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GolfSpy MPR

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  1. I'm definitely aware of the pain of buying clubs for kids that they outgrow in a year. For Kirke, I've still not found a better quality/value ratio than Diamond Tour's junior clubs (https://www.diamondtour.com/golf-clubs/junior-golf.html). DTG was founded and is run by the same guy who runs Sub 70. The heads are properly sized and weighted for juniors, and if you're handy with epoxy you can custom fit them for your child yourself for much cheaper than virtually anything else out there.
  2. Duration: 00:38:02 It's an age old debate: Is it better to invest in new equipment or golf lessons? We tackle this topic and more on today's NPG. 0:00 - Intro 1:33 - Cavity back wedges over blades? 10:59 - Can rain gear really be worth $1000? 20:35 - New clubs vs swing lessons 35:58 - Harry's English Phrase of the Week 37:05 - Contest winner announcement --------------------------------------------- Welcome to MyGolfSpy! Over 9 million golfers a year turn to MyGolfSpy to get unbiased, tested reviews and recommendations for the best golf gear to help you improve your game. Golfers like you turn to us because we're independent and unbiased. And, over the years, we've created the #1 resource for golfers who put cold, hard data above marketing hype. #MYGOLFSPY #CONSUMERFIRST Check out MyGolfSpy today! www.mygolfspy.com --------------------------------------------------------------------- Used by over 9,000,000 forward-thinking golfers! --------------------------------------------------------------------- Subscribe to MYGOLFSPY on YouTube: bit.ly/MGSyoutube OUR MISSION: mygolfspy.com/our-mission/ --------------------------------------------- Check out MyGolfSpy's other channels! -------------------------------------------- REVIEWS: bit.ly/MGSreviews BUYERS GUIDES: mygolfspy.com/category/golf-b... NEW RELEASES: bit.ly/MGSnewgear PODCAST: podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast... DRIVER FITTING TOOL: www.truegolffit.com/ ------------------------------------ MYGOLFSPY on Social Media ------------------------------------ Twitter: twitter.com/MyGolfSpy Facebook: www.facebook.com/mygolfspycom/ Instagram: www.instagram.com/mygolfspy/ Listen Here
  3. Go ahead and shoot a transaction number from one of those previous donations in a DM to one of the mods and we'll get that donor badge applied ASAP.
  4. I used this camera: https://www.amazon.com/YI-Action-Sports-Camera-Control/dp/B01FU6KDEG/ref=sr_1_3?crid=141Z2EGT6OY4F&dchild=1&keywords=yi+action+camera&qid=1600281521&sprefix=yi+action+c%2Caps%2C187&sr=8-3 To film this course log of Kirke's: Because I wasn't playing, I didn't use a tripod or anything, but it seems like it should work fine. The biggest problem was the wind noise. I've read that there are decent wind noise reducers, but I haven't tried them yet.
  5. I haven't tracked strike location on a shot-by-shot basis, though it's an intriguing idea. I have absolutely experienced what you've described here: toe strikes with the 699 Pros have held their line very well, but also come up short of their target. My short shots end up being a combination of things: I still know that I base my club selection on "if I hit this properly." Going a club up on every single approach shot, even if it's a blow to the ego, would almost certainly lift my GIRs. I have no skill in determining whether a shot from the rough will be penalized in distance or fly further than expected because of spin reduction. Occasionally, the issue is that I underestimate the influence of the wind on shots into the wind.
