1986 US Open Full Final Round Coverage

Re: 1986 US Open Full Final Round Coverage

Postby lagpressure » Sat Feb 12, 2011 9:05 am

The modern players simply don't have to learn to execute the variety or palate of shots that was once required, and that was such a big part of the game. Learning to hit long irons, learning to keep the ball under the wind, learning to shape the ball into the greens, and learning to drive the ball straight. In this coverage (86) you just don't see the guys hitting it all over the golf course. Trevino rarely ever misses as shot. Most all the drives you see are landing in the fairway, and if they don't it's really a struggle to make par. It's because the modern players are not required to learn these shots that the pros are not as good today.

Of course had the game not changed, then this would NOT be the case, and there would be a whole new generation of great players who WOULD know how to play golf. We would be seeing a completely different set of names out there. Many of the guys today would not be on tour. Some would, but there would be a lot of new faces, mostly shorter hitters who would havelearned to shape the ball and would have a huge advantage over the guys that just bomb it and can't keep it in play.

If you look at Norman, he was really long back then, but he is basically only 20 yards by his opponents, not 60 yards or 80 yards. The modern gear is just widening the gap between the long and short hitters exponentially with the springboard effect off the driver faces that doesn't really kick into full capacity until the swing speeds get up in the 120 mph range and over. You have some of these guys now on occasion hitting it 360 or more.... while the shorter hitter is back there at 280. Since the newer courses lack trees and basically play much more open off the tee, the shorter hitters can't compete against someone 80 yards past them, even if that player is 40 or 60 yards off line.

I disagree that today's players are better because they are stronger. What has happened is that the game is allowing stronger players to be competitive if they can also putt. The modern swing has evolved out of the modern gear. Very little requirement for precision of the strike with the driver. No requirement to learn how to hit the difficult long irons.. so the golf swings now are inferior to those of the past... because there is no real advantage to having a tighter precision based golf swing with the longer clubs. If Bubba or Dustin were to be playing on Sunday in 86, you would not be seeing them swinging the club they way they do now.. I am not saying that they could not learn a swing that would be toned down or trimmed back for accurate striking, but you would not see them swinging the way they do now and expect to see them teeing off Saturday morning yet alone even making through local or sectional qualifying. You would see them swinging more like Hal Sutton or Chip Beck.

I don't blame any of the young players for playing the style of power golf the modern game allows. The blame starts of course with the equipment companies strong arming the USGA, and the USGA not fighting back hard enough or being clever enough, or the PGA Tour not just dropping down their own set of rules. The courts made a bad decision, but I don't see why a ruling in a US Court should affect the policies of the European Tour or the Asian Tour.
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Re: 1986 US Open Full Final Round Coverage

Postby twomasters » Tue Feb 15, 2011 7:47 pm

Here is a pic of Greg Norman chilling on the range from about that time frame of mid 80's.....you can get a good look at his persimmon of choice.

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Re: 1986 US Open Full Final Round Coverage

Postby lagpressure » Tue Feb 15, 2011 8:49 pm

Was he using an Eye O Matic M60?
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Re: 1986 US Open Full Final Round Coverage

Postby twomasters » Fri Feb 18, 2011 6:14 pm

I have searched the internet and the consensus seems to be he used a M43 in the mid 80's...which is the era of that photo of him sitting on the range bucket

I also found this nice post by freddiec on another forum giving some great details about the Sharks' persimmon toys

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Re: 1986 US Open Full Final Round Coverage

Postby freddiec » Fri Feb 18, 2011 7:27 pm

Two,
Thats correct. Greg used a M43 for many years. I have a cool pdf of it being refinished in different stages that Dave Wood sent me. When i find it I'll post it. Dave was trying to sell Greg on a Wood Bros driver in the 80s and while at Dave's shop Greg saw a M43 the he liked the look of. Dave took all the face progression off and reduced the loft. Dave told me it was in pretty poor shape before he started the work. He used it to win the British Open. Here is a cool pic of Greg using a Texan right before he went to Cobra Ti.
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Re: 1986 US Open Full Final Round Coverage

Postby twomasters » Fri Feb 18, 2011 8:35 pm

Nice pic freddie....look forward to the other pics also

When dave mentions Norman's M43 was a fluke...what is he talking about...that it was a flatter or more upright lie than the 57 degrees mentioned in the article?
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Re: 1986 US Open Full Final Round Coverage

Postby freddiec » Sat Feb 19, 2011 5:00 am

TwoMasters,
Greg's M43's was solid. (no bored out cavity under the plate). Ben Crenshaw's M85 which Dave also custom'd out of his shop (similar background story as well) was also solid, but both did have the small weight on the back. Thats why Dave called both "a fluke". Wood Bros drivers were also solid. They were probably one of the only makers who did not add weight in the shaft, or lead in the head. All the WBs were oil hardened to specific head weight, I'm sure you probably know that. :) Here is that file showing Greg's M43 being refinished by Dave.
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Re: 1986 US Open Full Final Round Coverage

Postby robbo » Sat Feb 19, 2011 7:44 am

Great story and pics and what a beautiful looking block! Thanks Freddie!

ps.... Love the way Dave just had a few Texas-shaped sole plates laying around the workbench. :D
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Re: 1986 US Open Full Final Round Coverage

Postby bullrambler » Mon Jul 28, 2014 6:33 am

it was good to see this video of the 1986 US Open. I always enjoyed Ray Floyd when he played on the PGA Tour. I liked his swing; his putting style and his steely eyes when he was totally focused on the task at hand. Thanks for posting.
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