Baltimore Sun

Golf cracks down on driver length


The length of Phil Mickelson’s driver he used in winning the PGA Championsh­ip won’t be allowed. Bryson DeChambeau can only use a 48-inch driver when he’s competing in Long Drive Associatio­n events. Golf ’s governing bodies announced a new “model local rule” available Jan. 1 that would limit the maximum length of all clubs except the putter to 46 inches. A model local rule gives a tour or any other golf organizati­on the right to apply the rule to specific tournament­s. Given that the U.S. Golf Associatio­n and Royal & Ancient are in charge of the rules worldwide, the driver limit will be in effect at the U.S. Opens, British Opens and their other championsh­ips. The PGA Tour also said it will go along. The major tours have been working with the governing bodies on rules in recent years, including the overhaul of the Rules of Golf that took effect in 2019. The restrictio­n on driver length has been on the table for years, put on hold when the USGA and R&A embarked on a project in which it determined that increased gains in distance wasn’t good for the game. Martin Slumbers, the CEO of the R&A, said the governing bodies have consulted with players and tours and equipment manufactur­ers, and considered their feedback.

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