Monday, October 25, 2010

Great Day of Practice

I had a really good day of practice today at Callaway Gardens in preparation for the First Stage of Q-school, which starts on Wednesday. After getting a nice workout in during a morning rainstorm, I was one of the first players out to the course. I hit just enough balls to feel loose and headed for the first tee where I met up with an old friend of mine whom I haven't seen in years. We played a practice round together, and my game just sort of clicked. I was driving it as well as I can remember driving it lately and my iron play was pretty good as well. On top of that, my short game and putting both felt good. I've always felt comfortable around this course, and a solid performance like my one today just helps me feel even better going into the competition.

I shot seven-under-par during my practice round today. I've heard from a lot of people that it's not a good idea to keep score during a practice round, but I think it helps me. Otherwise, I end up just going through the motions and not really focusing on any of my shots. I especially like to go through my normal routine on the greens, and keeping my score in my head helps keep me motivated to read all of my putts and commit to a plan before I hit them. I really got a lot out of my practice round today because I played each shot the way I would have if it had been in the competition. And I had a lot of fun, which has not always been the case for me in practice rounds.

In the evening, I went back to the course and carried my shag bag out onto a little wedge range that seldom if ever sees any action at Callaway Gardens. I had the area all to myself, and I hit wedge shots from all different distances, angles, and lies to the target greens that are cut out in the range. I am trying hard to dial in my distances on those between yardage wedge shots where I have to either hit something a little harder than full or take a lot off of something. The thing that makes Callaway different than most of the courses I have played this year is the fact that anytime I am hitting a soft or partial wedge shot, I have to put a lot of effort into ensuring the ball will still land softly on the firm bermuda greens. I put a lot of effort into hitting high, soft 3/4 wedges this evening, and I really feel good about my ability to do that.

It was a very productive day today. I feel good about all aspects of my game, and I feel that I am growing more and more familiar with the course everyday. I'm still smiling and having fun, and I know that that will continue as the week progresses. I've got one more day of practice tomorrow, and then the competition starts Wednesday. Keep it here for progress reports!

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