Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Hank Haney's 7 Keys

Hank Haney has gotten a lot of guff lately....from the publication of "The Big Miss", to comments about the swing that he taught Tiger being "wipey" (wth ever THAT means).  However, before anyone complained about him violating Tiger's "trust" (lofl...discuss THAT amongst yourselves), Hank wrote an excellent instruction book.  It's called Hank Haney's Essentials of the Swing, and it is really something.  It's probably one of the ONLY instruction books that is short,concise, understandable, and most importantly EXECUTABLE.  I've read the book cover to cover three times, and use it constantly as a point of reference.  It's has made a huge difference for me, and I encourage you to check it out

Webb get's er done....

Like it or not folks, Webb Simpson was the last ,man standing at Olympia on Saturday.  Amidst all of the Tiger hand wringing, Beau worshipping, Birdman tackling, and Furyk snap-hooking...the best golfer really did win.  I've been fortunate enough to play Olympic under much more benign circumstances and it was still a huge test, so please a tip of the hat, and a toast to Webb Simpson for a round well played.

As you watched the last 12 holes out, one could not help but sense a tension in the foggy air of the Olympic Club - no real runaways, just a "feeling" that drama was right around the corner.  First Webb stated a birdie run, then Westwood went looking for a Spotted Owl in a tell tree, then GMac started to fray a bit at the edges....and finally, Furyk melted like a Hershey bar under a broiler.  Meanwhile, Webb persevered....and won a well deserved title.  Respect to Michael Thompson and John Peterson, two relative unknowns who really hung tough.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Tiger's Putter needs some Love #putterlove ?

If you watched Tiger's putting woes this week, you have to wonder what the heck is going on ....It's certainly nothing he can blame on Hank, or atribute to the "wipey" swing that he has been heard to complain about.  Tiger has vacillated between (at least) three putters over the past 12 months - his original Scotty, a heel shafted "semi mallet", and now the Nike version of his venerable Cameron Newport.
Despite the equipment changes, his putting continues to be lackluster. We can all understand, I suppose, the impact of his personal struggles and his injuries on his full shots - as that is a much more complex motion. However, it is difficult to comprehend that the guy who not so long ago had (arguably) the best putting stroke ever finds himself in such a pickle. No matter what Johnny Miller says about Tiger winning "40 more tournaments and 4 more majors", one thing is for certain - if Eldrick cannot figure out the flatstick, he has no chance to ever reach those numbers.

Here is a thought - maybe Tiger and Nike should follow the lead of TaylorMade and their recent "#driverlove" campaign...they could start a #putterlove campaign, and make Tiger some special hats...

Sunday, February 19, 2012

A New Golf Season....

Next weekend, I will play my inaugural 2012 event on The Golf Channel's Amateur Tour at one of my favorite courses ever - Farmlinks. I'm really looking forward to getting back on the competitive bandwagon, after a short winter break.  Last year was one of mixed results - while I finished in the top 25 at the AmTour's National Championship in La Quinta, CA, my play throughout the season was inconsistent. 
For those of you who are new to BCC, or have not heard of The Golf Channel's Amateur Tour, its a really cool thing, and I recommend you check it out.   Regardless of your skill level, it's an awesome way to enjoy some competition and play some "real golf" - something that lots of golfers (including me, before I joined) seldom if ever played.  Playing completely by the Rules of Golf ("playing it down", no gimmes, no mulligans) is vastly different than how most people play...don't get me wrong, I'm not bashing  the game filled with "do overs" - just saying that playing where you count every stroke and must make every putt is a lot of fun, and will really improve your game.
Anyway - with this being my 5th season to play on the "AmTour", I decided to make some changes in my approach this year. The way the tour works is that every couple of weeks there is a one day event (with 8-20 people in your flight), every couple of months there is a "Regional Major" (a two day event with 50-100 people in your flight), and then the season ending National Championship (with 150 people in your flight).  Although I have done well in the local events (winning a few here and there), I have placed reasonably well in only one major, and have set a goal to finish in the top 10 at Nationals in 2012.  I have decided to lessen the focus on local events this year (planning to play in 6-8 of them), and play in several "Majors", in hopes that this prepares me better for Nationals.
I will be writing more this year about my experiences on the AmTour, so please check back often to see how my plan works out.  Of course, no new season here at Bushwood would be complete without an edition of "What's in the Bag" here are the highlights:
  • The official ball of BCC is now the Titleist Pro v1x
  • We have also put a new driver in the bag, a Titleist 910D2, at 9.5 degrees - with a "real deal" MItsubishi Blue Board shaft
  • TaylorMade r9 3 Wood and two TM hybrids are in the mix (maybe replaced by RocketBallz , depending on the results of my upcoming testing)
  • Titleist AP2 irons, with KBZ "C Taper" shafts ( a nice Christmas gift !)
  • TP Mills "Hand Forged"  Trad 2 is now the putter of choice (strongly recommend checking out TP Mills gear - he was truly a visionary artist of the putting instrument, and his son David has continued his legacy..although David IS a bit of a flake).  
  • I've been experimenting with belly putters (see next weeks post on that...), so the jury is out on that...
  • Vokey wedges are back in the bag, after a year off...
Anyway, thanks for reading Bushwood Country Club, and please come back soon for more .... I'm hoping for a great golf season in 2012 for me and for all of BCC's readers...

Friday, February 10, 2012

Is less really more ? (part 1)

Adams Speedline Super XTD
RocketBallz by TaylorMade

Recently, two equipment manufacturers have launched product lines that have two interesting  things in common...
(1) the feature some form of "slot" in the clubhead, which is reported to provide flex in the clubface, and therefore more velocity and distance
(2) the featured club in each case is a 3 wood (not the driver, as we have come to expect)
By now, you have probably determined that the clubs I am referring to are TM's "Rocketballz" line, and Adams Golf latest in the Speedline series.  

While all of the reviews and reports suggest that this technology really works, our nature here at BCC is "seeing is believing" (just ask Lacey Underalls if you doubt us....).
Over the next two weeks, we will be testing these two newcomers against two old favorites: the  TM R9 and the TourEdge Exotics xcg5 (which is touted as being the longest 3 wood on the market).
Stay tuned for the "straight story"  from our testing, which will be supervised by our own Judge Smails...