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PGA will test shot distance trackers on three tours

Golfers will know just how powerful their swings really are.
Jon Fingas, @jonfingas
March 28, 2017
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Not surprisingly, the PGA has been hesitant to let golfers use distance trackers on the course. In theory, they take all the challenge out of picking the right club. The association isn't stuck in its ways, however. Officials have announced that they'll let players test distance measuring devices at certain tournaments on the Web.com Tour, the Mackenzie Tour in Canada and PGA Tour Latinoamérica. Competitors won't be allowed to gauge elevation, slope or wind, but this could still help them take more informed swings.

The first tourney to allow trackers is the Essential Costa Rica Classic, which kicks off April 20th. It's important to note that the PGA isn't nearly so cautious about tracking for the sake of fans, by the way -- the PGA has served distance info to viewers for a while.

It will take a while before you know whether or not these gadgets become mainstays. Once the relevant tours wrap up in July, the PGA's Player Advisory Council will examine the data to see how the trackers influence play. And it could be a complicated decision. The PGA may not mind helping players out and speeding things up, but it also doesn't want to risk removing so much of the challenge that tournaments become boring.

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