TOP TRACER Shot Results and Data from VGC
Tech Helps Me Get My Ball Flights and Distances Down
Virginia Golf Center in Clifton, VA now has Top Tracer Technology ( by Top Golf ). Their 38-covered-bay installation makes it the largest Top Tracer range in Northern Virginia. It lets a golfer measure each shot you take as to how hard, how fast and how far you hit a specific club in your bag, how high it flies hitting it a certain way, how much it carries and rolls out, and actually measure the launch angle and landing angle of each shot. For any golfer, it affords a measurable view of your ball flights, as well as convenient automatic record-keeping of shots you can take with any club.
Or in my case, with the new Safe-Tee-Air Driver. While it has helped me shorten the development time of our invention by months, it has really helped me to fine-tune the actual playing of the game of golf, with my Safe-Tee-Air Driver. It has allowed me to get a good sense of how much pressure to dial in, and how to aim the S.T.A.D. to hit it where I want to on the fairway, or to go for the green.
At VGC's Open House in mid September, I started to put together the results I was getting from my practice there, especially taking advantage of their Top Tracer tech. I entered the Long Drive competition mostly just to see what our Optimum-Curve Barrel could do. I knew the original Long Drive barrel could produce shots up to 400 total yards, and had been used in charity Long Drive events. When I "opened up" the Safe-Tee-Air Driver, charging it up close to maximum safe pressure, my best long drive flew 320 yards in the air and rolled out almost 40 yards further.
This was exciting, because it confirmed what I'd discovered the week before, playing 18 holes with my first foursome (ever!) It meant that I could use the S.T.A.D. with just this single barrel and play the whole long game from tee to green. And after this event, that's exactly what I did for 36 more holes, with my second foursome, just buying a Golf Now/Supreme Golf tee time at South Riding Golf Course, and then my first threesome at Bristow Manor, thanks to my brother.
There is one particular application (or "game") within Top Tracer, originally called "What's In My Bag," now simply "My Practice," that lets you store and review all the data right on your phone. It allows you to specify what club you are hitting with and track the ball speed, ball flight including height, launch angle, landing angle, and both Carry Distance and Total Distance of each shot, after bounce and roll out. In my case, it has helped me emulate the behavior of the best-hit shots a good golfer might make -- with each club in a golfer's arsenal.
The Safe-Tee-Air Driver (S.T.A.D.) was developed with "players with disabilities" in mind. When I first tried Top Tracer Technology, with high-quality video cameras mounted at each end of the whole driving range, I saw that it mostly wouldn't "pick up" or trace the flight of shots took from standing position. But it worked great if I was sitting or kneeling. So that would be perfect for discovering and showing what someone in a wheelchair, for example, could do with the S.T.A.D. Or for that matter, while sitting in a golf cart from behind the tee marker (even from the cart path) or from the fairway itself.
So the next time I came I just brought a little folding beach chair with me, pulled it out of my car with my golf bag and push-cart, and set it up on the tee mat. I started out seeing what total distance a golf ball would fly when I charged the S.T.A.D. to a specific pressure setting (measured in Pounds Square Inch, or PSI). I tried each shot with 2 and then 3 basic "elevations" which correlate to "launch angle." One was Zero Elevation (like a rifle shot), and I also decided Elevation Two would be High elevation, and Elevation One pretty much in-between - sighting by using the STAD's pressure gauge rather like a rear sight.