Posts Tagged ‘atlantic golf club’
There is so much happening at AndrewRiceGolf.com at the moment that I thought this would be an opportune time to let everybody know what’s been happening and what’s coming up….
I have just formed a relationship with Peter Millar for 2013. I am very excited as I approached the company about wearing their line – it has always been a favorite of mine. Look for Peter Millar clothing in all AndrewRiceGolf.com photos and video shoots.
Comprehensive TrackMan Days
This in-depth day long program will explain all the factors that influence ball flight and clearly illustrate what is required for you to perform at your best. All elements of ball flight and club delivery will be addressed – from drivers to wedges. Clubfitting will also be included. Due to the intensity of this program there will be a maximum of 3 students in each school. (Minimum 2) Cost is $650 per person and lunch is included.
Modern Golf Comes to Berkeley Hall
South Africa 2013
Looking to Get Longer or Straighter this Year?
Atlantic Golf Club
Thanks for reading and please shout if you have any questions….
I will soon be leaving Atlantic Golf Club and heading south for the fall and winter seasons. It has been another amazing summer of learning and growth and I look forward to returning to Berkeley Hall to resume my teaching operation there. I will be back at Berkeley Hall on Tuesday September 18th and time slots are filling up. Call me at (843)247-4688 if you’d like to come out and get firing for the fall….I have so much I want to share!
With so many questions after my two most recent posts I thought it would be enlightening to show you what we see when using TrackMan. This particular driver was hit by Rick Hartmann – my boss and the Head Professional at Atlantic Golf Club. Rick played on the European Tour for ten years and is a fantastic driver of the ball. This is a good drive, but not anything unusual for Rick (it was into a very slight headwind). These particular numbers are very close to optimal and should be something we should all be working towards regardless of what our club speed might be. Of course that is if you happen to like high, long draws…
If you want to be efficient with your driver here is an explanation of what I look for:
- The Attack Angle (0.9 degrees up) is positive – a good sign for maximum efficiency as an upward hit is better than a downward hit (if you want to hit it as far as possible).
- Notice how (because the Swing Plane is very close to 45 degrees) that the Attack Angle + Club Path = Swing Direction. Not unusual really, this is a helpful indicator in understanding what factors effect the club path.
- The Spin Loft is close to 11 degrees – a solid number that seems to work for most golfers. Spin Loft = Dynamic Loft - Attack Angle. Think of spin loft as a measure of ‘ball compression‘.
- In order to hit good draws the face must be open relative to the target at impact and here you see how the Face Angle is open (2.7 degrees) with the Club Path being further to the right (3.5 degrees). Couple that with a centered hit and you’ve got lovely push draws.
- A centered hit is vital and that’s why I like to keep Face to Path alongside Spin Axis. If the hit is in the heel the face angle would be closed ( a negative number) and the spin axis would be tilted to the right (positive) and vice versa for a toe hit. Here you see how with the face slightly closed to the path, you should get a baby draw, and that’s exactly what we got – all from a centered hit.
- Club Speed and Ball Speed are fairly self explanatory, but if you divide the club speed into the ball speed you will get 1.48 which equals the Smash Factor. Smash factor is merely a measure of how efficiently you translated club speed into ball speed and is not purely a measure of how well you struck the ball. The maximum smash factor for a driver 1.53. (I have seen 1.54 twice!)
- The Height of the shot, which is measured from flat and not necessarily the ground, is right where I’d like to see it for this particular club speed. PGATour average swing speed is 112mph and they hit all their clubs 90 feet in the air. At around 108mph I think 88 feet high works very nicely.
- Launch Angle and Launch Direction are largely influenced by the club face and I like both here. I look for draws to launch to the right of the target (positive) and the launch angle to be somewhere between 10 and 16 degrees depending on the players club speed.
- The Spin Rate for this shot is a touch high, but I would attribute that to a shaft that is softer than what the golfer should be using. I’d like to see the spin rate at this club speed be somewhere between 2000 and 2200.
