Golf Digest Videos

Butch Harmon & Brandt Snedeker on Playing Augusta

Butch Harmon talks to 7-time PGA Tour winner Brandt Snedeker about his game-plan for Augusta, including how he plans to tackle the illusive Amen Corner.

Released on 4/7/2015

Credits

Starring: Butch Harmon and Brandt Snedeker

Transcript

00:06
So Brandt, let's talk about Amen Corner.
00:09
Masters coming up next week.
00:11
Let's go with 11.
00:11
You hit a good drive, you're at the top of the hill.
00:13
Interesting because depending on where
00:15
the tees are and the wind,
00:16
you could have anywheres from what, 215 to 175 yards.
00:20
[Brandt] Yeah.
00:21
I heard Ben Hogan say once that no matter
00:23
where the pin was, he never shot at it.
00:25
He always tried to put it on the right side of the green.
00:27
What's your philosophy for playing 11?
00:29
You know, 11's probably the scariest second shot
00:30
at Augusta National, just because there's so much trouble
00:33
obviously on the left side of the pond.
00:35
The right side's obviously where you need to miss it,
00:36
but it's not a give me up and down,
00:38
and you're coming out of the mid to long iron,
00:39
so it's a very, very difficult shot.
00:40
So my whole thought process at that hole
00:42
is there's a little front right corner of the green,
00:45
it's kind of where I'm aiming every time.
00:46
Trying to obviously avoid anything going left there.
00:48
Left is dead.
00:49
Alright, let's see you hit the shot.
00:50
What do you figure we got here?
00:51
I was trying to hit a nice, what I call my stock shot.
00:54
Nice straight to a little turnover draw
00:57
on the front right edge of the green.
00:58
I think the best thing you said was
00:59
you don't even look at the flags.
01:01
Your target is that right part of the green,
01:03
and that's where you're trying to put the ball,
01:05
and you're gonna hit the shape shot to get it there.
01:07
Yeah, exactly.
01:07
In my mind right now I'm set at the very right of the green.
01:09
There's actually a pine tree behind the back right bunker
01:12
that I always look at as kind of my target.
01:14
And then just really focus on making sure
01:15
I get through the golf ball.
01:19
Oh, that would've been perfect.
01:22
Just at the right edge, falling to the left
01:24
puts you on the green.
01:25
So now we've parted 11.
01:27
We're walking up to the 12th tee.
01:28
I've heard people say all the time
01:31
that the wind swirls around down on 12.
01:33
[Brandt] Uh-huh.
01:34
So now it's probably the hardest 150 yard hole
01:36
you could ever play.
01:37
Jack Nicklaus says he's never shot at a flag.
01:39
He shoots in the middle of the green.
01:41
When you're on 12, what is your mindset?
01:43
It changes every time I'm on it.
01:45
It's such a difficult hole.
01:46
That's why it's such a great par three
01:47
because you only have a front left pin
01:49
where you've got a perfect number for a pitching wedge,
01:51
135 yards that baits you into going after it,
01:54
and you realize if you miss it three yards right
01:56
of your target there you go in the water.
01:57
The more risk you take on there
01:59
you're bringing a lot more big numbers.
02:01
That's why Jack was so smart by saying
02:04
there's actually the front left bunker,
02:05
corner of the front left bunker
02:07
is right in the middle of the green, and that's your target.
02:09
You're trying to hit it right there.
02:10
That gives you the most depth to work with.
02:12
You kinda forget about the pin there.
02:13
As my one little confidence booster,
02:14
I've always looked at that 11 flag
02:16
right before I pull the trigger.
02:17
See what that wind's doing.
02:18
That's the best thing I've ever seen.
02:19
Our best way of judging the wind there.
02:21
So what are you gonna hit there--
02:22
I've got an eight iron.
02:23
[Butch] Eight iron?
02:24
You're just gonna try and hit it in--
02:25
Try and hit a little 3/4 cut shot
02:26
right at the front left center of the green,
02:28
right over the middle of that bunker.
02:30
Alright, let's see it.
02:31
Okay, open the club face up a little bit,
02:32
just swing along my body line.
02:37
That was perfect.
02:39
I tell you what, it's a lot easier
02:40
talking about that shot here on our range
02:42
than it is standing on that tee on Sunday--
02:44
You know what's funny?
02:45
It's a lot easier on Wednesday afternoon
02:46
than it is on Thursday afternoon as well either.
02:48
That first go on 12 is kind of a guinea pig,
02:49
so you try to take every piece of advantage you can get,
02:52
every advantage you can get there,
02:53
and being second or third up at 12 in Augusta's
02:54
not a bad thing to have happen.
02:56
Such a great par three.
02:57
It is, you know.
02:58
It's really probably one of the best designed par threes
03:00
ever played because it brings so many numbers into play.
03:02
I've seen guys make seven and eights there.
03:03
I've seen guys make twos there.
03:04
I even played with Harris English last year
