WHO: Mike Reid
WHAT: 210-yard five-wood to 20 feet to set up his winning birdie
WHERE: Par-5 18th at Laurel Valley
WHEN: First playoff hole of the Senior PGA
June 5, 2005
Reid has the most vital--but often overlooked--skill needed to thrive under pressure: control of his swing speed. Down the stretch Jerry Pate and Dana Quigley got quick and imploded. Reid stayed poised and maintained his tempo. That helped him hit the high, soft five-wood to the 18th green to set up his winning birdie.
Swing Every Club Like a Wedge
To hit a solid shot with a fairway wood--or any other club--swing the wood as if it were a wedge. Try my three-ball drill to learn the proper feeling. First, hit three shots with a wedge followed by three shots with a fairway wood using the same technique (address position, swing pace and length, and mental approach). Then alternate back and forth from the wedge to the wood, hitting three balls with each club, until both swings feel exactly the same.
Craig Shankland teaches at LPGA International in Daytona Beach, and is a Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher.
... AND ANOTHER THING
"Jerry Pate's lay-up at 18 was the worst decision since the Jean Van de Velde fiasco at the 1999 British Open. Pate blew it by changing gears and playing safe."
Did Mike Reid win the Senior PGA or did Jerry Pate lose it?
Reid won 75%
Pate lost 25%
"Yogi Berra had it right when he said, 'It ain't over till it's over.' Mike Reid never gave up."
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