairly well for chipping onto the green today. It wasn't perfect, but better than previous methods of hit and hope.

 

It was a glorious day at the rolling hills of Heywood. I find the course a bit of a challenge because of the uphill/downhill lies and unforgiving rough. Hit straight or go home! The sections of fairway where they haven't watered are very hard. I bounce my irons off the ground with some interesting shots resulting. Divots? Not much!

 

I hit 91. 39 points and I got nearest the pin on a par 3.


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#28 xrman1954

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Posted 04 March 2019 - 07:24 PM

 I just checked the GA site. My handicap is now 19.5. I am happy with the reduction and I am  out of the 20's at last.


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#29 xrman1954

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Posted 04 March 2019 - 08:02 PM

On reviewing today's game for areas I can improve upon, I recalled what happened on hole #1. Note that we started on hole #9, so we were half way through the game by hole #1. I think I was so focused on chipping method and length of shot, that I forgot to check my aim and the ball went wide of the pin and ran off the green. in effect it added two shots, my only double bogey for the day. 

 

Concentration can waver and I go blank at times and don't stay in the shot. As in, did I swing towards the target? What was my target again?

 

I still don't feel like I am striking my Driver flush. Distance is not bad, it just doesn't sound crisp. I also sprayed a couple of hybrid shots to the right. I was placing the ball too far back in my stance. Putting was not bad (only one 3 putt on #1) considering the greens were slower than we were used to. I think I only sunk 2 one putts.


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#30 xrman1954

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Posted 08 March 2019 - 07:29 PM

I went out to the range to try working on slightly higher tee height for my driver shots. I used a yellow castle type tee and left it a few mm out of the ground. End result was better strike and I managed an all time best 220 m drive. In general even my less than ideal strikes ( heel/toe wise) were O.K. in that I would have had a reasonable second shot in a game.

 

I also tried to simulate my poor hybrid shots for last game. Yep if I aimed foot line straight and swung right the ball stayed right. If I had foot line left of target, shoulder line at target and swung slightly right= straight shots.

 

I also worked on high pitch shots with my 56 wedge using 7 o'clock and 8 0'clock swings for 44 and 50 m distances. Then I tried various tee shots for the par 3 hole #11 160 m to front of green. I was trying fades with my 5i but hit the trees that overhang left side of fairway. I tried drawing some shots, but flirted with trees on right and O.O.B. In the end I decided that hitting at the middle of the green with an easy 22 degree hybrid is the better option. If it goes straight great. If it goes left there is no trouble for an easy chip on. If it goes right I will be short sided , but my 65 lob will get it back on near the pin-ish.

 

Next Sunday I will have my fist experience with match play for the D grade championship. I think all I have to do is to to play bogey golf to do well enough to win. I have been doing this for a few months, trying to score 5 per hole. If I get the occasional par or the rare birdy, even better. 

 

I am playing with my mate Tony tomorrow in a practice match play situation. It should be fun!


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