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Category: TaylorMade

July 29, 2013

TaylorMade SLDR driver hits retail stores August 9

Posted at 9:50 AM by Robert Sauerhaft

TaylorMade's prototype SLDR driver has been in play on Tour since the John Deere Classic in mid-July. Now, it's official: The adjustable SLDR will be at retail starting August 9. Can't wait? The company will host a live chat today (Monday, July 29 at 11 a.m. EST) with the club's designers on

TaylorMade’s testing reveals that wood heads with a low, forward center of gravity (CG) produce faster ball speeds, less backspin and a lower dynamic loft than woods with a low, rearward CG. It follows that the SLDR driver is engineered to maximize distance with a low, forward CG. The sleek movable weight device (in blue)—along the sole and close to the face—offers 20 grams of movable mass (R1 has 9 grams). This means 30 yards of “draw/fade” shot shape capability compared with 20 yards in R1.

The SLDR comes in 8°, 9.5°, 10.5° or 12° lofts. Each head has 12 loft settings so you can add or subtract as much as 1.5° to modify launch angle and spin. Darren Clarke, Ken Duke, Lucas Glover, Dustin Johnson, Martin Kaymer, Ryan Moore, Boo Weekley, Y.E. Yang are among the pros to play the SLDR in competition. $400 with Fujikura Speeder 57 shaft; $500 with Fujikura Speeder TS 6.3 shaft.

(Photos: Courtesy of TaylorMade)

July 08, 2013

PHOTO: TaylorMade prototype SLDR driver

Posted at 1:14 PM by Robert Sauerhaft


The USGA updates its list of conforming driver heads each Monday morning. Today, a prototype TaylorMade driver dubbed the SLDR appeared on the list.

The photo here (courtesy of the USGA) clearly shows a moveable weight mechanism along the sole. This design reminds me of the technology used in Mizuno’s MP-630 Fast Track driver from 2010. A big difference is that the slider -- used to tweak shot shape -- was rearward in the Mizuno model whereas it runs the length of the sole, and closer to the face, in the SLDR. Relatedly, it appears that the device replaces TaylorMade’s iconic removable heel-toe weights.

Dave Cordero, Communications Manager at TaylorMade Golf, confirms that company reps will have prototype SLDR drivers at this week’s John Deere Classic (PGA Tour) and the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open (European Tour). More to come.

(Photo: Courtesy of

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July 04, 2013

Special Edition: Justin Rose TaylorMade Spider Blade putter

Posted at 2:47 PM by Michael Chwasky

In celebration of Justin Rose's impressive U.S. Open win at Merion last month, TaylorMade is offering a limited run (99 in all) of exact replicas of his Spider Blade putter ($299.99). Every replica is made to Rose's exact specs (37 5/8" in length) and fitted with a black Ghost Tour shaft and counterbalanced grip that is normally only available to members of TaylorMade's Tour staff. The clubhead of each putter is numbered (1 through 99) and stamped with Rose's "JR," logo. 

The Spider Blade features a 260g steel body and 3.5g surlyn face insert for enhanced feel at impact. A 3g polycarbonate sole plate and 82g tungsten weight screws in the heel and toe areas of the clubhead increase MOI and stability on off center hits. A 130g grip, which is about twice as heavy as a standard grip, creates counterbalancing which further increases MOI and provides an even greater amount of stability throughout the stroke. 

(Photo: Courtesy TaylorMade)

June 23, 2013

Winner's Bag: Ken Duke's equipment at the Travelers Championship

Posted at 7:03 PM by Robert Sauerhaft

Duke_300DRIVER: TaylorMade RBZ Stage 2 (9.5°) with Aldila Tour Series TX shaft

FAIRWAY WOOD: TaylorMade RBZ Stage 2 (14.5°) with Aldila Tour Series shaft

HYBRID: TaylorMade RBZ Stage 2 (18.5°) with Aldila Tour Series shaft

IRONS: TaylorMade Tour Preferred MC (3-PW) with Aldila graphite shafts

WEDGES: Akira prototype US-Tour Issue (52°, 58°)

