Since no one sent me a guest column this week, I thought I’d give an update on my game.
My putting is fine. Good days and bad, but is at a level where if I play tee to green at a high level, the putter won’t be a liability.
My chipping is probably the weakest part. Not sand play, as even in my darkest days that was always at a world class level. My chipping is weak for actually a very positive reason that relates to my ball striking. The club is out in front of me and I am not required to flip at it to send it on it’s merry way. This is great for my long term success, but right now to call my feel rancid, is an understatement.
The solution: hit a bunch of chips exactly the way I am doing it right now and develop a consistent feel for it. As soon as that happens, I will look like I actually know what I am doing…and develop touch and spin and distance control.
My ball striking is in a similar place to my chipping. The club is in a great position and it feels so good it is indescribable. However, the “save” that used to create a good shot when the club us stuck, causes bad shots now.
Now you would ask how is that the same as chipping when one feels rancid and one feels great. In a full swing, I am accelerating through the terrible feel and my body is accepting it. It doesn’t hurt my body as much to swing. What is the same is the timing is off. In both cases I am not performing the action automatically yet.
The solution: hit a bunch of balls exactly the way I am doing it right now and develop a consistent feel. I actually look like I know exactly what I am doing right now, except on about every 4th or 5th ball…LOL.
The last two times I have played, I made tons of birdies and three eagles. Problem is I hit 4-5 loose shots each of those rounds that turned 63 or 64 into 68.
Basically, it’s all mental after that. I am 2-10 weeks (depending on how long it takes to develop a feel) away from being physically able to play at a Nationwide Tour level. The $64,000 question is when and if I will develop a mental ability to do the same. That blind inner arrogance that everyone who plays at a high level has. I had it at one time and need to find it again.
Since the difference between being able to play at a Nationwide Tour level and a PGA Tour level is the ability to deal with the attention from the media and fans and the money factor…there is basically no difference to me. I am a narcissistic ham who loves the attention and the difference between winning $100,000 and $1,000,000 for a victory is something I am unaffected by. In either case it’s a wheel barrow full of money.
If I think I can not only be competitive in the qualifier, but also the tournament…I will try and qualify for the Nationwide event on Northern California on April 11th.
I will for sure play in the US Open qualifying in early May. I just submitted my application.