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Golfers are going CRAZY over Costco’s new Kirkland Signature golf balls

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Costco, the home of wholesale, is a wonderful place where you can buy a 12-pack of steaks, a year’s supply of ketchup, two pounds of cheese balls, refurnish your house and re-up your wardrobe… all in one trip. Now, you can also pick up two dozen, four-piece urethane golf balls for $30 at certain local Costco warehouses, or online.

The golf balls are branded with the Kirkland Signature name, which is Costco’s in-house brand that makes all sorts of things: alcohol, food, house supplies and much more. Costco says the Kirkland brand must be equal to or better than the national brands, and must offer a savings to Costco members. The $15-per-dozen Kirkland Signature golf balls are USGA conforming, and are produced by Nassau Golf Co. Ltd of South Korea.

Sounds good, but what are real golfers saying about the Kirkland Signature golf balls?

GolfWRX members, who are some of the most knowledgable golfers in the world, have not hesitated to weigh in on the Kirkland-branded balls, filling up a 31-page forum thread (and counting).

Related: Join the discussion here.

“Same driving distance, and flight pattern (as the b330rx),” Forum member Two_Putt said about the Kirkland Signature Balls. “I can’t check the ball on the green but I did notice that it didn’t run out as far. Overall in my opinion a great value and my new ball of choice.”

As you may know, another popular manufacturer making four-piece urethane golf balls is Titleist with its Pro V1x, which sell for about $48 per dozen. A few forum members took it upon themselves to test the “KSigs” against the Pro V1(x)’s. Some of their reports below.

Coreyhr: “Here’s my hot take on the Kirkland. I normally game a Pro V1x and that’s what I was comparing against on my Skytrak. The feel off the driver in my opinion is better than the ProV, seriously the best feeling ball off the driver I’ve ever hit. The irons however left a lot to be desired for me. They felt clicky off of long and mid irons compared to the ProV. I don’t quite understand why one feels so good but the other not so much. I hit enough shots that strike shouldn’t be the culprit. The Kirkland was 2-3 yards longer for me during a 6 iron comparison due to lower spin than a ProV. Launch and peak height were virtually identical. Launch with a driver however was actually about 2 degrees lower with the Kirkland interestingly enough. I won’t be putting the Kirkland in the bag during tournament play, but absolutely will use it for those afternoon rounds after work. This thing is a serious threat to the big boys in the market.”

tomuch23:

GolfWRXCostcoBalls

“Lots of comparisons to the pro v1/v1x’s. There more similar to the project a’s in looks(almost identical), feel(tad firmer), and spin after playing them imo. When you put the $15 a dozen perspectives into consideration there isn’t any negatives that can really be justified I guess. Hopefully the price doesn’t jump $10 by spring but even then it would still be a great deal.”

tw_focus: “…Overall it’s a nice ball, BUT I think I will stick to ProV1s. I don’t spend a whole lot of money on golf balls (4x boxes of ProV1s during sale time have lasted me the season), the major cost / investment is my time. I don’t want to play with anything less than the best, and I think the Kirkland balls are slightly worse (though I admit a much better value).”

suprfli6: “Played 18 with one yesterday and it actually felt firmer off the driver than my usual Pro V1, but similar distances and spin with every type of shot I played. It was cooler than I’m used to so maybe that contributed to the feel difference. Too soon to tell for sure but personally it seemed to perform like a typical urethane tour ball so considering the price I’m optimistic.”

gripandrip: “Not like this will be a surprise, but I think I am a convert as well. Played two rounds this weekend, one on a links course in 25mph winds (on the shore of Lake Erie) and the other under normal conditions. No noticeable loss of distance, decent flight through the wind, acceptable spin on and around the greens. I am typically a Pro V1 player. Do these balls feel as good off my club as a Pro V in all instances? No. But close enough that I will probably change, for a while at least. However, I won’t be buying large quantities. If I bought 50 dozen balls, they would probably have to be cleaned out of my basement after I die. That’s a lot of balls.”

Kirkland_Signature_Box

MarkCPA: “…Overall, I’m very impressed given the price of the ball. I saw no material differences in the K-Sig performance-wise vs. any other premium ball I’ve got good experience with including the TM TPX and the ProV1X. It has very good greenside control and is plenty long. I already placed an order for four dozen. I don’t see how anyone who wants a tour caliber ball but hates dropping $45+ on a dozen balls wouldn’t give the K-Sig a try.”

