Almost every golfer wishes he or she had started playing the game at a younger age. Many Arccos Members wish they’d discovered the A.I.- powered game improvement platform earlier in their golf journeys. Not many Arccos Members can say that the platform pre-dates their birth...
But Penny Roach is pretty remarkable.
The six-year-old Canadian junior golfer has been playing since she was three and started swinging her father Adam’s clubs at the driving range. Now, she has a swing Adam, describes as equal parts Arnold Palmer, Mickey Wright and Tommy Fleetwood.
“Mostly Palmer in the follow-through,” Adam says with a laugh.
If you think you can handle the cute-ness... check out images and videos of her swing on her Instagram account, @watch_penny_golf. In adorable fashion, you’ll also see Arccos Caddie Link clipped to the bill of her cap. (While we don't recommend this for adults, Penny gets away with it because of her pint-size stature—the microphone in the wearable can still hear the ball strike at impact.)
“Penny is just out there swinging and having fun,” Adam says. “She’s seen her data but she’s not as excited about it as I am,” Adam says with a laugh. “I was tracking all of her swings and shots manually and it was a lot of work. I watched a few Arccos YouTube videos and I was sold. I figured it would be the ultimate digital diary for Penny’s golf game.”
Hitting more greens in regulation makes Penny happy, however, and Adam says she’s been doing a lot more of that since they started using Arccos. Ever the supportive dad, Adam loops for her in competitive events on the Maple Leaf Junior Tour. Despite his best intentions, he was continually mis-clubbing Penny.
“The biggest benefit out of the box was club selection,” Adam says. “I would over-club her a lot. In some cases I was way off. We’re also using the [A.I.-powered] Rangefinder to get distances to water hazards and bunkers.”
Adam says he’s even turned much of his distance-based caddie duties over to the Arccos Caddie App’s data-based club selection. He used to have Penny tee it high and let if fly with her driver on most holes, but when Arccos recommends a different club off the tee, they go with it.
“If we stand a better chance of hitting a green with a four hybrid than a driver we’ll use it,” Adam says.
Recently, Arccos Caddie Rangefinder recommended that Penny take a 9-iron over a water hazard to reach the green. Adam was going to have her take a 7-iron to be safe. They trusted the Arccos number and she stuck it on.
“That definitely made her smile,” Adam says.
Dialing it in with SGA
Like many young junior golfers, Penny enjoys playing more than practicing. Adam tries to ensure that her time on the range is both efficient and enjoyable. Arccos Strokes Gained Analytics Feature helps the duo drill down on what Penny needs to work on to score better.
“I like that you can set the number of rounds to include in the analysis,” Adam says. “Junior golfers are growing and their swings are changing all the time. If you go too far back the data won’t be as relevant. Strokes Gained Analytics helps us optimize the data.”
Penny is using that optimization in pursuit of one her biggest goals: her first hole-in-one. Arccos Members are statistically 5.5 times more likely to make an ace than non-Members, so we have full faith that Penny will get this one in the bag.
Penny’s idols are her mom, who’s a surgeon, as well as LPGA Tour players Hannah Green (from Australia) and Brooke Henderson (from Canada). So it only stands to reason that at this juncture of her young life, she wants to be a “golfer-doctor,” according to Adam.
“I told her she’s going to be very busy,” says Adam. “Those are women she admires. We met Hannah at an LGPA Tour event in Toronto and she let Penny line up a putt. Then she surprised us and let her walk the 18th hole with her.”
Penny got to do a Zoom call with Henderson and some other golfers via Golf Town, Canada’s version of Golf Galaxy in the U.S. Both Henderson and Green check in on Penny’s progress periodically, a true testament to both players’ commitment to growing the game.
“They are amazing individuals,” says Adam.
If the early results are any indication, Penny’s in great position to follow suit.