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5 Things We Learned on Day 2 of The Open

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The downfall of working in the golf industry is I very rarely get to watch live golf on TV. My busy teaching schedule and a four-month old at home doesn’t even leave much time for me to catch highlights. But today was the day! I blocked my work schedule and set an early alarm, I was going to watch golf all day. Here are my takeaways from day 2.

1) Royal Birkdale shines in dark, windy and gloomy weather

There may be nothing better than a links course when the wind picks up and the rain starts to fall. Day 1 saw relatively subdued weather, and scoring reflected that with 39 players under par. Day 2 saw only eight players shoot under-par rounds. Round 2 also saw the average score jump up two strokes, even with Zach Johnson’s 66 early in the a.m. Here’s to hoping the weather stays gloomy during the weekend for the maximum Open-viewing entertainment.

2) Jordan can run away with it

Speith has 10 Tour victories, and half of those he won by three or more shots. When Spieth is having fun and making putts, he is simply difficult to beat. Even after facing some adversity today with four bogeys on the card, he was able to keep his calm (unlike Bubba today) and play through the worst of the weather. Even having the more difficult end of the draw, he has made the most of his opportunities.

3) Hometown heroes in the hunt

Two Englishmen, Ian Poulter and Richard Bland, are within striking distance. If you had to rest your entire nation’s hopes on two guys, those two wouldn’t exactly be your top picks, but here we are. At the beginning of this season, Poulter was yet to secure a tour card after a long medical leave, but he scraped by and made enough money to keep playing. If there is one thing we do know about his game, however, is that he plays well with home-town advantage.

To be honest, I can’t use not watching a lot of golf as an excuse for not knowing who Richard Bland is. And after some brief research, I soon realized why. He has only played two majors before in his career and his last Open championship was 1998, where he missed the cut. Bland plays the Challenge Tour over in Europe and only has one win in 21 years. The fact this guy made the cut is incredible, and now he finds himself among the world’s best. I wouldn’t bet against either of these guys with an entire country coming out this weekend to cheer them on!

4) Kuchar is still in second

With Speith in contention, very little is being said about even his closest competitors. For Matt Kuchar, that may prove to be a positive. Kuchar is an understated, quiet guy by nature and I have to think it can only help him if the spotlight remains on someone else. In the past 10 years, Kuchar has missed only three cuts in majors, and with eight top-10 finishes, he may be poised to break through.

5) Major Cuts

As with any major championship, some big names are packing up and heading home early. The Players Champion, Si-Woo Kim, followed his opening round 70 with 76. Justin Thomas put up a second round 80 after looking like one of the favorites after round one. And Phil Mickelson had a week to forget with rounds of 73-77 making us wait even longer for the Phil, Bones reunion of a different kind.

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Dan Gaucher is a Teaching Professional at Lyman Orchards Golf Club in Connecticut. He also host a very successful podcast called "Rebel With Out A Par". Dan also has experience in the health and fitness industry which has allowed him to further understand the biomechanics of the body and how it correlates to the golf swing. Dan enjoys being a student of both the human body and the game of golf. Dan works with players of all abilities from beginners to aspiring professionals.

2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. RG

    Jul 22, 2017 at 1:22 am

    Go Jordan!

  2. david

    Jul 21, 2017 at 7:00 pm

    Is Bibba playing with a new putter?

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Pro golfer Hosung Choi has the most ridiculous golf swing you’ll ever see

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Professional golfer Hosung Choi, playing in the third round of the Kolon Korea Open at Woo Jeong Hills Country Club, has set the golf Internet on fire with his wildly entertaining golf swing. And while it may look ridiculous, he’s currently sitting at 8-under for the event through three rounds, only two shots back of the leader. It’s worth noting that the top two finishers in the Korea Open will earn a spot in the 2018 Open Championship at Carnoustie next month.

Enjoy the videos of his golf swing below!

Top-100 swing instructor and GolfWRX’s resident swing expert Tom Stickney has this to say about Choi’s golf swing: “The club goes up and away with a nice rerouting motion from the top into a perfect delivery and impact position. It’s obvious that this guy can play from those two positions, however, I’m not sure about the dismount. Nor can I even guess why he does it…I’m betting he was self-taught and made that move from day one. Great lesson to all the “golf swing” centric people playing today, why change it if it brings you to the dance?!?!”

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Marty Jertson, Ping’s Director of Product Development, qualified for the PGA Championship

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The top 20 professionals from the PGA Professional Championship–contested last weekend at Bayonet and Black Horse Golf Courses in Seaside, California–are heading to the PGA Championship later this year.

Perhaps you saw Ryan Vermeer, at 5 under, was the medalist. What you may not have seen however, is something particularly cool for golf equipment geeks: Ping’s Director of Product Development, Marty Jertson, qualified–and he did so in spectacular fashion: the 37-year-old birdied the last three holes to finish T9.

Not bad for an engineer!

Also noteworthy: Ping confirmed Jertson played the company’s yet-to-be announced i500 irons in his 3, 4, and 5-irons, which will reportedly be available mid-summer. Yes, they confirmed that the rumors are true; Ping’s new iron will be called i500.

Related: We did a podcast with Jertson at the PGA Show, we also interviewed him back in 2017.

 

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Reddit AMA alert: Anthony Taranto, Callaway’s wedge art maestro, on his favorite designs, WITB

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If you’ve been around GolfWRX for any period of time, you’ve seen Anthony Taranto’s work. The Callaway wedge specialist is tasked with designing some of the coolest wedge decorations in the game.

Taranto did a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) yesterday, and The Wedge Art Wizard (as he introduced himself) didn’t disappoint.

Here are a few highlights (edited for spelling)

Remoolg asked: How did you start working at Callaway and get into this specific position?

AT: Back in 1999 Callaway had a job fair for their new golf ball plant Mr. Callaway was opening. I made it though many layoffs and reorganization. I was good at building clubs and I was placed in the pro tour department about 12 years ago. About 4 1/2 years ago I discovered this technique for sandblasting art onto wedges and now here we are.

Loudshorts asked: What’s the most odd art request you’ve put on a wedge and what’s the most common?

AT: Most odd: Probably Michelle Wie’s Harry Potter-themed wedges

I didn’t know anything about Harry Potter at the time so I had to do some research. Accio birdies!
Most common would just be old fashioned stamping of players initials.

Bunny said: Billy Idol, never pictured him as a golfer. What kind of design did he want on his clubs?

AT: He asked for his logo, which is this cool crown with a lightning bolt:

Iamrobert_paulson asked: What wedges are in your bag? Can we see pics?

AT: I’m gaming MD4’s: 45° (46 bent to 45), 50°, 55° (54 bent to 55), and 60°. Design wise: Skull & Crossbones and lots of stars.

Dr. Troutman asked: What is your favorite custom set you’ve ever done?

AT: Putting me on the spot! It might be these that I just recently made. Figured out how to evolve the sand blasting technique and start doing layers. Really happy with how these came out:

You can check out the full AMA here.

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