DOES A SOFTER BALL MAKE A DIFFERENCE

Greetings from Suzanne Thursday, 23 June 2011
For the last few weeks at least, Michael Giuffre may well have been the most stressed man in the world of golf. Mike is the director of golf course maintenance at Congressional Country Club – the host of last week’s US Open – and his staff of 55, plus 120 volunteers (a diverse group that included superintendents, assistant superintendents, interns, turf students and industry vendors from all over the world) were tasked with making sure that all of Congressional’s fairways and greens were ready for the nation’s championship.

That preparation included a complete rebuild of the greens, including the installation of SubAir aeration, moisture removal systems and soil moisture measuring systems to get them running as smooth, even and fast as possible. GPS mapping technology was used to increase the area of each green that could support hole locations; putting a premium on placing your shots into the right quadrant of the green. If approaches don’t find the right part of the green, the area where the hole is located, they become very challenging.

Then there’s the rough. Graduated cuts were made into the fescue rough to further penalize shots the further they land from the fairway. The first cut is an average of 18 to 20 feet wide and 3 3/4 to 4 inches tall, depending on the hole. The second cut of rough goes 18-20 feet further from the fairway and is 4-5 inches high. And we thought the players had it bad.

Now Congressional CC is one of the US’ biggest and most prestigious clubs, with a course maintenance budget and greens-keeping staff to match, but they’re an exception, not the rule. Spare a thought for our small team next time you’re out on the course; remember to always repair your pitchmark, and try to find one other to repair while you’re at it – every little bit helps.

If, for whatever reason, you haven’t been shown how to properly repair a pitchmark (maybe even if you have!) then come to see us in the shop and we’ll make sure you have the correct technique for the job; it will make a big impact on the recovery time of the grass. Then there’s the question of having the right tool for the job… I’ve just about seen it all, including tee pegs and car keys being used – it gives us sleepless nights so PLEASE come and get yourself a quality repair tool!

Regards,
Suzanne

DOES A SOFTER BALL MAKE A DIFFERENCE
I spent a few hours reading web sites and examining the packaging on Golf Ball boxes
and it is easy to get confused if you are looking for a soft Golf Ball with great feel
around the green.
Each manufacturer talks about their soft covers and soft cores and soft feel on almost
every Golf Ball I checked. So how do you choose a Golf Ball that offers you a softer feel
off the Putter and Wedges around the green?
The first point to note is that the ‘day of the brick’ has just about disappeared. The
manufacturers are right. Courtesy of new cover materials and even more inventive
materials for the core, they have found ways to drive extra distance out of golf balls
with a softer feel.
But there is a difference between Golf Balls. You are going to pay for it though. Generally across all manufacturers the covers on their multi-layer, premium, golf balls are thinner and provide a more responsive feel. While the difference between 0.3 or 0.5mm softer feel material and a cover that is 1.5mm might not seem much, you will notice it.
The same will go for the core. On the more expensive golf balls they have created softer cores that still provide high levels of energy transfer to maximize distance.
Many will argue that, given the fact that we spend most of our time with either a short-iron or Putter in our hand, we need to focus our thoughts on the ball that helps you most around the green.
There’s some sense in that argument. Compare the performance between a top player
and a regular or improving golfer and you’ll see the difference in the short-game.
So anything you can do to improve your shorter game will translate to a better score.

SPARE A THOUGHT FOR THE GREENSKEEPER
For the last few weeks at least, Michael Giuffre may well have been the most stressed
man in the world of golf. Mike is the director of golf course maintenance at Congressional
Country Club – the host of last week’s US Open -and his staff of 55, plus 120 volunteers
(a diverse group that included superintendents,assistant superintendents, interns, turf
students and industry vendors from all over the world) were tasked with making sure that
all of Congressional’s fairways & greens were ready for the nation’s championship.

That preparation included a complete rebuild of the greens, including the installation of

SubAir aeration,moisture removal systems and soil moisture measuring systems to get them

running as smooth, even and fast as possible. GPS mapping technology was used to increase

the area of each green that could support hole locations; putting a premium on placing your

shots into the right quadrant of the green. If approaches don’t find the right part of the green,

the area where the hole is located, they become very challenging.

Then there’s the rough. Graduated cuts were made into the fescue rough to further penalize shots the further they land from the fairway. The first cut is an average of 18 to 20 feet wide and 3 3/4 to 4 inches tall, depending on the hole. The second cut of rough goes 18-20 feet further from the fairway and is 4-5 inches high. And we thought the players had it bad…

Now Congressional CC is one of the US’ biggest and most prestigious clubs, with a course maintenance budget and greens-keeping staff to match, but they’re an exception, not the rule. Spare a thought for our small team next time you’re out on the course; remember to always repair your pitchmark, and try to find one other to repair while you’re at it – every little bit helps.

If, for whatever reason, you haven’t been shown how to properly repair a pitchmark
(maybe even if you have!) then come to see us in the shop and we’ll make sure you have
the correct technique for the job; it will make a big impact on the recovery time of the grass.
Then there’s the question of having the right tool for the job… I’ve just about seen it all,
including tee pegs and car keys being used – it gives me sleepless nights so PLEASE come
and get yourself a quality repair tool!

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