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Everything posted by Ben_Howell34

  1. I was fortunate enough to play 13 different courses this year! Payne’s Valley (Hollister, MO) Ozarks National (Hollister, MO) Buffalo Ridge (Hollister, MO) Top of the Rock (Hollister, MO) Mountain Top (Hollister, MO) Old South Golf Links (Bluffton, SC) Greystone CC (Birmingham, AL) Farmlinks (Sylacauga, AL) Hoover CC (Hoover, AL) Ballantrae (Pelham, AL) Timberline (Calera, AL) Mirimichi GC (Memphis, TN) Oak Mountain GC (Birmingham, AL) Played 23 rounds total thus far. Hoping to get in 1-2 more before the year is out with good weather.
  2. Used it again yesterday for a quick 9. Did not try the Link again as I did not really have time to fool with it. The phone worked fine, but it did miss a couple of drives, which after the fact can be a bit annoying, as you basically have to guess where you hit it from on the map (although it seems to get fairly close based on my other distances). I also need to figure out how to work the putting portion better. Overall with my 1st 3 rounds it’s been fun to use and cool to see the data.
  3. I saw that email as well. Seems to be a cool feature as I do have a GHIN handicap. From what I read, I am assuming that I would just enter the round into Arccos and it automatically adds to my handicap?
  4. Thank you guys! I’m definitely not consistent with it, but I do feel like I am improving. To answer your question, that was slightly past the hole, so if the tee box is 6 o’clock from the pin, the ball is about 2 o’clock, if that makes sense.
  5. Used the Arccos system for the second time today. I did not post after the first time because I did not have my putter attachment. A few thoughts: I like the way the app is set up and it gives you 3 distances into the green (back, middle and front) as well as how it is playing with current wind and a recommended club. However, many times the recommended club would be one longer than I need, but I am thinking that is more a lack of data for me versus a system error thing. Both times I have used it, the Link portion of the system has not worked well at all. The first time, it missed about 80% of my approach shots. Yesterday, it would not stay connected to the app at all, so I had to use my phone. The phone actually did well and only missed one shot (a putt). I just saw here that clipping it on your pocket vs belt has worked better so I will try that next time. The SG aspect is really cool, but seemed to be off on putting and driving. I did not drive well at all directionally (I tend to hit it pretty far either way) and my irons might have been the best I’ve ever hit them and my SG were almost identical on both. It’s possible that the app cannot tell if my drive is the reason I could not get a good shot at the green. I also putted pretty well but my putting was the worst. Since the app doesn’t always know pin location, you do have to move the putts around sometimes so it knows how close (approximately) to the hole you were for your putt. Excited to try this out again and work the kinks out. It was definitely helpful that I knew the app from the first time I played, since you can’t really “practice” the app without playing a round.
  6. #13 at Timberline in Calera, AL (near Birmingham). 191 yards, back pin location. Also came inches from an eagle on another hole. Maybe next time!
  7. Oh thank you! I was looking for that but could not find it!
  8. Came *this* close to a hole in one today. 191 slightly uphill. 6 iron. Within the leather. Timberline in Calera, AL hole 13.
  9. Played Timberline today, shot a 44/34 78 (par 71). First time I have ever been under par on a 9!! Had 3 birdies. Just changed out my driver head so I am getting used to it, and I was not hitting it well, lot of spin on it. However my irons were very good along with my short game. Even came oh so close to an ace!
  10. Smoked a brisket for the Bama game yesterday, paired it with my wife’s home made Mac n cheese. Home grown beef too.
  11. Played Friday at Ballantrae. Had a rough front 9 46 but made up for it somewhat with a great 39 on the back for an 85. One birdie, on the shorter par 5 18th. A crisp 71* and beautiful day. Starting to hit my drives well, had a couple I pulled but other than that I hit a few over 290 so I’m happy with that. Excited to get my Arccos installed for my upcoming rounds.
  12. Thank you! I’m not 100% sure on the scoring or tie breaks, but it has me listed 1st now (could just be alphabetical) and there is still 1 match going. Fun to be in the hunt!
