Notah Begay’s Secret


While I was rummaging through some old articles for the Magic Putter website, I came across a couple of quotes that I found quite interesting. These quotes are from the Sunday morning after Notah Begay shot a new course record 9 under par 63 to take a 4 shot lead in the Reno Tahoe Open. The quotes are from Tom Scherrer who hit all 18 greens in regulation and was in second place after shooting a 3 under par 69. “Scherrer said he was not surprised to see Begay’s score” a 10 birdie, 9 under par 63, which was posted while Scherrer played the 14th hole. This was because Notah Begay had broken 5 or 6 course records the previous year on the Nike tour, including his incredible 13 under par 59. This was after a very successful collegiate and amateur career which included bettering the all-time NCAA Championship record by shooting a 10 under par 62 on one of the most difficult courses in Texas, Stonebridge Country Club. Tom turned to his playing partner Jonathan Kaye and said; “This guy can shoot some crazy rounds, I wish he would tell me his secret” 

I was there and witnessed every shot and every putt. Switch Putting was the secret to Notah Begay’s magical low score

Tom hit 18 greens with 15/2 putts and 3/1 putts = 33 putts.
Notah hit 14 greens with 4-2 putts and 14-1 putts = 22 putts. 

The key to Notah’s record-setting round was making all 10 of his left to right putts inside of 20 feet putting left-handed. That was the only thing he did differently from the rest of the field.  He made all his left to right putts and a couple of straight putts with his left-handed putting stroke. His 4 misses were right-handed on the right to left putts. Notah’s switch putting gave him the ability to aggressively attack the hole with very little fear of ever three putting.  Putting left-handed from the low side of the ball on the left to right putts, Notah was able use the slope to his advantage to make all of his putts spin toward him and the hole. It was one of those rounds where he rolled the ball so pure that every putt seemed to have the perfect line and perfect speed, especially when he putted from the left side. 

Switch putting was the secret to Notah Begay’s Magic.



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