Hallson Golf BLOG

Seasons in High Gear

1/20/2020 6:02:58 PM

Golf season is in full swing. Last had 4 events PGA, SR PGA, European, Korn everything is off and running. More of the big dogs will play this week at Torrey Pines. Like everyone else PING has new irons G710 most forgiving Irons ever, right. PING also has new Heppler Putters, another multi-material, firm feel and stiffer shaft. How any of this actually helps makes putts who knows. They also have a Piper Armlock model for Kutcher/Simpson type stroke. Callaway Mavrik and TaylorMade SIM are both now in stores. More Drivers that hit it longer and straighter. Sorry but anyone with a handicap higher than 10 would probably never get anything from these clubs. Maybe a few scratch players and tour players, but few people really gain any benefit.


1/9/2020 7:35:15 AM

Another twist to remember in the WGH System. They are now giving you your Handicap Index, not your Handicap. Your Handicap is now called a Course Handicap and changes every Course/Tee you play. You need to do the math, Your Index * (Slope Rating / 113) + (Course Rating - Par), so if you play different courses your Course Handicap changes each time. Remember you need to know this because of the max score per hole is based upon Par + Course Handicap Strokes on that hole + 2. Probably is better and will take time to remember all this.

PGA Merchandise Show

1/8/2020 7:42:17 AM

The 2020 PGA Show is Jan 21-24. Show has went from the trunks of Sales Rep cars, to tents, to a real convention space. It has been held now for years in Orlando in the Convention Center. Was much larger than now, but still over 1000 vendors. Amazes you how many companies make golf related products. Many are very small less than a couple people launching out on their own. PGAShow.com you can see a list of vendors and some links to web sites. From pencils, clubs, awards, clothing and mowers, you can find just about anything there. I went for 15 years, but it kind of got old, same stuff just made by different makes.

New Year Started 2020

1/6/2020 9:53:17 AM

New Year, New Clubs...TaylorMade SIM(Shape in Motion)...How much did that name cost? Another more distance, easier to hit, more forgiveness, YADA, YADA...new Driver $549 and $499, Fairway $399 and $299 and Hybrids $249. Typical bag, Driver, Fairway, 1 Hybrid could set you back $1197. Cobra has new driver and woods out...Besides Ricky who plays there stuff. If you noticed you are seeing more and more apparel makers make special addition shirts and hats for events, FootJoy had some and Puma had some. Interesting finish to the weekend. Xander struggles to close it out, I hope this does not show he has putter trouble under pressure. Fans...really shouting cheater...You don't know that, kind of looked bad, but you really don't know and it did not change the outcome. Get over it... 2nd place did have to settle for $636k and suffer spending a week on Hawaii. Last place got $64k. WOW, just for showing up. Final note here, Sentry this event sponsor, inked a deal for 10 more years. Jordan skips out on Sony, claims a cold, could be, but there are much worse places to have cold. Look for video on Baylor student who won $5k by making a putt the length of the basketball court, watch close because the putt breaks at the end, https://twitter.com/BaylorMBB/status/1213646068560388096/video/1

World Handicap System

1/2/2020 12:13:51 PM

USGA new Handicap System, seems as messed up as the last rules changes. No system is perfect, but the new formula contains fuzzy math and makes it harder not easier. I think USGA overthinks things. For your first handicap round, you can have par+5 for a score, but after that it is par+2/strokes. Slope and Rating are still in place. Change 1, instead of using 10 of the last 20 score, they are using 8 of the last 20. Change 2, Playing Condition Calculation (PCC) will adjust your handicap on that round up or down based upon playing conditions. Here is where USGA is just trying to make a dollar. They are not disclosing what the math is behind this number. 8 or more scores of 36 handicap or less have to be submitted and then some formula will determine if the scores were to high or to low for that day and then adjust the handicap that day up or down. Scores have to be up or down what amount to make extra adjustments? Since the USGA won't say what this math is, outside companies can't create and sell handicap services. They are also introducing a new term, PLAYING HANDICAP, which is nothing more than your handicap times a percentage. to lower your handicap for different type events like Four Ball. Not really sure who that helps anything. ESR (Exceptional Score Reduction) more foggy math, if you post a score more than 7 below your handicap an adjustment is made. What adjustment they don't say what that is. This is defined, but strange math. Limiting Upward Movement. Your handicap in total can only go up 5 over a 12 month period. After the first 3, they next 2 can only go up in 50% intervals. So you went up 3, your still playing bad, post a round that should take you to 4, but it only goes up to 3.5 because it gets a 50% reduction on the stroke 4 and 5 increase. REALLY...it is a handicap for social play, you need something this complex.

