This year, Golf Monthly has teamed up with COBRA Golf for the innovative ‘Smarter Ways to Lower Scores’ project, in which two readers have benefited from a full COBRA Golf club fitting and expert swing advice in the quest to knock shots off their scores and handicaps.

Back in March, Mark Smith, a 5-handicapper from Hertfordshire, enjoyed a full driver-to-wedge COBRA Golf custom fitting and received technical tips from PGA Professional, Richard Strange.

Towards the end of July, it was time to put things to the test under the gun, as Mark enjoyed COBRA Golf’s hospitality at Luton Hoo in Bedfordshire, teeing it up in the Pro-Am for The Matchroom Sport Championship on the Europro Tour with professional, Luke Cornford.

Mark fires his drive away on the 1st hole in the Europro Tour Pro-Am at Luton Hoo

Here’s how he got on…

On the Pro-Am…
The Pro-Am got better and better as the day went on. The weather was a little inclement at first but the guys from the Europro Tour looked after us well before we went out.

My best moment was my birdie on 17 as it was the only one I had all day! That was a nice par 5 with a lovely central cedar tree to shape the hole, which I managed to miss by about 50 yards left. But I got on the green in regulation and slotted it in for the birdie, so that was my highlight.

Mark in par-3 action during the Pro-Am at Luton Hoo

The 9th was an interesting hole too, framed by the hotel and spa behind. I decided to take the direct route over the trees on the left to cut the dogleg, and left myself about 100 yards in off a 260-yard drive, so that was a good moment halfway through the round.

On his COBRA clubs…
My COBRA King Forged Tec irons
are a huge improvement on my previous set, and I’ve got the King F7 driver and King Versatile wedges working, so that’s all good, with my short game improving slowly.

Mark was fitted for COBRA King Forged Tec irons back in March at Silvermere

I think I need a lesson with my hybrid as I’m not really able to work that so well at the moment. It’s been a bit of a learning curve with a whole new set, but I’m really happy with the way things are going.

On his technique…
In my original lesson, Richard helped me break my wedges down into certain clockface positions to knock five and ten yards off each club, and that’s worked really well.

Expert swing advice from PGA Pro Richard Strange during Mark’s fitting

He also tried to get me a little steeper in my irons to launch the ball better, and with the lighter shaft, it’s been working superbly. I want to get down below 5. I’ve touched it at 4.6, but haven’t quite managed to break that glass ceiling yet!