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Today, we get ready for the US Open with one final day of prep.
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The Open is a day away
The US Open starts on Thursday from Winged Foot, and it’s going to be an exciting major championship week in the fall. I would be all for a major in the fall on the reg, but that’s another topic altogether.
We did see some mowers yesterday at Winged Foot, suggesting final cuts for the week. It looked like the rough got a little bit of a haircut, but they weren’t suddenly converting Winged Foot into an easier course.
It feels like everyone has set their sights mostly on DJ, Rahm, Xander and Collin to win this week. I think those are fair favorites, but we also have to consider some longshots. As I said on Twitter, you’d be hard-pressed to like someone more than Will Zalatoris. He’s been phenomenal on the Korn Ferry Tour, and that’s given him a unique chance to place on this pandemic-influenced stage.
I’m excited to see what NBC does as the old-new host of the Open. Fox did some things really well and pushed what it meant to air golf on TV in ways we now take for granted. Hopefully NBC will be reinvigorated working with the USGA again and do as good of a job as they do with The Open. It was a tight turnaround from getting Fox’s deal to airing this tournament starting tomorrow, but hopefully it works out for the best.
Bryson’s continued quest to break golf
Bryson DeChambeau wants to carry — CARRY — drives 400 yards, and he’s been experimenting with a 48-inch driver (the maximum length allowed under the Rules of Golf) to help him get to that goal. The now-27-year-old hasn’t found the right shaft to go with his 5-degree driver head, but it sounds like he’s close.
“If I wanted to swing it like [World Long Drive champions] and go as far back as I possibly could, I would probably gain five to six miles per hour more (of ball speed), maybe even more, I don’t even know,” he said.
“I’m swinging 45-and-a-half-inch driver, so the added length is going to create a lot of different things that can make the ball go sideways if you don’t have the right shaft in it. We’re working on testing a 48-inch driver after this week. It’s just going to happen, too. So we’ll see how far I can go.”
Taking this into account, a buddy of mine may have been suggesting the right answer to golf’s technology and distance issues all along: limit the length of the driver shaft and the size of the driver head.
You gotta check out…
The LPGA adds a second Drive On event: With its fall Asian swing completely canceled, the LPGA announced a new Drive On Championship that will be played at Georgia’s Reynolds Plantation in October. It’ll have a $1.3 million purse, and it’ll be broadcast on Golf Channel. We’re never rooting for the LPGA to lose events of the docket — and these tournaments will be back in 2021 — but it is always good to see another domestic event for American fans.
The DR will be on NBC next weekend: The PGA Tour’s event in the Dominican Republic, the Corales Puntacana Resort and Club Championship, is typically an opposite-field event without much exposure in the US. With the Ryder Cup’s cancellation leaving NBC with weekend air time to fill, the DR is getting a network stage next weekend. The event has been upgraded to a full points allocation this year, as a one-time deal. While the event won’t feature a mind-blowing field, the tournament will be on NBC for three hours on both Saturday and Sunday.[/s2If]