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Archive: June 2009

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June 28, 2009

Kenny Perry's Travelers Championship Winning Clubs

Posted at 6:58 PM by David Dusek

Kenny-Perry-Hartford During last week's U.S. Open at Bethpage Bloack, Kenny Perry removed his 3-iron and put a 19° prototype TaylorMade Raylor rescue club in its place. According to TaylorMade, Perry used the club successfully out of the rough from 220 yards out on the 10th hole to reach the green and make a birdie. Company reps said that because Perry's angle of attack is shallow, he often has trouble hitting longer clubs from deep rough, but the Raylor's V-shape sole design helped him a lot.

At the TPC River Highlands outside Hartford, where the rough was less severe than at Bethpage Black, Perry put his 3-iron back in the bag, but used a 22° Raylor instead of his 5-wood.

Here is a complete list of the club's Perry used to win his 14th career PGA Tour event:

DRVIER: TaylorMade R9 460 (9.5°) with Fujikura Matore F1 shaft
FAIRWAY WOOD: TaylorMade Burner (14.5°) with Fujikura Re AX TP75 shaft
HYBRID: TaylorMade Raylor prototpye (18°) with Fujikura Rombax TP 75 shaft
IRONS: TaylorMade r7 (4-PW) with FST KB Tour shafts
WEDGES: TaylorMade rac (54°, 64°), Cleveland CG14 (60°) with True Temper Dynamic Gold S400 shafts
PUTTER: Ping G2i Craz-E
BALL: Titleist Pro V1x

Take a look inside more PGA Tour winners' bags

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(Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

June 24, 2009

Nike Golfers Support Lance Armstrong's Live Strong Foundation

Posted at 4:40 PM by David Dusek

Nike Live Strong Bag At this week's PGA and LPGA Tour events, several golfers who have endorsement deals with Nike will use a special yellow golf bag to show support for Lance Armstrong's Live Strong Foundation and cancer awareness.

At the Traveler's Championship in Hartford, Stewart Cink, U.S. Open champion Lucas Glover, Justin Leonard, Carl Pettersson, Kris Blanks, Brendon Todd and Bob Tway will use the bag. At the Wegmans LPGA in Rochester, N.Y., Amanda Blumenherst, Paige MacKenzie and Ashley Simon will have it.

Anthony Kim and Michelle Wie are planning to wear yellow shirts during their respective events to show support.

While Nike does not plan to bring Live Strong golf bags to retail outlets, the players' bags from this week's tournaments—along with other Nike Golf Athletes' Bags—will be autographed and auctioned on Ebay. All the proceeds will go directly to the Live Strong foundation.

June 22, 2009

Ricky Barnes' 2009 U.S. Open Clubs

Posted at 12:23 PM by David Dusek

Ricky Barnes The irons that Ricky Barnes brought to Bethpage Black for the 2009 U.S. Open are Wilson prototypes called Staff FG. According Wilson, they are designed to enhance feel and control, but with a small cavity-back design, they're more forgiving than the muscle-back Wilson's Staff FG59 irons. Wilson plans on releasing the Staff FG irons late in 2009.

Here is a complete list of the clubs that Ricky Barnes is playing:

DRIVER: Callaway FT-9 Tour Authentic (8.5°) with Accra SC shaft
FAIRWAY WOODS: Callaway X (13°, 18°) with Accra SC shafts
IRONS: Wilson Staff FG prototype (3-PW) with True Temper Project X 6.5 shafts
WEDGES: Wilson Staff Tw9 (54°), Callaway X Forged (60°)
PUTTER: Odyssey White Hot Tour #9

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(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

June 21, 2009

David Duval's 2009 U.S. Open clubs

Posted at 4:58 PM by David Dusek

David Duval Bethpage Sunday Here is a list of the clubs that David Duval is using at the 2009 U.S. Open at Bethpage Black:

DRIVER: Nike SQ Dymo 380 (8.5°) with Mitsubishi Diamana White Board 83 X shaft
FAIRWAY WOOD: Tour Edge Exotics (15°) with Mitsubishi Diamana White Board 83 X shaft; Nike SQ Dymo (17°) with Mitsubishi Diamana Blue Board 93 X shaft
IRONS: Nike Victory Red Forged Blades (3-PW) with True Temper Project X 6.5 shafts
WEDGES: Nike prototype (53°, 58°)
PUTTER: Scotty Cameron for Titleist Newport 2
BALL: Nike One Tour D

