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The launch of a new era

Six-time major champion Sir Nick Faldo may have retired from tournament golf in 2007 but that doesn’t stop Britain’s greatest ever player hitting balls at every opportunity. And it won’t surprise you to learn that the man who rebuilt his swing in the search for the ultimate control of the golf ball is addicted to the latest TrackMan technology that provides instant feedback on all the relevant numbers when it comes to understanding the moment of impact – angle of attack, ball speed, launch angles, swingpath and so on.

I have been working closely with Nick over the last six months on a revision of his 1995 book A Swing for Life, and one of the fascinating points of discussion has been the launch angle required to flight the ball with the modern driver – a topic that is all the more relevant with the phenomenal figures Bubba Watson achieves.

“Back in my era while we used to all talk about catching the driver on the up, the reality was that we all hit down on it with a squashy type of strike,” says Faldo. “I cannot believe the contortions I have to put myself through to even get an angle of 1 degree on the up. And there’s Bubba hitting his dinky cut shots with an angle of 5 degrees down and then a high raking draw at 5 degrees on the up. That is the phenomenal talent of Bubba – and his is a lesson for all of us to get out and see what it is possible to do with a golf ball.”

On page 62 you can enjoy Bubba’s swing – and Sir Nick’s advice on learning about swingpath and launch angles – while later this year we will be bringing you exclusive extracts from his new book (due out in November) with some fantastic video lessons on the iPad version. Meanwhile, after 15 years in central London, Golf International is on the move.

All the confident talk about how the latest communication and design technology makes it possible to work from just about anywhere is about to be put to the test as we prepare to leave SW1 and set up our editorial office at Trevose Golf Club in Cornwall – a classic Harry Colt links notorious in the West Country for its stubborn refusal to entertain a mobile phone signal.

So at least we have that in our favour.

Enjoy the issue.

June 2012

Reproduced with kind permission of Golf International Magazine


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