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War on slow play

Written by: Tony Korologos | Date: Thursday, January 12th, 2012
Categories: GolfHackersPGA TourPro Golf

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This first weekend of golf on the PGA Tour has already started some interesting commentary from the TV announcers, PGA Tour players and golf journalists on slow play.  Slow play is the enemy without a doubt.  The comments at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions regarding Johnathan Byrd’s slow play (also known as “deliberate”) were well noted. I then I saw a few great slow play related tweets from world #1 Luke Donald’s twitter:

Sounds like slow play is already an issue the 1st week of the PGA Tour season and it’s 2somes. Sort it out please…

It’s not that hard, be ready when it’s your turn. Slow play is killing our sport

Can’t really blame the officials, not enough of them to govern. Responsibility lies with the players and their caddies

If u r second to putt, why not read your putt while the player 1 is reading his. 30 secs saved there = 35 mins saved for the round

It was very refreshing to read those rants from Luke.  Bravo.  Keep at it.

Yesterday I read a piece by Cam Cole in the sports section of National Post, “PGA’s slow paces is killing golf.”  Check it out.  Some great points and great quotes are in there.

2.5 Hour Round

In the Monday final round at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions this past week, David Toms was first out of the gate.  By himself he played 18 holes in 2.5 hours.  It can be done.

Not Just The PGA Tour

One reason aside from the expense that golf is not a reasonable endeavor for many amateurs is the fact that it takes so long, especially in a down economy when those who are working are working more hours than ever.  If amateurs could get in nine holes in 1.5 hours or 18 in 3 hours, the sport would have a lot more participation.

Speed it up people!

11 responses to “War on slow play”

  1. courtgolf says:

    Not so sure about that math Donald tossed out. Two guys in a group – 2nd player saves 30 seconds per putt is at best 18 minutes a round, and that’s assuming 2 putts per hole that have to be read. Quite often these guys just have tap in 2nd putts.

    The rules are in place from the USGA, and the PGA Tour has the ability to enforce the rules, but there is no push from the players or commissioner to attach strokes to penalties, and that’s the only thing that will hurt these guys enough to make them change from an organizational standpoint. (Ben Crane worked on his pace because of peer pressure)

    Pointing out David Toms, or any other final round rabbit, doesn’t really do much other than pointing out that there is room to improve. This is the guy who just wants to get off the golf course. He knows he’s not playing for much.

    Toms did shoot a 2-under 71 on Monday, and that can lead some people to wonder if moving a little faster at least isn’t going to hurt them.

    • Yes I thought about the math part too Court. But if each player in the group does that, it could add up quickly.

      Very good point in your 2nd paragraph. Until someone has the golf balls to enforce the rules in place, nothing is going to change.

      Toms is exactly the point. He is always fast, but it shows that a sub 3 hour round is possible. Personally I always play better when I can get to my ball, go through my routine and hit it. If I have to wait 10 minutes per shot, there’s no flow at all and I typically score worse.

  2. Mark says:

    I agree. Standing around doing nothing while another player putts is hard on everybody but the ‘deliberate’ one. I’ve seen some pros not even get their putters in their hands until it’s their turn. A few need to get over themselves. However, it’s not a race either and finding some common ground will be challenging UNLESS they simply enforce the rules. What a concept.

    • I find that I start to hurry when others are playing slow around me. That hurts MY game big time, especially when I don’t concentrate enough on 3-5 foot putts. Miss the putt hurrying to get out of the way of the group behind.

  3. Charlie says:

    Not only was David Toms able to play a full round in 2.5 hours, it was also his only round of the week under par. his best score came when he played fastest.

    You could almost sense Stricker’s frustration while watching Byrd take forever teeing off. Stricker then calmly walks up, tees it up and smacks it past Byrd in a tenth of the time it took Byrd to fidget around turning the tee bed into a bed of practice divots.

  4. JESSE says:

    Interesting

  5. duckhook says:

    Luke has some good points. One is that there are not enough officials to enforce. Get them, when a group gets out of position, penalize them. I understand that in situations like Kevin Na taking 16 shots on a hole, it is going to take longer. The rules allow time to catch up. Luke’s points are common sense. Penalties will reduce the time someone “analyzes” by affecting thier wallet.

    As for the weekend golfer. It is not just slow play, it has become a complete lack of etiquette. Golfers yelling to their buddies, not even understanding their position to other groups. I could go on. Before the Tiger Woods era and the added popularity he induced, it was unheard of to take 2 1/2 hours to play nine. 2 hours was normal.
    More course marshalls are needed…with the authority to remove players with poor golf etiquette. Back in the day, etiquette was learned before a club was swung.

  6. Buster says:

    Enough is Enough. A lot of us like J D get rid of his police mug my gosh you have had that up there long enough. Put T W girls friends up there one a month for the next 3 years

  7. WILLIAM BYRD says:

    I don’t make a practice swing neither does my golf buddies. It bugs me when someone stands over the ball, hoping the ball jumps off the tee and goes 300 yards.
    We need more players like John Daily that just grips it and rips it. No time wasted. Really how long does it take?

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