  6. I haven't played a ton of tracked rounds in the past couple of weeks. Golf league is over here, and so Thursday nights have switched to scrambles. In general, I leave Arccos off for events like that. But my play with the 699 Pros continues to be what I hoped. They have not revolutionized my game; I'm not making any outlandish claims for them. In Arccos's revised stats system, I'm treading water handicap-wise, sitting right in the 10–11 range. But my approach game continues to be consistent and predictable, and it has improved with the 699 Pros over the PING G700s, which is something I wouldn't necessarily have predicted at the outset of this test. Earlier, I posted my approach game shot distribution with both sets of irons. For a refresher, here were my shots with the PINGs from this season, before switching irons: And here are my current numbers with the 699 Pros, with a few more rounds since my last post: There are some fairly significant differences here from the last time I posted my numbers with the 699s. Last time, I was pleased to see my short misses diminishing enormously (they were down to 37.3%) and my GIRs slightly climbing (to 27.5%). I had more left/right misses with the 699s. Now, my left/right misses are both lower than they were with the G700s, but the short misses have soared. Some of this might be attributable to the change in seasons; it's already starting to get colder here (most days have highs in the 50s or 60s), and I haven't adjusted my club choices accordingly. That said, both the old and new Arccos systems say that my approach handicap has trending in the correct direction by a little more than a stroke since switching to the 699s. I'm still wanting to settle in to the garage this week to do some SkyTrak head-to-head numbers between the G700s and the 699 Pros. But as far as the on-course numbers go, I don't feel as though I've lost anything over my G700s. For those following this review who are in the mid-handicap range with me, who can't relate well to the numbers that @Smellis745 and @Tom the Golf Nut are posting in this thread: I'll go ahead and say that if approach play isn't some radical (negative) outlier in your game, these are absolutely clubs you should consider. Subjectively, I think they check all the boxes for looks and feel. But I don't think that a reasonable mid-capper has any reason to feel intimidated by these irons.
  7. Duration: 00:29:23 On this episode we cover Dustin Johnson's lackluster victory celebration, Titleist's newly announced TSI driver line, and our favorite comments from our Most Wanted Speaker test. 3:54 - Dustin Johnson's lackluster reaction to winning $15 million 7:18 - Titleist announces the TSI driver series 15:29 - Best of the worst comments on Most Wanted Speakers 25:57 - A double dose of Harry's English Phrase of the Week --------------------------------------------- Welcome to MyGolfSpy! Over 9 million golfers a year turn to MyGolfSpy to get unbiased, tested reviews and recommendations for the best golf gear to help you improve your game. Golfers like you turn to us because we're independent and unbiased. And, over the years, we've created the #1 resource for golfers who put cold, hard data above marketing hype. #MYGOLFSPY #CONSUMERFIRST Check out MyGolfSpy today! www.mygolfspy.com --------------------------------------------------------------------- Used by over 9,000,000 forward-thinking golfers! --------------------------------------------------------------------- Subscribe to MYGOLFSPY on YouTube: bit.ly/MGSyoutube OUR MISSION: mygolfspy.com/our-mission/ --------------------------------------------- Check out MyGolfSpy's other channels! -------------------------------------------- REVIEWS: bit.ly/MGSreviews BUYERS GUIDES: mygolfspy.com/category/golf-b... NEW RELEASES: bit.ly/MGSnewgear PODCAST: podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast... DRIVER FITTING TOOL: www.truegolffit.com/ ------------------------------------ MYGOLFSPY on Social Media ------------------------------------ Twitter: twitter.com/MyGolfSpy Facebook: www.facebook.com/mygolfspycom/ Instagram: www.instagram.com/mygolfspy/ Listen Here
  8. If you're referring to the Donor badge on certain profiles, those aren't added automatically. If you've made a donation, shoot me or one of the other mods a DM with the transaction ID, and we'll get that badge added to your profile right away.
  9. So I need to write a quick post of another first from Kirke: his first time playing a full 18 round from any set of "normal" tees. My dad is the one who came up with the idea for the round: we'd all play from the gold tees. The adults (my dad, me, and a friend were all playing) were all limited to our 125-yard club from the tee, and then the clubs lower than that for the remainder of the hole. So for me, I could use my PW to tee off, and then had to play the rest of the hole with GW, SW, LW, and putter. This puts us all in the same distance setup as Kirke, and honestly, made for a very fun round of golf. The gold tees at our course are not even listed on the scorecard (they've only been added in the last year or so). Did a little Google Maps measuring, and it looks like they play right around 4,600 yards for the full 18. For perspective: the US Kids recommended distance for Kirke (what he normally plays) is 3,000 yards for 18. The gold tees push him from playing the recommended yardage for him (boys age 7) to the recommended yardage for boys around ages 10-11. It's a big, big jump. Playing from the golds, then, Kirke put up a solid performance: for his first time playing from adult tees, he broke 100! [An astute friend noticed after I posted this that I messed up the math. Kirke shot a 51 on the front, for a 99 total.] His most impressive stretch was on holes 11-12, where he parred those two holes back to back (250 and 265 yards). On the back, he tied my buddy and beat my dad. If he hadn't made a bit of a mess of the ninth hole (ended up in a ditch that he had to drop from), it could have been a few strokes lower easily. I'm guessing that there are more than a handful of folks who play from the gold tees regularly (with their full bags) that Kirke might have beaten. I was proud of him: that length is a tough slog for a little guy, with several holes that he's hitting his FW multiple times to cover the distance (I could sympathize with him—I hit GW more times that I'd like to count). It's not something we'll do often (I have no desire to make golf frustrating), but I think it's going to make his "normal" course seem very easy by comparison, and it gives him a benchmark against adults who play this course, which will become more relevant as he continues to get bigger.