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(Photo by Al Tielemans/SI)

Phil Mickelson's clubs for 2009 U.S. Open

Posted at 1:21 PM by David Dusek

Phil Mickelson Hybrid Bethpage 2 I had a chance to speak with Callaway Golf club designer Roger Cleveland in the company's massive tour truck this week. Cleveland mentioned that Phil Mickelson is using a new hybrid this week. Still in the prototype phase, the club was designed and conceived with significant input from Mickelson himself.

Mickelson has previously used a Callaway FT hybrid in some tournaments.

Cleveland would not go into detail about the club or specific technologies used in its creation, but Mickelson himself told reporters, "This is a special club I actually made, taking the back part of the hybrid out so that I can open it way up and get through that thick rough." (Click on the image for a better look at the club.)

Like all prototype clubs, there is no guarantee Phil's new hybrid will ever make it to the pro shop. Here is a complete list of the clubs he is using at Bethpage:

DRIVER: Callaway FT-9 (7.5°) Tour hosel with Mitsubishi Fubuki 73 X shaft
FAIRWAY WOOD:  Callaway Big Bertha Diablo (15°) with Mitsubishi Fubuki 83 X shaft
HYBRID: Callaway PM prototype (18°) with Mitsubishi Diamana Thump X shaft
IRONS: Callaway X Forged (3-4), Callaway X Proto (5-9) with Rifle Project X 7.0 shafts
WEDGES: Callaway X Tour Forged (56°, 60°, 64°) with Rifle Project X 7.0 shafts
PUTTER: Odyssey White Hot XG #9 Blade
BALL: Callaway Tour ix

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(Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

June 20, 2009

Lucas Glover's U.S. Open Clubs

Posted at 7:14 PM by David Dusek

Lucas-Glover-Bethpage-Putter Lucas Glover used a Nike prototype putter that is similar to the one used by Paul Casey, Trevor Immelman, Michelle Wie, Justin Leonard and Stewart Cink.

As I wrote previously in this blog, it's a heel-toe weighted Anser-style blade, that features a series of red ribs on the face. The ribs are designed to help to reduce skidding on the greens and get the ball rolling faster.

I've seen five different versions of the Nike prototype putters and each was heel-shafted; I did not see a high-MOI Nike prototype putter with the red ribs in the face.

Here are the clubs that Lucas Glover used to win the 2009 U.S. Open at Bethpage Black:

DRIVER: Nike SQ Sumo2 Tour (9.5°) with Matrix Apache Ozik shaft
FAIRWAY WOODS: Nike SQ II (13°, 19°)
IRONS: Nike CCI Forged (3-PW)
WEDGES: Nike SV Tour (52°, 60°)
PUTTER: Nike prototype
BALL: Nike ONE Tour D

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(Photo by Al Tielemans/SI)

June 19, 2009

Tiger Woods Golf Clubs at Bethpage

Posted at 4:35 PM by David Dusek

Tiger-Woods-Fri-Bethpage FARMINGTON, N.Y. -- Tiger Woods recently experimented with different shafts in his driver, increased the loft on his driver, and put an older set of irons back in his bag.

However, Tiger really doesn't change the makeup of his set very often. In dry conditions, Woods often pulls out his 5-wood and replaces it with a 2-iron. While the 2-iron may have made the trip to New York from Florida, the 5-wood is in his bag this week. And although he has tested hybrids, Woods has not put one into his bag during competition.

Here is a complete look at the clubs in Tiger's bag at Bethpage:

Driver:  Nike SQ Dymo (10°) with a Mitsubishi Diamana White Board 83x shaft
Fairway woods:  Nike SasQuatch Sumo (15°, 19°) with Mitsubishi Diamana Blue Board 103g shafts
Irons:   Nike Forged Blades (3-PW) with True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shafts
Wedges:  Nike Victory Red (56°), SV (60°) with True Temper Dynamic Gold S400 shafts
Putter:  Titleist by Scotty Cameron Newport 2
Ball:  Nike One Tour

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(Photo by Simon Bruty/SI)

Drew Weaver's U.S. Open Golf Clubs

Posted at 1:55 PM by David Dusek

Draw-Weaver The first player to post an under-par round at the 2009 U.S. Open was Drew Weaver, the 2007 British Amateur champion. Here is a list of the clubs he had in his bag Friday at the U.S. Open.

