Golf inebriates are always looking for a new game to spice up the competition on Saturday with the regular buds. Kaptain Keith conjured up a this one this past summer and, given the bonus from the Golfing Gods of a 59-degree day in December, it seemed like as good of an opportunity as any to give it a test drive.
It is an old adage of the game that the sweetest walk in golf is the last 175 yards of a Par 4 with your putter under your arm. So the Putter Walk competition gets it’s name.
Best played as a two-man match with player’s of similar ability the rules are relatively simple-it is the total Putter Walk Yardage for a player over the 18 holes. On each hole a player’s Putter Walk Yardage is the distance of his shot to the flag if his approach stays on the putting surface. Any hole where the approach play is under 75 yards yields no Putter Walk Yardage.
Two additional wrinkles provide some drama:
The Daily Double: If a player hits a qualifying approach and makes the one-putt his
Putter Walk Yardage is doubled for that hole. Alex Trebek would approve.
The TPR (Three-Putt Reduction): If a player hits a qualifying approach and
three-putts his Putter Walk Yardage is cut in half for that hole. Kind of a Putter Walk
A running total of each guy’s Putter Walk Yardage must be kept to keep the focus of the players keen. A quality yardage gun or cart GPS and a portable calculator or a guy who had at least 650 on his Math SAT will make this a much more intelligible experience.
You can click on the photo to enlarge the image
In today’s test drive match between Kaptain Keith and The Kommish the gauntlet was thrown down early by Kaptain Keith whose hybrid approach on the first hole was worth 197. But this is a volatile game and The Kommish turned the tables quickly with a 164 yard approach on the second to 20 feet and made the putt for The Daily Double! A little parry on the third and then the match hit a speed bump with only one Putter Walk Yardage between them over the next six holes. At the turn it stood 563 to 362 in favor of The Kommish.
More bobbin’ and weavin’ over the first three holes on the inward nine until Kaptain Keith landed a decisive blow hittting the green on the 13th hole of the day and burying a 20-footer for the Daily Double and 240 points. The game was on again.
Another speed bump run for the Kommish over the next four holes and standing on the final tee Kaptain Keith had a 36 yard advantage. His GIR from 134 on the last closed out the match with a final score of 1119 to 949 in favor of the Kaptain. It only seemed appropriate that the man who invented the game should be the first walk off
Putter Walk winner.
As you can imagine, this is a ball striker’s game, short game saves mean nothing.
We found that GIRs on the par threes are critical and proper lay-ups on the five pars can put low hanging fruit within reach. Making a long putt after an approach that counts is a game changer.
This has to be played under the auspices of, as David Owen would say, “your usual game”. No gaming the system will be tolerated. Hitting five iron on a Par 4 to set up a 175 yard hybrid approach is considered inappropriate Putter Walk behavior.
The Putter Walk is a perfect adjunct to your regular four-man game on Saturday. It is relatively easy to track on a separate card, adds a few more bucks to the kitty, and can provide separate bragging rights to the conversation over lunch.
Once this goes viral I am sure GolfNow.com (a.k.a. The Golf Channel in Sheep’s Clothing) will add it as a feature to their smart phone mobile app. Remember you heard it here first so……….Go Play!