  10. Currently playing a 16.5° FW, but I'm interested in comparing it to something at 15°. I already have a FW-length shaft with a Callaway tip, so I'm looking for an Epic, Rogue, or Flash 15° head. Probably not the SZ variants. Cheap, slightly beat up is good, as this is an experiment.
  11. Duration: 00:36:32 We talk our first Ball Lab release with the 2020 Callaway Chromesoft. Also we delve into virtual ball fittings, the future of umbrellas, and the verbing of golf. 1:23 - More things we didn't know 3:47 - Virtual Ball Fittings 12:01 - Umbrella Buyer's Guide Results 20:41 - Ball Lab One: The 2020 Callaway Chromesoft 30:47 - Harry's British Phrase of the Week 32:08 - Hot Seat: The British Open, or just The Open? --------------------------------------------- Welcome to MyGolfSpy! Over 9 million golfers a year turn to MyGolfSpy to get unbiased, tested reviews and recommendations for the best golf gear to help you improve your game. Golfers like you turn to us because we're independent and unbiased. And, over the years, we've created the #1 resource for golfers who put cold, hard data above marketing hype. #MYGOLFSPY #CONSUMERFIRST Check out MyGolfSpy today! www.mygolfspy.com --------------------------------------------------------------------- Used by over 9,000,000 forward-thinking golfers! --------------------------------------------------------------------- Subscribe to MYGOLFSPY on YouTube: bit.ly/MGSyoutube OUR MISSION: mygolfspy.com/our-mission/ --------------------------------------------- Check out MyGolfSpy's other channels! -------------------------------------------- REVIEWS: bit.ly/MGSreviews BUYERS GUIDES: mygolfspy.com/category/golf-b... NEW RELEASES: bit.ly/MGSnewgear PODCAST: podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast... DRIVER FITTING TOOL: www.truegolffit.com/ ------------------------------------ MYGOLFSPY on Social Media ------------------------------------ Twitter: twitter.com/MyGolfSpy Facebook: www.facebook.com/mygolfspycom/ Instagram: www.instagram.com/mygolfspy/ Listen Here
  12. As someone who plays about 99% of my rounds on a single, quirky course, I'm convinced it matters a lot. So not only do we have tiny greens (that's going to skew my putting and approach numbers), but we have a bunch of dogleg holes, several of which are full 90° holes. Consider the 2nd hole, a short par 4: At under 270 yards, this is a tiny hole. But it is heavily forested on every side; cutting the corner isn't a real option (it's sometimes done for fun in scrambles, but you're lofting an iron over tall trees completely blind). So you end up hitting a wedge into the corner (didn't quite catch my PW properly on this swing). I have to assume that every single time I play this hole, Arccos marks me down has having lost strokes driving, because I'm (at best) looking for a 130 yard "drive" here.
  13. I've noted elsewhere on the forum that my GIRs are suppressed a bit by the tiny greens on our course (they average just over 3,000 sq ft, so about 18x18 in yards). This reality also likely inflates my putting stats a bit, as it's very rare to be faced with a 50' putt on our course.
  14. Yep, @golfingbrock's reply is something I was going to say in reply to @THEZIPR23. My "no long" miss pattern is very common among the high-to-mid handicap crowd, because we all (hand raised) have a tendency to pick clubs based on "if I hit this properly." I'm not even here talking about the guy who chooses his clubs based on "that one time when I was downwind of a cyclone on a fairway as baked out as Willie Nelson" distance. But it's very clear that I don't center my dispersion pattern over my target, which would lead to better scores.