- Side Total indicates that this ball is straight down the center and finished less than 4 feet right of the intended target line – just another ho-hum 280 yard drive down the pipe.
Somewhat advanced I know, but after the response to my last few posts I know there are thousands of golfers out there who are looking for a better understanding of what really happens at impact and what they should be working towards for maximum efficiency. If you can duplicate these numbers you won’t need me for much…at least not for the driver.
I was recently handed a pristine collection of older model Titleist golf balls. It included a dozen Tour Balata 100′s, a dozen Professional 90′s and a dozen early model Pro V1‘s. There is no arguing that Titleist has held the upper hand in golf balls for almost 30 years and if you have played golf long enough you have no doubt had the pleasure of maneuvering one or all of these models around the course at some point. After a second of thought, the golf geek in me wanted to take them out for a test drive – see how far they go and what they might feel like. After all, it’s been a long time since I had dented a Tour Balata.
Thankfully, wisdom prevailed and I decided to get some real numbers on the balls with the help of Trackman. I realized that, including the most recent model of the Pro V1, I had access to four generations of Titleist golf balls. I had balls from the ’80′s, ’90′s, 2000′s and today and I wanted to experience first hand what the differences might be.
I needed a very consistent driver of the golf ball and the best man at hand was Zack Brady from Atlantic Golf Club. Zack is an exceptional golf professional who can really play. He also happens to be one of the better drivers I’ve seen. I sacrificed six balls from each generation and had him hit them on a rotating basis going Balata, Professional, Pro V1 and new Pro V1. I did this to negate the effect of any changes in swing or weather. Zack hit twenty four shots on the Trackman and the average from the six shots with each model was calculated. Here are the results with each set of balls:
Tour Balata 100
- Total Distance 261.6 yds
- Carry 224.7 yds
- Clubhead Speed 110.1 mph
- Ball Speed 160.7 mph
- Smash Factor 1.46
- Attack Angle -0.4 degrees
- Spin Loft 9.0 degrees
- Launch Angle 6.5 degrees
- Spin 2789 rpm
- Total Distance 262.1 yds
- Carry 251.9 yds
- Clubhead Speed 110.6 mph
- Ball Speed 161.4 mph
- Smash Factor 1.45
- Attack Angle -1.1 degrees
- Spin Loft 6.9 degrees
- Launch Angle 6.5 degrees
- Spin 2915 rpm
Pro V1 – 392
- Total Distance 286.4 yds
- Carry 251.9 yds
- Clubhead Speed 110.1 mph
- Ball Speed 164.7 mph
- Smash Factor 1.50
- Attack Angle -3.0 degrees
- Spin Loft 10.8 degrees
- Launch Angle 6.5 degrees
- Spin 2739 rpm
Pro V1 New
- Total Distance 298.4 yds
- Carry 271.1 yds
- Clubhead Speed 110.8 mph
- Ball Speed 167.2 mph
- Smash Factor 1.51
- Attack Angle -3.1 degrees
- Spin Loft 11.7 degrees
- Launch Angle 7. degrees
- Spin 2850 rpm
Things you should be aware of: The numbers listed above are an average of the six shots struck with each ball. Each ball was only hit once. The golf balls, while all pristine and “new” are very different age wise. The balata balls have been waiting in their sleeve for more than twenty years for someone to play with! The balls had all been stored in an air-conditioned space and were stored together. The weather was a crisp 74 degrees with a slight left to right breeze blowing – lovely for August! Zack used a Titleist D3 9.5 driver with a Diamana ‘ahina X shaft by Titleist.
Points of Interest:
- Obviously the distance gaps were what interested me most and there were no real surprises there, other than the “upgrade” from the early Pro V1 to the newer model – almost a 5% increase!
- The huge leap in distance off the tee on the PGATour in 2000 is due to only one thing – the introduction of the Pro V1. An increase in distance of almost 10% over the scuff resistant Professional.
