E. Michael Johnson in Golf World writes that technology has not rendered
Baltusrol obsolete because, well, the scores were higher than '93 and because Davis Love says so.
"Technology has not changed as much as everyone makes it out to,"
said Love."We can hit 1-irons by the [Nicklaus] plaque and still not
We can hit 1-irons by the [Nicklaus] plaque and still not get there?
Did Davis mean to say that the players can hit a
drive by the plaque with a 1-iron and still not get home in two? Or did Love mean that
you would hit driver past the plaque but still not
reach the green in two with a 1 iron?
I think it was the latter of the two based on what Johnson wrote:
Love wasn't speaking
hypothetically. During a practice round last week, he hit a number of
1-irons from where the Golden Bear famously knocked a 238-yard 1-iron
onto Baltusrol's 18th on the 72nd hole in '67--and failed to reach the
green with any of them.First,
who carries a 1-iron anymore? Second, Tiger's hitting 7
iron from 190 into 18, so he would go at the green from the plaque with
what, 4 iron from 238? Now he is
working out! Goosen hit 5-iron from not far in front of the plaque,
so a key fact seems to have been left out here: what kind of wind was Love hitting
Or Davis really needs to have his lofts checked.
Johnson sees technology has not having an impact by pointing out that the winning scorewas higher than it was for the 1993 Open, and he writes:
As for those claiming it's because they lengthened the track by 300-plus yards and grew rough, well, the cost of rough was fair: 0.489 of a stroke--hardly excessive.No mention that the fairway widths were 10-15 yards narrower than the '93 Open, as reported by Golf Digest's Ron Whitten. The fairway is oh, 20-40% narrower this time around. What will they be next time, 10-15 yards wide? Is there a concern at that width as opposed to 25 yards on a sloping fairway? Apparently not.
As for the added length, [Kenny] Perry says it equals out. "You're hitting your driver farther so the holes are playing about where we played from in 1993," said Perry. "I'm playing my approaches from about the same spots." Added Janzen, "Even though technology has advanced how far we hit the ball, I hit a lot longer clubs to the greens today than I [did then]."Huh? So for some, the course is lengthened and it balances out to play the same. But Janzen hits longer clubs to the greens than he did in 93, even though technology has helped him advance his ball?
Maybe someone else needs to get their lofts checked.