March 4, 2013

Great Takeaways for your Golf Game from the Winner of the Honda Classic

This week’s Honda Classic was exciting for a couple of young players, Luke Guthrie and Michael Thompson, who started the day in the last group.  At the end of the day Michael Thompson was all alone as champion holding off the rest of the field to break through and win his first PGA tournament.

There were some real instructive lessons watching this tourney for all of us who are trying to break through in our golf games.  Whether it be to win a tournament, to break a certain score or to play under pressure for a $2 Nassau, the duel between Michael Thompson and the rest of the field might be helpful.  I’ll let the analysis of the talking heads Johnny Miller, Roger Maltbie, and Rick Hicks sum it up.

On Luke Guthrie’s game Johnny Miller said: “You can learn a lot by playing with the winner.  You can learn a lot by seeing how the winner did it.  It wasn’t pretty.”  But he got the job done.

It’s so true that every shot is not going to be perfect but by keeping the ball in play you give yourself a chance not to have self-inflicted errors.  Luke Guthrie was two shots down at 14 after coming off a birdie on 13.  He hit a shot he wasn’t comfortable with but was trying to make something happen.  Instead he hit it out of bounds and it cost him the championship.

Roger Maltbie followed up with this comment describing a good takeaway for us all with regards to playing with the winner:  “What Luke Guthrie would have seen from Michael Thompson was Michael playing to his strengths for the last two days.  He never really hit a shot he didn’t feel comfortable hitting.”

Golf GPS, Golf Watches, Rangefinders

If you don’t like the choice of club, the place you are trying to hit to, or the line of the putt, step away and get your mind in a place that you are comfortable to take the very best swing you can take.  Without a clear picture of shot success or a comfort that you can make the shot, you are only setting yourself up for a high score.

Johnny Miller weighed in on the Michael Thompson victory: ’’ Very amazing he went from finishing almost dead last in the one tournament he did qualify for to winning on the PGA tour.”   Dan Hicks take was this:  “You can miss cuts, you can go from almost giving up the game or you can be Michael Thompson and never stop believing.  Michael Thompson wins the Honda Classic” at PGA National.

It’s great to see these break through winners and figure out what they did right to get victory.  Steady play, confidence in your shots, and a belief you can win are all characteristics we learned from Michael Thompson this week that we can apply to our own games.

Feel Great and Hit ‘em Straight,




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