AUGUSTA, Ga. – Jordan Spieth knew something was wrong. His swing coach, Cameron McCormick, did not.
Spieth was grinding on the practice range late Wednesday on the eve of his Masters title defense when he noticed the flight of balls launched from his driver were higher and shorter than usual.
“(McCormick) grabbed the face to see if I was hitting it lower or higher on the face to produce that, and he said, ‘we’ve got a problem.’” Spieth said.
It was definitely a cracked driver head. In fact, Spieth said after shooting an opening-round 66 Thursday at the Masters that the crack was in the exact same position it’s been each of the last three times he cracked a driver.
“It’s just a little horizontal line at the middle, kind of right where you want to hit the driver, middle to top of the face,” Spieth said.
A similar problem happened to Spieth right before the 2014 Players Championship and he went bogey-free the first three rounds and had a chance to win the tournament before faltering to Martin Kaymer in Round 4. So, needless to say, there wasn’t much anxiety over the first round of the Masters.
After the incident, Spieth took the shaft off his original driver and hit five balls with four different heads and tinkered with various swing weights before selecting a backup.
“Obviously not ideal, but I hit balls this morning before the round and everything seemed fine,” he said. “I did hit a lot of 3-woods today but my driver didn’t cost me anything.”