September 2014 Posts

The Ryder Cup In All It’s Glory

Euros and Yanks,

It’s finally here! The best golf tournament that doesn’t include any monetary purse, which only occurs once every 2 years, and bragging rights that stretch across the globe.  Yes, I am talking about the Ryder Cup.

The Ryder Cup, which started in 1927 has been played once every 2 years with the only exceptions being during WW2 and September 11th, 2001.  The official tally to date is the Euros with 12 wins, team US with a whopping 25 wins, and just two ties in 1969 and 1989.  You might think that the US has dominated overall with only some sporadic wins by the Euros, but in reality the Europeans have won 7 out of the last 10 times! I believe this is a result of emerging non-US talent, (Rory, GMac, Martin Kaymer, etc) but this year will be different, I can feel it!  We are stacked with lots of young talent for a change (Fowler, Spieth, Walker) which ultimately will lead to some impressive shot-making and strategy.

The “war on the shore” in 1991 at Kiawah Island is one that still sticks out in my mind.  This tournament came down to the wire between Hale Irwin on team USA and Bernhard Langer for the Europeans.  The final singles match was a grueling one, coming down to the final hole, on the green, Irwin had a 6-foot putt for par, and Langer had a 18-inch putt for bogey.  To the surprise of all the Europeans, Langer conceded Irwin’s bogey putt and the rest is history;  Langer somehow missed his 18-inch putt for bogey, ultimately giving Team USA the cup back.  The pressure and visible emotion of these matches, creates crazed fans across the globe.

Another great reason to watch is that the format strays from “stroke play” which we are all very accustomed to watching; the Ryder Cup is broken down into 3 days with varying formats.
Days one and two consist of four-ball matches, a competition between two teams of two golfers, but all four golfers play their own ball throughout the round.  On day two, they play “alternate shot” foursomes, and on day 3 head-to-head matches.  Each of these matches are worth 1 point a piece.

Personally, I love watching the Ryder Cup; not only because it is the best golfers from rival countries, but also it showcases team camaraderie and the need to rally together.  The emotions are at an all time high amongst the players, where fist pumps and screaming are taken to a whole new level.

Why are you excited for the Ryder Cup?  What was your favorite year?  Which format do you enjoy watching the most?

8 Fun Facts About Caddies

1.  Historians believe that the term “caddie” came from Mary, the Queen of Scots in the late 16th century. Mary grew up in France where military cadets carried golf clubs for royalty and it’s said that when Mary immigrated to Scotland, she took the term “caddie” with her.

2.  Most PGA Tour caddies make between $1000 and $1500 per week, but they also make a percentage of what the player wins in the tournament. The percentage structure usually works as follows: 5% of any finish outside the top 10, 7% of any finish in the top 10, and 10% of any first place winning finish.

3.  Billy Horschel’s caddie Micah Fugitt recently earned over $1 million after Horschel won the FedEx cup earlier this month. He plans on setting a large amount aside for his two children’s college tuition.

4.  The PGA Tours most famous caddy Steve Williams, parted ways with Adam Scott last week as Williams wants to start working part time next season, while Scott prefers a full-time caddy. Steve Williams was the caddy for Tiger Woods from 1999 to 2011 during which Woods won 13 of his 14 majors. He inducted into the Caddie Hall of Fame in early September 2014. It’s been estimated that Steve Williams made roughly $20 million during his run with Tiger Woods.

5.  In a 2011 poll of 50 PGA Tour caddies, 54% said they had witnessed a player cheating during a PGA Tour event.

6.  Besides PGA Tour officials, caddies are the only employees that are paid at PGA Tour events.

7.  When a PGA Tour player wins an event, they give the caddie the flag off the pin as a trophy.

8.  Golfers love to prank their caddies.

Scor 4161 Wedges

Scor 4161 Wedges

Most wedge manufacturers sell wedges from 48-62 degrees of loft, but not Scor. Scor has changed the game.  These wedges, or as they like to say scoring clubs, come in 41 to 63 degrees of loft. That means you now can have the same type of clubs from your wedges all the way to your 9 iron.

Technology

The main differentiator from other companies is that not all wedges are built the same. The lower lofted wedges have a thicker face and more perimeter weighting. This means that these clubs will be more forgiving than higher loft wedges. These wedges also have a higher center of mass, which will produce a ball flight that pierces through the air. This surprised me because they do not look forgiving at all at first glance.

The higher lofted wedges are made with a lower center of gravity. This is meant for players that want to hit their wedges a certain distance with enough spin to make it stick on the green. The lower center of mass will increase your spin rate and give you the stopping control desired.

Scor started out by looking at how companies were producing new hybrids and realized no one was creating innovative technology for wedges. Most companies were taking fairway woods and compacting them to make easier to hit long irons, while Scor saw that and wanted to take irons and compact them to make wedges that were perfect for distance control. They saw that most wedges would balloon up in the air when they were miss hit on full shots, so they took the weight and spread it more throughout the club. Instead of keeping the weight in the bottom they spread the weight higher up in the club. This caused a lower shot compared to a typical high floating wedge shot. I thought this was a bad thing at first because I want to hit the ball high and land soft but I was completely wrong. The distance was consistent when I was hitting into the green. Time after time I was hitting the ball directly where I wanted regardless of what degree wedge I hit.  It was like throwing darts!

Feel & Looks

By far the best feeling wedge I have ever hit! Every single time I made contact, it felt perfect and the ball flight looked as if it was hit right on the button. I was so shocked that I actually put contact tape on the face of the club to see if I was hitting it pure or if it was the wedge. Unfortunately, I was not making perfect contact every time, meaning it was all the club. My ball marks were spread out on the face, but the consistent thickness throughout the face gives you enough forgiveness to achieve consistent results. The best feeling for me in golf, is hitting the ball clean and knowing I just hit a good shot. These wedges do not disappoint in that aspect, as every single shot felt perfect.

