Golf Tips Putting Tips Putting Lessons Putting Instruction
How to Putt Putting Tips
Contact Welcome to the #1 website in the world for putting. Over 2 Million visits & growing strong! Search / SignUp / LinkUp

Newsletter

Click to Join for the Best Info on Putting Today
Get in the Zone

Page Down to Current Issue

2007
Past Issues

2003
Past Issues

2002
Past Issues

2001
Past Issues

Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Feb
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Feb
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep

Geoff Mangum's PuttingZone Newsletter

November 13, 2001

Hi Folks!

I hope this finds you well. Inside this issue --

1. Pro Putting Stats for 2001
2. LASIK Eye Surgery & Putting
3. Werner & Grieg's Book
4. PZ Website Developments

1. END OF YEAR TOUR STATS

The Tours are winding down for 2001 (in the Northern Hemisphere, at least), so the year's putting stats are now fixed. Here they are:

Main Stats Page for US Tours PGA Tour Stats

JUMP TO ANY OF THESE:

 



PGA Tour -2001 Putting Average

TOP 5

Rank Player
Putts per GIR
1 David Frost
1.708
2 Phil Mickelson
1.717
3 Brian Gay
1.722
4 Vijay Singh
1.723
5 Jeff Sluman
1.725
Notable    
T6 Bob Estes
1.726
T6 Craig Kanada
1.726
8 Bernhard Langer
1.729
9 Skip Kendall
1.730
10 David Toms
1.732
11 Steve Stricker
1.733
12 Chris DiMarco
1.734
T13 Glen Day
1.735
15 Stuart Appleby
1.736
T19 Jim Furyk
1.738
T19 Scott Simpson
1.738
T21 Brad Faxon
1.739
T21 Scott Hoch
1.739
24 Sergio Garcia
1.740
25 Justin Leonard
1.742

Stinkeroo! 102 Tiger Woods... (He don't need no stinkin' putter...)

PGA Tour - 2001 Putts per Round

TOP 5

Rank Player
Putts per Round
1 Craig Kanada
27.90
2 David Frost
27.94
3 Steve Stricker
28.15
4 Brad Faxon
28.17
5 Glen Day
28.19
Notable    
6 Willie Wood
28.27
7 Brian Gay
28.31
8 Bernhard Langer
28.33
12 Nick Price
28.39
14 Stuart Appleby
28.41
T15 Loren Roberts
28.43
17 Scott Hoch
28.45
21 Phil Mickelson
28.49
T22 Scott Simpson
28.52
T22 Vijay Singh
28.52
T27 Sergio Garcia
28.66
T27 Skip Kendall
28.66
30 Jim Furyk
28.67

Senior PGA Tour - 2001 Putting Average

TOP 5

Rank Player
Putts per GIR
1 Hale Irwin
1.728
2 Larry Nelson
1.730
3 Bruce Fleisher
1.736
4 Tom Watson
1.738
T5 Bob Gilder
1.742
T5 Terry Mauney
1.742
T5 Gil Morgan
1.742
Notable    
8 Allen Doyle
1.743
T9 Ray Floyd
1.744
T9 Walter Hall
1.744
T11 Gary McCord
1.748
T11 Dave Stockton
1.748

Senior PGA Tour - 2001 Putts per Round

TOP 5

Rank Player
Putts per Round
1 Dave Stockton
28.46
2 Rex Caldwell
28.64
3 Lee Trevino
28.67
4 Terry Mauney
28.73
5 Bob Gilder
28.82
Notable    
6 Larry Nelson
28.90
7 Walter Hall
28.92
8 Allen Doyle
28.97
9 Hale Irwin
29.04
10 Tom Watson
29.10
11 Jim Colbert
29.13
12 Bruce Fleisher
29.23
14 Gil Morgan
29.28

PGA European Tour - 2001 Putting Average

TOP 5

Rank Player
Putts per GIR
1 HARRINGTON, Padraig Ire
1.723
T2 CAMPBELL, Michael NZ
1.731
T2 BJORN, Thomas Den
1.731
T4 MONTGOMERIE, Colin Scot
1.738
T4 GOOSEN, Retief SA
1.738
Notable    
6 FULKE, Pierre Swe
1.739
7 CLARKE, Darren N. Ire
1.742
8 OLAZABAL, Jose Maria Sp
1.744
9 FASTH, Niclas Swe
1.745
12 BALLESTEROS, Seve Sp
1.747

