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Which hole type is hardest- par 3 / 4 / 5? + 5 of Georgia's Top 15 Public Courses in a Single Resort

Plus, Learn to Score with this Low 50 yard Chip Shot

Happy Tuesday- It’s PGA Championship Week, and in 2024 we head back to Valhalla in Louisville, KY where Rory McIlroy won his last major 10 years ago. He’s riding strong vibes after his win last week at Quail Hollow, but still sits behind Scottie in terms of betting odds. Here are some other notables:

Scottie Scheffler - 3.5 to 1 (will a new baby affect his game?)
Rory McIlroy - 7 to 1 (loves a few specific courses and this is one)
Brooks Koepka - 12 to 1 (hard to bet against)
Xander Schauffele - 13 to 1 (playing really well)
Jon Rahm - 18 to 1 (LIV not doing wonders for anything but his bank account)
Bryson DeChambeau - 25 to 1 (uses illegal 3D printed irons… see below)
Justin Thomas - 35 to 1 (hometown hero?)
Dustin Johnson - 45 to 1 (oof)
Jordan Spieth - 60 to 1 (career Grand Slam potential?)

In today’s newsletter…

✅ TIPS & DRILLS: PGA Pro and coach Fredrik Lindblom says he’s got the secret to becoming a short game wizard- improve your 50 yard chip shot.

✅ COURSES: Six incredible courses packed into one Georgia resort. Reynolds Lake Oconee may not be familiar to you, but it will be soon.

✅ STATISTICS: Which type of hole is statistically the hardest - par 3s, par 4s or par 5s? Check out how your handicap compares to the data.

✅ TRIVIA: Who was the first lefty to win on tour? Answer for a chance to win a 2014 PGA Championship Flag from Valhalla signed by Rory McIlroy!

Let’s go!

If you want to score, you need to master the low 50 yard chip shot
Swedish PGA Pro Fredrik Lindblom helps demonstrate
To Recap…

You might think having a great short game means being able to hit the classic Mickelson high flop shot over a bunker to a tight pin. But those situations are rare, and the 50 yard chip shot is far more important to your ability to score. PGA Pro and coach Fredrik Lindblom says that great players can control their spin and distance with lower launch inside <50 yards. Here’s how:

-STEP 1: Start with your weight concentrated on your lead foot and a slight lean (forward) in the shaft.
-STEP 2: When you swing through the impact zone, the swing path should feel like it’s a bit out to the right (for a right handed player).
-STEP 3: As you make your swing, use less hands and more body turn, continuing to rotate your torso and pivot through the shot for a cleaner strike.

PRO TIP: If you can master this shot with a variety of clubs (even just 2 to start), you can play different launch angles dependent upon the amount of green you have to work with and whether it’s uphill vs. downhill, etc.

You might be able to convince your significant other this is a “Family Trip”
A 5-star Resort with Championship Golf for Days

Reynolds Lake Oconee
Greensboro, GA

If you’re not within a 3 hour drive of Reynolds Lake Oconee, it’s unlikely you’ve heard of it, but wow is it an incredible find. The lake itself is a reservoir that was created in 1979 when Georgia Power completed the Wallace Dam construction on the Oconee River about an 1.5 hours east of the Atlanta airport. The end result was an outdoor paradise perfect for your next family vacation. You can swim, wakeboard, fish, hunt, and even take a Jeep Rubicon off-road through the woods. And the whole property is stunning- it seems like every square inch is meticulously manicured by the greenskeepers of Augusta.

There are 11 restaurants on property, 4 boat marinas, 21 miles of walking and biking trails, and 6 championship courses you can play (with a 7th scheduled to open in late 2024). There’s even a unique “Quick Six” hole course you can play as a warmup or after your round with a beverage in your hand.

What’s more, it operates 1 of only 2 TaylorMade “Kingdoms” in the world, kitted out with the most advanced club fitting and instruction technology you can find (lots of pros visit for this reason). With 5 of the top 15 public-access courses in Georgia according to Golfweek, it’s a rare haven for both die-hard daily golfers and families that just want a a picturesque escape with a round of golf squeezed into the schedule.

Rates: Packages include lodging, breakfast and a round of golf starting at $509/night during peak season.

Check out this overview from @golftrip.ai

Stat of the Day: Scoring per Hole in Relation to Par (by Handicap)
presented by…

The Stat: For most golfers, Par 4s yield the highest average score relative to par (avg. 4.96 strokes across handicaps, or +24.0% above par) while par 5s yield the lowest average score relative to par (avg. 5.47 strokes across handicaps, or +9.4% above par). Par 3s average 3.87 strokes across handicaps (or +29.5% above par).

The Takeaway: Par 4s require shots from a variety of clubs (i.e. driver off the tee, iron approach, etc.), and if you struggle with any specific club type, it can really kill your score. That said, par 5s often give golfers the best chance at a birdie and offer more opportunity to recover from a poor shot. If you struggle with your woods, for example, you can typically play 3 iron shots in a row and still make the green in regulation on a par 5. So play to your strengths on the par 5s!

Fun fact: In 2018-19, 17 of the 20 most difficult holes on the PGA Tour were Par 4s.

Answer to Win a 2014 PGA Championship Flag from Valhalla signed by Rory McIlroy
(1 winner chosen on 5/31/24 across all May trivia entries, 1,000 respondents minimum)

Of the 15 left-handed players who have won on the PGA tour, who was the first lefty to take home a win?

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