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USGA and R&A announce proposal to limit golf ball performance for elite level competition


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Average professional tour and elite male players are expected to see a reduction of 9-11 yards, with a 5-7-yard reduction for an average LPGA or Ladies European Tour (LET) player.The change in testing speed is expected to have a minimal distance impact, 5 yards or less, for most recreational golfers.

 

 

I’m very surprised at the number of people who have said they will quit the game or golf is ruined because of that. My view on it is by time we get to that point, clubs will be 7 years further developed and it will all but make up for the ball change.
 

I think the real question is, if average driving distance plateaus where it is right now, is that OK? I’m fine with that, others may say why ever slow progress. But either way I can’t say this is enough for me to lose my enjoyment of the game.

 

That is all, thanks and make lots of birdies!

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5 minutes ago, Swisher said:


Not sure why you're being difficult. Shorter drives will lead to longer irons being hit into par fours/fives. That's a fact.

St. Andrews can't buy any more land to make their course longer. Scores are becoming ridiculous around there.

If you're struggling with definitions, a dictionary is a good place to start. 

 

You are being dishonest and now mocking as well, sad.

 

How are you going to make players use 5 irons?  Are you going to reduce the ball 30% then and have players tee off from different distances?  Why 5 iron?  Why not a 2i or driver off the deck?

 

I asked you to define obsolete because nobody has a clear definition of what that means in terms of golf courses and competitions.

 

I would appreciate it if you would try to have a serious conversation instead of reduce yourself to 3rd grade insults.

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8 minutes ago, bobfoster said:

 

Tee boxes moving 4 yards means you play the course (or even a single hole) "significantly differently". Seriously?

Well regardless of where the tee is now with the rollback the approach shot will be with a different club. For me in Scotland that is like summer golf versus winter golf with the lower temps. In my view that a significant change that doesn't got unnoticed and to my original point on Rory's statement, it makes a difference.
For me it changes the par 5s completely and it also changes the lines of the tees (potentially 10 holes on my course).

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1 minute ago, clevited said:

 

You are being dishonest and now mocking as well, sad.

 

How are you going to make players use 5 irons?  Are you going to reduce the ball 30% then and have players tee off from different distances?  Why 5 iron?  Why not a 2i or driver off the deck?

 

I asked you to define obsolete because nobody has a clear definition of what that means in terms of golf courses and competitions.

 

I would appreciate it if you would try to have a serious conversation instead of reduce yourself to 3rd grade insults.


You ask me to "define longer irons" and say I'm reducing myself to 3rd grade insults? Get a grip. Let's save everyone and let the debate continue without this.

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8 minutes ago, Swisher said:

Define rage.

per the chart, I’m in the category losing the most.  Honestly I could care less losing 10 yards.  It’s just not that big of a deal to me.  
 

I also keep in mind it’s a very specific test these balls must pass, and golf companies will figure out how to make those yards up with technology soon enough.  

 

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1 minute ago, WorkItBothWays said:

Well regardless of where the tee is now with the rollback the approach shot will be with a different club. For me in Scotland that is like summer golf versus winter golf with the lower temps. In my view that a significant change that doesn't got unnoticed and to my original point on Rory's statement, it makes a difference.
For me it changes the par 5s completely and it also changes the lines of the tees (potentially 10 holes on my course).

That is assuming there are no other changes in equipment that make up for distance loss with the ball. I think the fact we’re all going to be 7 years older when this comes into effect is going to have more to do with that extra club than the new ball! 😂

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This part stood out.  Almost like the OEMs cried foul when the original announcement came out.  

 

Additionally, the USGA indicated, “A significant portion of golf ball models that are currently in the market – and more than 30 percent of all golf ball models submitted for conformance across the game – are expected to remain conforming after these changes are applied.”

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1 minute ago, Pnwpingi210 said:

per the chart, I’m in the category losing the most.  Honestly I could care less losing 10 yards.  It’s just not that big of a deal to me.  
 

I also keep in mind it’s a very specific test these balls must pass, and golf companies will figure out how to make those yards up with technology soon enough.  

 

 

THEN WHAT WAS THE POINT LOL? 🤣

 

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1 minute ago, Soloman1 said:

Can we wait until 2030 before we really start to panic?

 

Golf Armageddon® - Countdown to 2031

 

 

They probably won't do it. They are going to do the groove rule approach. They will conveniently forget to implement the ball restriction for most amateurs. They will let the "must play what the pros play" and OEMs wanting to only make conforming equipment do the work for them. Gutless as always.

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1 minute ago, DoughBack18 said:

That is assuming there are no other changes in equipment that make up for distance loss with the ball. I think the fact we’re all going to be 7 years older when this comes into effect is going to have more to do with that extra club than the new ball! 😂

But I'm being told it won't make a difference and will go unnoticed. You are right I'll be mid 50s by 2030 but thats a different matter.