PGA European Tour - 2001 Putts per Round

TOP 5

Rank Player
Putts per Round
1 BALLESTEROS, Seve Sp
27.9
2 FULKE, Pierre Swe
28.1
T3 BJORN, Thomas Den
28.2
T3 HAEGGMAN, JoakimSwe
28.2
5 SINGH, Jeev Milkha Ind
28.3

Notable

   
6 FALDO, Nick Eng
28.4

Buy.com Tour - 2001 Putting Average

TOP 5

Rank Player
Putts per GIR
1 Deane Pappas
1.725
2 Pat Bates
1.726
3 Tim O'Neal
1.737
4 Rod Pampling
1.738
5 Stan Utley
1.741
Notable    
T12 David Gossett
1.749

Buy.com Tour - 2001 Putts per Round

TOP 5

Rank Player
Putts per Round
1 Stan Utley
28.26
2 Morris Hatalsky
28.28
3 Shane Bertsch
28.31
4 Rod Pampling
28.49
5 Deane Pappas
28.52

LPGA Tour - 2001 Putting Average

TOP 5

Rank Player
Putts per Round
1 Vicki Goetze-Ackerman
28.65
2 Laura Davies
28.83
3 Rosie Jones
29.17
4 Dottie Pepper
29.18
5 Mi Hyun Kim
29.23

Of course, everyone wants to know PGA Tour Money List rankings.

Here are the TOP 25 for 2001:

Rank Player
Events
Money
1 Tiger Woods
19
$5,687,777
2 Phil Mickelson
23
$4,403,883
3 David Toms
28
$3,791,595
4 Vijay Singh
26
$3,440,829
5 Davis Love III
20
$3,169,463
6 Sergio Garcia
18
$2,898,635
7 Scott Hoch
24
$2,875,319
8 David Duval
20
$2,801,760
9 Bob Estes
26
$2,795,477
10 Scott Verplank
26
$2,783,401
11 Mike Weir
23
$2,777,936
12 Chris DiMarco
29
$2,595,201
13 Jim Furyk
24
$2,540,734
14 Joe Durant
25
$2,381,684
15 Ernie Els
19
$2,336,456
16 Robert Allenby
29
$2,309,029
17 Mark Calcavecchia
23
$1,991,576
18 Brad Faxon
26
$1,951,412
19 Frank Lickliter II
29
$1,941,911
20 Tom Lehman
23
$1,907,660
21 Jeff Sluman
30
$1,841,952
22 Bernhard Langer
17
$1,810,363
23 Scott McCarron
25
$1,793,506
24 Kenny Perry
26
$1,786,066
25 Justin Leonard
30
$1,783,842

$1 Million Plus Club 55th and Higher

Bubble Boy 125 Woody Austin 34 $406,352


2. LASIK EYE SURGERY AND PUTTING

What is the function of visual acuity in putting? My studies of vision neuroscience have taught me that targeting is more concerned with where (relationships in space for physical action) than with what (identifying detail for recognition and categorization), and visual acuity is generally concerned with what (fine detail). In other words, you can putt pretty well with only so-so visual acuity, and of course blind golfers putt VERY WELL indeed without sight at all.

The visual system in targeting is more for informing the body about static locations important in the putt, in relation to body positions -- such as the ball at your feet, the startline, the break point, and the cup. None of this really requires especially sharp visual acuity.

So? Well, the lesson of LASIK surgery is that it has a very dramatic effect on ONE aspect of putting in particular -- seeing the contour of the green surface. Not the break -- that depends on how you imagine or understand the way gravity, the ball, and the surface interact. Visually, the perception of CONTOUR is where the big difference comes in. And that of course is the foundation for perceiving and imagining the break.

How does that work? Contour perception depends upon changing heights over distances. The height of the surface at any one location is a certain distance from the eyes. Detail vision at that distance depends upon visual acuity because of the characteristic size of grass-blade detail in the surface texture. The extent to which you perceive surface detail (grass blade patterns) depends upon your visual acuity. Therefore, seeing how this detail changes as you survey the green surface along the putt (and how far away you can perceive strong vivid details on the surface) underlies the benefit from LASIK surgery. LASIK surgery essentially strengthens the visual detail you perceive for a given distance and lengthens the range of your detailed vision. In a word, this surface detail is the key to seeing contour changes in the green surface.