DRIVER: Titleist 909D3 (9.5°) with UST AvixCore 79 X shaft
FAIRWAY WOOD: Titleist 909F2 (13.5°)
HYBRID: Titleist 909H (19°)
IRONS: Titleist Forged ZM (3-PW)
WEDGES: Titleist Vokey Design (54°), Spin Milled (59°)
PUTTER: Scotty Cameron Newport prototype
BALL: Titleist Pro V1x

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(Photo by Ross Kinnair/Getty Images)

June 18, 2009

TaylorMade Raylor Prototype Hybrid Seen at Bethpage

Posted at 4:10 PM by David Dusek

TaylorMade Raylor FARMINGDALE, N.Y. — Kenny Perry and Fred Funk each tried a new, unreleased prototype hybrid club as they prepared for the U.S. Open at Bethpage.

The TaylorMade Raylor has a weight screw in the low, rear area and a V-shaped leading edge. According to representatives from TaylorMade, the unique sole of the club helps it work through the rough especially well.

Perry practiced using two Raylor hybrid clubs, a 19° and a 22°, each fitted with Fujikura hybrid shafts. Funk was given a 22° Raylor and took it to an unused fairway on Bethpage's Red Course. TaylorMade Raylor Face

TaylorMade reps didn't know if either player would be putting the club into play during the U.S. Open, and like all other prototype pieces of equipment, there's no guarantee that the Raylor will ever be made available to the general public.

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Tiger Woods Looms Large on Billboard in Manhattan

Posted at 4:10 PM by David Dusek

Tiger Woods only completed six holes at Bethpage Black before play was suspended Thursday morning. But fans of the world's top-ranked player can see a lot more of Woods if they head to the corner of 34th Street and Seventh Avenue in Manhattan. There, above Penn Station, they'll see a 70-foot tall billboard showing a scene from each of Tiger's 14 major triumphs.

Tiger Woods Billboard

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(Photo provided by Nike)

Rain Gear Being Used at 2009 U.S. Open

Posted at 12:25 PM by David Dusek

FARMINGDALE, N.Y. – Modern foul-weather golf apparel has almost as much technology built into it as a driver. Space-age fabrics make waterproof tops and pants breathable while keeping you dry. Here is a look at what many of the golfers at the 2009 U.S. Open will be wearing. (Click on any of the images for a closer look.)

Tiger-Woods-RainGear  Nike Storm Fit Elite Jacket
 Also available in a long sleeve version ($300), this waterproof shell is lightweight and features seams that are completely sealed to keep water out. This top will be worn by Tiger Woods (left), Paul Casey and Stewart Cink.

Ian Poulter Raingear
Dry Joys Tour Rainshirt
With a two-year waterproof warranty, sealed zippers and Velcro adjustable cuffs, this top will be worn by Ian Poulter (right) and Adam Scott.


Martin Kaymer Raingear  Adidas ClimaFit Storm 3-Way Convertible Jacket
 This jacket unzips to become a short-sleeved rain top or a vest, making it super
 versatile and ideal for golfers who play when it's chilly and when it's warm. This top
 will be worn by Sergio Garcia, Martin Kaymer (left) and Justin Rose.

Luke Donald Polo Raingear Polo RLX  Elude Waterproof Jacket

Lots of pockets, all of which are sealed, make this hi-tech jacket extremely functional. It's fitted, but features plenty of stretch through the shoulders to allow golfers to swing freely. This is the top Luke Donald (right) wears.

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(Photos: Woods/John Biever/SI
Poulter, Kaymer/Ross Kinnard/Getty Images
Donald/Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

June 17, 2009

Scotty Cameron 2009 U.S. Open Commemorative Headcover Hits Bethpage

Posted at 8:40 AM by David Dusek

Scotty-Cameron-USOpen-Headcover1 FARMINGDALE, N.Y. -- As he has done for previous major championships, Scotty Cameron, Titleist's putter designer, has created a commemorative headcover for the 2009 U.S. Open at Bethpage.

