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46 Inch + Drivers on Tour


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Phil and maybe Bryson?  I think more guys are using 44-45 than 46+, but I could be wrong that. 

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27 minutes ago, Shilgy said:

Not a fan of this being used on tour.  What if a tall guy with shortish  arms reaches the tour level of play?  Cant use a driver best fit for him?

As for Phil and company if they can control it well enough to score well let them use it.

 

I think the ruling is dumb, but there's been guys on tour in the 6'4" through 6'7" who played drivers short enough that this ruling wouldn't have impacted them.  Guys on tour are a little more athletic than us AM's and aren't fighting their body as much when it comes to equipment.  You look across the board, you'll se plenty of 6 foot tall guys using shorter than standard irons,  Your tallest guys out there aren't adding more than a 1/2" on their irons.  

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The USGA has way too much time on its hands. Why create a rule that at best affects a mere handful of people? What's the purpose?

 

Plus - if someone actually wants to play a shaft that long - good luck to them. I tried a 47.5 a few years ago (have a friend who is about 6'6" - he just uses a shaft that is comfortable to him). I did, indeed, hit it longer. One drive probably went 325 yards in the air. Problem was that the 325 was 250 yards straight, and 75 yards to the right. It did land on the fairway, just not the fairway I was teeing off on. Never could wrestle that beast under control.

 

Phil does hit his drives fairly long for an old guy, but his accuracy leaves something to be desired. It is a trade-off. But if it is a trade-off he wants to make, I don't get why the USGA would want to stop him (or anyone else). 

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"We believe this is the right thing for the game at this time and it will provide tournament organisers with the flexibility to choose for themselves within the framework of the rules."

 

Wow.  Literally just allowed tournaments to discriminate against golfers of different abilities.  This is terrible for the game.  Should've at least been across the board.  Another feckless ruling by the clown show that is the USGA and R&A.

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2 hours ago, Haroputt said:

That sucks  I’m oppose to the ruling 
I am tall and have used a 48 inch driver with comfort.  

It's not a Rule Of Golf. It's a model local rule. You will still be able to use your 48 inch driver.

 

https://www.golfchannel.com/news/usga-ra-make-local-rule-cap-pros-driver-length-46-inches

 

Added USGA CEO Mike Whan: “Admittedly, this is not the ‘answer’ to the overall distance debate/issue but rather a simple option for competitive events. It’s important to note that it is not a ‘Rule of Golf,’ and as such, it is not mandated for the average, recreational golfer. Rather, this is an available tool for those running competitive events.”

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1 minute ago, grm24 said:

It's not a Rule Of Golf. It's a model local rule. You will still be able to use your 48 inch driver.

 

https://www.golfchannel.com/news/usga-ra-make-local-rule-cap-pros-driver-length-46-inches

 

Added USGA CEO Mike Whan: “Admittedly, this is not the ‘answer’ to the overall distance debate/issue but rather a simple option for competitive events. It’s important to note that it is not a ‘Rule of Golf,’ and as such, it is not mandated for the average, recreational golfer. Rather, this is an available tool for those running competitive events.”

What "competitive" events using the rules provided by the USGA would need such an available tool?  Only thing I can think of is a tournament that doesn't want some players to hit the ball farther than other players.  And that crosses into some very muddy waters.

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22 minutes ago, oikos1 said:

What "competitive" events using the rules provided by the USGA would need such an available tool?  Only thing I can think of is a tournament that doesn't want some players to hit the ball farther than other players.  And that crosses into some very muddy waters.

I'd say they don't want players to hit drives further than they currently do based on increasing the length of the club.  Its a logical way to do what they've said they're trying to do for the last two years, to limit future equipment-related distance gains, while not decreasing distance across the board.  This specific step was discussed more than 6 months ago.

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Extra long driver shafts are all about adding shot distance and have nothing at all to do with "fitting".

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And yet we crucify USGA for letting distance get out of hand through equipment as much as it has.  Here they are getting well out in front of this when it impacts very few people and there are still those griping.