PUTTER: Scotty Cameron by Titleist Newport 2

BALL: Titleist Pro V1 (2013)

Photos: Getty Images

May 30, 2013

Back in Black: TaylorMade's R1 Black driver

Posted at 11:04 AM by Robert Sauerhaft


The naysayers were wrong. Many predicted, in 2011, that a white driver wouldn’t fly given golf’s conservative roots. But, fly, it did. TaylorMade’s R11 turned the golf biz on its ear and precipitated an unprecedented run for the company. TaylorMade would never go back to the days of black drivers, would it? Sure, it would. The fully loaded, adjustable R1 Black has all the bells and whistles as the original R1 but in a more conventional-looking, toned-down package. The only difference, really, is its paint job. Both versions pack in a ton of adjustability features for loft (8° to 12°), face angle (4° open to 4° closed), and shot shape (removable 1-gram and 10-gram weights).

Why black, why now? “We want to stay connected with authentic, low-handicap golfers,” says Tom Kroll, product evangelist, at TaylorMade Golf. “We get a lot of feedback from people saying they want to play a black-headed R1. We want to give them what they say they want.” Understood. We all know golfers who won’t try a club based simply on appearance. 

One more thing: The R1 Black will be available in limited quantities only. "They'll account for less than 20% of all R1’s built this year," adds Kroll. "Once they’re gone, they’re gone, and we have no plans to do a second ‘limited edition’ run."

R1 Black will be at retail starting on Monday, June 10. Both the R1 and R1 Black are $399.

Finally, the R1 Black will debut on the PGA Tour next week at the FedEx St. Jude Classic in Memphis, Tenn.

RELATED: ClubTesters review the TaylorMade R1 Driver

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(Photos: Courtesy of TaylorMade)

May 22, 2013

TaylorMade releases new Spider Blade putters

Posted at 5:03 PM by Robert Sauerhaft

Taylormade-spider-blade-putter_300The club is 80 grams heavier than conventional blades because of a 130-gram grip.

The multi-material, 355-gram head -- stainless steel body and screws, tungsten weights, a polycarbonate sole plate, a Surlyn "Pure Roll" face, aluminum cavity badge, 3M foam dampener and TPU gaskets -- shifts more mass to the heel and toe. It comes in 35” or 38”.

The Spider Blade 12 has an l-neck, while the Spider Blade 32 has a short slant neck.

It is available in stores for $200.


RELATED: TaylorMade Club Reviews, News

RELATED: ClubTest 2013: 24 New Putter Reviews

(Photo: Snap36)

TaylorMade-adidas Golf responds to Sergio Garcia's 'fried chicken' comment

Posted at 11:30 AM by Kevin Cunningham

In light of the growing controversy over Sergio Garcia's racially insensitive comments about Tiger Woods at an awards ceremony at the European tour's BMW PGA Championship, Garcia's primary equipment and apparel sponsor, TaylorMade-adidas Golf, released a statement regarding the incident:

Sergio Garcia's recent comment was offensive and in no way aligns with TaylorMade-adidas Golf's values and corporate culture. We have spoken with Sergio directly and he clearly has regret for his statement and we believe he is sincere. We discussed with Sergio that his comments are clearly out of bounds and we are continuing to review the matter.

Garcia apologized for his remarks at a press conference Tuesday, and Woods responded to the incident via Twitter, saying the comments were "wrong, hurtful and clearly inappropriate..." but that "The Players ended nearly two weeks ago and it’s long past time to move on and talk about golf."

(Photo: Julian Finney/Getty Images)

March 18, 2013

New Daddy Long Legs Putter from TaylorMade

Posted at 3:09 PM by Michael Chwasky

Taylormade-daddy-long-legs-putter_640Though it won’t be officially released until April 15th, TaylorMade’s new Daddy Long Legs putter ($199) is already getting attention out on the PGA Tour. According to Brian Bazzel, director of product creation at TaylorMade, a wide variety of players have already gravitated to the new mallet.   