RSinSG: “…As I wrote earlier, I play ProV1x that I get for $20/dz from Golfballsdirect.com and to be honest I like the KSig’s as much if not a little better. I’m not saying they are a better ball than the ProV1 – only that I like them. If you’re on the fence try them. $15 a dz is a crazy good deal. I just ordered 3 more boxes before the free shipping ends.”

And remember, as per Costco’s policy, if you don’t like the product, you can always take it back for a full refund.

“I saw a lady return a jar of peanuts to Costco minus the jar,” forum member FiveSixAce said. “A gallon zip lock bag full of peanuts. They took it back.”

Tough to tell if he’s joking or not.

Read more reviews and thoughts on the Kirkland Signature golf balls.

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He played on the Hawaii Pacific University Men's Golf team and earned a Masters degree in Communications. He also played college golf at Rutgers University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.

70 Comments

70 Comments

  1. Frank Cruz

    Jan 1, 2017 at 11:24 pm

    This ball will hit the industry between the eyes and really hurt most everyone in the ball business. Titleist balls like NXT, Velocity, DT could be dust now, PRO V will definitely suffer as only the few loyalists wanting the label on their ball will pay the price. All the balls from Bridgestone, Srixon and others will face serious trouble (many millions) if the ball were to comeback. I don’t expect to see that Kirkland ball ever again! The collective industry will stop it, they may buy the plant that makes these and close it down, they may call it a test pilot or Beta run that could not be sustained…. blah blah.

  2. Gary

    Nov 17, 2016 at 4:35 pm

    Bought Kirkland 4 piece about 3 weeks ago and have played 4 rounds. I am 65 yr young retiree with a 9 hdcp. Ball is great distance wise with fantastic spin on greens. I have have played Snell and Vice both great balls but higher price than Kirkland. They do scuff a little easier. On a fixed income I look for great buys for the $$ and this ball is. Another great ball if you can find them is a Wilson Staff Zip(24 for $20) this 2 piece spins better than than duos I had been using since they came out. Glen Kirk is a fantastic 8yr old single malt for $19.95, make it a habit to find great value

  3. Pingback: Anyone teed these up yet?

  4. Mad-Mex

    Nov 5, 2016 at 12:16 am

    I am willing to bet if you held a blind test here and told all the elitist who have posted here to try this ball, unbranded and were told it was the 2017 Pro-V1 platinum prototype, they would be acting like teen girls at a Justin Bieber concert, giggling and screaming about how wonderful it is.

  5. Kevin A

    Nov 4, 2016 at 4:52 pm

    Someone these posts remind me of why some of my friends won’t play golf. Because some golfers are elitist buttholes.

    Who cares what ball you play. Why rip another’s choice?

    These are the guys who buy escorts and end up in tax fraud cases.

  6. mitch

    Nov 2, 2016 at 9:05 am

    ughhhh! I get my Costco membership yesterday , and they are sold out online and in my Costco store!

  7. nick

    Nov 1, 2016 at 6:58 pm

    the reviews on the costco website are phenomenal. people dont blow smoke on reviews for the fun of it… these balls got nearly 5 star reviews by everyone. this isnt a gimmick or advertisement. not sure why people feel the need to trash this article. clearly it has people interested. im definitely gaming these this weekend. thanks Costco and GolfWRX for the heads up!

    all manufacturers make a legit 4/5 piece ball. just like all manufacturers make legit clubs. most pro’s play different setups from their clubs to their ball. most all golf equipment is created equal; different people winning every week on tour with different sponsors… Costco just changed the game here and these balls are only going to get better and evolve.

  8. WLBR

    Nov 1, 2016 at 12:00 am

    Americans, I urge you to buy American-made golf balls, certain models of Bridgestone, Titleist, Callaway, etc. Please buy American. Show these companies you value keeping their manufacturing jobs in the states.

    • Mat

      Nov 1, 2016 at 2:57 pm

      I’ll buy what fits me best. Manufacturing jobs aren’t some magical thing. They’re just jobs.

      “Made in the USA” failed in the Reagan era. No need to MAGA.

    • Dan

      Nov 12, 2016 at 2:38 pm

      Also Taylormade tour and Project A are American made…..

    • Uncle Sam

      Dec 26, 2016 at 9:51 am

      oh please…..a bit too late for that now….

