Most all of us have been listening to all the talk of a VERY difficult test here at Oakmont Country Club June 16-19th for the best players in the world. The guy below is certainly the undisputed #1 player, and I must say a very nice man. Our practice round on the back nine was EYE opening to see up close how a golf ball is compressed like non I’ve ever seen (that includes Mr. Tiger Woods). Not only is Jason Day fit, but he has a body that coils like a snake. It was interesting to see Jason’s club selection on each of the back nine holes, here you go- On #10 Jason hit a 2 iron on this 440/462 downhill par four hole that played the second hardest hole in the 2007 US Open. The idea here is to chase something down the slope, leaving about 150 into this difficult green.
On #11 Jason again chose his 2 iron on this uphill 379 yard par 4. On #11 you need to carry your tee shot about 260 yards to get to the top of the hill, leaving about 135 yards into this green. This is a bonafide birdie opportunity if you can get your ball in the fairway.
On the 667 yard par 5 12th hole Jason smashed a driver on this hard sloping left to right fairway. There is a nasty bunker on the right that you must avoid, he did! We all waited while he waited for the green to clear. He was 295 yards from the front of the green, and was waiting with his 2 iron in his hand. His second finished short and a bit right of the green, but this shot took off like a missile, his trajectory is very high for such a long, unlofted club. My mouth dropped as I was watching this shot penetrate the atmosphere.
On the 13 hole we had a front pin playing 165 uphill, Jason chose an 8 iron that he hit straight up in the air, looking like a wedge shot. I laughed to myself when his shot landed one yard left of the hole, and he said he pulled it. I was like OK if thats a pull, then I hope I pull all my shots the rest of my life. He may have been kidding, but I don’t think so.
On the 358 yard par four 14th hole I believe he hit a 4 iron about 230 yards down the middle of this very tight hole. His sand wedge shot into the green hit about 4 feet from the hole, and after the slope brought it down another ten feet, he had a legit birdie attempt here.
On the long par 4 15th hole measuring 500 yards, Jason hit a three medal to the right side of the fairway. This fairway is narrow, and a miss here is very penal. Jason hit a second shot in that looked like a 7 iron that stayed in the air forever, and probably traveled 200 yards to the front left of the green.
On the long par three 16th hole playing 231 yards Jason hit a towering 4 iron that landed on the left side of the green and rolled to the fringe. This hole cannot be attacked to the right side of the green, as I believe you cannot hold the green. There is a nice entry way into this green on the left, where you can run up a shot onto this very tough green. Many bogeys will find their way onto the players card here.
The short drivable par 4 17th hole didn’t produce a very good shot for Jason as he flared his drive right into a miserable spot where a bogey was waiting for him. This hole despite being only 313 yards long, and drivable, played over par in the 2007 US Open. Even a lay produces a very delicate shot into this very narrow green. A perfect tee shot could yield an eagle, but even a shot slightly left will end up in the thickest rough on the golf course. I hit a few from this area, and many of the shots went only a few feet in from of me.
The 18th is an amazing hole, and played the toughest hole on the back side in the 2007 Open. You MUST drive the ball in this fairway, or else a bogey or worse will be waiting for you. Jason hit his 1 iron off the tee down the right side, leaving him almost 200 yards into this 484 yard par 4 finishing hole. He second was flared into the right rough. As the week progresses I believe his iron off the tee will have more run out leaving him a much shorter approach shot. If we get rain as expected on Thursday and Friday, who knows how this course will play. I took some slow motion video of Jason’s swing that is a must see that I will post later today.
Meanwhile Gregor’s game is shaping up, and we will be ready when the gun goes off tomorrow.