  15. Haven't checked in here in a bit; the last couple of weeks have involved a chunk of traveling and a little less playing. But I got out for a nine hole round this afternoon, and also decided to take a quick look at where things stand with my on-course performance with the 699 Pros. I'm using the old Arccos system numbers here, because it's easier to use the web dashboard rather than the app when compared date ranges. I'm finding that in the new system, my overall handicap is slightly higher and my approach handicap is somewhat lower. But the numbers here should just be compared relatively. Here's my overall handicap for this season before getting the 699 Pros, when I had the PING G700s in my bag: And here's the rounds since I got the 699 Pros: As I said in an earlier post, all else being equal, I'd rather have the 699s in my bag than the G700s. They're a pleasure to hit and they look great. That topline number suggests that perhaps all else is about equal. But let's dig a level deeper and check the shot dispersion patterns before and after. Here's the before (limited to yardages that I'm likely to use my 5-PW): And here's the rounds with the 699 Pros: So there's an incremental gain in GIRs. Still nothing good there, but an increase is better than the alternative. What I'm more impressed by is the 8% drop in approaches short of the green, with those misses either hitting the green (2% more) or missing left and right, but still the correct distance (6% more). I'm not quite sure why that wouldn't translate into a better overall approach handicap in Arccos, but that seems like a small but genuine improvement. At this point in my testing, the 699 Pros have won the subjective contest in a landslide, and they're beginning to pull ahead in the objective, statistical categories as well. EDIT: I'll add here one picture from the new app. It shows my Strokes Gained: Approach trend line for my past 25 rounds. I think there is noticable improvement here as well.
  16. Duration: 00:28:11 Ping has announced the new G425, but is there room for improvement over their previous models? Also, the return of Adam's Golf (on Twitter), at home launch monitors and Harry's English phrase of the week. 2:12 - NEW! PING G425 Driver (New & Improved?) 7:14 - Best ways to score on Par 3's? 12:14 - Are personal launch monitors worth it? 21:04 - The return of Adams Golf? 26:15 - Harry's English Phrase of the Week --------------------------------------------- Welcome to MyGolfSpy! Over 9 million golfers a year turn to MyGolfSpy to get unbiased, tested reviews and recommendations for the best golf gear to help you improve your game. Golfers like you turn to us because we're independent and unbiased. And, over the years, we've created the #1 resource for golfers who put cold, hard data above marketing hype. #MYGOLFSPY #CONSUMERFIRST Check out MyGolfSpy today! www.mygolfspy.com --------------------------------------------------------------------- Used by over 9,000,000 forward-thinking golfers! --------------------------------------------------------------------- Subscribe to MYGOLFSPY on YouTube: bit.ly/MGSyoutube OUR MISSION: mygolfspy.com/our-mission/ --------------------------------------------- Check out MyGolfSpy's other channels! -------------------------------------------- REVIEWS: bit.ly/MGSreviews BUYERS GUIDES: mygolfspy.com/category/golf-b... NEW RELEASES: bit.ly/MGSnewgear PODCAST: podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast... DRIVER FITTING TOOL: www.truegolffit.com/ ------------------------------------ MYGOLFSPY on Social Media ------------------------------------ Twitter: twitter.com/MyGolfSpy Facebook: www.facebook.com/mygolfspycom/ Instagram: www.instagram.com/mygolfspy/ Listen Here
  17. A quick chart I built today from my previous years' Game Golf data and this year's data from Arccos: Each category records my strokes lost to a scratch golfer by aspect of the game, and the total. In addition, I've got a column for something that should be close to my average score each year. Obviously, comparing strokes gained from 2016-2019 against 2020 is dubious, because of the differing stats systems. But in any case, I'm pleased to see obvious, measurable improvement.