  9. Trumpthekunt

    Oct 31, 2016 at 3:04 am

    Geez how much did golfwrx/ TMZ get paid to run this article….. Golfers going mad for Costco ball….. Sure they are….. Best run down and get yourself some….. This website has just gone straight down the pan…

    • Mad-Mex

      Oct 31, 2016 at 9:15 pm

      With a name like that and the way your write, your what?!?! 15/ 16? Grow up!!!

  10. Uncle Buck

    Oct 30, 2016 at 7:13 pm

    My apologies, I’m pretentious and concerned about how I’m perceived on the golf course. I wouldn’t be caught alive with any golf products from Costco, Gemco, Target, Thrifty, CVS, Sears, Penny’s, FedCo, YourCo, or my local grocery for that matter. Kirkland will remain on all of my finer camping needs and H2o bottles. I’d rather lose the extra $15 and roll out the ProV’s, thank you very much. Save your alleged dollars and tell me all about how much you’re saving on the other umpteen vices in your life.

    • Furious Styles

      Oct 30, 2016 at 11:21 pm

      9.5/10

    • Travis

      Oct 31, 2016 at 2:25 am

      Extra $15 for Pro Vs… Try more like $30 a dozen more for the Pro Vs. At $15 a dozen Id probably use them for most of my practice rounds and club events and save a few dozen Pro Vs for when it actually mattered.

    • PCR

      Nov 1, 2016 at 10:32 am

      Geez… When is it going to get into people’s skulls that the Kirkland balls at $15 per DOZEN. PER DOZEN, folks.

      That’s:

      $1.25 per ball or,

      $3.75 per sleeve or,

      $15.00 PER DOZEN or,

      $29.99 per TWO (2) DOZEN (24 balls).

  11. ultimate hacker

    Oct 29, 2016 at 1:55 pm

    these advertisements on this webpage are out of control extremely annoying.

  12. pepperwhiteknight

    Oct 29, 2016 at 1:35 pm

    Great article. I use recycled prov1x Academy sells $10-20 a dozen. Never heard of these balls but I am going to give them a try.

  13. Jurrrayyyyy

    Oct 29, 2016 at 1:14 pm

    So this isn’t the right place to post a review but I picked up 5-doz Vice drive balls last week for around $50 (or ~ $10/doz) and I really liked them. Tee to green they were about the same as my V1x, good feel, spin, and distance off the driver and irons.. They were a little bit of a let down on the putting green, (very hot off the putter face) but after a few holes I got used to them. They aren’t a urethane ball, I think they are 2-piece Surlyn, but definitely worth considering if you want a budget ball. Much softer feel than the other Surlyn balls I’ve played like the e6. And like all Suryln balls they seem pretty indestructible – I’ve played 2 rounds now with the same ball and it doesn’t have a scuff.

    • Mat

      Nov 1, 2016 at 2:59 pm

      Vice quality leaves a lot to be desired. My shipment contained patterns that weren’t symmetric.

  14. Freddie 4x4

    Oct 29, 2016 at 9:56 am

    I was planning to load up a pallet of these today. Am I supposed to feel self-conscious about that?

  15. Pingback: You can now buy Costco-made golf balls, because of course you can - GolfDigest.com - Sportal.co.in

  16. Guia

    Oct 28, 2016 at 6:21 pm

    There are any number of very good golf balls that are around $30 a dozen, which I think is reasonable. Price is not really a major concern to me I can easily afford the $50 a dozen for Titleist but have found that they really don’t perform (for me) any better than the balls that are $30 a doz.

    I have gone to the less expensive Taylor Made, Wilson, Bridgestone, or the colored Korean Balls (the name escapes me now).

    More to the point, I have no interest in the Kirkland. The result of diminishing return applies at both ends of the spectrum.

    • Trackcoach13

      Oct 29, 2016 at 11:54 am

      Except these 4-piece urethane balls are $15 a dozen. Pretty scary that so many folks cannot comprehend something so simple.

      • Tom

        Oct 29, 2016 at 12:31 pm

        BAZINGA!

      • Guia

        Oct 29, 2016 at 3:13 pm

        So, they are a 4 piece ball. What is your point?

        • Trackcoach13

          Oct 29, 2016 at 6:05 pm

          It is $15 per dozen and not $30 as you mentioned. There is a huge difference between $15 and $47 per dozen for similar construction and performance. A number of folks here have made comments that at $30 it is not worth the savings. However, it is $30 for two dozen.