For a report by Tiger Woods about his LASIK surgery, visit this USA Today story: LASIK surgery gives Tiger eagle eyes. (cached version)

More LASIK websites:

HealthSouthGolf.com: I Can See Clearly Now

MSNBC: Tiger paid $2 Million to Endorse TLC's LASIK Surgery

TLC Laser Eye Center: Press Release re Tiger Woods' Endorsement

Laura Davies' LASIK Experience, 2000 Los Angeles Women's Championship

Chris Dortch Column, May 2001:LASIK, Golf, Amateurs & Pros

The LASIK Institute - the Definitive Guide for LASIK Education


3. WERNER & GRIEG ON PUTTER PHYSICS AND DESIGN

Frank Werner and Richard Grieg have written about club design physics before for Golfsmith. Now they've cranked out a very interesting book about the physics of club design, and half of the effort is devoted to putter physics and design. Here's the short review I'm posting on the PZ Books page, http://puttingzone.com/books.html

Frank D. Werner & Richard C. Grieg

How Golf Clubs Really Work and How to Optimize Their Designs (Jackson, WY: Origins, 2000).

Paperback, 183 pp., $29.95. Available at Amazon.com. This is a physics book for golf club design, and half the book is devoted to an analysis of putter design physics. The authors derive empirical formulae from numerous laboratory and on-course investigations / data-gathering. The authors convincingly debunk much modern dogma about putter designs, proving that a standard putter from yesteryear is probably just as effective as one of the greatly overpriced specimens touted nowadays as "must-have". Practically no design features in putters matter much, with the exception of aiming aids. When all is said and done, it comes down to square contact with a squarely aimed face moving squarely at the target. Along the way, the authors also discuss true roll dynamics, ball-hole interactions, and the optimum speed for the ball. They offer more proof that Pelz is just simply wrong when he claims he has proved his so-called 17-inch rule, instead showing that the optimum go-by speed varies with grass type and condition. They also give a very detailed (if somewhat unnecessarily cumbersome) discussion and analysis of ball-capture physics. Werner and Grieg do not appear familiar with the physics articles on this subject by Brian Holmes and Tim Maloney, but their analysis leads them to very similar observations and conclusions. All together, this is a very nice treatment of the subject.

Here are some interesting findings:

  • Face orientation is critical.

  • Face square to target is more important than face MOVING toward target.

  • A face moving 30 degrees left of target but oriented 5 degrees right sends the ball nearly straight.

  • Small radiusing of the face does not help, and hurts distance.

  • Neither pros nor amateurs are very exact in hitting with the putter sweetspot. Amateurs show an ellipse around the sweetspot, with 30 handicappers having nearly a 1" wide ellipse, and 0 handicappers having about a 0.5" ellipse.

  • Some of the amateur hits are so high on the face, the sole hits the turf and scuffs, while pros almost NEVER scuff.

  • Minor scuffing doesn't matter much, but a major "hit the big ball first" kills distance altogether.
  • Slower greens allow deeper scuffs.

  • Most golfers hit the ball too high on the putter face -- i.e., they go for a "low" stroke. Instead, they should hit lower on the putter face, as this definitely helps avoid scuffing and distance control problems (playing the ball forward more in the stance promotes this use of the lower part of the putterface.).

  • Green surface irregularities usually result in a 2% variance either too long or off to the side (2% of a 10 foot putt, or a 120 inch putt, is 2.4" off) -- not that big a deal.

  • Forward pressing alters distance, but not significantly (under 1" for a 15 footer).

  • On a Stimp 9 green, a ball that is center cut can drop even if it would race 58 inches past (about 5 feet past). On a Stimp 5 green, a center-cut putt could run 3 feet past and still not be too fast to drop.

  • When the ball nears the cup, there is a region immediately around the lip where grass blades lack side support from other blades, and this helps a ball topple in -- effectively widening the hole diameter. The slower the grass, the larger the effect -- a Stimp 5 green has an effective hole diameter not of 4.25 inches, but 4.89 inches. That helps!

