Winless since February 2020, Adam Scott has set himself a goal to end his drought by the end of the PGA Tour season after shooting himself high up the leaderboard on day two of the Rocket Mortgage Classic in Detroit.
Scott fired a 66 to climb to nine-under-par, a hot round he says was fuelled by a more accurate driver during the first two rounds. The 2013 Masters winner hit 10 of 14 fairways on Thursday and eight fairways on Friday.
“(Round one) was the best I’ve driven it for a couple of years maybe, and that felt good. I drove it well again today,” Scott said after his second round at Detroit Golf Club.
Scott has adjusted the angle of attack on his driver; he’s now hitting more down on the ball as opposed to up. Most pros hit up on the ball to achieve a high launch, low spin ball flight that maximises distance. But Scott feels he has more control his way. Scott also switched from a Titleist to a TaylorMade Stealth driver and woods several months ago.
“I made a conscious effort after the US Open, when I started practising, to (hit steeper) because although my play is okay, a couple of errant drives a day were costing me the chance of shooting rounds like today or even the good rounds I played at the open at St Andrews,” Scott said.
“I’m just bringing the ball a little more under control. It’s funny because I don’t feel like I’ve sacrificed any distance, even though we all think you’ve got to launch it high to hit it far. I didn’t feel like I was sacrificing too much, but I’ve certainly hit more fairways.”
The 42-year-old is without a win worldwide since triumphing at the Tiger Woods-hosted Genesis Invitational at the famed Riviera CC in Los Angeles in February 2020, a month before the Covid-19 pandemic began. It was his 14th PGA Tour victory.
Former world No.1 Scott was in the mix in the last two Majors of this year, with a tie for 14th at the US Open and a share of 15th at the Open at St Andrews. He wants to lift a PGA Tour trophy before the season ends in late August.
“A little bit,” Scott said when asked if it felt like a long time since the 2020 victory. “I think for me the last couple years have been a bit of a blur. There’s been a lot going on with COVID, but the travel, the international travel and everything, and we (Scott and wife Marie) have had another (child).
“I don’t know if it feels long or just a wash, but it was a year ago next week that I was in that playoff at Wyndham and had the putt to win. I’d love to get back in that position over this weekend. I think generally everything has settled down for me and my game and everything is moving a good direction. So if it’s not this week, it would be a good goal to try and win an event by the end of this season.”
Other Australians in the field in Detroit include Jason Day, Aaron Baddeley, defending Rocket Mortgage champion Cameron Davis, Geoff Ogilvy (sponsor’s invitation) and Brett Drewitt.