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I'm waiting for that other golf site to fire up the robot and hit all the balls in the test matrix under the new conditions to see some actual data.

 

Given that it's a seven year time frame, I have lots of time to adapt.

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10 minutes ago, jvincent said:

I'm waiting for that other golf site to fire up the robot and hit all the balls in the test matrix under the new conditions to see some actual data.

 

Given that it's a seven year time frame, I have lots of time to adapt.

 

I bet Ping already did it.  They have an awesome catalog of ball data, don't make a ball themselves, and I'm betting they are sitting on all sorts of great data.

 

All myspy needs to do is cherry pick about 6 balls, from super firm tour balls down to a Supersoft.  Hit them at current specs, change the robot to new specs.  

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15 minutes ago, WorkItBothWays said:

Well regardless of where the tee is now with the rollback the approach shot will be with a different club. For me in Scotland that is like summer golf versus winter golf with the lower temps. In my view that a significant change that doesn't got unnoticed and to my original point on Rory's statement, it makes a difference.
For me it changes the par 5s completely and it also changes the lines of the tees (potentially 10 holes on my course).

You’re telling me 4 yards or 12 feet significantly change a par 5?  I can’t think of a course I’ve ever played on 30 years of playing golf that 12 feet changes a hole significantly.  ( I don’t define significant as having to club up or down a club)

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21 hours ago, GoGoErky said:

Well the ruling bodies don’t want bifurcation if equipment per Mr slumbers so that type of solution is off the table.

It wasn't the ruling bodies that didn't want the bifurcation, USGA/R&A proposed the MLR ball. it was the PGA Tour, and manufacturers who balked at it. 

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FWIW the average final round at the Old Course over the last three years at the Dunhill - which is all the work I'm willing to devote to this endeavor - is 69.8.

 

Course is really getting destroyed.

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5 minutes ago, Pnwpingi210 said:

Same reason they updated the ball standard in 2004.  Standards get updated as technology changes

 

Ok, so all that talk about using a variety of skills, making distance less important, lowering use of water, courses being obsolete, courses getting too long were all just lip service and this is just a once every 20 years teeny change to make it look like they are doing something?

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5 minutes ago, maamold said:

It wasn't the ruling bodies that didn't want the bifurcation, USGA/R&A proposed the MLR ball. it was the PGA Tour, and manufacturers who balked at it. 

 

Actually this is untrue.  They have openly stated they didn't want bifurcation prior to optioning it to the tours.

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Just now, Pnwpingi210 said:

You’re telling me 4 yards are 12 feet significantly change a par 5?  I can’t think of a course I’ve ever played on 30 years of playing golf that 12 feet changes a hole significantly.  ( I don’t define significant as having to club up or down a club)

For me personally the difference is looking 7 to 9 yards so it could be potentially 2 clubs on ocassion. Says it's just one I do class a significant change as a shot permanently playing one club longer. So we disagree you see it differently but it's noticeable and makes a difference.

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14 minutes ago, ThinkingPlus said:

They probably won't do it. They are going to do the groove rule approach. They will conveniently forget to implement the ball restriction for most amateurs. They will let the "must play what the pros play" and OEMs wanting to only make conforming equipment do the work for them. Gutless as always.

 

 

USGA

 

US be Gutless as Always

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bought out by private equity.

capitalization, grammar and reasoning slashed as a cost reduction.

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4 minutes ago, clevited said:

 

Ok, so all that talk about using a variety of skills, making distance less important, lowering use of water, courses being obsolete, courses getting too long were all just lip service and this is just a once every 20 years teeny change to make it look like they are doing something?

Yeah I’m not sure the USGA or RA used all those arguments.  Some if not most of those have come from people speculating in this thread.  

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I'm looking forward to see which of the balls on the market now, fall in the "30% will pass the update test as-is."  Perhaps the OEMs will just slap a small "2028 Conforming" print on the ball packaging quietly, not wanting to admit they over-exaggerated in the spring when they cried foul. 

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4 minutes ago, WorkItBothWays said:

For me personally the difference is looking 7 to 9 yards so it could be potentially 2 clubs on ocassion. Says it's just one I do class a significant change as a shot permanently playing one club longer. So we disagree you see it differently but it's noticeable and makes a difference.

I don’t disagree that 7-9 yards can make a difference on certain holes.  So that we agree on that.  This is a different scenario.  

 

We were talking about average golfers (if you are in the 7-9, you are above average by the metric the USGA and ra is using), seeing 4 yards.  I’m saying that will have zero impact on their game.  

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And talk about an interested job, being one of the people who works at the USGA Ball Lab over the past few months.  They probably tested a bulk of the current balls in their inventory to the new test, and logged millions of data points.  Probably had a lot of sensible chuckle moments seeing a ball from an OEM who lied in the spring, in fact passing the updated test.  

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