Always looking up: My Life on the PGA Tour

I’m in the show. I am one of the lucky ones to be playing in the top level here at TGCTours. I am ranked 87th in the world at the time I am writing this, and each week, I prepare for the potential that I might finally break through and consistently be sniffing at the lead on the final day.

That day has not come yet. I am officially a PGA grinder. As a Canadian, i’ll use a hockey analogy. If the PGA tour was a hockey team, I would be on the 4th line…or filling the water bottles. Sure, I’ll have a good tournament here and there (had a top 20 at the Sony Open this week)…but inconsistency has been killing me. I can usually put three good rounds together, but tank one of them (almost always round 3 for some reason.) I’m leaving myself too long of putts and misreading speed and breaks more frequently than I should. Seeing the round 1 scores roll in at the beginning of the week is tough…-16s..even -18s are not uncommon anymore. I can usually throw down a 62 or 63 without too much trouble…but that’s 9-10 strokes back of the leaders…multiply that by 4, and what I think is a good tournament for myself is 30-40 strokes worse than the eventual winner.

I’ve reached a point in my game where I need to try to get better. The way I’m playing right now doesn’t allow for any improvement. So I’m experimenting with something I vowed I would never use. Those damn charts. I played a round with them last night and actually enjoyed it more than I thought. I played the same course the way I normally played, then checked out the loft charts and I improved by a couple shots. Do I think this will drastically change my game? No, but it’s a start.

Taking my time is something I want to do more of. In my life, I’m known to speed through tasks to get them done with as quickly as possible (an “anti-perfectionist”, if you will). The same applies in TGC. I can usually zip through a tournament round in about 20-25 minutes. That’s way too fast. People that watch my stream always tell me to slow down, but I always feel I second-guess myself. Taking some time to do a bit more mental math will most likely slow me down.

How I feel playing my TGCT tournament rounds. SLOW DOWN, CANUCK!

I want to get better, but I have come to realize that I will most likely never beat the Ian Sweeney’s of the world. However, there may be hope for us lower level PGA grinders…as well as up and coming Web.commers that want to take on the big boys. Something new is coming to TGCT soon that is going to make things interesting for us. Stay tuned.

1 Comment

  1. John Yates on January 19, 2016 at 4:38 pm

    Interesting read Canuck. I find myself in the same boat, although a little different circumstances. I am new to the PGA tournament. I started at the CC level and barely made it to the Web. I felt my game improved and I became more consistent, but I wasn’t a top Web player. I just got really lucky/fortunate one week and everything came together…and I won a tournament. I then barely scraped by with my exemption and now I’m in the show. And I should note, I would NOT have an exemption with last year’s rules.

    I want to get better. I watch a lot of streams now to see how others play. It has helped me better a few areas of my game or at least understand better what things have what affects. But I don’t feel I’ve really improved all that much. I’ve been more lucky than consistently good. I can have 2 or 3 good rounds but really rare to have 4. My putting is atrocious.

    So while I want to get better, I’m kind of planning to be a grinder for the foreseeable future. I just don’t know how I can be as consistent as the top players week in and week out. People call Ian the ‘Machine’ but there are a lot of machines out there. Very few mistakes. And when they do make a mistake, they drain that 25 foot putt on the glass putting surface with the huge break. Not 100% of the time, but often enough to make a big difference. It’s pretty awesome to watch.

    I will note that I do think you play fast. I’ve watched your streams before and honestly don’t learn a lot – there isn’t enough time for me to understand your decision making. By the time I do quick math in my head you’ve already hit 🙂

    Appreciate the article. I think it applies to a lot more of us than it doesn’t!

    PS: I don’t like your tease about something new coming to TGCT soon!

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