03:06
in a practice round, he made a one there.
03:08
I know of a guy who made a one there.
03:09
My dad made one there.
03:10
Did he really?
03:11
It's pretty cool, yeah.
03:12
Okay, we've been through 11 and 12.
03:14
Now we've come to 13.
03:16
13 is interesting because it's a very short par five
03:19
by modern day's links.
03:21
It's barely over 500 yards.
03:23
[Brandt] Yes.
03:24
Now some people like to play a three wood off the tee.
03:27
Some people like to play a driver.
03:29
What is your choice?
03:30
Well 'cause I like to draw it,
03:32
sometimes I like being aggressive with a driver.
03:33
Most of the time it's a three wood hole.
03:35
With a three wood I have a much bigger fairway
03:36
to hit it into and so I can hit
03:38
a nice solid turn-in three wood,
03:40
have probably 210 in from there.
03:43
If I don't pull it off, I kinda hang it out to right.
03:45
It's a three-shot hole.
03:45
But I hit it just right, I get it up there
03:47
where it's supposed to be,
03:48
and have a long iron to hybrid in from there.
03:51
And the hole is a perfect shape for you
03:53
because you like a little right to left draw.
03:55
[Brandt] Yeah.
03:56
So you just set up and hit your stock three wood.
03:58
[Brandt] Yeah, let's see if I can pull one off.
04:01
[Butch] Oh, that'd be perfect right there.
04:03
Can we bottle that?
04:03
I know.
04:04
I don't want to waste it today,
04:06
but that was the right feeling.
04:07
Alright, so now we're down there in the fairway.
04:09
Now comes I think, one of the most interesting
04:12
second shots in golf to a green that sits
04:15
and runs away from you to the right.
04:18
The distance to the front left corner
04:20
versus the back right can be 20 yards.
04:21
Oh yeah, for sure.
04:22
Just 'cause of the way the green sits there.
04:24
But yet, you're standing there with a ball above your feet,
04:27
which is gonna cause a hook.
04:28
So your tendency is you want to aim out to the right
04:31
'cause you think you're gonna draw it.
04:32
If you don't draw it, that thing hangs out there.
04:34
It's goin' in the creek.
04:35
Sometimes you get suckered into saying,
04:36
well I only have 192 yards to the front edge.
04:39
Only that front edge may be six yards wide
04:41
and you see the green.
04:42
The green from where you're looking
04:43
looks like it's 30 yards wide.
04:45
It's a great design, the fact that you know,
04:47
the actual front of the green's probably 20 yards on,
04:49
so you really have 14 to the front,
04:51
and that's the width of the green.
04:52
You told me Tom Watson gave you a great tip
04:55
for hitting these balls with the ball above your feet,
04:57
especially on that hole.
04:58
What was that?
04:59
So I play a practice round with Tom,
05:00
and he was really gracious.
05:02
I sat there and asked him.
05:03
I was like, what would you do on 13 out of the fairway
05:06
'cause I struggle making sure that ball turns over
05:08
without over-cooking it.
05:10
He gave me a great tip.
05:11
It's just somethin' really easy to do in your set up
05:13
when you're getting over to make sure that
05:14
that ball will turn over every time.
05:15
That is what I wasn't realizing is
05:17
when that ball's above my feet,
05:19
my hand's are getting too high
05:21
because I wasn't adjusting for my normal position
05:23
because the ball was much more above my feet.
05:26
When I got my hands a little bit lower,
05:28
obviously it made the club bottom out
05:29
at the right angle every time.
05:31
The ball turned over a little bit easier,
05:32
and I stopped hangin' 'em out.
05:33
Let me see your natural set up
05:35
where your hands would be a little higher.
05:37
So that's kinda how you would set up.
05:39
So when you get there with a ball above your feet,
05:41
you drop your hands down a little.
05:42
Little bit more like that.
05:44
[Butch] I like that.
05:47
[Brandt] And sure enough, there's a nice little draw.
05:48
You know what I like about that is you know exactly
05:50
what that ball is gonna do.
05:52
I think it's pretty interesting.
05:53
We've talked about three of the most famous holes in golf,
05:56
Amen Corner at Augusta National,
05:58
11, 12, and 13.
06:01
You're one of the best players in the world
06:03
and you haven't once talked about shootin' at a flag.
06:05
No.
06:06
I think that's what makes Augusta so fantastic.
06:08
There's a reason why Jack Nicklaus
06:09
won so many majors there, and won so many Masters
06:11
is because he knew the art of putting the ball
06:15
in the middle of the green and steering away from trouble.
06:17
Well I love your game plan, Brandt.
06:19
[Brandt] Yeah.
06:20
Augusta National's a special place.
06:21
Amen Corner is what it's all about.
06:23
I know you know you're ready.
06:25
I know you're ready.
06:26
Let's go to Augusta and have a chance
06:27
to put that green jacket on, my man.
06:28
Yeah, thanks a lot, Butchy.
06:29
I appreciate it buddy. Good work.
06:30
Thanks.
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