Augusta Chair Ridley Says Distance Gains Not Good for Masters, Golf

Bryson DeChambeau has opened a lot of eyes with his incredible body transformation and the resulting distance gains. 

He destroyed Winged Foot on his way to a U.S. Open win, and if his practice rounds are any indication, he could do the same at Augusta this week. 

But, is this distance boom good for golf? Augusta National Chairman Fred Ridley doesn’t think so. 

“I think we are at a crossroads as relates to this issue. I do think that we’re coming closer to a call to action. As it relates to our golf course, we have options, and we will take the necessary action to make sure we stay relevant,” said Ridley during his press conference on Wednesday. 

Regarding Augusta, Ridley was specifically asked about the 13th hole after DeChambeau said he hit a pitching wedge into the green for his second shot. 

“It still provides a lot of drama, but its challenge is being diminished. We don’t think that’s good for the Masters. We don’t think it’s good for the game. But the issue is a lot larger than Augusta National and the Masters,” said Ridley. 

Augusta National does have the option to lengthen the hole by building a new tee box on land that was recently acquired from Augusta Country club. 

Back in the early 2000s, Augusta lengthened several holes after a young Tiger Woods shredded the course in 1997 and again a few years later. 

Will be interesting to see if DeChambeau has the same effect. 

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