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19th Hole

Coming to professional golf: a tournament with no par putts

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Chubby Chandler, Lee Westwood’s former manager and head of International Sports Management, chatted with Golf World’s John Huggan, and you won’t believe what he had to say.

No, Chandler didn’t spill the beans on his split with Westy (confidentiality agreements ensure that will never happen). However, he did reveal something potentially more interesting: A European Challenge Tour event next year where there will be no par putts.

That’s right, in an extreme effort to combat slow play, players will pick up when facing a par putt. Further, as soon as a player doesn’t achieve par, he’ll pocket his ball…even if he hasn’t made it to the green.

“It won’t just be that par doesn’t count. The players will be banned from putting out once they haven’t made a birdie,” Chandler told Huggan. “That way they will all be round in three hours. We will have two points for a birdie, five for an eagle and eight for an albatross. That’s been done before. But no putting for par, which counts as zero. So you can’t knock it out of a bunker to four-feet and putt for par. Not allowed. And that’s where things will speed up.”

“Everybody is in with a chance right to the end,” Chandler says. “That might all turn out wrong. But it could also be really exciting. We’ll see. We’re not changing the game that much. We’re just making it quicker and getting rid of the dull bits. No one really gives a bleep about eight-footers for par.”

What do you think WRXers? Like all potentially great disruptive ideas, this sounds like sheer madness…or it could be brilliant. Will it “all turn out wrong,” or will we see a massively more entertaining product?

 

(h/t Geoff Shackelford) 

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17 Comments

17 Comments

  1. Joey5Picks

    Nov 10, 2017 at 3:49 pm

    I have an idea; once a team is inside the 5 yard line, call it a touchdown! In basketball, only dunks count for 2 pts! Tee shots in the trees can be dropped in the middle of the fairway (no one gives a bleep about punch-outs).

  2. James Browne

    Nov 10, 2017 at 7:15 am

    This will just cause there to be about 20 people tied on the same score at the end of the tournament.

  3. Nick

    Nov 9, 2017 at 7:54 am

    My simple solution to speed the game up is only allow a player to mark his/her ball once on the green (unless directly in another players line). How often do we see a player mark his ball, clean and wipe, as many as three times on a single green?

  4. Sq

    Nov 8, 2017 at 8:16 pm

    YES, YES, YES….bring this to my course immediately!!!!

  5. SK

    Nov 8, 2017 at 3:52 pm

    How about just putting out and no lengthy green re-reading on the second and third putts? That would speed up play and stop macho chatter on the greens while other golfers are waiting in the fairway to get on the green.
    I doubt footprint indentation is significant on today’s green designs so that is not a factor in scoring. Of course one can estimate the lines of putts for others, and there is no need to take the ball out of the hole until everybody putts out. The hole is deep enough to hold 4 balls.
    Other than searching for lost balls, socializing on the greens does slow down play a lot.

  6. Marnix

    Nov 8, 2017 at 2:35 pm

    What is missed in the comments is that this is all about points, and pars earn 0 points – it’s not stroke play! This is somewhat similar to Stableford, where a net double bogey (relative to your handicap) earns 0 points so players in friendly rounds in Europe will often pick up and note a 0 for the hole when the chance for their net bogey is lost. I think it sounds like great fun actually and should indeed make for faster rounds.

  7. Hans

    Nov 8, 2017 at 12:34 pm

    Not only does this totally change the game in a way that takes out a lot of strategy (all the way to the tee box, might as well bomb it almost every time to setup birdie chances, since if you don’t make birdie it doesn’t matter.), but this also may take some of the drama out of ending. Part of the theater of golf is that it’s not just about birdies to make comebacks it’s also about leaders giving up shots. Jordan Spieth wins the US Open after DJ 3putts at Chambers Bay and loses the Masters the next year after blowing at no12, etc. If a leader can go into the back nine with no fear of losing shots, it completely changes the drama of tournament golf. I’m sure some players will like the reduced stress, but for the fans watching, It may suck out a lot of the drama

  8. gretch

    Nov 8, 2017 at 2:35 am

    Tiger woods would have won last years Hero in this format.

    I bet he would think it is stupid too.

  9. TR1PTIK

    Nov 8, 2017 at 1:04 am

    I hope this idea fails miserably…

  10. Robert Parsons

    Nov 7, 2017 at 3:26 pm

    That is the dumbest idea I’ve ever heard.

    How about just put a shot clock on them once they get to their ball? And don’t let Sergio complain about a lie for half an hour. Just give him his one or two options and give him 30 seconds to decide and start the shot clock?

    Nobody earns par the way we do. Period.