“We designed the putter to provide the feel, stability, and performance of an anchored putter but for players who putt with the traditional method. So far we’ve had players who use both methods try the Daddy Long Legs and give us very positive feedback regarding the ultra-stable feel.” 

The Daddy Long Legs is an extension of the Spider series, which was originally introduced in 2008, and is made to provide the ultimate in stability both during the stroke and at impact. Design features of the putter include a 16-piece clubhead made from 8 different materials, a Pure Roll face insert, and a 15” grip that tips the scales at 130g, which is approximately twice the weight of a standard grip. 

“The goal of the heavy grip is to provide counterbalancing,” says Bazzel, “which moves the balance point of the club closer to the player’s hands. This weighting technique makes it easier to control the clubhead and square it at impact on a more consistent basis.” 

The extra long grip is provided to allow players to choke down on the grip, which Bazzel says is critical to taking full advantage of the counterweighted design. To accommodate this fact, the putter will be available in 38” and 35” lengths.

(Photos: Kevin Cunningham)


CLUBTEST REVIEW: TaylorMade R1 Driver

CLUBTEST REVIEW: TaylorMade RocketBladez Irons

MORE TAYLORMADE: TaylorMade Homepage on

January 20, 2013

Winner's Bag: Brian Gay at the Humana Challenge

Posted at 11:37 PM by David Dusek


DRIVER: TaylorMade R1 (9°) with an Oban Kiyoshi shaft
FAIRWAY WOOD: Adams Speedline Super LS (13°) with an Oban Kiyoshi shaft
HYBRIDS: TaylorMade Rocketballz Tour (16.5°) Rescue TP (19°) with Aldila NV shafts
IRONS: TaylorMade RocketBladez (4), Mizuno MP-60 (5-8); Mizuno MP-32 (9, PW) with Project X 6.0 shafts
WEDGES: Titleist Vokey Design Spin Milled (56°, 60°) with True Temper DG Spinner shafts
PUTTER: Bettinardi BB8 TOUR prototype
BALL: Titleist Pro V1x 

See-Try-Buy: Learn more about Adams, Mizuno, TaylorMade and Titleist clubs, and schedule your fitting with GolfTEC or Golfsmith.

Related: Follow David Dusek on Twitter | Facebook | Google

(Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)


January 08, 2013

Winner's Bag: Dustin Johnson at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions

Posted at 5:24 PM by David Dusek

  Dustin Johnson Kapalua

DRIVER: TaylorMade R1 (10°) with a Fujikura Motore Fuel 2.0 X shaft
FAIRWAY WOODS: TaylorMade R11S (15.5°) and R9 (19°) with Aldila RIP Series X shafts
IRONS: RocketBladez Tour (3-PW) with True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shafts
WEDGES: TaylorMade TP xFT (54°, 60°) with with KBS Black Nickel shafts 
PUTTER: Scotty Cameron for Titleist Newport prototype
BALL: TaylorMade Penta TP5

See-Try-Buy: Learn more about TaylorMade and Titleist clubs, and schedule your fitting with GolfTEC or Golfsmith.

Photos: Gear seen at Kapalua

Related: Follow David Dusek on Twitter | Facebook | Google+ 

(Photo by TaylorMade Golf)

November 29, 2012

Putter makers react to the pending anchored putter ban

Posted at 2:11 PM by David Dusek

P1-Keegan1-USGA Executive Director Mike Davis made an important distinction about the ban on anchored putting that was announced Wednesday and will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2016. 

"This is not an equipment rule," he said. "The equipment rules are based on facts, research. There's a formal notice and comment period that we go through with manufacturers. In this case, this is simply us clarifying what a stroke should not be."

So golf manufacturers can keep making and selling long and belly putters, even after the ban goes into effect. That's good news for companies like Odyssey Golf, the world's top-selling putter-maker, which saw sales of belly and long putters triple from 2010 to 2011. Today those putters consitute 12% of sales. At TaylorMade, anchor-style putters represent almost 15% of sales.

