Friday, January 19, 2007

There was a time when "real golfers" carried a standard set of clubs that looked like this:

  • Driver
  • 3-wood
  • 1 iron or 4 wood (pick one)
  • 2-iron through pitching wedge
  • Sand wedg
  • Putter

  • Tiger Woods (10 majors) has now (with his new swing) pulled his 2-iron out of the bag in 2005 and seems to have permanently replaced it with a 5-wood. He can hit it farther and higher from the fairway, and it's much easier to use from the rough.
  • Phil Mickelson (3 majors), who used two drivers and no sand wedge in winning the 2006 Masters, routinely plays practice rounds with 15 clubs in his bag. Lefty either keeps a 4-wood in the bag and removes his 3- or 4-iron, or, leaves the long irons in and pulls out the fairway wood.
  • Vijay Singh (3 majors) carries a 7-wood that my colleague David Feherty is fond of saying, "is bent like a 5-wood, but he can hit like a 3-wood."
  • Hybrid and rescue clubs are so common today in the bags of PGA Tour players that they don't even raise an eyebrow.

  • Where's the Cry For Wie-Proofing?

    Longest Hitters on LPGA and PGA Tour by Year
    1999 260.7 (Jean Bartholomew) 305.6 (John Daly)
    2000 270.1 (Caroline Blaylock) 301.4 (John Daly)
    2001 265.8 (Wendy Dolan) 306.7 (John Daly)
    2002 269.3 (Akiko Fukushima) 306.8 (John Daly)
    2003 269.7 (Annika Sorenstam) 321 (Hank Kuehne)
    2004 270.2 (Sophie Gustafson) 314 (Hank Kuehne)
    2005 270.3 (Brittany Lincicome) 318 (Scott Hend)
    2006 288.7 (Karin Sjodin) 321 (Bubba Watson)

    Peter Kostis is a golf analyst for CBS Sports, a GOLF MAGAZINE Top 100 Teacher and co-founder of the Kostis-McCord Learning Center in Scottsdale, Ariz. You can e-mail him your questions and comments at

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