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Kyle Berkshire smashes ball speed world record

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Tiger Woods recently called Bryson DeChambeau’s search for length as ‘something historic’. On the 15th December, Bryson himself then tweeted about recording a personal best of just over 221mph for ball speed at a recent Cobra testing session.

However, two-time World Long Drive champion Kyle Berkshire has upped the ante.

At the same media launch and with less fanfare, Berkshire surpassed the PGA tour’s longest driver by almost 10mph but has now gone a touch further, adding another 2mph and recording 233.4mph. Check out the moment at 5:20 in the video below.

 

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A post shared by Long Drivers (@long.drivers)

Appearing on the long.drivers page on Instagram, the 25-year-old stood in front of a whiteboard, the posting entitled ‘The King of Ball Speed’ and with the simple comment ‘Berkshire breaks the record for the fastest golf ball hit in the history of life’.

An alum of the University of North Texas, in 2017 Berkshire moved from standard golf to concentrating on the World Long Drive Tour, being rewarded with back-to-back world crowns within four years. Those particular events take place on what is a long ‘landing’ strip and shouldn’t be compared to a PGA golf hole, but it remains that he recorded a drive of 422 yards to win this year’s world crown and a personal best of 492 yards in competition, some 168-odd in front of Bryson’s PGA average in 2021, a player he beat into seventh place in Nevada.

These figures are something to behold, but they are almost certainly not the end of it all.

Right or wrong, players seem to get bigger, stronger and more determined to find even more length. DeChambeau commented that he ‘wants to inspire’ and he may well do so, but when new measurements such as ‘smash factor’ come calling, it will be interesting how those same university coaches treat the progress of the game and will surely closely monitor his tournament results.

Certainly, now and for a while, Kyle Berkshire can claim to be the longest driver and in possession of the fastest ball speed in the world, inspiring in his own way.

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  1. JJM

    Jan 6, 2022 at 7:39 am

    Am I seeing it wrong or did the 233 ball speed only translate to a 310 yard drive because of spin rate? Looked like a previous drive was 150 ft. Left but they focused on vall speed and the next drive went 60 yards further but I’m not a tack man expert. Makes me wonder what all the hoopla is about given all the pieces that need to come together beyond ball speed.

  2. Patrick Reedier

    Dec 25, 2021 at 9:17 pm

    As much as it is a huge accomplishment, it more just shows what Bryson is doing, not to much Kyle. Kyle is a one trick pony at this point, Bryson is among the best in the world at more than just gorilla swinging.

    • Letsgobrandon

      Dec 29, 2021 at 12:08 pm

      Kyle is a plus 1 on pga level courses. Dude is no golf slouch it’s just the level between being a pga tour and everyone else is so extreme that being a pga tour golfer is the most difficult pro sport status to attain.

      • Patrick Reedier

        Jan 1, 2022 at 10:24 am

        Until it can actually be taken to competition (as is his goal, 30 years from now…), he is just a good golfer that hits it far, nothing more…

    • Funkaholic

      Dec 29, 2021 at 1:45 pm

      While you shoot over 120 with a 40 yard slice and an 80mph ball speed. You are a no trick pony. What a stupid comment.

      • Patrick Reedier

        Jan 1, 2022 at 10:24 am

        That sounds like your front 9 kiddo…

  3. Hugh Givzaphook

    Dec 23, 2021 at 3:44 pm

    Thats cool. I held the record for most pieces of chalk eaten in 1 minute for awhile.

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19th Hole

Symetra pro shares eye-opening detail about financial hardships on feeder tour

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Over the past few months, we have seen several social media posts from players currently playing at feeder tour level, with many highlighting the disparity between pay at the very top and the potential loss of taking part in development tours.

On New Years Day, six-time professional winner Meghan Maclaren took to Twitter to highlight her real-life example of life on the Symetra/development tours.

The 27-year-old is no stranger to posting her thoughts, with her regular blog an excellent insight into many things golf and beyond, but this posting set up an uninvited debate with the usual anonymous tweets interspersed with understandably supportive comments from her fellow ‘feeder’ players.