  18. This'll be fun: looks like the guys at TXG are going to be giving their opinions on the Sub 70 line, including the 699 Pro: EDIT: YouTube link is already up. Watching it now:
  19. Nothing yet. I'll check in again.
  20. First Tournament Recap Kirke and I left for the Twin Cities on Sunday afternoon. We were looking at about a 4.5 hour drive. But along the way, I remembered a sign I'd seen for a course along the road. We impulsively decided we needed to check it out, and that was a great decision. Grantsburg (WI) Golf Course was a total blast to play. Just under 2,000 yards for 9 holes. They charged $10 for the 9 with cart, and didn't charge for Kirke. He and I decided to play it as a two-man scramble. There is a shorter set of tees as well, and that bailed us out on one hole when I duck-hooked a drive. Nearly every hole is blind on at least one shot. I probably wouldn't want this to be my home course, but for a quick nine, it was a total blast! It was the kind of course you finish and immediately want to go around again because you would have a better idea of how to attack it the second time. Monday morning, we got up early (I didn't think Kirke had a chance of sleeping in; he was pretty excited). We grabbed Chik-Fil-A for breakfast and headed to Eagle Lake Youth Golf Center for some morning practice. We starting with Kirke practicing some longer putts. We then got a bucket of range balls. Kirke was on fire on the range. He was peppering the 100 yard sign with his driver (he normally carries the ball right around there), and he hit one in the 50 yard net on his second attempt. His swing was looking really sharp: But we got hit with a thunderstorm (with quite a bit of lightning) partway through his bucket. We took shelter for a while to wait it out. The storm was going to pass in about a half hour, but more concerning was the fact that the radar looked to be showing an enormous storm system over the whole Twin Cities just about the time of Kirke's scheduled 3:12 afternoon tee time: Once the initial storm cleared, we headed over to the short course for what (I'm pretty sure) was our third match on the Eagle Lake pitch and putt. The longest hole is 90 yards. This course is the scene of one important golf first for Kirke: when he was 3, it was the first time he beat me on a hole we played at the same yardage. It was a 40-yarder, and at the time, he hit hybrid on the green and two-putted for par; I went over the green and made a bogey. I digress. Monday morning was a new first: the first time Kirke and I played nine holes from the same tees and he beat me outright: Note that he shot a solid even par 27. I skulled my tee shot on 2 OB over the green and missed a few short putts for a 30, so Kirke thumped me thoroughly. A cool accomplishment for him, and it certainly won't be the last time I lose to this boy. From there, we headed to another place that Kirke has wanted to go for a while: Topgolf! We spent most of our time competing on the Junior Quick Nine game: three shots each to the nearest three targets. I had to shoot for the red and yellow targets that were further from our bay to even it up a little, so of course Kirke ended up beating me a little more often than I beat him. After a quick stop at the local PGA Tour Superstore, we began the drive to the course. When we arrived, I was struck by the 1) number of kids and 2) the dollars spent on youth golf equipment. It's a different world. Anyway, we waited the COVID-approved half hour before Kirke's tee time before he went to the putting green. Given the amount of swings he'd already taken that morning, he didn't feel the need to hit any range balls. They were only a few minutes behind schedule for Kirke's tee time. Kirke was paired up with one other 7-year-old boy; they both had the same Cobra junior bag. There was no rain when the round began—and not a drop fell during the round. We were grateful to be able to play, having come from so far. As per my earlier post, I had done as much online scouting as I could of the course and was pretty confident that it would set up well for Kirke. What I didn't realize was the degree to which most of the greens were set well above the fairways, most with pretty severe false fronts. On the first hole, Kirke hit his approach well above the hole. Given the speed of the practice green and the fact that the green had some significant slope to the front, he was very timid with his first putt, barely getting it halfway to the hole. It ended up as a three-putt bogey. I'm not going to recap every single shot in part because, already, they're blending together a bit for me. Here's his card: He made a solid par on 2. The 3rd was another that had a severe incline; he flared his 6 iron right and short and didn't get up and down. The surprise hole for me was 5; it was