Rickie Fowler took a one-shot penalty during Friday’s round at the WGC-Mexico Championship for an illegal shoulder-height drop.
It’s a new rule this year and while a lot of attention has been paid to all the new rules, sometimes old habits die hard.
Fowler had shanked his second shot out of bounds on the 10th hole and when it came time to drop, instead of doing so from the waist, as the new rules calls for, Fowler held his right arm straight out and dropped his ball from shoulder height.
His caddie Joe Skovron missed the infraction, too. At the moment Fowler was dropping, Skovron had his attention on Fowler’s bag and did not see the infraction.
Fowler ended up with a triple-bogey seven on the hole, dropping him to 3-over for the event.
According to a report on Golf Channel, Fowler addressed the issue with a rules official, who notified him of a one-stroke penalty.
Had Fowler or Skovron caught the error before hitting the next shot, Fowler could have dropped again from waist height without incurring a penalty. But because Fowler played on after the shoulder-height drop, he was slapped with the one-shot foul.
The WGC-Mexico Championship is a no-cut event, which continues over the week at Club de Golf Chapultepec in Mexico City.