I love the look of blades so that could also be why I love these. The look of a blade will give a higher handicap player a scare, however, these are no ordinary blades. The look is clean and traditional. There are no flash added to these; they are designed to perform well and look simple.

Opinion

If you could not tell from everything I have been saying, I absolutely love these wedges. They changed how I look at my wedges and how I want to hit the ball into the green. Everything from looks to feel, they were exactly what I wanted them to be. They can be intimidating for someone who has forgiving clubs, but if you try them you will see that they do not feel as scary as they look. I recommend to anyone who is looking for new wedges/irons to go and try these out before you choose. You will not be disappointed with the Scor Wedges!

 

Kings of New York 1Day 4Man Scramble

The summer may be over, but golf season certainly is not! We just finished our City Championship between New York and Boston, which went so well, we couldn’t resist getting everyone back together for a great day of golf.

The “Kings of New York” 1 day event will be a 4man scramble for millennial golfers 18-34, with custom Jones Golf Bags going to each player on the winning team, and a full Maide Golf outfit going to second place.

The SHOTGUN start will be at NOON @ Tallgrass Golf Club on LI, which is roughly 1 hour from NYC, and there is a LIRR station 5 minutes from the course. Please let us know if you need help with transportation.

Your round gets you RANGE/CART/BOOZE/FOOD/PRIZES

1st Place- Custom Jones Golf Bags

2nd Place- Full Maide Golf (Bonobos golf line) outfit

Long Drive- Free ($125 value) 1 hour driver fitting at New York Golf Center powered by Cool Clubs

Closest to the pin- Free ($175 value) 1 hour irons fitting at New York Golf Center powered by Cool Club

We looking forward to seeing everyone out on the course, we’ll bring the beers!

BUY TICKETS TODAY!

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/kings-of-new-york-tickets-13201819999

Breaking 90- Mastering The Drive

Welcome back to Breaking 90! Your home for tips, tricks, and strategies that will help you and me finally join our buddies in the 80’s. I hope last week’s focus on warming up left you with nothing but great shots and low scores. I am happy to say that I had a great round. Although, when it was all said and done I shot 95. I was in the sand nine, yes nine, times. A few bad bounces led to some extra strokes here and there, but that’s golf right?

How did you guys make out last week? Did a more concise and regimented warm up help prepare you for your round? Is there something you did that helped you get ready for your round that you would like to share? Let me know in the comments down below.

Now that we are warm, loose, and ready to play, lets head to the first tee. Does anyone other than me get first tee nerves? Oh wait, that’s a stupid question. We all do. I get them, you get them, Rory gets them, and Phil gets them. It is just part of the game.

I will never forget the pounding in my chest I used to get as I stood over my ball. My hands used to shake because I got myself so worked up. Mentally I was wreck. It wasn’t until I stopped thinking about the numbers and all the other distractions out on the course that I started seeing improvement in my game. I found that being mentally prepared was just as important as the physical part of the game. Being able to start off on a positive note from my first swing was a great way to build my confidence for the rest of the round. That easily shaved three strokes off my game.

So hole number one. It is a 427-yard par 4, water up the left side with a nice big fat lovely bunker guarding the green on the front-side left. What a treat right? Just out of curiosity, what club would you play here? I’d venture to say 85% of you say Driver, while another 14% go with some combination of 3-wood/5-wood for accuracy.  Me? Believe it or not I am going to grab my 4-hybrid.

What?!?!?

Yeah you heard me. Screw the distance.

Why?!?!?

My goal on this tee, or any tee for that matter, isn’t to hit the ball as far as possible. Rather, I am looking to land my ball in the safest place possible.  Center cut of the fairway is optimal, but as long as I keep it dry and have good look at the hole for my second shot I am happy. For a beginner golfer it is so tempting to try and wail on it with the Driver like the pros. That is not to say don’t hit your Driver. But if you are not confident yet in the results it is going to get you, I say keep it in the bag until you it becomes a club you trust. And that goes for any club, not just your Driver.

I struggled for months with the nastiest slice in the world when hitting my driver. I mean the thing could cut a block of cheddar cheese in January it was so sharp. But I knew I was money every time with my hybrid. I was more than happy to sacrifice the 50 extra yards when I didn’t have to hunt for my ball in the woods after every tee shot. Is there a club other then the your driver that you like to hit off the tee? Hey maybe it’s a 7-iron, nothing wrong with that. As long as you are comfortable and confident, give it a rip.

Now tell me, what is more frustrating then finally getting to that first tee and as soon as you make contact with the ball you know exactly what you did wrong? Nothing, right? Immediately you think, “My weight was back.” Or “I didn’t rotate my hips.” Or “I bent my left arm on my downswing.” It is times like these that I am thankful the kart girls carry a heavy supply of Miller Light.

So I say give it a rip, but what I really mean is swing your swing. Swing the swing you have repeated thousands of times at the range. Swing the swing that you know works for you. Swing the swing that you are confident in. Swing the swing that’s going to get you into the 80’s. So often we forget about all the hours we spent grinding away at the range the minute each stroke counts. It only makes sense that the combination of resolute focus and total confidence will lead to great results during your future rounds.

That’s all I have for you this week. I hope Breaking 90 gave you a little better idea of how to approach your first swing(s) of the day. It only stands to reason that setting yourself up for success right from the start is the simplest way to start lowering your score. If you would like to share any tips or advice you use to get off the tee I would love to hear them. Please share them in the comments. Remember, this is all about getting you AND me under 90.

Summer may be over, but there is still a ton of golf to play. That 89 is right around the corner. I can feel it. See you next week!