Tiger Wedges

12/31/2019 5:03:39 PM

Tiger in the latest of his new online videos says he uses new wedges every single tournament. Reason, he knows for sure the grooves and spin will be consistent. While we don't get free equipment so every week is not even an option, I am a believer in replacing your wedges yearly if you play some golf every week. Even a 4 handicap like myself begins to notice the spin difference after a while. Also interesting is Tigers comments on looking for a new driver he cares about the look first of all. Without a good look you won't have confidence in the club. I have read theories in looks on putters also, that when in a slump just change to a different style because it forces you brain to focus more because it has something new to look at. Who knows, anything to score lower.

Another Callaway Driver - Adam Scott

12/24/2019 7:43:18 PM

Consumers must be getting tired of Callaway constant release of drivers, Mavrik and Mavrik Sub Zero are now out on Tour in play. Is it really any better or just $495 they want from your wallet. Thumbs up to Adam Scott for winning the Australian PGA. 2020 events are right around the corner. Must be nice to start off 2020 in Hawaii playing golf in a limited field with big $$$ just for showing up.

Closer than anyone thought it would be

12/17/2019 7:29:54 AM

Just shows you the World Ranking mean nothing, just about anyone in the top 50 can beat anyone else on any given day. There was a day when a guy named Tiger was far better than anyone else, but those days are gone and no player fits into that today. I think you could play the Presidents Cup again this week and maybe get a different results. All players at that level just have good and bad days. As for Tiger I do give him credit for sitting himself on Sat so he could go Sun. Forget who said it, but during the broadcast someone did say this Tiger seems do play to the middle of greens far more often than the old Tiger, knowing he now has his limits, again give him credit for that. I thought Ernie did a good job also, the team seemed prepared. I did have a wild thought wondering why the international side did not have Steve Williams as an assistant captain, his insight into how to play that course could have helped and probably irritated Tiger a little. It was nice to see a competition go down to the wire and I can not remember seeing so many guys get down far and come back.

Last Events of 2019

12/2/2019 3:03:02 PM

Season stops but golf goes on. Tiger's event this week and then Presidents Cup. This is why I think Tiger should have not picked himself. He will be playing back to back weeks and taking a very long flight. Anyone with back problems, this becomes an issue. Hopefully he takes himself out of the mix as much as possible. DJ pulls out of Tiger event, probably for the reason I just said, 2 weeks in a row coming off surgery is probably to much. Moving on 10 years after Tiger gate, everyone wants to write about it again. Press, let it go, remember he has kids that are much older now and don't need to be reading all this stuff. On to more, Garcia can get appearance money of $640k, are those people nuts. Poor thing is going without this year, because he acted like a child last year. Did you see Sungjae Im played in 25 events for calendar 2019. That is a great deal of weeks on the road, hope he has a hotel sponsor, if not he has lots of points now. Pro V balls drop in price which means a newer version will be coming out. Still not sure what the EXP-01 ball is, maybe just an early release of the Pro V1 or is it really a new ball. Moving to tour money, you always see the FedEx Cup winner this year got $15m, but did you know the total payout is $60m, so many players get nice checks for having a good year. Golf is good to those that can play. At least we have sport that actually pays based upon performance. Kills how in most other sports the player gets the big contact and his next year is usually terrible, but he gets the money anyway.