          • Guia

            Oct 29, 2016 at 7:01 pm

            That is sound reasoning.

            • GuiaRETARDALERT

              Oct 30, 2016 at 8:59 am

              “That is sound reasoning.” – Looks like somone actually has to spell it out for you eh?

  17. Jamie

    Oct 28, 2016 at 4:37 pm

    I would love to step up to the tee and have the guy with the ProV1’s and PXG irons ask what ball i’m playing and say “Costco Black Dot” and then proceed to take his money.

  18. Dylan

    Oct 28, 2016 at 4:11 pm

    37 people don’t mind paying $50 for 12 golf balls that perform about the same as a Pro V1, unless you’re a tour pro…doubt you guys could tell the difference if you played both balls without brands on them.

    • Justin

      Oct 29, 2016 at 10:08 am

      I’d be curious, as well. We can say that for almost any product made, though. The looks are different, to avoid infringement, but when it comes to performance, who can tell a difference?

      Blind tests would be best. It’s incredibly hard to do, especially with club heads, and people will always find flaws in the methodology (shaft wraps altering performance, for example).

      At the end of the day, though, Brand Loyalty is a thing, and it always will be. We gotta make ourselves happy, and if it takes a $50/doz ball or a $30/2 doz ball to do that, it is what it is.

  19. Ronald Montesano

    Oct 28, 2016 at 3:15 pm

    I want to know what links course exists on the shores of Lake Erie!?!?

    • Greg Gaynor

      Oct 28, 2016 at 10:31 pm

      Probably Maumee Bay State Park on Ohio Rt.2 between Toledo and Port Clinton. It’s an Arthur Hills layout that’s about 25 years old.

  20. Greg chambers

    Oct 28, 2016 at 2:24 pm

    I will wait for the site that does real testing to publish their results.

  21. Deadeye

    Oct 28, 2016 at 2:10 pm

    I will buy some soon!

  22. alfriday

    Oct 28, 2016 at 1:12 pm

    I give this “article” a shank.

    The writer does nothing to advance the discussion on the ball. The article is nothing but two paragraphs of introduction, two paragraphs of transition and a number of quotes from a long forum thread on the ball.

    This reads like an essay a high school student would put together an hour before class when the student forgot to do the assignment the night before. Write a couple of paragraphs, copy and paste liberally from Wikipedia and hope for a passing grade.

    • Mat

      Nov 1, 2016 at 3:02 pm

      That’s because either this article is an ad placement, or it’s an “article” with no research and a very lazy writer. It would be awfully nice if the article had anything on it more than “it’s a 4-piece”. It sounds as if it plays like a rock, but there’s no comparison with any other ball made by the SK firm…

  23. B. Parsons

    Oct 28, 2016 at 11:43 am

    How can people not read? $30 for TWO dozen is a steal even if they perform half as good as everyone is saying! And there are way too many people speaking highly of this ball to doubt it is a very playable ball.

    • Tom

      Oct 29, 2016 at 12:37 pm

      for various reasons, some players/commenters are harder to convince than others.

  24. Ron

    Oct 28, 2016 at 11:37 am

    $15 a dozen, and you know there is a small profit margin in that…so have you figured out why ProV1’s are $48 a dozen..besides every time you buy a dozen you are paying for at least one more dozen for the the pros on the driving range….this Kirkland will not be on any pro driving range, note it is made in Korea (a Korean company owns Titlist golf balls if you did not already know) This is not the first good Urethane ball at a good price point MG golf has had a good one (C-4) for years.

    • Jonny B

      Oct 28, 2016 at 12:46 pm

      Love the Tour C4’s from MG Golf. Been playing this season and just as good as other tour urethane balls.

  25. moneypowerrespect

    Oct 28, 2016 at 11:21 am

    good deal for the hacker – I have the opposite problem, I try to find excuses to get rid of balls. A single ball could last many rounds. If it scuffs up I toss them to my friends. Don’t need to save money when you only use a box or 2 a year.

    • LookAtTheHeroAbove

      Oct 28, 2016 at 1:10 pm

      Congrats you’re a real hero. A little bit insecure are we? Jacked up truck? Mustang/Camaro/Challenger in a bright obnoxious color? European luxury vehicle that post all over social media? Cheesy high-priced designer clothes with logos all over so everyone know what you’re wearing? Will tell everyone that you make a ton of money without them even asking? McMansion that is decorated completely awful? I would guess at least one of these applies to you.