one that, given the yardage, I had hopes he would birdie. He hit a perfect drive, leaving him just over 100 yards to the green. But his FW cut a bit on him and he ended up in a pretty deep greenside bunker. His first bunker shot hit the lip and rolled back to the same spot. He got out on his second try, 2-putting for a bogey. The thing I was most proud of him about, though, is that although he was 4-over through five holes, he wasn't down at all. That's (honestly) a bit unusual for him; when he starts with a few bad holes, his attitude can get frustrated and a bit sulky. Monday, though, nothing seemed to phase him; he just wanted to go to the next hole and keep playing. The next three holes he rolled up solid pars. The final hole was a blind drive, and although he hit it well, when we came over the hill we found he was in the right rough. This left him with about a 75-yard shot from pretty heavy rough over a deep bunker; that's a tough shot for a little guy. He ended up bunkered; got out in one shot and two-putted to finish with a bogey (his par putt just missed; that ended up being more important than we thought in the moment). To be honest, neither nor I were expecting 5-over to finish well. We were the first group to get done, and Kirke's playing partner clipped him by one, shooting a 4-over 40. But as each group came in, no one was posting anything lower than Kirke's 41. So Kirke ended up T-2. I'm pretty sure he thinks that medal is the greatest thing ever! After the round, we hit a gas station so Kirke could get a much-needed and well-deserved Mountain Dew slushie. Then we enjoyed a four-hour drive home (with lots of good conversation). It was a great two-day road trip, with lots of really special father and son memories made. We've got the ball from his first tournament set aside (to go with his first hole-in-one ball). Kirke appreciates the support so many of you guys have shown: I share your comments and such with him. Thanks for that! We're still not planning to make a habit of driving to these events on any sort of regular basis, especially in the near future. I did find out, though, that there's a Upper Peninsula Golf Association that has a junior tour here. It's already done for this season, but I'm hoping that maybe next year, Kirke'll be able to play an event or two.
  21. Duration: 00:44:36 Today, Callaway releases the Big Bertha B-21 driver that aims to cure your slice. They also announced the REVA line of women's clubs. Lastly, is an electric cart revolution just around the corner? 2:10 - Will the Big Bertha B-21 cure your slice? 6:05 - Is the FlightPath Tee the most advanced tee on the market? 13:03 - Can a Ball Retriever save your life? 19:30 - Are Callaway's REVA clubs the best clubs for women? 37:28 - HOTSEAT: Will electric carts take over in the U.S.? --------------------------------------------- Welcome to MyGolfSpy! Over 9 million golfers a year turn to MyGolfSpy to get unbiased, tested reviews and recommendations for the best golf gear to help you improve your game. Golfers like you turn to us because we're independent and unbiased. And, over the years, we've created the #1 resource for golfers who put cold, hard data above marketing hype. #MYGOLFSPY #CONSUMERFIRST Check out MyGolfSpy today! www.mygolfspy.com --------------------------------------------------------------------- Used by over 9,000,000 forward-thinking golfers! --------------------------------------------------------------------- Subscribe to MYGOLFSPY on YouTube: bit.ly/MGSyoutube OUR MISSION: mygolfspy.com/our-mission/ --------------------------------------------- Check out MyGolfSpy's other channels! -------------------------------------------- REVIEWS: bit.ly/MGSreviews BUYERS GUIDES: mygolfspy.com/category/golf-b... NEW RELEASES: bit.ly/MGSnewgear PODCAST: podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast... DRIVER FITTING TOOL: www.truegolffit.com/ ------------------------------------ MYGOLFSPY on Social Media ------------------------------------ Twitter: twitter.com/MyGolfSpy Facebook: www.facebook.com/mygolfspycom/ Instagram: www.instagram.com/mygolfspy/ Listen Here
  22. A couple things: I prefer the size and shape. The G700s are very, very large and feature quite a lot of offset. These a simply better looking, in my opinion. Practically, the smaller head (especially heel-to-toe) is not as difficult to hit from the rough. This was one of my complaints with the G700; it has a lot of face area, and seems to struggle to rip through taller grass. The sound is much better. At best, the G700s have a loud crack at impact. The 699 Pros have a much more solid, muted sound. There is a point that, if the goal is a lower score, the objective performance numbers have to trump everything else. But as I said, all else being equal, I like the 699 Pros more.