The initial comment was itself quite innocuous, detailing the importance of financial help throughout a career, even one with a couple of LET victories in the bank and a 2021 victory on the Symetra Tour, the main pathway to the LPGA.

In the two tweets, Maclaren thanks her sponsors and team for support, highlighting the ‘VERY unselfish coaches and next to no caddie all year.’

Prefacing the tweet with the comment ‘*not looking for sympathy or a debate about feeder tours, just thought interesting to share’ she makes note of the fact that even after a win, two top-10s and a pair of top-15 finishes she would have, without assistance, been looking at a LOSS on the season of around $31,000.

Replies were of contrasting natures. Many folks understood the point that was being made. Here we have a victorious player that finished 18th on the money list of the league just one below that of the big time, and winner of circa $60k in prize money that would, without help, be paying out for the privilege of playing.

Bradley Neil, formally a hugely promising European junior making his way through the grades, commented simply, ”Could not agree more! If it wasn’t down to the generosity of the team around us, we wouldn’t survive.” Thoughts turn to many players on the Outlaw Tours, EuroPro Tours and the rest that perhaps don’t get the chances to progress their undoubted talent because it simply costs too much, not that perhaps they are lacking the skills.

Of course, nobody will argue that Tiger, Phil et al. have brought countless millions to the PGA and ‘deserve’ to be rewarded, but as covered by the likes of Ryan French (@acaseofthegolf1) it is the mini and development tours that create the stories, that have the players so dedicated to ‘making it’ they sleep in camper vans overnight and work in stores at the end of each round. Perhaps too the players that might make the future as bright as it is now, and many that were almost certainly inspired to play by the likes of those at the top.

Maclaren, who said that, ‘(2021) Q series crushed me completely,’ and eventually finished just three shots from a card after eight gruelling rounds, wasn’t looking for sympathy. She simply thought it would be useful to know the costs behind the glamour.

Meghan’s regular blog highlights all these musings and gives an insight into life on the road, into psychology, self-belief and doubt, and simply, well, Meg Maclaren. It’s well worth a read https://megmaclaren.com/

 

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19th Hole

‘Get your s–t together!’ – Viktor Hovland fumes at airline over missing clubs…and it gets worse

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Viktor Hovland’s trip to Hawaii to play in the Sentry Tournament of Champions this week got off to a rocky start.

The Norwegian’s clubs were stuck in Seattle while he was in Maui, and it’s safe to say he was not best pleased with Delta for the inconvenience – letting his feelings known on his Instagram story (pictured below in a tweet from @golfbettingclub).

As of Tuesday morning, Hovland’s clubs were yet to arrive to his hotel. He has been playing great golf the past few months and should be an excellent fit to contend at Kapalua this week. While he has bounced back from equipment issues in the recent past and won at Mayakoba despite having his driver break on the range prior to the event, it certainly isn’t an ideal way to start the week.

Update: It appears Hovland’s clubs arrived early Wednesday morning…

…but unfortunately for Hovland, it seems that his driver has broken in the shipping process:

Where’s Danny Lee when you need him?

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19th Hole

Massive club-snapping crab clashes with golfers in Australia

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The Golden Bear, Great White Shark, The Walrus, El Pato and maybe even Tiger. Just some of the ‘wildlife’ names found throughout golf over the years.

But ‘coconut crab’?

9News Australia recently posted a video on Twitter of a group of golfers on Christmas Island clashing with one of these huge crustaceans, confirmed by Wikipedia as ‘the largest terrestrial arthropod in the world’.

Indeed, probably better known as a ‘robber crab’, that name seems far more appropriate given the beast’s actions in the clip where he clamps down hard on three clubs despite the golfers’ attempts at pulling the sticks free of the exceptional behemoth.

Eventually they recover a couple, but the longest club in the bag is never leaving his pincers.

Weighing up to 4.5kg (10 pounds) and measuring up to one meter from leg tip to leg tip, this was golfers versus ‘a chainsaw’, as one player named the creature.

Indeed, the way he snaps that driver suggests it was very much a match the golfers would never win, although surely he was going for the putter with that claw grip!

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