Reining the Big Minds: The governing bodies of golf are taking steps to address the game’s distance problem
The leading golf authorities on Tuesday announced their intention to save the future of the sport from the big hits by unveiling proposals to curb Bryson DeChambeau and Rory McIlroy. The game’s two governing bodies, R&A and the US Golf Association, have paved the way for equipment restrictions, including limiting rider length and introducing a standardized tournament ball on tours. The growing distance problem in golf is causing great golf courses to be ruined. The move will likely abandon DeChambeau’s plan to use a 48-inch driver to crush Augusta National in ruins at the Masters in April. It was the milestone the purists – including Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods – had been waiting for since the powers that be, who signaled last February that they were finally ready to attack pro with the “Distance Insights” project, the problem of game length , pointed out by their joint studies, was “critical to the future of the game.” The pandemic put a pause on progress, but it has resumed and has finally reached what is known as the “resolution phase”. With Martin Slumbers, the R&A managing director who confirmed to Telegraph Sport on Tuesday that a radical overhaul of the professional game was all but inevitable – “it is highly unlikely we will end up doing nothing” – is now feedback on the Topics collected Possible use of a local rule that specifies the use of clubs and balls intended to result in shorter striking distances. A last-minute comment was sought on the proposal to introduce a local rule that would reduce the maximum length of the non-putter club from 48 “to 46”. The deadline for this is March 4th and Augusta and any other tournament organizer can, as expected, slow down the long hitters. Slumbers denied that it was “individually specific” but accepted that the big minds out there could be “personalized”. The big battle, however, will certainly lie in the attempts by R&A and USGA to convince device manufacturers to review the general compliance specifications for clubs and balls, including specifications that directly affect hitting distances. This means that ruling bodies want to investigate issues such as limiting ball efficiency, ball sizes and weights, downsizing and shortening the rider, and reducing the feathery effect in faces and the moment of inertia in club heads. They have chosen to follow the “local rule” to ensure golf continues to have a set of rules that professionals and amateurs of all levels adhere to. “Local rules” are not part of the official rulebook, but rather an amendment or addition to a rule that any tournament committee can adopt for a particular competition. Indeed, the rules would be different in practice and would ultimately mean that although the weekend hacker would still be able to take advantage of the best technology they can offer – there is no appetite to see things in the Substantial change in the leisure sector – groundbreaking restrictions. But Schlummer doesn’t see it that way. “The local rule could be applied on a much larger scale than the professional game or the elite amateur game,” he said. “I think it is misleading to say that this is all about elite golf.” No doubt the lawyers will be working with the device makers and are already involved in protecting their billion dollar industries. However, the hope is that an agreement can be reached after the feedback phase is completed in November. “This is a serious problem and this is the time for serious thought. I am confident that the game and its many facets can come together to do what is right for our sport,” said Slumbers. It’s a complex subject, but Slumbers pointed out that while the conversations should be as detailed as they are responsible, they shouldn’t be dragged on. DeChambeau is already threatening the 400 yard mark, and there is an urgent need to curb bombers to ensure great tracks aren’t out of date and the game doesn’t get too one-dimensional. “There’s a balance between skill and technology that we’re looking for because the game is in danger of losing that balance,” Slumbers said. “After the lockdown, the various tours, governing bodies, golf associations, golf unions, and bodies like Augusta and the PGA of America came together to make sure the sport was back to being as effective as possible. That gives me confidence in this regard. “Mike Davis, Slumbers’ USGA counterpart, added,” This is long term for the entire game. Golfers need to understand that this additional generation, who keep hitting the ball, negatively impacts the game. The costs for this are borne by all golfers. We’re just trying to bring the game of golf back to golf courses. “Local Rule” Route Perfect Plan to Thwart Big Hitters The R&A and the United States Golf Association are anything but stupid and are very aware that they are fighting the equipment fighters with their proposals with their equipment manufacturers Reducing the hitting distances in the professional will lead game. However, if they expected this to be essentially a fight with the bombers on tour, then Webb Simpson insisted that even the conspirators might be in opposition. Number 9 in the world, Simpson is one of the shortest elite players. He ranks 114th in the PGA Tour’s driving distance statistics after failing to make it into the top 100 for the past six seasons. If the power of Dustin Johnson, Bryson DeChambeau, and Rory McIlroy were suddenly curtailed, it should surely be good for Simpson’s chances of adding the one major to his resume.