  11. golfbum

    Nov 7, 2017 at 3:20 pm

    New to the MASTERS! EVERYONE GETS A FIRST PLACE TROPHY!

  12. Ross

    Nov 7, 2017 at 2:59 pm

    This is a ridiculous idea, golf is more than make Birdie and move on.

  13. Regis

    Nov 7, 2017 at 2:51 pm

    Chandler is a self promoting schill. Years ago he convinced then number 1 Westwood and a young number 3 Rory to boycott The Players in an attempt to shift focus to the Euro Tour and his pocketbook indirectly. Keep shoveling it Chubby

  14. Madre

    Nov 7, 2017 at 2:32 pm

    This only works if everyone is on the green with a descent chance making a par, birdie or eagle putt. If you’re still in the fairway for par and others are on the green for par, how is that comparable play? Not sure how this rewards really good players from lucky hacks.

  15. george

    Nov 7, 2017 at 1:57 pm

    Bushwaaaaa

  16. george

    Nov 7, 2017 at 11:35 am

    Yes, play the game like the amateurs. Every par putt under eight feet is considered holed.

  17. Jacked_Loft

    Nov 7, 2017 at 11:00 am

    Got to love it. Most players will only play a handfull of holes to the end, and the others will complain that they have to stand around and wait.

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19th Hole

What’s your favorite photo from the history of pro golf?

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Golf history, as we know, is rich. Dramatic storylines, pithy anecdotes, iconic equipment, and storybook shots are all woven into the vibrant tapestry of the game at the professional level.

It’s no surprise, then, that from the rough black-and-white of Old Tom Morris, open-stanced, gazing past the camera to his target, to the present DSLR shots, the history of the professional game is peppered with great photographs.

WRX member Christosterone started a thread with the question, “What’s your favorite tour picture and why?”

He offered this shot of “three reverse-c idols and a Texan.”

Of course, it only took one response, for someone to offer up this classic shot of Arnold Palmer and Ben Hogan. One assumes that the fact that they didn’t care for one another only enhanced their badass postures.

 

Also, dicko999 (who better to post the following?), offered a cropped version of the legendary Presidents Cup streaker shot. Beyond the absurdity of the scene, the facial expressions make this shot great.

Just a fantastic thread that you’ll want to check out–and hopefully add a photo of your own to.

Check out the thread.

 

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Do you go high-five or fist-bump on the golf course? #YoGolfWRX

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Equipment expert Brian Knudson and Editor Andrew Tursky cover a wide variety of topics including Tiger’s best swing, high five vs. knuckles and logo up or logo down?

Watch below (or click here if the embed doesn’t work for you).

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Parents in Montana can’t watch their children golf, and nobody is happy about it

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In Montana, as you may have heard from an irritated friend at some point during the past month, spectators cannot watch high school golf.

Nick Petraccione of KBZK originally did a deep dive into the following passage from the Montana State High School Association Rulebook in November.

“No spectators/fans are allowed on the course except for certain locations as designated by the tournament manager and club professional.”

Petraccione found the “designated” areas are generally the first tee box and the 18th green, but at some courses, there are no such area. Needless to say, as the KBZK report has been disseminated through the golf mediasphere over the past month, most are not in favor of the MSHA’s position.

Before drilling down into some of the dissent, it’s worth considering the logic of spectator restrictions. Per Petraccione:

“It comes down to a few factors: mainly that golf courses and tournament managers are involved in opening those spaces, not the MSHA. Other factors include parents being unruly, disrupting play, spectator safety, and illegally coaching players on the course.”

Fair enough. But the other side of the coin, beyond parents merely wanting to watch their kids play, is that the MSHA could be “trampling on civil rights,” per James Greenbaum, an attorney KBZK spoke with.

“The highest court has stated many times that difficulty of enforcement is no excuse for trampling on civil rights. They are discriminating against children and parents in an outrageous manner in violation of the federal and state constitution. That is a fundamental right, for their parent to bond with their child and encourage them in something as innocent as a sporting event. … How could you deny a parent that right?”

The outrage, as mentioned, is abundant. Major-winner Shaun Micheel tweeted his disbelief. Micheel also suggested the policy handicaps potential college recruits.

“Scores are only part of the bigger picture…That being the intangibles like attitude, etiquette and temperament. How does the player handle adversity? All of the extra things that are part of competing. Coaches aren’t able to evaluate those things by looking at just the final score.”

Chris Kelley, a parent of a high school golfer in Montana, created a Change.org petition aimed at bringing awareness and ultimately changing the rule. Dylan Dethier at Golf.com filed a look at some of the petition’s signees, which include Xander Schauffele’s father and a handful of coaches. You can view the petition here.

The MSHA has declined to comment.

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