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Stocktons offer helpful tip to Mickelson and Uresti

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SAN DIEGO – I ran into Dave Stockton, Jr. Thursday strolling the grounds at Torrey Pines. He was following a couple of his students competing at the Farmer's Insurance Open.

As you may know, he has joined forces with his father Dave Stockton, Sr. They've quickly become two of the most sought after putting coaches in the game and they're piecing together quite the stable of professional golfers from both the men's and women's ranks.

He was excited to tell me that Omar Uresti was coming off of his first top ten since they started working together last year, adding that the drill that really clicked for Omar happens to be one they also used on Phil Mickelson.

In this exercise they ask the player to sign his name on a sheet of paper. Then they ask him to do it again, except this time, at one tenth of the pace. Stockton said everyone, including Phil, noted that it felt awkward writing it at slow speeds. The Stocktons respond by saying that's why you shouldn't approach your putting stroke the same way; it needs to be less cerebral and more reactionary.

Stockton, Jr. went on to tell me that they are receiving a ridiculous number of requests for their expertise. It has gotten to a point where they have to curb the number of players they bring into the circle. You'd be amazed how many professionals are recruiting their help (of course, it doesn't hurt when Phil Mickelson is your biggest advertiser). Dave told me that it was Phil who contacted his dad and not the other way around.  

I asked him if they've heard from Sergio Garcia who's been searching for a little magic in the putting stroke for years. Stockton's answer was interesting. He said Sergio hadn't made any direct requests but Dave, Sr. did receive a Christmas card from the Spaniard. That had never happened before this year. Do you think he's laying down the foundation?