The Thrill of Holing Out From the Fairway

Yesterday, my quest to ask an interesting question on my social media sites went crazy. I like to interact with other golfers and see what they think on a plethora of issues. Surprisingly, I received almost ten times the normal responses and as a result had a hard time responding to everyone. As the day unfolded, it became apparent that I found a topic that many are passion about; myself included.

What caught my immediate attention is the percentage of golfers who have holed a ball from over 75 yards. I realize that with the uncountable number of stokes shot even daily, sinking a ball from any great distance would be difficult at best. Additionally, I was dumbfounded by the number of albatrosses that were reported on the ensuing thread. If you have the time, it is worth checking out some of the responses. With the golf courses closed at this time, it will help pass the time and remind you that golf is just around the corner.

Since my question garnered so much attention, I have been trying to remember the longest shot I drained from the fairway. It actually took sometime because I have not had any really memorable shots from any distance; except for my three holes in one.

However, I do remember on shot from 60 yards. I think it was my longest, but I cannot say for sure with 100% certitude. Regardless, I figure it was worth describing because it changed the fortune of my round.

It was a few years back that this magical shot occurred. I was playing from the tips because the Greenwood Golf Club was not overly long (6200 yards) I was on the sixth hole and a fantastic drive. I was sitting about 120 yards out and grabbed my PW. After chunking my second shot, fitting considering I was five over after five, I was thinking about packing it in after nine holes.

Well, after taking a few deep breaths (I am sure I needed them) and one large one before hitting, I decided to hit my PW again. I figure a little knock down was the right choice. If nothing else I would be putting for par. Then something magical happened! I landed a few yards short, watched my ball hop onto the green and roll into the cup! Wow, a birdie; now I was only four over after six. As I walked to the green my whole attitude changed from despair to joy.

This change in mental state transferred to the rest of my round. I shot even par from that point on. Walking off the course with a 76 in my pocket was a boon considering my start. This obvious point in my game where I suddenly started to play better is nothing new because it happens often. Unfortunately, changes happen both ways and I do not think about the collapses.

Sinking a shot from off the green is always fun. In some cases, they provide memorable events that stick in you mind for a long time. Additionally, it can be a game changer, as in my case, that brings lower scores at the end of your round.

I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!

4 thoughts on “The Thrill of Holing Out From the Fairway

  1. I’ve holed out from the fairway more times than I have a right to ask. I’ve done it with my SW (from the bunker and the fairway), GP, PW, 9, 7, and one with a 4 iron but there are a few that will always stand out in my memory. It’s not the 4 iron shot because that one I couldn’t see go in. My first one that wasn’t a chip in from near the green I hit from about 130 yards out. I had blown through the fairway on hole 3, a short dogleg left par 4 and was hitting over water from the rough at the side of a bunker and was basically just thinking I was happy that I wasn’t hitting from the sand and trying not to think about the trouble a chunk would bring. I saw that one take two hops and disappear before the cheers erupted from my group and the group behind us who saw it from the green they were on.

    The other is special because I holed out the same hole, the same way 4 times in less than a year. The entire combination of shots were pretty much exact. It was hole 18 on my home course. I played a 3 iron off the tee on a long par 5 that doglegged left around a lake. My second shot was a 7 iron right over the center of a really tall tree to cut the corner. And the last shot was a gap wedge from the right side of the fairway from about 70 yards out. I’m sure I didn’t hit it to/from the exact same spots all four times, but they were close enough that I can’t distinguish the difference in memory. I pretty much center cut the tee shots, then hit a big tall 7 iron that flew straight as an arrow, and then the gap wedge shot from 70 yards or so where even the flag was on the same back tier on the green all 4 times. The green was three tiered and I landed my ball on the bank just below the flag and the pin stopped it every time. It was like instant replay. lol The only credit I’ll give myself for them though is that I did well not thinking about holing out the 2nd, 3rd, AND 4th time. There were other times I played that same combination and didn’t do nearly as well because I did let that thought enter my mind.

    And that’s one major thing I still haven’t gotten about dealing with my mind while playing. They tell us to picture our shot, but I tend not to do well at all if I picture something I’ve done great in the past or try to picture the ball into the hole with anything but a putter. So I have to think about shot shape, trajectory, and the distance I want without remembering my greatest hits to do well. This week I played the course where I’ve hit my only hole in one. I played from pretty much the same place as the day I hit it. The pin was pretty much right where it was when I hit the hole in one, and I mentioned both to my playing partner as we walked to the tee. But I got all those thoughts out of my head as I stood over the ball and ended up hitting the ball a little too well and rolled off the back a bit. But it looked good on the way there and I know from lots of experience (the hole in one was in 2002) that it wouldn’t have done nearly as well if my mind were picturing the hole in one I made there. All my holes outs came as a surprise. Even number 4 on hole 18 at my home course in the middle of an instant replay of the recent past successes there.

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    • Kevin

      Thanks for sharing your stories. There were a fun read. As far as the mental aspects of visualization, it is an entire process. And each is unique to each player. What works for you, probably does not work for me and vice versa. Regardless, I believe that visualization is important and I use it often. It helps to ground my thoughts when playing.

      Cheers Jim

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