What is regular tournament preparation like for a caddie?
Gillette allows you to stay prepared for whatever comes in life, keeps you dry, allows you to stay fresh until that 72 holes is up, allows people to focus on their lives without the stress of potentially sweating — just like caddies help pros focus on their golf rounds – and continues to deliver on its promise of freshness during high-pressure moments. Just like caddies help keep players calm during these moments. Gillette 72 Club caddie members Matt Minister and Ryan Goble told us how they prepare for all these situations on the course.
The pressure and stress that comes with contending in a golf tournament down the stretch can be intense.
But there’s a lot that goes into getting to that point… well before the tournament even begins for caddies.
So, what’s tournament preparation like for a caddie?
It all starts with getting to the venue.
“A typical week on tour starts with travel arrangements,” veteran caddie Matt Minister, a member of Gillette’s 72 Club, said. “Traveling has becoming much more difficult and can add to the stress of the week. To make sure that you are at the event at the same time as your player, or preferably before, requires flight planning and car rental reservations.”
Upon arrival to any host city, the work begins for a caddie, and it doesn’t include sightseeing. Instead, it’s straight to the course.
“You register with the event officials and then ask, ‘Have there been any changes to the course?’” Minister explained. “For rookies, this doesn’t pertain. Regardless, our biggest job is to scout the course. Scouting the course is done with a yardage book and usually a range finder. We check all the sprinkler heads to guarantee they are correct. Check rough heights so we know where the worst places are to avoid. We make sure that if our player asks a question, we have a clear and concise answer. The more we are sure of our information, the less stress our player will feel, and they will be able to perform to the best of their ability over a 72-hole event.”
Like Minister, fellow 72 Club Member caddie Ryan Goble spends the early part of the week dissecting the course.
“I’m out there finding driving lines off the tees, getting a feel for the greens and rough, identifying spots where it’s OK to miss and sports we don’t want to be,” Goble said. “And then there’s a huge emphasis on putting. Behind that, I make sure I’m well rested.”
I worked the Practice Facility at the 2016 RBC Canadian Open and would see Bryson and his team working after his rounds (he failed to make the cut BTW) as he banged ball after ball out into the setting sun.
Admirable you’d think but with every resulting shot Bryson would turn and bark at someone as if they were the one hitting the ball – he displayed a 22-year old immaturity at the time, something that you would write off to his age and quest to succeed.
Fast forward 5 years and it’s the same thing. He has plenty of talent, lots of support from a team that might not ‘feel the love’, and plenty of pent-up anger that still poisons his potential.
The game is bigger than any one individual – Bryson should realize that he’s not carrying the game, the game is carrying him. Chill brother, respect the game and all of us playing it!!