Thursday, June 16, 2011

The New Irons have been selected....

16/6/11 Thursday The NEW IRONS!!! Had no idea that my search would end so quickly after setting myself on the trail only 7 days ago. The set chosen is used and come from the 2010 club champion and are the set he was using when I won the 2009 club handicap championship against him. Had always intended to have a hit with his old Bridgestone J33’s and played with him on Sunday and organised it during the round. Having moved on to Titleist AP2’s and down to a 7 handicap from the 10-12 he was on in 2009 was a factor in my choosing to have a hit with them. Was a like a kid on Xmas eve the night I received the clubs, then kept grabbing odd sticks while walking around the house and having a bit of a set up and waggle in the living room.

First two days were a couple of hours on the practise range alternating between the J33’s and my current favourite iron the Ping Karsten clones. The J33’s are a combo set with cavity backs from 2 to 7 irons and blades from the 8 to PW. Yes the set has a 2 iron which I had never used before even though I use a #2 Maxfli 16 degree Hybrid. As I played 2009 without using Drivers and #3 iron was first choice off the tee then and successfully I add in winning and getting 8 or so strokes off my starting hcp., I had a plan. After two days of range practise and champing at the bit to get on the course in earnest. Discovered some major changes in my iron play with the J33’s. First and most obvious was the added distance with the lofted irons, with a definite improved control in shot play. Secondly was the need to change my stance, moving a little closer to the ball at address, fixed the early problem of pulling shots to the left.

Today was the day the plan was put into action, simply play 9 holes with the irons only. With a strong wind it was a definite challenge on some holes and a 46 off the stick was a credible score. With one three putt and a little inacuracy caused mostly by selecting a club too much on three second shots I was very satisfied. I must comment on the 2 iron, used it of the tee on all holes except one par 3. It was excellent hitting into the wind and with it as well. Apart from the clubs owner another golfer (and former club champ) I play regularly with uses a 2 iron a lot. This player is going blind (glaucoma) and has drifted out from 4 to a 10 and needs a spotter to play. Have caddied for him in championship match play and learnt a lot, watching a fella who cannot see where his ball goes yet as his swing so good that hi ball rarely if ever is off the fairway.

The accuracy of the lofted clubs was superb the PW made the difference from 100 m and in. Last week that was a distance that had me struggling in club choice. Tomorrow is the “Chicken Run” and this time will be the irons and the driver in unison. Lack of distance off the tee today really did stretch my capability on all second shots with and into the wind on the par fours. This set of clubs have a good history for me to measure myself with in progress for the next couple of years.

The former owner of the irons hits a long ball, where as I have never been in that realm. At times of late with the better swing and physical condition it has felt that there was a little more in the tank on some iron shots. Leading me to question if the irons needed to be upgraded and hence the start of my search last week. With the J33’s that bit ‘extra’ is now coming into the stroke play and is going to take a bit of getting used to.

The past two years of trial with cavity back and blade irons has worked for me. If I had used these clubs last season when they were available it would have been a wasted effort. That I can “feel” these irons surprises me, the difference between these and what I have progressed with to this stage is like chalk and cheese. It has invigorated my delight in golf even more, visualising practise sessions with deliberate efforts shaping shots. This has made every bit of effort, pain, enjoyment, and disapointment to get to this level of playing golf worthwhile. Thankyou for your time and attention, “Hit ‘em straight all”, Geoff

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