Palmer's 1963 Masters Plan

Great discussion here from the top player in the world in 63 preparing for Augusta and The Masters

However, Jack won it in 1963 and Palmer would have to put this plan into effect the following year to get his 4rth Masters Victory.

Just a bump here and a great read about how Augusta was intended to be played by Palmer in 1963.

First off, think about shooting 64 in 1940 (Mangrum) out there using gear from the late 30’s most likely. Obviously that gear was pretty good. It was a big deal when Nick Price shot 63 in 1986 on Saturday.

The first three holes Arnie is talking about which side of the fairway to come in from and why.

The fourth hole describing hitting a 1 iron into a par 3.

The fifth coming in with sometimes a two iron and how one needs to skip or run the ball back into the green. This is the trajectory issue I keep talking about that seems to be falling on deaf ears these days. This green is designed for a long iron approach with a lower trajectory as are #10 and #11.

#6 he describes it as a five or six iron… but this hole is extremely downhill and unless you have been out there… it really gets flattened out on TV. Almost a two club drop in elevation.

#7 is actually supposed to be a short par 4. Remember, a proper championship course has 3 long iron par fours, four mid iron, and three short iron holes.

#8 Palmer describing crushing a drive to carry a bunker 230 off the tee. Uphill tee shot. A difficult hole to birdie.

#9 is a mid range par 4. Mid iron… most guys playing 5 to 7 irons.

#10 Typically a 4 iron could be a two iron. A high fading cut shot to hold the green.
Real concern here about holding this green. This hole was not meant to be played using an 8 iron or a wedge into the green. This hole is the third of the long par 4 holes.

#11 Back to back long par 4s’ with another long iron shot into this narrow but deep shaped green.

#12 Interesting that depending upon wind, Palmer suggests at time it could be a 4 iron? Could you imagine guys coming into that small shallow green with a 4 iron?
I recall footage of Knudson hitting a 6 iron. Palmer suggest typically a 7 iron from 155.

#13 Three wood to 4 iron approach into a high risk reward situation because of the green being protected in front with the creek. Relatively shallow green is why this is a par 5 and not a par 4. Again, this hole is designed for the required low trajectory ball flight into the green. This hole was never intended for mid iron approach shots. I saw Phil hit an 8 iron in here a few years back.

#14 is a mid iron four par.

#15 A big drive leaves a 3 wood to a 3 iron. In recent Masters Saturday round I posted from the 80’s, guys were still hitting the same approach shots into this green. Seve hit the longest drive of the day 285 yards leaving him a three iron approach which he stuck. Watson about the same thing. For this to be a great hole, it has to play this way. This hole is not about Nick Watney hitting driver 8 iron.

#16 was typically a four iron shot.

#17 All about position of the tee shot and the pin placement. Mid iron to short iron approach.

#18 Since the hole is uphill, a typical 250 yard drive would end up 235 to 240 leaving 180 or so into the green. It was not uncommon for guys to be hitting 4 or even 3 iron into this green. Even in this era, a drive nailed 260 would leave 160 uphill. This is not a driver short iron hole. Notice how many short iron shots you will see played into this green this year.

This description by Palmer is very insightful, and the reason we don’t see the event crowning only the worlds best anymore. With the long iron play taken out of the game, it now just plays like any other tour event in reality outside the hype, and we see anyone winning the event now just like any other week on tour.

The Masters needs to put the course and game back to where and how it was intended to be played. It’s a watered down version now.