The Molinari brothers want pro golf's pace of play to improve. A few months after Edoardo published some of the European Tour's timing statistics, brother and reigning Open champion Francesco believes the major tours need to overhaul how they enforce pace of play rules.
Speaking with Golfweek, Francesco Molinari said he would like to see the tours give themselves the right to time players on a shot during any point in the round -- not just when they've fallen behind time par, which is the expected length of time players should take to complete any one round. Under long-standing rules, the PGA Tour and European Tour only begin timing specific players when their group falls behind the pace.
“They should be able to time us at any time," Francesco said. "If they tell us at the beginning of the year, ‘Right this year we’ve got new rules and you can be timed on any shot at any time without any warning,’ then probably it will different from a player’s point of view because you know you can be penalized at any time."
Under current timing rules, players typically have 40 seconds from when it is their turn to hit their shot. Players get an extra 10 seconds when they're the first to go on a tee shot, approach shot or a shot around the green.
Molinari said the system doesn't identify chronically slow players, but rather it identifies a player who has an odd poor time here and there. The Italian knows slower players have a coping system to play quick enough when they're on the clock, only to return to their slow ways when the timers leave.
“The guys that are really slow know that they’re slow and have two speeds: one for when they are not on the clock and one for when they are on the clock," Molinari said. "They need to find better rules that they can enforce and just punish the slower players.”