End of 2019

11/26/2019 2:24:41 PM

Finally golf takes a small break, still think the season is to long. Largest check in women's golf occurred this weekend, $1.5m for Sei Young Kim. Second place was only $480k, so 1 shot here was a VERY BIG DEAL. The ladies always amaze me how far and accurate they hit swigging so slow. I know not all of them swing slow, but the bulk of them do. Never fear the men's side in Europe played for a bit of cash also. Jon Rahm won $3m for winning the DP World Tour Event and another $2m for winning the Race to Dubai. Can't even imagine picking up $5m over a weekend. Young guns come and go alot in golf, but this guy might be the real deal to hang around for many years. Fleetwood picked up $888k for the event and $1.2m for the Rave, also not a bad weekend. Nothing against Tyles Duncan, but I wanted Brendon Todd to win 3 in a row, but he still had a good week. Go look at the history of his career, where did this change come from. If nothing else this is where you tell your kids keep working hard, success can always be just around the corner. Give Duncan big credit, birdies on 3 of the last 4 holes, that is stepping up and getting the job done. More talk on slow play, still don't get it. Just time them through shot tracker, you get to the end of your round and you have violated the 40 second rule x number of times, that is x number of shots. Just don't understand how guys that are very good need so long to hit the same shot they have hit 100's of times. Play like Dustin Johnson and a few more that just get to the ball and hit it. If you play quick 95% of the time, you can take a few more seconds on the 5% of shots you need to think about. Sorry, I get the issue on Thu/Fri with so many players but 2 hours should still be enough. Sat/Sun playing in 2's, that is just nuts for it to take more than 3 hours.

Equipment never stops

11/19/2019 2:52:43 PM

King Cobra has new drivers, irons, fairways and hybrids, KING SZ. Callaway SuperHybrid. Footjoy Flex is now water proof, plus $30 more, New Contour's spiked and non-spiked. Lots of Christmas Specials coming get your wallets out.


11/18/2019 12:26:12 PM

Tour always amazes, guy goes years struggling, start 2020 season with 4 missed cuts then goes T28, WIN, WIN...How does that occur, what changed? I have no clue. Give a big clap to Carlos Ortiz, home country guy, not well known steps up and picks up a second. Actually he too has been on a roll of good finishes. Tour has to cut back on the number of events they play, 1 more before they take Christmas off, but it starts up Jan first week. This time of years gives the less known guys action, but still a great deal to follow along with Football and Basketball in high gear.

New WHS.com

11/6/2019 2:10:31 PM

Heard of the World Handicap System, WHS.com. Seems more like away for USGA and R&A to get everyone paying them to keep your handicap. The new plan can be found at WHS.com. They will continue to use the Slope and Rating numbers, but add in an adjustment for playing conditions. Seems playing conditions will be determine by were the scores turned in today normal for the handicaps of those players. If the scores are to high or low strokes from -1 to +3 will be added or taken away. The math behind this is not being disclosed thus no other web site could duplcate this part of the handicap. That would be easy math to determine, but I am not sure basing solely on scores is the best method. I know from years of playing, even on good weather days and good course conditions, tournament scores tend to be higher on day 1 of a multi day event. Hackers get nervious playing in a competive round. Also a player is determine strokes received per hole and adjust their score so Par+handicap+2 strokes is the max used for any hole. So if I am an 18 handicap, I get 1 stroke per hole. On a Par 3 today I can not take a score higher than a 6, 3+1+2. Not sure people higher handicaps will go to that much trouble. Worse might be lower handicaps under 18, say a 9 handcap. He can only take double on the 9 easiest holes and triple on the 9 hardest holes. I am a 4 handicap and I make a triple now and then on Par 3's so I want the full score. There is also some language around Course and Playing Handicap. It is attempting to make adjustments for todays played if different tees or formats or course donditions make a Par 5 a Par 3, etc., not sure of any of the logic around this. There are some changes around what is an accetpable round to record. Even more fuzzy math, last 20 scores will be review and best 8 scores used, OK here, but there is now a CAP, seems those scores can also not be more than 7 shots over your handicap. So on a Par 72, 3 handicap, the most any of your 8 scores will be is 72+3+7, so 82. That probably is OK, but seems a bit much. WHy not look at 20 scores through out the low 2 scores and take the next 8, that probably is closer to how you actually play. You can not use 9 or 18 hole rounds, OK. Max handicap is 54, I am not sure if that is new but I don't want to be playing behind a 54. Again, this is to help grow the game. This is to help the USGA pocket books, because this will not be free and the only way to get a handicap will cost you. Not much, I am sure the cost will be small but even $5 per year for millions of golfers is nice considering the web site won't cost much to operrate. Seems to me adjusting the Slope/Rating and taking 8 scores out of 20, throwing out the 2 low scores easier to anyone to understand and reflects how I play. A little to much fuzzy math going on here.