 

There were 6'4"+ golfers in the days of steel driver shafts.  They were playing them at 43-44" then.

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To me this is a bass akwards rule and is beyond dumb.  A better rule in my opinion would have been to make rules regarding total weight of a club.  They could do a gram/mm or gram/inch rule to make things limited but still accommodate taller players and players that want to risk the accuracy in return for speed.  I think this will also have collateral damage.  It will filter down into the sport as a whole and you will find that anyone using a greater than 46 inch driver will be called a cheater even if it isn't a full on rule.

 

I also bet the PLDA will adopt the 46 inch rule because of the tour adopting it.

Edited by clevited
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2 minutes ago, smashdn said:

And yet we crucify USGA for letting distance get out of hand through equipment as much as it has.  Here they are getting well out in front of this when it impacts very few people and there are still those griping.

 

There were 6'4"+ golfers in the days of steel driver shafts.  They were playing them at 43-44" then.

 

Not sure who we is that you are referring to.  I think you will find that roughly 3/4 of the golfing population would say there is no distance issue.  They also are not well out in front of anything.  They are rolling back existing golf rules instead of adding rules where they make sense and being forward thinking without hurting the game.

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They are rolling back a rule (model rule actually) where most are not using that equipment.  Be like banning 70* wedges (if there were a benefit to having a 70* wedge).

 

"We" is all the people on here and elsewhere who said that the USGA should have been more proactive about equipment rules and by dragging their feet they let [driving] distance get to a point they didn't want it to be to begin with.  The cat that can't be stuffed back in the bag.  You can stuff a 48" driver shaft back in the bag now much easier than in 5 years when/if it becomes fashionable/mainstream.

 

I can't help what 3/4 of the golfing population thinks.  We are discussing adding yardage to courses at an increasing rate across the past 25 years due in large part to equipment.  There is nothing about adding length to a golf course that makes it faster to play, more sustainable or cost less to maintain.

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3 minutes ago, smashdn said:

They are rolling back a rule (model rule actually) where most are not using that equipment.  Be like banning 70* wedges (if there were a benefit to having a 70* wedge).

 

"We" is all the people on here and elsewhere who said that the USGA should have been more proactive about equipment rules and by dragging their feet they let [driving] distance get to a point they didn't want it to be to begin with.  The cat that can't be stuffed back in the bag.  You can stuff a 48" driver shaft back in the bag now much easier than in 5 years when/if it becomes fashionable/mainstream.

 

I can't help what 3/4 of the golfing population thinks.  We are discussing adding yardage to courses at an increasing rate across the past 25 years due in large part to equipment.  There is nothing about adding length to a golf course that makes it faster to play, more sustainable or cost less to maintain.

 

You don't need to add yardage to courses.  You need to get over this.  Golf has always been about putting the ball in the hole in the least amount of strokes possible.  I absolutely despise rolling back rules that have been in effect for a long time.  I am a fan of forward thinking rules.  I have said this many times but one such rule would be total weight of the club because that is where technology is going.  Making longer clubs lighter and more usable.  Make a weight per inch limit and there, stop gap.  

 

smashdn, you and I will never see eye to eye as has been the theme in any thread like this,  I recommend we no longer respond to each other's posts, it won't create anything fruitful.

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28 minutes ago, smashdn said:

And yet we crucify USGA for letting distance get out of hand through equipment as much as it has.  Here they are getting well out in front of this when it impacts very few people and there are still those griping.

 

There were 6'4"+ golfers in the days of steel driver shafts.  They were playing them at 43-44" then.

Back in the day, guys like George Archer and Cary Middlecoff struggled with finding good drivers.  Long enough to fit-too heavy to play.

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What did they rule ? 
 

edit. I see now.  Idiots. Treating symptoms not the issue.  I said it a million times. Leave it alone if you’re not going after the ball AND the driver head size.  

Edited by bladehunter
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55 minutes ago, smashdn said:

They are rolling back a rule (model rule actually) where most are not using that equipment.  Be like banning 70* wedges (if there were a benefit to having a 70* wedge).

