Archerfield Performance Centre, Archerfield Links, Scotland
TrackMan User since:
When and why did you start playing golf?
I started when I was around 8 or 9 years old. My late father was a golf writer, so I would sometimes go to tournaments with him when I was a kid and watch the best players of the day. He took me to the golf course a few times as a result and I guess it wasn’t long before I got the bug.
What was your HCP when you turned Pro?
Which is your favorite golf course?
I love links golf and am lucky to be surrounded by some of the best links courses on the planet at Archerfield in East Lothian. I love Muirfield which is virtually next door, as is North Berwick West Links where I played my first ever 18 holes. Having said that, the Old Course at St. Andrews is tough to beat for too many reasons to mention.
Do you have a favorite coach you follow and why?
There have been a few coaches who have been very influential over the years. The late Bob Torrance inspired me to become a coach. Pete Cowen has been very helpful to me and taught me pretty much everything I know about the short game. Karl Morris who I co-wrote “The Lost Art Of Putting” and “The Lost Art Of Playing Golf” with, has probably had the most positive impact on my way of thinking and coaching over the last few years.
Who is your favorite player and why?
I have been fortunate enough to meet, watch and work with some of the world’s best players over the last 30 odd years. There are numerous players who I loved to watch but Seve Ballesteros was always my golfing hero. He was a magician who could play shots that no other player on the planet could even imagine. He was so charismatic and entertaining. Tiger is obviously amazing and Rory McIlroy is hugely impressive but for me, the late, great Seve will always be my favourite. He was an inspiration to a generation.
What is your best golf related achievement?
I guess coaching players who have won European Tour events while I was coaching them would be the obvious answer along with having the opportunity to work with and learn from quite a few Ryder Cup players. I am very proud of TPEGS – Tour Pro Experience Golf Schools which I set up at Archerfield 10 years ago with my friend and business partner Andrew Coltart.
However, I think my proudest achievements would be seeing our books in print and both becoming Amazon best sellers.
As a golf coach, what is the most common mistake among players you see?
Paying too much attention to form over function. Focusing way too much on their swings at the expense of focusing on the shot. I could go on for hours about this…….
What are your greatest professional strengths?
I think the desire to continue to learn would be up there. I read a lot and always have. The day you stop learning because you think you know it all is a day I hope I never see. I always like to look at the game through the eyes or lens of the golfer. I like to try to understand how anyone I work with sees the game.
What’s in your bag?
My bag is due for a complete overhaul and I will be testing the latest offerings from Callaway in the near future. The only thing that will probably remain is an old Odyssey two ball putter which I love!
How often do you play golf yourself?
I don’t play as much as I could or should, although I do still enjoy playing. It can be hard to find the time and I guess it isn’t too high on my priority list during winter in Scotland.
What has changed since you started working with a TrackMan?
I would say the biggest difference is that I can now work with facts rather than opinions. I like logic and facts. It has allowed me to help my students focus on playing shots and truly understand the impact conditions required to create a variety of different shots.
Which is your favorite TrackMan feature, and why?
I love the shot tracker for a variety of reasons. It helps players pay attention to the shot. I love to use it as a visualization tool. Can you imagine how powerful a shot tracker of your shot would be if you could see that beautiful shot BEFORE you hit it?! I also love the fact we can now track putts with TrackMan.
Do you have any suggestions, how TrackMan can do better or differently?
I have often said that TrackMan are THE best company in the industry to work with. If there is one thing I would like to see, it would be the introduction of the shot tracker to the events application. I host a lot of corporate events and I know my clients would love to see the shot tracker alongside the data on long drive competitions etc…
Would you like to be the next TrackMan coach of the month?
All you have to do is sign up on TrackMan University and complete Level 1,
we will randomly pick a new coach every month.
Disclaimer: The answers in this interview have not been modified or changed, nor do they necessarily represent the views of TrackMan A/S.