Remax Long Drive – My Worst Nightmare

jeff flaggI will admit I didn’t watch the Remax Long Drive Championships last night.

First, I’m not a fan of the “winner-take-all” format that reduces the competition to a desperate lunge at the ball knowing that everyone except the winner is going home empty-handed.

It’s the Hunger Games and a demolition derby rolled into one.  Second, last night my worst nightmare came true, as I woke up this morning and saw what had happened.

I watched perhaps five minutes, tuning in just to see the interview Jamie Sadlowski gave after losing to Joe Miller early in the night’s proceedings.

That was enough for me (no insult to to the rest of the competitors) as Joe Miller was the last “big name” swinger remaining, so I switched it off.

Now, let me congratulate Jeff Flagg on his victory over Jeff Crittenden.  That said, I can’t imagine a worse outcome for the technical aspects of the golf swing than what happened last night.

Why am I saying that?

Because of this video and the picture I have here in which Jeff Flagg is touting his workout regime.  Let me say right now, my friends – do not try this, either at home or at the gym.

Jeff Flagg & The “Back-Breaker”

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Every once in a while, you see individuals like Flagg.  Graced with athletic talent and an extraordinary degree of flexibility.  But that move is death to the overwhelming majority of people.

If you wish to do it, suit yourself.  Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Meanwhile, the guy who came in second and got absolutely nothing for his pains, has a swing that is nearly mechanically flawless.  

jeff crittenden swing

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Jeff Crittenden is 43 years old and he lost by inches with that swing to the 29 year old guy with the back-breaker training (let’s visit Mr. Flagg in 10 years to see how that back is holding up, I remember Tiger Woods being pretty healthy at 29 with the same move – now… not so much).

I’ll take a closer look at J.C.’s swing but this is the swing you want to be watching, not the back-breaker swing.  J.C. is able to make the finals of the long drive at 43 with that swing, and that’s in his technique.

The swing is bad to the bone.  So close to to MCS model it’s practically the same, but for the minor little things I’d see Jeff change (like that leading foot angle – of course I have critiques!).

But last night was not good for health of many young swingers who will jump on the back-breaker bandwagon.

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10 thoughts on “Remax Long Drive – My Worst Nightmare

  1. bigtoilet

    Watching Flagg was PAINFUL last night!! You nailed it there DJ. I was also impressed with Critter. Flagg keeping that left knee locked without opening the gate, is OBVIOUSLY physically damaging, when it doesn’t have to be.

    I was texting my brother last night saying, “Flagg has sooo much more chance to add speed to his swing if he just swing his left knee some, a little!”

    Some may say I am picking on the guy who just won $250,000. That’s not it. He can just be that much better…..then he coulda won by 20 yards and not 10inches.

    1. D Watts Post author

      Someone really knows his MCS

      “Flagg keeping that left knee locked without opening the gate, is OBVIOUSLY physically damaging, when it doesn’t have to be…”

      ????????

      When a playing pro has a bigger swinging gate than a long drive champion, one of them is due for some back issues down the road…

  2. buddhabob

    agree dj, I didn’t know they had the contests and was not paying attention but this guy who won, well…

    I just don’t understand how or why they memory-holed the Nicklaus insistence of triggering both his back and down swings with the left knee movement. It led everything to freedom. Palmer did it, they all did it, how did this get flushed over time I just don’t understand it. all that said who really cares?

    I don’t think long drive goes anywhere. the all or nothing format is absurd and medieval and the other buy in divisions are a joke that merely attract guys who want to self promote their own teaching businesses. that said going 370 into the wind is pretty amazing but I think the event has hit a wall now and will need much,much more creative leadership from here on out to prosper.

    I also suspect that sellinger is happy going to the bank over these last years and is squeezing his format for all its worth, his overhead just cannot be that high and he gets a lot of mmoney pouring in from contestants and sponsors. so where does that money finally go when all is said and done after all the volunteers that run all the national and provincial events have gone home? Look no further than the profit margins of the NBA the MLB and the NFL before collective bargaining and t.v. coveraged changed all that.

    these were gold mining monopolies with the owners making out huge, not to say they are not huge windfalls now for ownership but that is for different reasons today. Mickey Mantle I thing had to hold out for 50k back in the day and I don’t think Mays ever made more than 100k at most, its just even given inflation nowhere near what mediocre players make today.

    1. D Watts Post author

      I hate the winner-take-all, I think I’ve made that quite clear.

      To illustrate how much my personal interest in the event has waned: I used to watch the Christmas broadcasts of the already-finished event months later, and would make sure to catch them. There were lots of characters (was Zuback going to win it again?), the winners were exciting and not carbon copies of one another, and there was ENERGY in the air, even in a taped broadcast.

      Now: I watched last year’s live contest, and probably won’t be watching any more until something stirs sufficient interest in me to do so. I don’t have to watch the event to analyse swings, they’re on Youtube.

      The event is stale and heading in the wrong direction, but that’s just my worthless opinion.

  3. Steve in MN

    He reminds me of Dustin Johnson physically. Built to hit a golf ball a long way…the upside is $250K will pay for a knee replacement

  4. Brandon

    Flagg only won because he is 6’6″.

    Hey Deej I was looking at the list of the top eight and I think you should look at Connor Powers. There is a pic of him at the top of his swing that shows a very interesting pivot. Too bad the pic is from such an angle.

    “OPEN THAT FRONT FOOT SON, BEFORE I SHOVE THIS SWING STICK UP YOUR ARSE!!!!!”, screams DJ Watts.

    1. D Watts Post author

      You just proved my point in a way, Brandon – this 29 year old awesome physical specimen (and he does remind on of Dustin Johnson as Steve In MN says above), at 6’6″ – could only beat a 43 year old guy by inches.

      It ain’t the technique, it’s that he’s a terrific athlete, and that got him past Crittenden, just barely. He will regret this training regime in another ten years, if he doesn’t stop doing this and soon.

      And yes, that leading foot position of Connor’s is horrific. I can’t even look at it, makes my knee hurt.

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