      • Jamie

        Oct 28, 2016 at 4:35 pm

        Hilarious! i was thinking the same thing.

      • moneypowerrespect

        Oct 28, 2016 at 5:05 pm

        hahaha, that was good, you are correct sir, my psychiatrist has mentioned that I’m insecure, but that’s ok, the people who leach off of me give me all the affirmation I need.

      • PCR

        Oct 29, 2016 at 9:38 am

        “Yeti” sticker on the rear window of the SUV?

      • Leave A Comment

        Oct 29, 2016 at 9:45 am

        Threads like this one is what makes the United States of America such a great country. Thanks to each and every one of you.

  26. D.J.T.

    Oct 28, 2016 at 10:36 am

    Dimples look like they have a “hint” hexagonal shape to them. Callaway much? Anybody agree?

  27. PCR

    Oct 28, 2016 at 10:21 am

    SHANK. LOL!!!

  28. Cornholio Golf

    Oct 28, 2016 at 10:20 am

    On the site they are listed for $30.00. No thanks. I’LL rather spend a bit more for a better ball.

    At $15.00, sure, $30.00? A shank all the way.

  29. G P

    Oct 28, 2016 at 9:53 am

    No kidding about the “shanks”! $30 for 24 four-piece urethane balls, and 9 CLOWNS are giving it a “shank”? I guess some folks have money to burn!

  30. Sloop

    Oct 28, 2016 at 9:33 am

    I bet you get a free can of soup when you buy these.

  31. Golfbuddy

    Oct 28, 2016 at 9:28 am

    I need to pick up double dozen or two next time I’m in the States. Not yet available in Canada, unfortunately.

  32. Trackcoach13

    Oct 28, 2016 at 9:17 am

    Why did some people vote this article as a shank? A shank? Really?

    • erlybrd

      Oct 28, 2016 at 11:45 am

      Because for lots of folks here, brands they so admire and donate their money to are the only things that hold them together; so that they can escape the reality of their level of play.
      Bushes are full of ProVs and other top level performance balls.

      • Mad-Mex

        Oct 29, 2016 at 3:33 am

        WOW!! You came off the top rope and the ones you aimed it at are to ignorant to reply!! Great post!!

        Standing ovation with “golf clap”!!!

    • Tom

      Oct 29, 2016 at 1:01 pm

      It’s mind boggling! Virtually MIND boggling. $1.25 for a 4 /pc. ball or $4.00 for a 4/pc. ball. This information is scaring some posters back into a relapse event. The mere fact that something of same quality as a higher priced product can be produced and sold for less than what is currently being offered is MIND BOGGLING!

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What GolfWRXers are saying about Cleveland’s CBX2 wedges

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@clevelandgolfeu

In our forums, our members have been discussing Cleveland’s CBX2 wedges. WRXer ‘hammergolf’ wants to hear from single-digit players who are currently playing the wedges, and our members have been sharing their thoughts on the clubs with plenty of praise for the wedges in our forums.

Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.

  • cfmgolf: “I am definitely a believer. Tried it on a whim at a PGA SuperStore in FL last fall and was stunned by the consistency of it. Changed from a RTX3 to the CBX2 in my 52* gap within a couple of weeks. Now that we are back in OH for the summer, I changed out 3 wedges (Ping Glide 3.0, and 2 of the RTX 4’s) for an entire bag of the CBX2’s. I am trying the full face in my 56* and found it to be very good also. Biggest benefit for me has been the consistency of the CBX line. Shots out of the rough that can be high on the club don’t really lose much – i.e. more forgiving. I go between a 6-8HCP, and short game is my strong point. Very happy with them so far.”
  • JCRay33: “6 handicap here and bought a couple CBX’s (54 and 58) from 2nd swing a couple months ago and absolutely love them! Way more forgiving than typical blade wedges (had vokeys before) and great feel as well. It’s easy for ego to get in the way and not want to get these, but once you realize, all that matters is performance the choice is a no-brainer and results speak for themselves really.”
  • mortimer: “CBX2 50. Excellent gap wedge for full, 3/4 shots and chipping. Forgiving, consistent and more than acceptable spin numbers. Also offset is fine to my eye. Having said all that I would not game a 58/60 degrees one if you like to manipulate the face for different shots around the green as I do. Intrigued though with the new full-face but have not seen one in person yet.”
  • Simp: “I have a set of 58, 54 & 50 raw CBX2’s allegedly tour issue, and I love them. The 58 has a grind that is lovely. I’m a 0 FYI.”
  • nicelife: “I have Srixon irons and Mizuno T20 wedges. I found the CBX2 50 was the perfect transition club between sets. LOVE the Srixon/Cleveland V-Sole. Visually the face has more grooves than I would normally like to look at, but its performance more than makes up for it. I really like the satin finish. So much so I’m thinking about refinishing my irons. Go for it you won’t be sorry.”

