Caddies Making a Comeback
By Torleif Sorenson on 6/4/13
Slowly but perhaps surely, the art of caddying is making a comeback. In the case of Long Island, New York Times writer Bill Morris recently paid a visit to Lawrence Yacht & Country Club to observe two high school juniors getting their first loop. While Morris notes that the two women playing this round were nearly forced into taking a cart, they prefer to walk. Morris quoted Carolyn Argento thusly:
"It's a different game when you walk," said Argento, who started playing four years ago. "You're not discombobulated worrying about the cart. You focus on the game, not on where to park."The article also points out that carts got their start in 1930, when Curtis Willock of Annandale Golf Club in Pasadena, California had a friend construct a three-wheeled cart that ultimately changed the landscape of American golf. Also, Lawrence Y&CC is not the only place where caddying is making a comeback; Morris also quotes Metropolitan Golf Association executive director Jay Mottola and Quaker Ridge Golf Club caddie master Rich Uva in trumpeting the virtues of playing the game on foot wherever possible.
Had this sort of opportunity been available to this writer as a teenager, this part-time job would have been more rewarding than running a drugstore cash register. I also would have learned more about the game and found it more enjoyable and less frustrating a lot faster.
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[ comments ]
though I've never used one, I think having an experienced caddie on the bag would make a big difference for many struggling players. While not swing coaches, they can help with alignment and club selection and take those worries / issues off the players mind. I had a friend do that for a few holes for me and I found myself playing with aggressively with less fear of consequences.
I've always wanted to own and/or run a golf course and have caddies instead of or in supplement to carts. I think it's a great job to have for exercise and even to make good connections which lead to new jobs (*ahem* yours truly). it's a shame about carts these days.
I would love to play with a Caddy. A friend of mine did and he told me its a different game. He really enjoyed it and although it took him a couple of holes to get use to it he scored better.
Caddies at the course you never played before does help a lot. They can explain about the layout, where to aim, yards to the hazards, etc. First few holes will be difficult, as not used to someone telling you where to aim...but once you get use to it, it is great.
Yeah, it is extra cost, but Bear's Best in Atlanta does provide a golfers with a caddy with carts. Caddy just ride on the back of the cart from hole to hole, from one shot to the next.
I also know few friends who made great $$$ caddying at the Oakland Country Club in Michigan while growing up.
Could this be the solution to slow play? Imagine instead of 1 or 2 guys driving around in carts making sure that everyone on the course is in position, there is someone making sure that every golfer is in position. Not only that, but if he gets paid per round, he's going to want to make sure that he gets as many rounds as possible. Even better, as someone else stated, it's a great way to network, and could help solve the unemployment problem we have in this country.
joe jones says:
I have always loved to use a experienced looper. Some of the best times I have ever had were because of the caddies in Scotland. I have a full chapter on my caddy experience at St. Andrews, Troon and Carnoustie.They have the ability to quickly ascertain a players skill level and to be able to club you to perfection. I have never felt uncomfortable in a caddies hands. They can save you many strokes just because they have local knowledge. It,s a shame they have become as rare as they have, It,s nice to hear that they may be on the way back.
I've had 2 kinds of caddies, the one that doesn't care and just hands you a driver in every hole that's not a par three, and the ones that pay attention to your swing and yardages and are actually helpful. in Asia, caddies are everywhere and they're typically women. the first time I played with a caddy it was intimidating because you feel like you're not just playing for yourself anymore. you want to give the caddy a good story to tell the other caddies in the shack. eventually you get used to it. the last one I had was good. I was thinking an 8 iron on a par 3 and he said to use a 9 instead. he put me pin high, about 10 feet from the hole. I missed the putt, but that wasn't his fault.
White Witch Golf Course in Jamaica requires you to use their caddies. Great experience. Highly recommend a round there.
Falcon driver you are right. When I played White Witch last year I had a caddy which was a cool experience. She helped me navigate the course quite well. The only problem I had was her green reading was not as good as I figured it would be. After about 6 holes I took my line and her line ( since I knew how hard I wanted to hit it ) and it worked out great. I shot I think 74 which I could not have done without her.
I've caddied for 13 years (and still counting once school ends here) in the summer between school/while home from college. It's an AWESOME job, pays you outrageously well (I was routinely making $10,000 a summer while in college...in cash), you meet a ton of important and influential people, and you learn skills that will be applicable throughout your entire life.
The number of caddies I knew that got jobs at law firms, accounting firms, in their desired field based solely on their relationship with members from caddying is a surprising amount.
The trouble is that many clubs use carts are a viable revenue stream. If members are taking caddies instead of carts, that's $50+ out of the club's pocket and into the caddies. Typically caddies only work in places where membership really really really wants a caddy program and aren't worried about lowering their dues (more cart revenue=lower dues because the club doesn't have to charge as much to cover expenses).
I've had caddies anywhere from a consummate professional at Pebble Beach to a 14 year old kid in SW Ireland who didn't have the sense to dress properly for the weather (he wore one of my rain jackets during the round). Every time it has been a joy to walk and not have to lug around my golf bag. I still have a problem completely allowing the caddie to do his job (replace divots, tend flags, rake bunkers, etc...) as I am so used to doing everything myself. If you get a chance to play a world class course (Pinehurst, Pebble, Bandon, etc...) fork over the extra $$ and use a caddie. It is an experience everyone should have, especially when placing a check mark on the bucket list.
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