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What it’s like to caddy for a player who wins a Web.com Tour event

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In case you missed it, a pair of incredible things happened on the Web.com Tour last week at the El Bosque Mexico Championship. Wesley Bryan, one-half of the Bryan Bros trick-shot duo, won his second event in six starts on the tour. And he did it not with his brother, George, on the bag, but with Callaway’s Social Media Manager, Chad Coleman, carrying his sticks.

Related: The clubs Bryan used to win in Mexico

Chad was kind enough to chat with us about his wild weekend cleaning clubs and calculating yardages, rather than creating content and calculating character counts. How did Coleman find himself in Mexico carrying a golf bag? Thanks to the power of social media, coincidentally enough. I asked him how he landed the gig.

How exactly did you ended up on Wesley’s bag at the El Bosque Mexico Championship for those who haven’t heard?

Yeah, it was pretty crazy how it happened. Wesley’s brother, George, couldn’t caddie for him that week, because he was Monday qualifying for the event the following week in Indiana. And so literally without even talking to me about it first, he sent out a tweet that said, “If this gets 100 retweets then Chad will caddie for me next week in Mexico,” or something like that.

Then he called Harry [Arnett, Callaway’s SVP of Marketing and Brand Management], got his approval, and made sure I could be out of the office. And THEN he texted me and said, “Pack your sunscreen. You’re coming to Mexico next week.” So at that point, I really didn’t have another choice.

Any previous experience looping, or competing in tournament golf?

I’ve definitely competed in a few tournaments before, but never have caddied on a professional level. So this was entirely new to me. Luckily, I got there in time to caddie for the Wednesday Pro-Am, so I could get the hang of it a bit before the competition started.

What was the toughest part of the gig? 

Well, the good thing is that Wesley is a very self-sufficient player. He likes to read most of his own putts (and rightfully so — he’s one of the best putters out there), so the main things I focused on were keeping his clubs and grips clean and getting the right yardages for his tee and approach shots. We were at 6,000-feet elevation so the ball was going forever, so I had to learn how to factor that in plus the wind, slope of the hole, where we wanted to land the ball on the green, etc.

Do you have a new respect for pro loopers, and beyond that, pro golfers?

One-hundred percent. It’s a very tough job and pro caddies (and players, for that matter) don’t get nearly enough credit. It’s a grind out there, and is both physically and mentally exhausting. On Monday morning, when I was sitting in the airport, I was SO glad to be coming back home to my own bed and my normal routine. I was wiped out.

And to think that Wesley was going straight to Indiana to do the same thing all over again was pretty eye-opening. Don’t get me wrong — it’s incredibly fun out there. But it’s not as easy as people may think.

Wesley is obviously a friend of yours. What was it like working with him on course?

I think that was one of the big advantages we had out there, the fact that we are good friends on a personal level. We had a blast both on and off the course all week, and the fact that we were so comfortable around each other helped keep both of us calm and focused on the golf course. Wes is a big fan of the Biebs, so on the rare occasion he missed a shot, I would liven the mood with some horrible singing. We had a great time.

What the heck was it like being in contention and eventually winning on Sunday? 

I was DEFINITELY more nervous than he was, both on the day he tied the course record with a 63 on Friday and when we had a three-shot lead standing on the 18th tee on Sunday. I was incredibly impressed with his demeanor the entire week.

And so yeah, on Sunday I really just tried to stay out of his way as much as I could. He was in the zone. The first time I really felt relief on Sunday was on the 18th green. He was reading his 6-foot birdie putt from the opposite side of the hole and I stepped in behind the ball just to confirm the line. I was looking down at the break for a few seconds — nervous as could be — then looked up at Wes, who was just staring at me with a huge grin on his face. It was at that point that it really sunk in that we were about to win this thing.

This has to be doubly surreal for you, since you’ve known the Bryan Bros since they were making trick-shot videos. Wesley comes out, qualifies for the Web.com Tour, wins two of his first six events, and is now heading to the PGA Tour. How crazy is that?

Yeah, it’s unreal. To think about how far he has come since we first signed him a year and a half ago is just ridiculous. I know how hard he works at his game, so to see him succeed like this is very gratifying for both me and everyone here at Callaway.

I’m not sure how many caddies have won in their professional debuts, but I assume you’re going to pull a Jim Brown and go out on top?

That’s right. I’m hanging up the bib.

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5 Comments

5 Comments

  1. Bill Mac

    May 9, 2016 at 6:34 pm

    Love it.

  2. Zachary Jurich

    Apr 29, 2016 at 8:48 pm

    It would be cool if more web.com guys did stuff like this. I would kill to loop for a golfer that can actually hit it where you tell them.

  3. Jonathan Daily

    Apr 29, 2016 at 11:00 am

    Some people say you should continue to post…but most of us know they are fools also.

  4. MRC

    Apr 28, 2016 at 4:56 pm

    Great read!
    You guys are money.

  5. Other Paul

    Apr 28, 2016 at 2:13 pm

    Great story!

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Equipment

Tiger Woods opts for lead tape on his Newport 2 rather than a heavier putter: Here’s why it makes sense

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After days of speculation about which putter Tiger Woods might end up with an attempt to tame the greens at Royal Portrush, we now officially know he settled on his old faithful GSS Scotty Cameron but with a twist—some added lead tape.

