Friday 14/12/12. Yesterday as I ambled around the Kingston course smacking the little white ball without the game brain on it was possible to experiment. As my chosen game is one of minimal risk and playing the shots which have the least opportunity to fail, these social rounds are where I test my capability.
Coming to grips with the added distance and what changes it initiates in my rounds is going to take several social rounds yet. Kingston is a course with several doglegs and with trees 3 to 5 metres on the corners it is possible to take the short cut. Going across the corner is the shot which was not considered by me previously. Yesterday was a day when I tested the limit to see if these shots could be played and have a high percentage of success.
What is the first thing noticed about the improved distance is the lack of effort required in playing the stroke. The improvement is all from the technique that has been developed from the coaching and practise over the past two seasons. To get to the end of the story is to say, yes, I can 'cut the corners' and do it easily. Mentally though this is now an accepted reality and that is as important as being physically able to play the shots as well.
On two holes in particular the new game was made especially apparent. The first is a 193 metre par 3 a hole which is a stretch for me club wise as I carry a #2 iron and a #3 hybrid and not a fairway wood. 200m though is a distance I play with the second 400cc (10 degree) driver in my bag yesterday I did not try hard and was still too long. Should have had a crack with the 2 iron or 3 hybrid but was not too fussed with being long and can negotiate this distance well enough. The second hole is a 325 m dogleg right par 4 and I generally play to the left side and finish at 80-100m from the green. Yesterday though I cut the corner into a breezy cross wind. The ball finished 60 metes from the green. A big 20 to 40m advantage gained for me in going to the green with the next shot.
The next hole was the 358 m 9th hole and I continued with the trialling my capability off the tee. This time with a definite aggressive mindset. This was opposed to my usual, find a reachable target on the fairway and place the ball as close to it as possible. The green is visible at the end of a straight fairway and all I did was aim to the right of the green and hit. Finished 125 metres out hitting into the gusty breeze which had picked up as the round progressed.
Now it is back to the putting green for the next day. Practising on getting the ball into the hole with a much improved return.
Thursday 13/12/12 A busy week yet I have managed to maintain a consistent level of practise following the weekend. Was a runner up in the competition on Sunday and happy with a second place. Especially happy with the distance off the tee and accuracy. This was a flow on from results on the range last week. By happen stance was in a group with two single digit handicappers who are noted big hitters. In no way did I chase them off the tee it was a head down have fun day of golf and concentrate on hitting the ball and consistency.
As the round progressed it was obvious that off the tee my shots were not much off the distance and 10-20 metres behind big hitting golfers is in the 230 - 250 metre range. Not my usual distance that is reached with ease or consistently at all. The last 3 holes though I was in the rythym and genuinely began to chase the drives and yes I did match them off the tee. Still in my taking it easy golf period consolidating my game in preparation for 2013. This weekend though is the Kingston Summer open and I went for a drive played nine holes just for a hit out. Putting and short game is still a bit ratty. Not sure what this is caused by 100%. Have a suspicion that it is not technical but mental and not having a red hot go at the task when on the green.
Hence I am about to go out and get on the practise green again in 10 minutes.
Thankyou for your time and attention, Geoff