2019 golf so far
Bryson DeChambeau raised the bar with his win at the Dubai Desert Classic yesterday with a total score of -24 at the Emirates Golf Club. His win was the lowest total score in the tournament's history. Meanwhile, over in the US, Justin Rose won the Farmer's Insurance Open at Torrey Pines with a score of -21.
I've been back home in England working hard on my swing too despite the cold and windy conditions (with a touch of snow thrown in for good measure). January has been a good month of practice and playing for me. I was also very fortunate to attend a talk given by John Paramor (European Tour Chief Referee) about the latest changes from the R&A governing the Rules of Golf. I walked into the room and went straight up to ask for a photo before the talk started:
I've done a couple of polls on Instagram about one of the most talked about rule changes which is that the flag can stay in the hole when you putt:
Poll 1 (6 Jan 2019): "Who's left the flag in this weekend?"
63% of voters kept the flag in
37% of voters took the flag out
Poll 2 (27 Jan 2019): "For birdie - flag in or out?"
31% of voters said I should keep the flag in
69% of voters said I should take the flag out
It's interesting to see how the vote changed over the course of 3 weeks and swung the other way. It turns out I should have listened to the majority and taken the flag out for my birdie putt (photo below). Another interesting point is that some of those that had said they took the flag out whilst they were putting at the start of the month recommended I kept it in for my birdie putt. Are these results a sign of people changing their habits on the green themselves, people just testing out the new rules or is it a reflection on my putting!? I'll keep an eye on how things change and how well received some of the other rules are.
In practice my main focus has been keeping my right wrist closer to my body on my takeaway which is something I've been working on during my previous lessons. I've been able to visit a couple of flood-lit driving ranges after work near me which has been great to keep up the practice before I have my next coaching session so I can get the move as automatic in my swing pattern as possible.
I also interviewed a caddie very recently so will be posting a piece on that over the next couple of months to understand their job and a typical day for them.
Today marks a year since I posted my first swing video when I was quite nervous about the response I was going to get (which I really didn't need to be!) and here it is a year later:
There's still plenty of work to be done this year but I'm excited to see what progress I make.