McIlroy - Hard to figure

11/6/2019 7:31:32 AM

Really hard to figure this guy out, he burst onto the scene wins major and other events, kind of fades away for a couple years and now he seems to making a come back. Not that he ever went far, but at the start you thought he could be close to another Tiger type dominance, but that all faded. I hope he is back this time for a nice long run of great play. History proves if he can step up his game, the other young guns behind him will step up their game which gives us all more to watch. Lets hope Koepka is not hurt to bad and comes back with that chip on his shoulder about last year.

Rules - Kim

11/6/2019 7:24:39 AM

Kim does right and wrong, should she say anything about a rules violation, YES, it is her duty as a player to protect the field. What you don't do is put it on social media. Keep it between the players and the rules official. You would think by now people would realize you never win in social media, someone will always get offended and take what you said the wrong way. Kim your great for the women's tour, you have personality, they need more like you, but only do social media talking about yourself, dragging in others will always bite you in the end. Go get yourself a WIN...

General Golf

10/31/2019 1:45:38 PM

Annika Sorenstam gets to play in the Father/Son Challenge with her dad, which I think is great and well deserved, but change the name to Family Challenge, Fuzzy and Bernard L played with daughters and that to is great for the game. In other news Davis III as announcer, will see, never thought Duval could do it, but he is OK. Bio Kim suspension got reduced from 3 years to 1 year, still seems a bit much, I think something more in the line of x% of your earning over the next x number of events goes to that events charity. Koepka has knee problem, which is probably better than back problem. Has anyone heard of PopStroke, putting knockoff or Top Golf. Not sure about this, the pictures look like it could be hard. I played the same concept in the Bahamas at a resort and it was hard because the slopes took the ball offline with the slightly offline putt. I would to try it.

Peter Kostis and Gary McCord

10/28/2019 7:06:49 AM

I kind of see McCord, been there a long time and can say a few things that maybe he should not. You have seen they had been cutting back on his air time. Kostis is more the surprise to me. He is one of the better swing analyzers in the game which not to many people can do well. Both have been there a long time and from an HR perspective cutting 2 guys in there 70's could be looked at in the wrong way. I hope both get to move along to what ever they want to do.


10/28/2019 6:52:11 AM

Who new 2 years ago Tiger could even play again much less now win 3 times. He seems to have fallen into the normal golfer mode, he gets on a roll with the irons and putter for a few dats and a win pops up. This is like most wins on tour for most players, they just happen to have everything fall in place for 1 week. In his hey day it was every week. Congrats to Tiger, great win...Did you see where Tiger and several others went to show, got stuck for a few hours at Domino's and a 7-Eleven for a couple hours. Seems almost no one knew who they were, that had to be strange for Tiger. Tigers bag is now all TaylorMade except for his putter. Unless your really, really good, don't even try to hit the TW Irons. Average Joe might hit them 1 on 20 swings. Tiger is a great example of if you find a putter keep it, his is well over 10 years old. His Ball choice also shows you, also most all the top brands balls are good. I am very surprise TaylorMade does not have him use their TP5 ball.

More Putters/Cobra/Cleveland

10/16/2019 1:04:58 PM

Odysseys has 2 new Stroke Lab Ten Black and Bird of Prey putters, seems like old putters in new color tents to me. Cobra has introduced their iron that is blade like with some form of injected foam. Funny how 1 brand does it and now 3 companies have the same basic type blade iron. Cleveland has a new Launcher Driver. Not sure why this driver has no adjustments for lofts. Seems Cleveland is still lagging in adding that to the woods. Tour is offshore for about 3 weeks, Senior guys are just now closing out their season. Tiger Book, if he is honest it could be a good read, if it is his normal his twist on what he wants to tell then you might not get anything new.

Na, Rahm, Shoes, Kim

10/7/2019 8:50:45 AM

Na held it together, give him credit hard to do after a triple, plus getting up and down on hole 72, topping birdie in hole 73, shows how he is improving with age. Rahm at win number 5, if he continues to mature his mental side of the game his win count could be 20+. Bryson claims he is going to hit the gym hard in his off time, is he trying to become Koepka. ECCO release BIOM Cool Pro, FootJoy release new Contour's...I like ECCO's but they don't seem to last material wise. Not sure that grip pattern on the bottom is all the gripping, plus $230. About the same shoe as the Contour for $130. Side note...3 year ban for Bio Kim for obscene gesture, WOW US players need to be happy the don't play over there we might not have many guys on tour...Tiger would have never won so many...I fully support calling him out and correcting the behavior but 3 years...