SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Sanford International golfers hit the course today thinking a lot about the weather, and not just because they’d spend most of the day outside but because the weather conditions will be a factor in every shot they take. Meteorologist Grant Smith explains.
The Minnehaha Country Club was filled with people who have been paying close attention to the weather forecast for this weekend.
There comes a point in your skills as a golfer where you have your swing mastered and you know how to play a course. But the weather will always be the one aspect that makes each round different than the next.
Wind has a big effect on ball flight. If the wind is at the back, the ball will fly farther but if the wind is in the face, the ball won’t go as far.
So golfers will change their club selection and even how they stand based on wind direction and wind speed. And if the wind speed is strong enough, it even affects putting, which is where games are won and lost.
Temperature also has an effect. How fast the ball flies off the club face is determined by that energy transfer from the club to the ball.
And if it’s cold, that energy transfer isn’t as efficient, so the ball won’t travel as far. So a ball hit in the morning will react differently than a ball hit in the afternoon.
And lastly, the wetness of the greens and fairways will effect how the ball reacts once it hits the ground. A dry ground is described as fast because the fall will travel farther while a wet ground absorbs a lot more energy, so it’s described as slow because the ball doesn’t travel as far.
All these reasons and more are why these pros will be thinking about the weather a lot this weekend.