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New groove rules – fail?

TheTrueReview

"Playing it straight"
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Jan 8, 2009
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The following is not meant to be a rant.

It occurred to me whilst watching the Barclays that the new groove rules have had little or no practical effect on the course strategy of the touring pros. By that I mean, they're not winding back their drives. If anything, they are still trying to boom it as long as possible.

Although the conforming grooved wedges are not as effective out the rough as under the previous rules, the pros are saying that they're replacing their conforming wedges each month to ensure they remain as sharp as possible.

It is now apparent that the new groove rules have had had a negligible effect on the touring pros games. In my view, the intent of the governing authorities has clearly failed.

But what about the poor weekend golfer?

Given the decision by the OEMs to only manufacture conforming groove irons & wedges from 2011 & beyond, from next year any new wedges you buy will be conforming to the groove rules, which is well before the 2024 date set by the governing authorities for us to change over. So, in effect, many weekend golfers (not by choice) will be playing conforming groove wedges from 2011. Unfortunately, weekend golfers can't afford to change their wedges every month like the pros can.

… and I really don't buy comments that the new groove rules don't affect weekend golfers. I've noticed the cavernous grooves in my new wedges to be full of the green stuff after I play out of the rough. The conforming grooves just don't allow the amount of moisture and gunk to be carried away from the face of the club when playing from the rough. That is their intent.

What about the balls?

I've observed a growing groundswell of opinion recommending that balls should be standardised and their current performance limited. I don't really have a view about that but I do hope that if the authorities change the rules to standardise golf balls, they abandon the 2010 groove rules. Otherwise, weekend golfers will have a double whammy effect on their game.

Your thoughts?
 

Clugnut

Gimme some roombas!
Aug 13, 2006
3,423
1
I agree. Groove rules = fail.

It was said in another thread, and bears repeating. It's the ball, stupid.
 

N.V.M.

now...a cartoon
Sep 27, 2008
1,972
2
i've heard more comments, albeit most of them from the broadcasting booths, that it actually helps the pros with less back spin as they usually over do it and spin the ball backwards into a worse position.

its like, they're spinning back just the right amount now.
 

BigJim13

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Aug 13, 2006
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I agree, groove rule=fail.

Golf world has been keeping track of this since the beginning of the season and while I won't bore you with all the numbers, here are a few:

Driving accuracy 1.52% better this year vs. last
Approaches from Rough (50-125yds) 2" farther from hole this year
Approaches from Rough (125-150) 9" farther this yr
Scrambling success (outside 30yds) .34% better this yr vs last
and scoring avg 2009: 71.06 and 2010: 71.20

And from me:
59's the last 11 yrs with square grooves: 0, and I doubt Duval used square grooves for his, but I'm not sure.
59's this year with V grooves: 2

So as you can see, not really much different. They can still bomb as far down the hole as they can into the rough, on avg they are only going to be 2" farther from the hole, big deal. Tour Pros are almost forced to hit driver on every hole anyway, did you see how many friggin LONG A@@ par 4's there were this weekend.

I don't think it affects us weekend hacks much at all though, I will disagree on this one point. Most weekend hacks don't hit their wedges consistent enough to generate spin that backs the ball up or stops on a dime and the ones that do, it doesn't matter if they lose a bit of spin because they can control their ball better.
 

BigJim13

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Aug 13, 2006
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Oh, and Jack Nicklaus has been saying its the ball for years. Maybe the USGA should listen to the GOAT for a minute or two, he might actually know what he's talking about.
 
OP
TheTrueReview

TheTrueReview

"Playing it straight"
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Jan 8, 2009
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Country
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I heard a guy on a podcast some months ago talking about this controversy & what he said really made sense.

He said - if you want to stop the pros bombing it, grow the rough so it penalises them 1.5 shots if they miss the fairway.

He then went on to explain. The governing authorities (R & A / USGA) only control the Open Championship & the US Open (respectively). Therefore, they have no jurisdiction over PGA & Euro PGA tour events & the length of the rough.

He said that to require the rough grown longer to a standard length would require extensive negotiation with both tours & it would also involve input from the courses (which in turn might put their hand out for financial assistance to comply). The R & A / USGA answer? The cheap & dirty option - change the groove rules.
 

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