Brandon Stone takes us on a personal journey through his year and what he is looking to achieve in 2020.
Here we are folks, at the end of 2019. Another year seems to have flown by right before our eyes. While many of you are fleeing to the coast, the bush or simply relaxing at home, this time of the year is vital for us professional golfers. It’s a time for us to reflect on the past year and to look ahead.
Over December I’ll be breaking down every statistic under the sun in an effort to find ‘The Answer’. It’s a process I started in October. However, my reflection is not limited to the golf course.
At the end of 2018 I had the same opportunity to contemplate things. During this time I identified certain aspects within my life and game that I needed to address for me to reach the standard I believe I’m capable of. I’ve discussed a few of these aspects with all of you during the year, so I think it’s fitting I provide you with an update.
Let’s start on the golf course. The 2019 Race to Dubai was a tough one for me results-wise. The first eight months were littered with inconsistency and average scoring. So, in September, I decided to go back to what used to work for me. I started hitting the ball harder, with the Brandon Stone patented draw. I felt like I was getting closer to my best. Some fantastic results towards the end of the season helped get me back to the positive mindset I had been missing; I simply ran out of tournaments before the Race to Dubai season ended.
Last year I also identified where I needed to be physically to compete with the best in the world. Now, I was under no illusions. I had no intention of getting arms as big as Brooks Koepka’s. However, I needed to be fitter. I needed to be stronger. I needed to be more athletic. If I could do that, I’d be able to play more events, more consistently.
Physically I have never been better. Under the guidance of my trainer, Gavin Groves, I have been working tirelessly this season to get in a physical condition that will allow me to compete more consistently over a 30-tournament schedule. This will help me gain on my opponents in 2020.
The move to London has been fantastic, although we have been missing our friends and family. Not having to fly over 10 hours every month from South Africa to Europe has helped my body tremendously. Those little aches and pains in my hips and back are a thing of the past.
It definitely isn’t all sunshine and rainbows, though. After all, it is London we’re talking about. But I do feel that having my base in Europe will help me achieve my goals.
But … I’m back. Back in the land of 35ºC and sunshine. My lily-white skin will be many shades of tomato over the next few weeks as I bask in our beautiful sunshine. I will be sharing a few beers with friends beside the pool.
But most importantly, I’ll be playing golf in my favourite country. So keep your eyes open, our paths might cross and we can have a little money game at your local club. After all, a little extra cash for Christmas presents won’t hurt.