Waiting game… practice, family and rest!

It feels like forever since my T19th finish in the Porsche European Open, but it’s been a busy few weeks! We spent the first week in the UK visiting family and friends and then, along with my caddy Steve and his wife, we hosted The #CharityBall at The Venue in Halifax.

We personally really enjoyed planning and hosting the evening and the feedback we have received from so many guests is that it was a fantastic night. But the most important thing is that we all raised £12,500 for our two wonderful charities, and donations are still coming in.

We were truly overwhelmed, but it wouldn’t have been possible without the support from so many people, friends, businesses, and top golf manufacturers! So, thanks again from all of us!!

The day after the #CharityBall it was all go, we headed straight back to Spain; I had a week of practice planned in the hope of getting into the Paul Lawrie Matchplay (Germany) and my mum was also out to visit!

Back in Spain I’m so lucky to be able to split my practice between two amazing set ups, Los Naranjos and Guadalmina, and for me the best time to practise is the moment it gets light until lunch time.

So, I get to the course for 7.30am, plan out a four-hour practice session, set some goals, then head back for a swim with the kids before lunch. Being able to miss the afternoon heat is perfect, as you don’t really want to be smashing drivers for an hour or so when it’s 35 degrees!

How a typical practice session currently looks…

  • arrive at 7.30am, head down to the ‘members’ area’ at the bottom of the range where it’s so quiet, spend half an hour doing short game whilst they set up the range/balls etc.
  • I then tend to work through my bag; I start with Lob Wedge and just work through my pitching positions trying to hit the numbers on my Trackman, then when warmed up and I have the feel for my positions, I go straight into a couple of Wedge Testing games on the Trackman. 10 balls, it selects random yardages and I have to pitch the ball that number, it gives me a score each time and I push to beat my PB every time! It’s a great way to keep some focus, work on my routine and stay competitive!
  • I will then do some technical work with short irons and mid/long irons, film both swings from face on, and also down the line, then with my swing numbers I will send the data and videos to my coach to cast his eye on them…this week they are flying through CyberSpace to Barbados as he’s on holiday, but that doesn’t stop Mark Pearson wanting to see me improve!
  • again, I will do some Trackman tests where I do another 10-shot challenge with distances from 130-220yds being selected randomly, I work hard to keep full routines and focus on each shot and, like the wedge game, keep pushing to beat my PB!
  • then some driver work, we call it the ‘DD’ session, Driver Development; generally, I drive the ball well, but we are forever pushing to get it better and hit it longer!! So, I check my numbers, videos and keep pushing for a more positive Angle of Attack and a more inside path, again with some competitive testing at the end of the DD session.
  • from there I head back up the range to finish with some technical putting work on the Visio template and a few more competitive games that Mark and I have developed which are relevant to me and my performance on the course in tournament play!

So, that’s what my mornings looked like most of the week, plus a couple of evening short game sessions when it has also cooled down around 7.30pm.

As I mentioned, I had hopes of getting into the Matchplay event but knew it could be a last-minute thing…it wasn’t confirmed until Friday but I had a good idea after the World Golf Championship, as I then went down to 1st reserve; knowing that the winner of the PGA wouldn’t be flying back to Germany I knew the spot held back from that event would go back to the field and I would be in.

And in the end, I got in before that, with Daniel Im behind me in the list getting the last spot into the event!

So, what a bonus, I’m buzzing to play what feels like a bonus event and one I wasn’t sure about playing in, plus an event where only 64 compete and it’s straight Matchplay – it should be fun!

Bring on the challenge!!!!!!!!