Entire Thread: “Cleveland’s CBX2 wedges”

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What GolfWRXers are saying about the best non-mainstream brands for golf apparel and accessories

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@linksstrathaven

In our forums, our members have been discussing non-mainstream brands offering the best apparel and accessories. WRXer ‘CousinDonuts’ kicked off the thread with a great selection, and our members have been mentioning their favorites in our forums – with a wide variety of different brand’s receiving a mention.

Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.

  • Mike T: “Apparel: J Lindeberg – Euro Style cut and fit. Shoes: Lamda – Handmade in Portugal.”
  • aem604: “Reigning Champ-Good active but also golf ready.”
  • Righty to Lefty: “Fenix Xcell based out of Thailand and have great gear with an Asian twist. I absolutely love all the vivid colors and options, especially from their previous collections. They also have a U.S. based collection that may suit others. Cross Sportswear based out of Sweden and have so really nice gear and a rarity which is waterproof trousers that look exactly like slacks. Antigua polos are nice quality and have some good designs. Druh has really good gear…pricey but still nice stuff. Retailer: Function 18 has quite a bit of your higher-end apparel all in one place. I start there and then go to each website individually to see what else they have available.”
  • kmay_: “Check out Pioneer Golf Co, Canadian headcover brand. Make some awesome covers and valuables pouches, starting to release some branded apparel. Prices are super fair, and if you’re in the US, they’ll be a steal.”
  • ScottWS33: “Bluegrass Fairway for headcovers, valuables pouches and scorecard holders.”
  • BobsBugsBeGone: “Best Exotic Belts: Jacob Hill Leather by Piedmont.”

Entire Thread: “Best non-mainstream brands”

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Coming out of the haze: What to expect from the OEMs in the second half of 2020

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As we slowly come out of the lockdown haze, it’s going to be interesting to see which OEMs are primed to come out swinging. From where I sit, there are a few companies that either kept the foot on the pedal or found new ways to interact with the masses. I have been tracking the major companies for different reasons, and I am optimistic on most fronts. Now, it needs to be said that everyone has been keeping the respective momentum going in their own ways—this has been a challenge for everyone, so this analysis is simply a commentary on what may come in the second half of the year.

Many good folks were either furloughed or laid off during this lockdown—that’s where we all lost. It needs to be acknowledged that we are talking about golf here, but the underlying reality of this is still devastating. I so look forward to getting into the trenches with these folks again either back where they were or at new companies.

TaylorMade became educators…and kicked off live golf again

Big giant club company or big giant marketing machine…it doesn’t matter what you label them as. TaylorMade Golf, in my opinion, turned the heartbreak of stalling one of the biggest first quarters in company history into an opportunity to start talking…and teaching. With the help of the tour team and TM athletes, TaylorMade focused hard on talking to us all during the lockdown. With multiple initiatives through social media, the Driving Relief event, and the tour staff engaging way more than usual. I believe TM created a runway to start moving quickly once stores and pro shops open up again.

Let’s face it, with the social media presence, the most robust tour staff maybe ever, and the driver everyone seems to have reserved for the top big stick of 2020, what’s not to be confident about? On the flip side, a company that big could have really taken it on the chin hard, but how they handled the lockdown—from my chair—was fun to watch and will ultimately ensure a quick restart. There is something to be said about having guys like Trottie, Adrian, and Hause in the fold informing and keeping things fun.

Rumor has it new irons are dropping in the fall/winter, which could spell two awesome bookends to a bittersweet 2020.

PXG leaned in

Why online sales for all OEMs spiked is no mystery. Boredom, desire, and a credit card are keys to any great online buying experience, but PXG made certain that if you were not a buyer previously, you may be now.