  23. Played a couple 9-hole rounds yesterday: one with Kirke as a practice round for his upcoming tournament, and then a league match with my dad. [It's awesome to play a game that transcends generations like this.] Made a slight swing adjustment last night which seemed to aid my ball-striking quite a bit. A regular fault of mine is a hard sway into impact, getting out ahead of the ball. Made it a focus yesterday to make a more centered turn both back and through the ball, and saw immediately improvement in how I was striking the ball. The first hole (the 10th) asks for an iron over a dogleg on the tee and then a very accurate approach. I hit both shots well, but each slightly offline. My 6-iron off the tee was pushed slightly, leaving a longer approach. My 8-iron into the green was a touch left, but still ended up pin-high from about 155. That's a good start. I used my PW from 125 on 11, and once again hit the desired distance, but again slightly pulled. My next iron was on the 13th. After driving into the woods, I had to pitch backwards to get back in play: good job on the 5-iron for successfully completing this tasks. From 180, I hit yet another pin-high iron, this time with a 6. It was left again, but I was gaining confidence with my ball-striking with each swing. On 14, I probably had my worst iron shot of the day: an 8-iron from 150 that I push-faded weakly into a greenside bunker. The next hole was my highlight of the day: we have a short, blind par 3 on our course. From 128, I hit my 9-iron to inches. I believe it's the closest I've even been to a hole in one. Kirke gets the photo credit: My final iron swing of the back came on 17, after driving under some trees. The 5-iron again had a nice punch-out, this time just over 100 yards, trundling up onto the green. In my league match, I'll condense the report: I made a total disaster of the easiest hole on the front by pulling a 9-iron into the woods, taking the penalty, and then hitting a 9-iron through the dogleg up to a tree on the far side. Other than that, things went swimmingly The best hole on the front was the final one: a 420 yard, uphill par 4. I hit a big drive (for me), and then hit the 8-iron on a line with the flag. It ended up releasing to the back of the green, leaving a very fast downhill putt that I was happy to get home in two: As I had hoped, after an initial turn the wrong direction in my stats, my approach play numbers are beginning to improve. Over the last few rounds, I'm trending in a decent direction: This remains a work in progress. These are obviously great sticks. All else being equal, I'd much rather have them in bag than the G700s. It is simply a matter of me raising my game to match the irons.
  24. Closing in on Kirke's tournament debut! He and I will drive from here to the Twin Cities Sunday after church services here (it's about a 4.5 hour drive). The tournament is Monday with tee times starting at 2:00pm (specific tee times will be announced tomorrow, I think). Our current plan is to arrive in MSP Sunday evening and head to one of our favorite practice facilities: https://www.threeriversparks.org/location/eagle-lake-youth-golf-center. They have a tiny par 3 course (total yards: 575!). I think I beat Kirke by a stroke or two the last time we played it; I'll need to have my partial wedges totally dialed in or else he's almost certain to beat me this time. So far, Kirke hasn't beaten me if we've played from the same tees; perhaps Sunday will be the day? They also have a giant practice green, which is important, because Kirke needs to practice lag putting. As I've noted in other threads, the greens at our course are tiny, so I want Kirke to spend some time two-putting from 40+ feet. Monday morning, we'll plan to take it easy. I'm not looking to wear Kirke out before his round. We'll probably head to a golf store (always a treat for us, since there aren't any where we live). I'll probably grab him a sleeve of new balls. We might also check out the next length of US Kids drivers. I've found that the employers are a bit amused when I ask if Kirke can test a driver in the hitting bay against his current driver. I'm not at all sure yet when the course opens for warm ups, but I know that when we get there, I'll need to slow Kirke down a bit. He tends to rifle his way through a bucket of range balls. I would imagine that tendency might be heightened with his excitement for the tournament. A couple days back, the tournament director emailed me the yardages for Kirke's age group. I'm pretty excited on this: the course (as best I can tell from online maps) looks fairly flat, with no obstructions in front of the greens (water or bunkers). There are hazards, but you have to go offline to find them. The total length is same that Kirke normally plays (1,500 yards for 9 holes). But because our home course has only two par 5s and three par 3s (for the whole 18), the distribution of yardage is different on the tournament course, which is a more traditional 5-4s, 2-5s, 2-3s setup. In particular, Kirke's par 5s at home are both 300 yards; for this tournament, they are 235 and 265. With any luck, he should be putting for eagle on the shorter par 5. Kirke is very excited; definitely talking about this all the time now. I'm trying to help him focus on things he can control: having fun. Hitting one good shot at a time. And having a good attitude. I'll keep everyone posted with pictures and videos over the next few days.
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