The whole reason the speculation was in high gear early in the week was because of Tiger was spotted with a new custom Scotty that had the Studio Select weights in the sole to increase head weight to help with slow greens, something Tiger has talked about in the past—especially when it comes to the greens at The Open Championship.

We can even look back a few years ago when Tiger finally put a Nike putter in play, the original Method (those were nice putters) and talked about both the increased head weight and the grooves on the face to help get the ball rolling on slower greens.

The decision to stick with the old faithful with added lead tape goes beyond just a comfort level, even if the two putters look the same at address, it’s about feel and MOI around the axis.

Let me explain. Sure the putter heads weight the same, but depending on where the mass is located it will change the MOI. The putter with the Select weights vs. lead tape in the middle will have a higher MOI because there is more weight on the perimeter of the head—it’s like a blade vs. cavity back iron. Sure, two 7-irons can weigh the same but the performance will vary significantly.

For a player with such deft feel like Tiger Woods, any change like that can could cause doubt. Tweaking an already great putting stroke and on the eve of the last major of the year is not really something you want to do, which is why it isn’t surprising he stuck with his legendary Newport 2.

Lead tape in the middle allows Tiger to increase the head weight with very little change to the natural rate of rotation for hit putter and hopefully manage the slower Portrush greens better.

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Equipment

Tour Van Intel @ The Open: P790 UDI seeding, possible new putter for Tiger, Bryson with PXG wedges, Spieth in T100 irons

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Whispers from the tour vans at The Open Championship, via our Johnny Wunder’s crack reporting. JW has his finger on the pulse of what’s going on in the world of reps, techs, new builds, and new product. Here are his notes on equipment switches of note from Royal Portrush.

1. Tony Finau had a Ping Blueprint 2-iron built up. The strategy here is self-explanatory: knee-high fastballs.

2. Tiger Woods was seen testing a heavier headed Scotty Cameron proto that is a replica of his famous wand that he’s used to win 14/15 majors. In addition, he also added lead tape to the back of his famous Scotty. The strategy here is to create a heavier head feel which is helpful on slower greens.

3. Do we see Bryson Dechambeau with PXG wedges in his bag?! The rumor is after messing around with a friend’s wedges during a practice round, he liked, he wanted, and he now has. Where this will go from here is anybody’s guess.

4. TaylorMade has distributed several Proto P790 UDI 2-irons this week. Tiger, Rory, Fleetwood, DJ, Rahm, all testing amongst others.

5. Jason Day is testing a new TaylorMade Spider X Chalk which would be the first switch he’s made from his Red Spider Tour in a long time. DJ is as per usual testing new putters he was seen with a Spider Copper Mini. What he will land on for the Open is anyone’s guess.

6. Jordan Spieth is now into a set of Titleist T100 irons: 5-9, Project X 6.5 shafts.

Per Titleist…

“While Spieth waited to put the T100’s in the bag until the season’s final major, he is not unfamiliar with the iron. In fact, according to lead Titleist Tour Representative, J.J. VanWezenbeeck, Jordan was clearly the most influential player in the development process.”

“It was over two years ago that Jordan and [Titleist Director of Iron Development] Marni Ines had already started discussing what Jordan was looking for in a next generation iron,” said VanWezenbeeck. “The keys for Jordan were sole, offset, and overall look. As we created early prototypes and discussed specifics with Jordan and other players, we found an opportunity to take everything we learned with the AP2 line and build an entirely new iron. There was an obvious challenge to surpass the most played tour iron in the world.”

“The final T100 prototype was revealed to Jordan and other select players during a Titleist photo shoot at Scioto CC during the week of the Memorial.”

“Jordan immediately commented that the offset and top line was everything he wanted,” said VanWezenbeeck. “As we moved to the tee, Jordan kept commenting to Marni about how the club set up and the look was just what he was looking for. Knowing we succeeded in those categories, now the question became, ‘are you getting the performance of the AP2 line and more, despite being in a sleeker chassis?’ His performance and responses at the hitting session confirmed we succeeded at what we set out to do.”

7. Webb Simpson is also into a set of Titleist 620 MB irons: 5-9, True Temper Dynamic Gold TI X100 shafts.

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Tour Photo Galleries

10 interesting photos from Tuesday & Wednesday at the U.S. Open

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GolfWRX is live this week from the 2019 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach Golf Links!

We have plenty of general galleries packed with a bundle of great photos in our forums, as well as specialized and WITB galleries for you to enjoy. Here are ten interesting photos from Tuesday and Wednesday to get you fired up ahead of today’s opening round!

Bernd Wiesberger testing the new Aldila Rip X proto shaft.

Checking out Paul Casey’s custom Mizuno irons.

New Mitsubishi iron shaft.

Tiger Woods’ famed and trusty Scotty.

Justin Rose rocking Nike’s Roshe G Tour shoes from their “No Denim Allowed” pack at Pebble this week.

Amateur Matt Parziale gaming the “old school” ProForce V2 shaft in his 3W.

Up-close and personal with Kodai Ichihara’s wedges.

Rickie Fowler showing off the Cobra x CRU’s Headcover from Puma’s U.S. Open Patriot Pack.

Brett Drewitt getting into the spirit of things this week with appropriate wedge stampings at Pebble Beach.

Austin Eckroat’s Ping Redwood flat-stick has been impressing our members in our forums.

Check out all of Tuesday’s photos in our forums.

Check out all of Wednesday’s photos in our forums.

 

 

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