Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Mexico's challenge: Thin air, more distance

MEXICO CITY – At 7,500 feet, Club de Golf Chapultepec will present a litany of challenges for players at this week’s WGC-Mexico Championship.

Physically, Jordan Spieth said he can feel the difference after just nine holes on Tuesday but he was hopeful the elevation challenges would subside in a day or two.

The bigger issue will be the distance the golf ball is flying in the thin, warm air.

“I had 235 [yards] to the hole [at No. 7] and I took a 5-iron, didn’t quite hit it great, I walk up and it carried. It was carrying 235,” Spieth said. “I mean some of the shots I hit today, I just couldn’t believe how far they were still flying.”

WGC-Mexico Championship: Articles, photos and videos

Trusting those increased distances will be the biggest challenge for Spieth and the other players in Mexico, along with the layout’s small and undulating greens.

Spieth said he spoke last week with Lee Trevino, who played tournaments at Chapultepec in his career, and the veteran told him the key to playing the course was keeping the ball low and out of the thin air, which will make the 7,330-yard course play much shorter.

“You don’t have to hit a driver out here and you can hit all 18 greens,” Spieth said.

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