Is a 3-wood more accurate than a driver off the tee?

Published:

In our biggest questions answered series, we decided to ask the experts: Is a 3-wood more accurate than a driver off the tee?

As it turns out, yes it is. But that doesn't mean you need to start copying Henrik Stenson and hit a lot more three woods off the tee, as it doesn't necessarily mean it is the right play.

"When choosing between a driver and a 3-wood, you need to trade off the benefits of distance and accuracy," reveals leading golf statistician Professor Mark Broadie (everyshotcounts.com).

"If you are playing a par 4 or par 5 where the penalty for missing the fairway is not too great, then being longer is better than being shorter, so driver always tends to be the better choice.

But if you are playing a par 4 or a par 5, where gaining 20 yards with the driver brings deep rough, a bunker, trees or another hazard into play, then being on the fairway is far better than being off it, so a 3-wood would make sense."