The muscleman wears a cap, milkboy features and a not very flattering nickname: “Bulk”, mass. With a body weight of 108 kilograms, he fires his little white bombs across the lawn.
“My goal is to inspire a new generation of golfers to think differently,” says Bulk, whose official name is Bryson DeChambeau and who is currently the most dazzling figure in golf. “Just to go out and fire bombs. Augusta would be the stage for that,” the “New York Times” quoted him as saying. The Masters at Augusta of all places, the most prestigious golf tournament in the world, which has been running since Thursday. So far, however, DeChambeau has had a hard time there, but from Saturday noon onwards he will have to fight to be allowed to play on the two final days as well. So far he has only been able to hint at what many had expected: that he would “destroy” the course, dismantle the meadow.
The future question of golf “bulk”, that does not coincidentally remind of “Hulk”. But DeChambeau doesn’t plough the courses, he doesn’t even break his club in two – he rages with his drive, his tee shot. He bounces the balls up to 350 metres, further than any of his competitors this season. His balls sail over many of the carefully placed obstacles and land near the hole earlier. His tactics expose the architecture of the golf courses, all the ditches and sand bunkers, and DeChambeau’s brute style has sparked a famous debate. We are at a crossroads in terms of the “distance problem”, said Augusta’s Tournament Director Fred Riley. He spoke of how long shots are not good for golf, not good for Augusta. “There’s still tension, but the challenge is getting smaller.”
Because it’s not just DeChambeau – for decades now, the golf pros’ tees have been flying ever further. The balls got better, the clubs got bigger and the players more athletic. But DeChambeau’s striking distance takes it to new dimensions: Since this summer, he has been hammering his tee shots an average of 344 meters far – the average distance of all the professionals on the PGA Tour is 298 meters. The professor becomes a musclemanHis catapult tactic is not forbidden or questionable – but follows the meticulous plan of a special athlete. Even before his performance explosion, Bryson DeChambeau was considered a promising golfer.
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