Bryson DeChambeau has muscled his way to becoming a major winner, and he’s now hoping it’ll bring him success at golf’s most famous competition.
As he prepares for the Masters, which begin on Thursday, the 2020 US Open winner has brought a new weapon with him: a new driver.
DeChambeau had contemplated using a 48-inch driver last year, but opted against it in the end, finishing 18 shots behind winner Dustin Johnson.
But now, after a few barren months and time to tinker, the American is hoping the new club will bring him success at the Augusta National.
“Obviously there’s something in the bag this week that’s very helpful,” he said in his pre-tournament press conference.
“I won’t go into specifics of it. But just know this has been a few years in the making, and I’m very excited for it. Whether it helps me perform at a higher level, I’m not sure, because it’s golf and you never know what happens. Definitely what I’ve seen on the driving range and what I’ve seen the last week in practice, there’s some tremendous benefits to it.”
The world No. 5 shot up golf’s world rankings in 2020 when he returned from the break brought on by the coronavirus pandemic having added 40 pounds of muscle and able to hit the ball even further.
Now the longest driver on the PGA Tour, he won his maiden major at the US Open last year.
But at the Masters, he struggled, finishing tied for 34th.
While he’s hoping his length with give him advantages — he spent his practice rounds trying to blast his drive on the first tee over the trees protecting the right side, thereby leaving a much shorter shot to a hole which is 445 yards long — the intricacies of the course means the rest of his game has to be on point if he wants to have any success.
“There are certain holes out here where length does help tremendously. And so as you look at it from a statistical point of view, there is a lot of advantages to be had with length for me,” DeChambeau told reporters.
“But, again, you go up around those putting greens, and you just try to hit it into those areas of the green where the pins are, and it becomes very diabolical. Length is only as good as you can hit your next shot, is what I always say. And that’s the most important thing about Augusta National, is it doesn’t test just the driving. It tests your second shots, it tests the third shot, it tests — you’re making for par, your 4-footer you’re trying to make for par.”