  13. Think USA wins 17.5-12.5! How are the points calculated in this?
  14. I just got a UPS notification, should get them Saturday! Thrilled to try these out!
  15. Introduction My name is Ben Howell and I am 31 years old, living in Hoover, AL with my wife and two daughters. First, I would like to thank MGS for the opportunity to perform this test, and Arccos for providing the system! I love sports, outdoors, and am an extrovert, so golf suits me well. I also love to travel, eat out, and experience new things. I work as a major account sales rep for Xerox, so I get to use golf with my work (or in lieu of it ) sometimes, which is great. Golf I started playing golf later in life. Growing up in a small town we did not have a golf course, and put most of my energy into baseball and football. I thought golf would be too slow and boring (wow was I wrong). Ended up playing college football at the University of Alabama which didn’t leave much time for anything else, but I did pick up golf sparingly. After college, I started playing golf more, but wasn’t until about 5 years ago that I really started getting more serious about it. I play an average of 2-3 times a month. I am not a member of any club, and the Birmingham area has a lot of great public courses. I started to keep an official handicap last year, as well as took a few lessons, which have helped a lot. I have also been fortunate to be able to get some new equipment via a sales program with my work, which is a huge help. My handicap has dropped from a 10.5 to an 8.8 in the past year or so, but more importantly I am having more fun than ever playing golf! One reason I am excited about this test is the strokes gained (SG) aspect. I always "feel" like I know where I am losing strokes, but this should give a better perspective on that. Typically, it seems I lose more shots on approaches than anything else. Generally speaking, my strengths are putting and length off the tee, although accuracy can be wanting. Goals for this test According to the Arccos website, "The average Arccos Caddie member improves their handicap 5.78 strokes in the first year!" I would love to see how that holds up in my own game, in the short and long term. I would also like to see how the strokes gained feature helps gear me towards certain practice habits. Does it help me in terms of practicing correctly, or could it mess with my mental game on the course? How well does the actual product work? Is it a smooth look and feel that works almost seamlessly, or can it be glitchy? Is it something fun to use, or just another something that I have to look at my phone for instead of enjoying the golf course? How accurate are the statistics? Can it compare to other players? Could it replace my current golf app (i.e. 18 birdies, 19th hole, etc.)? I do have one friend who already has this application @Mtbryant01 and he seems to like it. I have not really used it with him, so my "slate is clean" as they say, which is the way I like it with tests such as these. If there is anything you would like to see tested or are curious about this product, please let me know. I am very excited to test this out! First Impressions When I received the package, it was not very big at all, which I great as the smaller the better in my opinion for something like this. The packaging and product are really slick, and I almost felt like I was receiving an Apple product. Clean edges and the sleek white box are a very attractive look for something that is being sold as high tech.   The parts themselves were very easy to install on the clubs and seem durable. I was somewhat worried that the sensors would affect my grip but they are unnoticeable on the few swings I took with it.  The app itself has a cool look and is very simplistic (in a good way). One thing that did happen in the setup that was not necessarily easy to find out how to fix was that I double scanned a sensor. There were no instructions on how to correct that, nor a very obvious section in the app to find it. I was able to Google a solution and once I found that, it is easy to change. That would be my one suggestion to Arccos is to include more detailed instructions in that area. My putter has a counter weighted SuperStroke grip on it, so the general putter sensor did not fit my putter. However, there is a $20 alternate sensor for that grip you can purchase that is very easy to install. I would not knock off any points for having to purchase the extra sensor, but I do not see anything on the app, instructions, or website that would tell me beforehand that I needed this (albeit since this is a test, I did not purchase the system). Only because one of the other testers mentioned it did I realize I needed this alternate part. Overall, my first impression of this product is exactly what I believe the company is looking for: high tech, sleek, and metric forward.
  16. Played Greystone CC, Founders Course today for the first time. They host the Regions Tradition annually, which is one of the majors on the champions tour. It was in great shape and lots of fun. I played ok, shot 87. Had 2 birdies though, one on the toughest hole on the course, made a 40 footer. Other birdie was 18, which is always fun to end on a birdie. Driving today was my downfall, only hit 4 fairways and 4 GIR, most of that due to poor drives. However, I putted great, having only 26 putts on the day.
  17. Got this Taylormade Stealth 4 Hybrid. Hit it for the first time today at the range, felt great.
  18. I was in the 5th grade, running an errand to the library for the teacher. As I walked in, everyone was glued to the tv as the 2nd plane hit the tower. I remember my mom crying at dinner that night as we prayed. Was tough to understand the gravity of what happened then as a kid, and is still sad to think about now. God bless those first responders who ran into danger for those they’ve never met before. We are fortunate to have men and women like that protecting us.
  19. Sales for Xerox, gives me a few more excuses per year to play golf. What more needs to be said?
  20. Nowhere is it written that we must root for conferences… incredible marketing job by the these conferences to get all these folks pulling for the conferences as much as their favorite teams in the last 15 years or so. I never heard my parents or grandparents generation when I was growing up say “I’m an SEC fan.” If you were a Bama fan, Auburn and Tennessee could be playing the Soviets and they’d root for Russia…
  21. Played Bent Brook again today, shot 41/39 for an 80. Very happy with my game right now, driving and approaching much better than in the past. Only hit 6 greens but missed a few more just off the fringe. Had zero birdies, had 3 burn the edge and 1 literally do a 360 out of the cup. Shot of the day on 18 I hit a drive on a par 4 right at 370 yards. Thought it went in the water well before that, was about to drop then I see it about 25 yards from the green. Not sure how it hit it so far, must have gotten cart path then perfect roll out. Missed the 8 foot birdie putt though
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