Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, and even Tiger Woods have all advocated creating a golf ball that flies shorter instead of making courses longer or completely redesigning classic layouts to keep them from becoming obsolete. Balls today go crazy distances. Pros oftentimes are hitting drives 350 yards or more. Manufacturers are putting out balls all the time that go farther and farther. Yet, ask them to create a ball that goes shorter and they act like putting a man on the moon is easier. Check out this quote from a USGA official: “Developing a new ball to substantially different specifications like that is almost like starting over for the ball manufacturers,” said Dick Rugge of the USGA. All the major companies have multiple ball lines, each with different characteristics intended for different players. “They honed those balls over decades of trial and error, a little of this, a little of that. There’s no pixie dust,” Rugge said. “Despite advances in fields like computerized fluid dynamics, which analyzes airflow, it’s not a fully sorted-out science. There is still art involved.” Anyone want to buy a used car from this guy? Does that even make sense? Let’s see…they can make a ball to go farther, but they can’t make a ball to go shorter? Bull!! What about restricted-flight balls for driving ranges, floaters, or the Cayman ball? How about just making balls like they used to, like the wound balata? I suspect that the real issue is money. Look how many types of balls there are, and all are being advertised as longer than the next. How much demand would there be for a ball that goes shorter than the other guy’s? Let’s just be honest with the folks. Yes, a ball can be slowed down, but for economic reasons we’re just not going to do it.
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