Masters 2024 Notebook–Thursday to Sunday

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“Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it.” —Mark Twain (…including the Masters!)

The first round will begin at 10:30 a.m. off the No. 1 tee. The Honorary Starters Ceremony will begin at 10:10 a.m. Go online and get updated tee times or add 2 1/2 hours to the previously set times. Patron gates will open at 9:30 a.m.

Wind gusts may reach up to 40 mph in the morning and up to 35 mph in the afternoon. However, there is a clear window in the afternoon. Some pm tee times, including Tiger Woods, Jordan Spieth, and Dustin Johnson, are expected to be completed by Friday.


John Lindert

John Lindert

On Thursday morning, I happened to run into John Lindert, the current President of the PGA of America and head golf professional at the CC of Lansing at the main Golf Shop. He played the Par-3 course at Augusta National last Friday along with the USGA’s Mike Whan, PGA of America’s Seth Waugh, and Jim Davis. John had 5 birdies (matching Ricky Fowler in the Par-3 Contest!) and 1 bogey to card a 4-under 23. The Prez’s got a game!


A Masters record today: Ryan Fox, Byeong Hun An, and Bryson DeChambeau all birdied the first 3 holes today. That’s a first for the number of players doing so. And more players still need to tee off.


Bryson DeChambeau

Bryson DeChambeau

Bryson DeChambeau was quite revealing in his post-round interview. He shot 65, which could be considered only 2-under par after his oft-quoted statement in 2020 that Augusta National was essentially a par 67 course due to its reachable par-5s.

When asked about it today, he said: “Again, the comment was definitely misinterpreted. I said it, and I respect people’s opinions on it…I have a level of respect for this golf course that’s a little bit different than a couple years ago, and clearly today was a great test of golf, and I was able to conquer a very difficult golf course today.

“Regarding the 67 comment, you know, you mess up. I’m not a perfect person. Everybody messes up. You learn from your mistake, and that was definitely one.”

Hard not to admire how Bryson handled the question.


Pre-dawn Masters practice area

Pre-dawn Masters practice area

The Masters practice range was lit up before 6 a.m. It’s interesting that the second round will begin at 8 a.m. while the first-round players are finishing their rounds. Tiger’s second round will begin at 10:18 a.m. DeChambeau begins at 11:54 am.

At the par-four 5th hole today, I witnessed how promptly the Masters comes to the aid of an injured patron. Cameron Young’s second shot veered wide right and into the observation stand next to the green, striking on the fly a patron on the left hand and wrist. Immediately, he grabbed the hand and was in obvious pain. Within only a few minutes, after being radioed by security staff, a two-person response team arrived at the scene. One of the staffers wrapped the hand and wrist in a soft brace and then escorted the patron, keeping his hand elevated, to a cart and taken to the medical building nearby. As he was exiting, he raised his good hand and arm and was given a warm ovation. And Cameron Young, as a customary practice on Tour, presented the gentleman with a glove.


The golf world is asking this sartorial question: What kind of golf clothing is Jason Day wearing? Day signed on this year with Malbon, a luxury golf apparel brand founded in 2017. In January, he was announced as Malbon’s first-ever PGA Tour ambassador. The line features baggy pants and loose-fitting shirts. It’s a different look for sure, especially the pants.Well, UM’s Fab Five “shocked the world” with its play and baggy shorts in the ‘90s. On Friday, Day’s pants were cut a little trimmer, but he wore a pullover vest garishly decorated with “no. 313 MALBON Championship.” Luckily, Day removed the vest later in the round.


After his round today, fiesty Tyrell Hatton had this to say about the pace of play: “Yeah, the lads [Patrick Reed, Sungjae IM, and Kurt Kitayama] in front have been so slow. It’s pretty poor from the officials that it took 32 holes to put them on the clock. Yesterday they’d lost a hole and a half, and then they weren’t any better even this morning, and then for the second round they were just brutal. Fine for them; they’re not waiting on any shot that they hit. But for us, we stood in the fairway, we stood on the tee. It was really hard to get a rhythm, so it was disappointing that it took 32 holes for an official to go, oh, we’ve put the group in front on the clock.