- I thought the spin rate on the wound balls (Balata and Professional) would be through the roof. Not so! The balls sounded very soft off the face and seemed to struggle to get into the air – almost as if they were unhappy to be put into play this late in the game! Zack said it felt like he was hitting ping pong balls.
- I was very interested in the fact that the smash factor was lower with the two softer balls. It almost seemed as if it was more difficult to get the smash factor up due to the softness/compression of the ball. BTW, smash factor (generally speaking) is the ball speed divided by the clubhead speed and it measures the efficiency/quality of the strike.
- The older/softer balls definitely curved more than the more modern models. This was noticeable even to the untrained eye.
- Since the study I have gone back and weighed each model of golf ball measured. I have long been under the impression that all golf balls weighed 46 grams. The Tour Balata (43gr) and the Professional (42gr) were much lighter than the others (46gr). Not sure if a ball can “lose weight” or were they made at that weight?
On a side note: I also had Zack hit six older model Pro V1X – 332 balls. I kept this data out of the study as I wanted to key in on four separate generations of Titleist balls and this model was a relative of the early model Pro V1 we studied. Interestingly enough this was the ball that traveled the furthest - a whopping 307.3 yds! (All the additional clubhead numbers were similar to the other models). I took from this that it is important to play a golf ball that fits your clubhead speed/game. With a driver speed in the vicinity of PGATour average (112mph), Zack currently plays the new Pro V1X and this study confirmed that the X is the right ball for him.
If your driver clubhead speed is below 95mph you should use the Titleist NXT or equivalent. With speeds between 95mph and 105mph you should be using the Pro V1 or equivalent ball, and above 105mph you should be using the Pro V1X or equivalent.
The moral of the story is that when it comes to golf balls, new technology fitted to the appropriate golfer makes a real difference. Take the time to chat with a teacher or professional you respect and get some sound advice as to which ball might make a difference for you. Oh, and that pristine logo-ed dozen you’ve been saving for that special course, remember the one your buddy bought back from Augusta for you in ’78 – eh…not so good.
Situated in the Bridgehampton on Long Island in New York, the Atlantic Golf Club is a special place. And it’s not only the golf course that makes it special.
The Director of Golf is Rick Hartmann and I could not think of a better personality to provide New York’s financial and entertainment elite an exceptional all-around golf and membership experience. An excellent player in his own right, Rick oversees a well-seasoned staff that seems able to anticipate every golfer’s need.
The caddy program is second to none! I have never seen a caddy yard as deep as the one they have at Atlantic – I don’t believe it is possible to get even a mediocre “loop” there. Rocco Casero, the caddie master, seems to have the magic touch when selecting his team.
The course is beautifully maintained by longtime superintendent Bob Ranum. Bob always seems to be trying to find a way to improve the course and it’s playability. From reshaping the traps to altering the cut on the fairways, nothing seems to be too much for Bob and his crew to provide a fun, playable and spectacularly well maintained golf course.
The Rees Jones design was opened in 1992 by Lowell Schulman and was greeted with rave reviews. The course has been softened (made more player friendly) in certain areas over the years and I really like the direction it seems to be headed. A more enjoyable and pleasing experience for golfers of every level. The fairways are generous enough, but make sure you don’t misfire as the infamous Atlantic fescue awaits your wayward Titleist. There are enough difficult holes to keep you paying attention (2, 4, 5, 10, 18) but they are nicely balanced by a handful of interesting and imminently playable holes (6, 8, 11, 12, 17). My favorite holes are the 4th, 12th, 14th, 15th and 16th. The 4th is an almost exact replica of the famous 13th hole at Royal Portrush and at over 200 yards into the prevailing wind it is just as brutish. It really is thrilling to be able to strike the correct type of shot that finds this green.
This month a few fortunate golfers will have the privilege of competing in the US Mid Amateur Championship at Atlantic Golf Club – they are in for a treat, and a stern challenge. I know Rick and Bob and Rocco are looking forward to playing host – something they do so well.