Pace of play is a hot topic on the PGA Tour, but world no. 1 Jason Day isn’t worried about speeding up his pre-shot routine anymore.
The New York Times reports that Jason Day used to be bothered by criticism of his pace of play, and attempted to solicit advice from his boyhood idol, Tiger Woods.
Day told Tiger, “Every time I try to [play faster], I feel like gathering information and hitting the shot combine into one, and there are too many things flying around and I can’t concentrate.”
Woods’s reponse? “Why would you speed up? You’ve got to be deliberate. You’ve got to hit the correct shot.”
Day took the advice to heart. “I’ve got to get back to what makes me good,” he said. “If that means I have to back off five times, I’m going to back off five times before I have to actually hit the shot.”
Day also makes a distinction between being deliberate and being slow.
“Deliberate is not slow,” he said. “Being deliberate is being 100 percent in my process of actually hitting the shot. Being slow is getting out of position, and I understand that. If you’re out of position, quicken up. Being deliberate is making sure I don’t miss information that I need to hit the right shot.”
Increased visibility and TV time for players like Day and Jordan Spieth can add additional pressure and scrutiny when it comes to maintaining a reasonable pace of play, but Day is determined to stay in his routine. “Last year, I felt that I had a lot more peer pressure, and I’m like, ‘I’ve got to speed up play,’” he said. “But why would I need to do that when I played such great golf?”