How tough was the wind today? Jose Maria Olazabal said if ranked from 1 to 10, the wind was an 11. And at age 58, he shot 73 today and made the cut, along with 61-year-old VJ Singh. Charl Schwartzel was asked about the conditions: “Were there any impossible shots?” He replied: “I thought I had 81 impossible shots today.” Then he was asked: “Was there anything they could have done with this setup to mitigate the wind?” Charl: “(They) could have slowed the greens down to 8 on the Stimp, put the flag in the middle, watered them up a little bit. (laughter).


Luke List

Luke List

The “A-List” shot of the day witnessed on #1: Hope CBS shows it as Luke List chipped in from over the first green. Faced with a 20-yard uphill shot to a back pin, he used a hybrid to run it up the mound, striking the flagstick squarely and into the cup. And then he eagled the 2nd! PS The Masters app has every shot of every player.


Saturday’s conditions are much better than yesterday, but there’s still wind, and it’s gusting at times. First off Rickie Fowler said post-round: “A lot more enjoyable today. But it’s still a heck of a test out there.” Added Tom Kim: “It’s hard out there. They tucked some pins where I’ve never seen them, they’ve never put it before. Yeah, the wind is down, but it’s still swirling.”


Why didn't Day wear this outfit

Why didn’t Day wear this outfit?

As a follow-up to yesterday’s post about Jason Day’s clothing (by Malbon) at the Masters, Day’s post-round interview today revealed that Masters officials asked him to remove his garish vest on Friday morning. Day: “They asked me to take it off — the vest off yesterday… Respectfully, you do that because it’s all about the tournament here, and I understand that. I respect the tournament.”

Question to Malbon: Is all publicity good publicity?


After three rounds, here are the telling stats of the leaders:

Scheffler: T-9 in Greens in Regulation (GIR) but 2nd in putting with 82 total and with 2 three-putts, and T-5 for birds or better with 14. Morikawa: T-4 in GIR, T-4 in total putts with 84 and 1 three-putt, and T-9 in birdies with 12. Home: T-1 in GIR, T-36 in putts with 89 putts and zero three-putts, and T-21 in birds with 9.

How important is the GIR stat? Patrick Reed is #1 in putting with only 76 putts but 57th in GIR meaning he’s getting up and down for pars from off the green. Since 1995, the record for total putts is 101 jointly held by Mark O’Meara and Jeff Maggert, neither of whom won that year.



Official Masters weather forecast: “Temps will rebound under sunny skies, reaching mid-70s by midday and topping out in the mid-80s this afternoon. Light winds this morning..reaching the 7-14 mph range late in the day.” In other words, shootout weather!


First off today was Adam Hadwin who had this to say about the course and the conditions: “I think things are a little bit softer. There’s barely a breath of wind. It was going to be as scorable as it could be all week.” He shot a 2-under 70.

Congrats to Scottie Scheffler, the 2024 Masters champion. I always like to share the winner’s stats for the tournament: 2nd in birdies with 21; 3rd in total putts with 109; T-12 in Greens in Regulation (46 greens out of 72); T-10 in Driving Accuracy (44 fairways hit out of 72) and T-13 in Driving Distance with 305.7 yards. (All stats credited to the hard-working folks at Elias Sports Bureau)

And #1 in course management, patience, and staying in the present.


In the final cumulative stats for the Masters, here are some other highlights:

Defending champion Jon Rahm ranked dead last in cumulative putting (72 holes) with 130 putts and with 8 three-putts, the highest number of three-putts. Rahm was tied for #1 in GIR with Max Homa, each hitting 51 greens out of 72. Translation: Rahm didn’t make squat.

#1 in putting was Patrick Reed with a record-tying 101 putts and only one three-putt. Reed tied the tournament putting record jointly held by Mark O’Meara and Jeff Maggert in 2003. In that same Masters, O’Meara set the single-round putting record of 19 putts. (Records compiled and verified since 1995 by Elias Sports Bureau.)

Only two players managed not to three-putt for 72 holes: Ludvig Aberg (a Masters rookie) and 58-year-old Jose Maria Olazabal, a two-time Masters champion. Amazing!

In the cumulative driving distance, Rory McIlroy led the field with an average of 318 yards. Next was Bryson DeChambeau at 317 and third at 312 was Min Woo Lee.


Images courtesy of PGA of America, PGA Tour, Terry Moore, LIV Tour, Malbon

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