Here are some reactions from leading putter brands to Wednesday's announcement:

Odyssey Golf
Regarding the USGA and R&A proposal today, Odyssey has long held the belief that confidence with the putter is good for the game, particularly regarding player retention and growth potential. But one of the beauties of putting is that there are so many ways to do it.

Notwithstanding the final ruling in 2013, it is Odyssey's pledge to ensure golfers have the same level of confidence when they line up a putt with one of our products – regardless of the putting technique. We have anticipated this proposal for some time now and have been busy exploring several alternative options.

It should be noted that Odyssey will continue to offer belly and long putters in the short term for golfers who want to continue using them recreationally.

We'd like golfers everywhere to know that Odyssey has an optimistic approach to the proposal regardless of the outcome. As the #1 Putter in Golf, we have more tour players around the world playing and winning with Odyssey putters than any other company, and we will continue to work with those players to innovate new products and new, alternative methods to putt at the highest level.

The Acushnet Company (parent company of Titleist)
We intend to review the announcement regarding anchoring issued today by the USGA and R&A and, as a matter of process, appreciate the opportunity to provide comments to them during the comment period.

Mark King, CEO, TaylorMade Golf
Because the proposed change to the Rules of Golf bans the act of anchoring the putter to the body, and not long and mid-length putters themselves, we’ll continue making them. Does it mean the demand for these kinds of putters would drop? Maybe. But at the end of the day I don’t think we would sell one more or one less putter if the change to the Rules is made.

It’s definitely possible to use a broomstick putter without anchoring it, and I speak from experience. I use one and I hold my left hand in a stationery position a couple of inches away from my sternum. So I think we would definitely see players who currently anchor the putter who will find ways to use a long putter without anchoring it, so they can keep playing by the Rules.

Yet I also think that there will be plenty of amateur golfers who won’t give up anchoring the putter. Anybody who’s played this game knows that good putting requires an extremely precise stroke, and anchoring the putter helps a lot of golfers do that. It will be hard to give up anchoring if your putting is a lot worse without it.

However, golfers who continue to anchor the putter would be breaking the Rules, which would exclude them from holding a legitimate, USGA-sanctioned handicap, which means they couldn’t compete in tournament or event where the Rules of Golf apply. Because of that I think we would see a lot of golf leagues and golf clubs making their own exception to the anchoring rule, which essentially means that they wouldn’t strictly be playing by the Rules of Golf.

But the truth is that most golfers don’t play strictly by the Rules of Golf when they play with their friends, anyway. I don’t mean they cheat, I mean that they often go ahead and flatten spike marks even though the Rules forbid it. And how many golfers are okay with hitting a mulligan off the first tee? And that’s fine, because the game is about having fun for 99 percent of the golfers who play it, not grinding out a score in tournament play.

RELATED: PGA Tour ConfidentialVideo: What's Next? | Obituary for belly putters
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(Photo: AP)

November 11, 2012

Winner's Bag: Charlie Beljan at Children's Miracle Network Hospitals Classic

Posted at 7:08 PM by David Dusek

Cleveland Classic (9.0°) with a Miyazaki B Asha 5 shaft
Adams XTD (15°) with a Graphite Design G Series shaft; Srixon Z-TX (20°) with a Nippon prototype shaft
 Cleveland 588 CB (4-PW) with Nippon prototype shafts
Cleveland 588 Rotex CB (52°, 56°, 60°) with True Temper Dynamic Gold S-400 shafts
Scotty Cameron for Titleist Select GoLo
Srixon Z-Star 3 prototype

See-Try-Buy: Learn more about Adams, Cleveland, Srixon and Titleist gear and schedule your fitting with GolfTEC or Golfsmith.

Related: Follow David Dusek on Twitter | Facebook | Google+

(Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

November 02, 2012

Mickelson playing stealthy TaylorMade fairway wood in China

Posted at 2:54 PM by David Dusek

Before the start of the HSBC Champions at Mission Hills in Shenzhen, China, Phil Mickelson pulled out his Callaway Big Bertha Diablo 3-wood and added a TaylorMade RocketBallz 3-wood to his bag.