  • Putts start out with a launch, then a skid+roll, then a roll, then a decay/quick stop. For a 3 degree putter on Stimp 8+ greens, launch is 2-4% of the length, skid-roll, about 10%, and roll and decay the rest.

  • Distance control ought to vary depending upon handicap, if the objective is to minimize total putts to hole out, since better golfers have better directional control. (All Stimp 9 greens):

0 HCP golfers 5' putts - aim 7 inches long
0 HCP golfers 20' putts - aim 13 inches long
0 HCP golfers 40' putts - aim 7 inches long

max dist past = 16" on 24' putt, Stimp 12

15 HCP golfers 5' putt s- aim 9 inches long
15 HCP golfers 15' putts - aim 13 inches long
15 HCP golfers 40' putts - aim 3 inches long

max dist past = 15" on 13' putt, Stimp 12

30 HCP golfers 5' putts - aim 12 inches long
30 HCP golfers 10' putts - aim 14 inches long
30 HCP golfers 40' putts - aim 3 inches short

max dist past = 17"on 12' putt, Stimp 12

Over 5', add about 2" per foot on fast greens; subtract 2" per foot on slow greens.

These experiments also specifically refute the claims of Dave Pelz that 17" past is the optimal speed for all putts, regardless of grass type or playing speed.

  • Off-center hits lose distance, but not much, unless the hit is seriously off center. Missing the sweetspot is not nearly as big a deal as misjugding speed or face orientation.

  • Plumb bobbing is useful to give a reference to true vertical, and little else.

  • Slope near the ball matters because it changes the direction a little, and little directional changes early have bigger effects the longer the change stays in place. Slope near the hole is more important, but slope near the ball is not at all unimportant.

  • A putting robot revealed no effect for grain worth bothering with on a bent green.

  • Cutting the ball starts the ball with sidespin but the rolling washes it out pretty quickly. Cut strokes often succeed on short putts because the error introduced doesn't cause a big enough problem, but in general cutting the putt adds nothing and only reduces the chances of success.

  • Eye-alignment markings on putters assure that your gaze is straight at the putter, not that your eyes are over the ball (or even that your gaze is straight out of your face). Eyes-over-the-ball is the easiest position to get right repeatedly, but don't rely on such markings for this.

  • Most putter design features heavily advertised for game improvement effects concern only minor errors that don't really matter much in the total number of putts required to hole out. For example, heel-toe weighting schemes to "widen" the sweetspot don't get you out in less putts than a traditional blade design, because missing the sweetspot a little is insignificant compared to misalignment or speed control problems.

Quite a nice book!


4. PZ WEBSITE DEVELOPMENTS

I added a section on Greenkeeping, using a two-dimensional frame navigational system. The main TOP frame allows switching channels thru the main sections (construction, turfgrass science, maintenance, etc.). Doing so changes the full set of websites along the LEFT frame. This design lets me pack literally hundreds of well-organized web resources on ONE page!! And boy is this page jammed full of resources.



Carl, in Caddieshack

The page has already drawn the praise of Golfdom Magazine, the top magazine in the US for Golf Course Superintendents. And I also have received a kind word from Dr AJ Turgeon at Penn State's Turf Science Center. Based on what I saw doing the research, this PZ page has more resources and better (easier) organization than any other source in the world, including that of the USGA, the Golf Course Superintendents Assn of America, academic websites, and others. The listing of golf course architects' websites alone is vastly more comprehensive than anything else available. I've been letting academics, course supers, architects and builders, and media types know about this resource, and my page hits have doubled. Golfdom Magazine is planning on featuring the resource soon.

I've been adding resources all along, to the Tips page and elsewhere (Books, Aids), so if you haven't checked in lately, there is a lot of new stuff. I reworked this news group to prevent accidental postings as happened recently. Sorry for any bother.

Later, and cheers!

Geoff Mangum
The PuttingZone.com
http://puttingzone.com
The Future of Putting Now -
elite instruction from the World's most comprehensive resource.

PS - tell a friend! use the postcards...

Putting Academy
eMail
PZ Radio
Oldtime Music
© 1999-2007 Geoff Mangum
MacMade with ApplePi
Solution Graphics
 



The intelligent golf search engine.