5 Holes at the Open Championship Where the Pros Will Be Hitting Draws
Is the Claret Jug the best trophy in golf? Maybe. Is the draw the most ideal shot shape in golf? Definitely.
This week, at Royal Birkdale in Southport, England, the best golfers in the world compete for the title “Champion Golfer of the Year” at the 146th Open Championship. We are one year removed from the final round showdown between Phil Mickelson and Henrik Stenson at Royal Troon – a slugfest for the ages between two of the best ball strikers of all time.
Back to this year. On a course that is as hilly and unforgiving as Royal Birkdale, precise shot-shaping will be a valuable asset. Put your money on white-hot Jon Rahm, local boy Tommy Fleetwood, or even a long-shot but old favorite Phil Mickelson. Although their styles are very different, there’s something all three of the these guys have in common: they know how to shape the golf ball.
If you believe Malcolm Gladwell, to truly master a skill, you need to put in at least 10,000 hours of practice. But those hours are all for naught if you don’t have the right tool to help you get better. If you want to draw it like the pros do, the fact is, you need the Golf Slot Machine. Take it to the range, and divide that hour total by, let’s say, 10,000, and develop the shot you need.
Speaking of good shots, keep your eyes peeled for the shot tracer on these five holes.
Tee Shot at #1
Just like at the U.S. Open, the opening tee shot will require some curve. Often ranked as one of the most difficult on the course, number one is a 450-yard, dogleg left par-4 that too many players will card a bogey on. Should they carry it 286 yards with a right to left shape, the ball will find the middle of the fairway, with only a gap wedge onto the green.
Tee Shot at #7
At 177 yards, this par-3 is the shortest on the course, but is by no means the easiest. From an elevated tee to a sloped, saucer-shaped green perilously surrounded by seven pot bunkers, golfers can’t leave this shot to chance. Drawing the ball will likely get them safely to the back half of the green.
Tee shot at #8
Another slight dogleg left at the 8th give the advantages to the drawers in the field. At 413 yards, the approach shot should be no huge test to today’s bombers, but only if they can safely put their first in the fairway. Whether we see more 3-woods or drivers off the 9th hardest hole on the course, it would behoove all to follow the direction of the fairway and draw the ball away from the bunkers on the right, 307 yards up.
Tee Shot at #10
Number ten is a drawer’s paradise. With the most jagged of direction change on the course, the hole sharply juts left, leaving no choice but to almost hook the ball from the tee box. With a strike of around 270 yards, players can miss the gruesome fairway bunkers on the right by drawing the ball down the left hand side.
Tee Shot at #17
With a lot less danger than number 10, the penultimate hole at Royal Birkdale is a serious birdie, or even eagle, opportunity to close out a player’s round. Like Padraig Harrington did in 2008, the last time the Open was played in Southport, the best players will aim for the center of the two sand dunes around 300 yards up, and leave themselves a power hybrid up to the green.
Take note of the pros’ shot shapes this weekend and heed the above advice. Can’t hit the draw? Lucky for you, the Golf Slot Machine is the best training aide on the market for teaching beginners the right-to-left shot shape, and eliminating a hacker’s worst, and most common, nightmare. Try it today, and tag us on social media at @golfslotmachine.