According to Callaway's senior vice president of marketing, Harry Arnett, Mickelson arrived at a Callaway photo shoot last week in Fort Worth, Texas, and told Callaway designers that the Mission Hills course in China presented a problem.

"He said, 'Here's my dilemma: Because of the course set-up, I'm not going to be able to hit driver. I need to have something that I can hit 290 off the tee. My 3-wood goes about 275 to 280 and my driver goes 305. I can't hit my driver there because if I do I'm in all the junk, but I don't want to hit it 270 because in some cases I may not be able to reach some of the par 5s. What do we have?'"

Arnett explained that Callaway is releasing a new fairway wood in a few weeks, but the company didn't have one ready to give to Mickelson for his trip to China.

Mickelson brought a TaylorMade fairway wood to Fort Worth and Arnett said he saw the club. While the off-the-rack RocketBallz fairway woods feature a white crown, Mickelson got one from TaylorMade that is black.

Arnett said, "We told him, 'Play whatever you want. We've got the prototype coming in a few weeks. If you really feel like this is the best way for you to compete and win, then go for it!'"

When Callaway releases its new fairway woods, Arnett said he was confident that Mickelson, who has already tested prototypes of the new Callaway woods, would take the TaylorMade club out of his bag.

Before the start of the BMW Championship at Crooked Stick in September, Mickelson pulled his Callaway RAZR Fit 5-wood and added a 9-year-old Titleist 980F 5-wood to his bag. The Titleist 5-wood made the trip to China and Mickelson is still using it.

The four-time major winner and World Golf Hall of Fame member shot 66 on Thursday and 69 Friday, putting him tie for sixth, six shots behind Louis Oosthuizen.

See-Try-Buy: Learn more about Callaway, TaylorMade and Titleist clubs, and schedule your fitting with GolfTEC or Golfsmith.

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(Photo by Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images)

October 14, 2012

Winner's Bag: Jonas Blixt at the Open

Posted at 8:21 PM by David Dusek

DRIVER: Cobra ZL Encore (8.5°) withy a UST Mamiya Attas T2 6X shaft
FAIRWAY WOOD: TaylorMade RocketBallz (15°) Graphite Design Tour AD shaft
HYBRID: Cobra Baffler T-Rail (18°) with a Graphite Design DI Hybrid 105X shaft
IRONS: Cobra S3 Pro MB (3-PW) with True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shafts
WEDGES: Callaway X Forged (52°, 60°) with True Temper Dynamic Gold S400 shafts
PUTTER: YES! Donna 2
BALL: Titleist Pro V1x

See-Try-Buy: Learn more about Callaway, Cobra, TaylorMade, and Titleist gear and schedule your fitting with GolfTEC or Golfsmith.

Related: Follow David Dusek on Twitter | Facebook | Google+

(Photo by Robert Laberge/Getty Images)


October 08, 2012

Winner's Bag: Ryan Moore at the Justin Timberlake Shiners Hospital for Children Open

Posted at 9:21 AM by David Dusek


DRIVER: TaylorMade RocketBallz (8.5°) with a Fujikura Motore shaft 
FAIRWAY WOODS: TaylorMade RocketBallz (15°, 19°) with Fujikura Motore shafts
HYBRID: Adams Idea Pro a12 (20°) with a Fujikura Motore shaft
IRONS: Ping S56 (4-PW) with Dynamic Golf Lite X100 shafts
WEDGES: Cobra Trusty Rusty (55°); Titleist Vokey Design SM4 (60°) with Dynamic Golf Lite X100 shafts
PUTTER: YES! Sandy-12 White 
BALL: Titleist Pro V1

See-Try-Buy: Learn more about Adams, Ping, TaylorMade and Titleist gear and schedule your fitting with GolfTEC or Golfsmith.

Related: Follow David Dusek on Twitter | Facebook | Google+

(Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

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