Is there a gear hack to becoming a better putter? Brad Faxon offers his take
Everyone wishes they were Brad Faxon on the putting green. One of the greatest to ever stroke it — his 1.704 putts per green in regulation average during the 2000 season is the best ever recorded on Tour —Faxon has offered guidance to a number of high-profile names, including Rory McIlroy.
When you’re good at what you do, everyone wants to know your secrets. The thing is, Faxon freely admits there isn’t a hack to becoming a good putter. A lot of it has to do with two things: finding a putter you trust and learning how to read slope and speed.
Sticking with the same putter is a tough proposition for golfers who constantly place a bulk of the blame on the flatstick. The second things go sideways, it’s out with the old and in with the latest mallet or blade.
Faxon has tinkered with other putters on occasion, but for the most part, his go-to wand has been a Scotty Cameron FaxDay that’s been in his possession since 1997. Instead of holding the putter responsible when things go awry, Faxon has taken a different approach during his career.
“I think it was the comfort of knowing that I was taking an attitude that the more I used it, the more I would be able to know what it feels like to hit a good putt and what it feels like to hit a bad putt,” Faxon said. “Frankly, any putter that I would use, you could make or miss with. I just said, I’m never going to blame my equipment. If I miss it, I need to have a better routine or stroke.”
And his green-reading prowess? That comes from years spent observing putts as a caddie growing up in the northeast.
“I could watch balls roll and see how much they broke,” he says. “I think that I became a very good greens reader in an organic way. I didn’t have any tricks.”
If you don’t have a caddie gig, consider spending more time focusing on how your putts roll and break during practice sessions. At the end of the day, it’s the little things that separate an elite putter from the rest of the pack.