 

"We" is all the people on here and elsewhere who said that the USGA should have been more proactive about equipment rules and by dragging their feet they let [driving] distance get to a point they didn't want it to be to begin with.  The cat that can't be stuffed back in the bag.  You can stuff a 48" driver shaft back in the bag now much easier than in 5 years when/if it becomes fashionable/mainstream.

 

I can't help what 3/4 of the golfing population thinks.  We are discussing adding yardage to courses at an increasing rate across the past 25 years due in large part to equipment.  There is nothing about adding length to a golf course that makes it faster to play, more sustainable or cost less to maintain.

 

 

Agree with this take.  It's pre-emptive.

 

I agree that a driver > 46 inches is not an advantage now.  If it was, more than 2-3 guys would be using them.  In principle, I agree that if a guy can control a 48 inch driver, good for him and he should be rewarded.

 

However, I can understand where the ruling is coming from.  Future technology may enable drivers that are really forgiving or balls that fly super straight and people may benefit from 48 inch drivers.  Then the cats out of the bag and its done.    You can't roll them back.  

 

While I can understand why Phil and Bryson are pissed, it really doesn't affect many people at all because its not even an advantage now really.  I doubt even Phil or Bryson are going to be affected that much.    

 

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1 hour ago, NevinW said:

You guys need to go read the actual statement.  It is left to tours to decide whether to implement it as a local rule. It has no effect on any amateur.  

Unless any tournament decides to adopt it.  Much like the groove rule.  Many amateur events at the state and county level have used the condition of competition deal to outlaw old grooves. Although if never been physically checked. I did have to turn in a usga test certification before hand for the titleist irons I was playing.  A tour set that’s not on the conforming list.  They tested good.  But I had to do all that and then show it to the committee or else risk being checked randomly and being DQed.  This was just for the usga  mid am qualifier.  
 

so yes.  It effects a lot of amateurs.  If you intend to play 46 or less in events. You’re going to play 46 or less all year.  

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Has it been published how they intend to measure a driver ? 

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3 hours ago, grm24 said:

It's not a Rule Of Golf. It's a model local rule. You will still be able to use your 48 inch driver.

 

https://www.golfchannel.com/news/usga-ra-make-local-rule-cap-pros-driver-length-46-inches

 

Added USGA CEO Mike Whan: “Admittedly, this is not the ‘answer’ to the overall distance debate/issue but rather a simple option for competitive events. It’s important to note that it is not a ‘Rule of Golf,’ and as such, it is not mandated for the average, recreational golfer. Rather, this is an available tool for those running competitive events.”

 

Since Haroputt is a GolfWRX member, he is clearly not an average golfer.

 

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1 hour ago, bladehunter said:

Has it been published how they intend to measure a driver ? 

That is already in the Equipment Rules.  This MLR is just one step in doing what they've said they intend to do since early 2020, try to limit future equipment-related distance gains.  So damn near everyone in the world can play the same driver they're using now, they just can't take a step to one longer than 46 inches.  If anyone didn't expect this, they've had their heads in the sand for more than 18 months.  

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6 hours ago, smashdn said:

And yet we crucify USGA for letting distance get out of hand through equipment as much as it has.  Here they are getting well out in front of this when it impacts very few people and there are still those griping.

 

There were 6'4"+ golfers in the days of steel driver shafts.  They were playing them at 43-44" then.

Not many, back then 5’10” was considered the ideal height based on equipment of the day.

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What a joe, the USGA are useless

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This is kind of a stupid way to go about it IMO.  I know they did that whole insights report in 2019-20, but I think they should be looking at course design instead of shafts. In 2021 all 4 major champions were middle of the pack in driving accuracy for that week and Morikawa/Hideki were near the bottom in distance. They are approaching this whole issue the wrong way. Why don't course designers take a look at Augusta National? 6 of the par 4s are under 460 and all 4 par 5s are reachable in 2. The course is long, but it's not like an Erin Hills long.

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