Inspired by World War II fighter planes, the silver headcover has the snarling teeth of a Spitfire, Cameron's Red Circle T logo on one side and a classic pinup girl on the other.

The limited-edition headcover will go on sale Wednesday at for $72.Scotty-Cameron-USOpen-Headcover2

Update: Ernie Els Sticking with Traditional Driver at Bethpage

Posted at 7:48 AM by David Dusek

FARMINGDALE, N.Y. -- Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Ernie Els experimented with a significantly-heavier shaft in his driver on Tuesday afternoon at Bethpage, but he has decided not to use it during play at the U.S. Open.

According to Callaway, the company that makes Els' FT-9 Tour Authentic driver, the two-time U.S. Open winner with use a 79 gram, 45 ½-inch Fujikura Speeder 757 shaft.

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June 16, 2009

Ernie Els May Go With a Shorter, Heavier Driver at Bethpage

Posted at 6:09 PM by David Dusek

Ernie Els Calaway FT-9 TA FARMINGDALE, N.Y. – Earlier this season, Phil Mickelson put a unique Callaway FT-9 driver into his bag. Unlike the FT-9 drivers that had previously been released, Mickelson's had a hosel, so the club had to be examined by the USGA and deemed legal for competition.

Maybe Phil was onto something, because Ernie Els and a few other Callaway players have switched to the FT-9 Tour Authentic driver. Because the Tour Authentic version of the FT-9 has a smaller head and different weighting, it allows skilled players to work the ball more effectively off the tee. The standard FT-9 has a higher moment of inertia (MOI) that helps mid- and higher-handicap players hit straighter drives.

On Tuesday morning at Bethpage, I had a chance to speak with Barry Lyda, a PGA Tour rep with Callaway Golf, about Els's driver. He told me that the two-time U.S. Open winner is experimenting with heavier shafts so he can feel where the club is in his swing more easily.

"Ernie is using a 100-gram True Temper Project X graphite shaft in his Callaway X 3-wood," Lyda said. "He said he'd like a driver made with the same shaft, but I told him that I can't make him one with that shaft because I don't have a head light enough to offset the weight."

Els has been playing a UST Mamiya ATTAS 76 in his driver.

To compensate for the extra weight, Lyda cut a full inch off Els's driver, making it 44". Lyda said that should reduce clubhead speed and create a lower ball flight for Els. To offset that lower ball flight, Lyda added loft, making an 8.5° and a 9.5° head for Els to try.

The Callaway FT-9 Tour Authentic driver is currently only available to the public on the company's Tour Authentic Web site. In the video below, Lyda explains the differences between the standard FT-9 and the Tour Authentic model.

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(Photo by Fred Vuich/SI)

Tiger Woods Talks Irons and Driver Loft at Bethpage

Posted at 12:08 PM by David Dusek

Tiger-Woods-Bethpage-Tues FARMINGDALE, N.Y. -- At the Memorial, Tiger Woods hit 14 of 14 fairways on Sunday after changing to a Nike SQ Dymo 380 driver with 10.5° of loft (the effective playing loft was 10°). That adjustment got a lot of press, including in this blog.

Another equipment tweak, which didn't get as much attention, was his iron switch at Muirfield Village. Tiger had been playing a set of Nike Victory Red forged blades this season, but he switched to a set that appeared to be the Nike forged blades he'd played with in previous seasons.

In his press conference today at Bethpage, Woods didn't go into much detail about his irons, but he did give some more insights into his driver. Here is his complete answer:

"I went back to an old set that I had played before and had some success with, so I went back to that.

"As far as my driver is concerned, as we all know, loft is your friend. The reason why you hit a 3-wood straighter is because it has more loft, and that helps. My release has changed over the years, and I just need a little bit more loft now. It's working out and I'm driving the ball more efficiently. I still have the same power, but I just need the loft now.

"When I first came out here on Tour, I used a 6.5° driver, and now I'm up to 10.5°. Jeez, I'd hate to see what I'm going to hit when I turn 40. I wonder how that's going to be. Maybe a 46" driver, with about 15° of loft.

"But you know, it is what it is and technology has changed and the ball doesn't spin as much as it used to, and you have to have a little bit more loft than you used to play."

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(Photo by Fred Vuich/SI)

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