The price tag has always been a key topic with Bob Parsons’ Scottsdale-based company. It’s no secret that the clubs aren’t cheap, but during this lockdown, they did multiple strategic initiatives to not only crank up direct-to-consumer buying but also expand the PXG conversation into different areas, namely fashion.

Price cuts across the board started early and, rumor has it, enabled PXG to achieve sales numbers unlike any other period in the company’s short history. Yes, cutting prices helps unit sales, but in the case of PXG, it brought in the club customer that ordinarily shied away from PXG for financial reasons and ultimately made them buyers. That’s where PXG seems to shine, once they finally get you in, they are very effective at keeping you in the family. Mercedes-Benz AMG is like that: once you have had a taste of the Kool-Aid, it’s hard to go back to Hawaiian Punch.

In addition to the aggressive price-cutting, PXG fashion, spearheaded by President Renee Parsons, launched a new collection that is designed and manufactured by PXG. Fashion in times like these is always a risk from a financial standpoint, but this launch has been on the calendar since the BOY and the current lockdown did not disrupt that. It speaks to the confidence that Bob and Renee have in what they are doing. Now, is it a guarantee that PXG garments will fly off the shelves? No. but that’s not the point, it’s the fact that this current climate didn’t scare them into pivoting or holding off.

Point to this pick is PXG looks healthy coming out of this and it was possible to believe that perhaps this would have taken a toll on the custom fit brand. There is even a commercial produced during lockdown to attract even more club builders to the fold. Not normal behavior in times like these, but is anything that PXG does normal? No, and that’s what makes them fun to talk about.

The company also released its Essential Facemask with 50 percent of proceeds going to Team Rubicon.

Ping was quiet…but don’t be fooled

Yes, they did some rare social media engagements with Kenton Oates and the tour staff, which were fantastic. But the real magic here was the quiet way in which Ping slipped into 2020 and the mystery they have in hand and what’s to come next.

There hasn’t been really any new Ping product in a good while, and I anticipate a big winter for the Solheim crew. Sometimes, silence is golden and from what I can gather, what Ping has coming in irons and woods will be yet again a launch that gets people talking.

Ping from a business standpoint is a company that gets one percent better every year. Never any dramatic shifts in strategy or product. It’s always good, it’s always high-performance, and it’s always in the “best of” category across the board.

Watch out for them over the next six to nine months…a storm is brewing. A good one.

Cobra introduced the “Rickie iron”

Cobra Rev 33 Irons

Compared to 2019 and the runaway success that was the F9 driver, Cobra Golf seemed to cruise along in the first quarter of 2020. The SpeedZone metal wood line was an improvement tech-wise from the F9 but seemed to get lost in the driver launch shuffle with an earlier release—and frankly everyone in the industry took a back seat to TaylorMade’s SIM.

It’s not placing one stick over the other actually, I have been very vocal about my affections for both, it’s just some years, the story around a club can generate excitement, and if the club is exceptional, boom. Cobra was that cool kid in 2019.

What Cobra decided to do in the downtime is slowly tease and taunt with a “Rickie Fowler” iron. Players blades aren’t typically the driving element of any business model, but what Cobra did was introduce to a beautiful yet completely authentic forging that will not only get the gear heads going nuts but also entice the better players to start looking at Cobra as a serious better players iron company. No small feat.

Point is, Cobra has generated buzz. It helped that Rickie’s performance at Seminole was just short of a precision clinic. Beyond the Rev 33, its rumored Cobra has a new players CB coming and some MIM wedges.

It should be an exciting last half for the Cobra crew.

The Titleist train chugged on

I mean, what else is there to say about Titleist? They are as American as apple pie, have a stranglehold on multiple tour and retail categories, and one of the best front offices in golf. The company is a well-oiled machine.

So what do I expect from them in the last half? Well pretty much what I would expect on any other year, solid player-driven equipment. A metal wood launch is coming, the SM8 was a huge hit in stores and on tour, and the ball portion is the biggest 800-pound gorilla in golf.

It was also nice to see a little more social media interaction beyond the traditional. Aaron Dill has been very active on the social media front and a good portion of the tour staff, namely Poulter, JT, and Homa were proactive in engagement. Might seem trivial to some, but specifically, Titleist and Ping are not super active in the organic interaction game, so it was nice to see both companies dive into the fold.

Cleveland/Srixon should have a lot to look forward to

Let’s be honest here, 2019 was a quiet year overall for Srixon. Shane Lowry won The Open, but in the golf mainstream it was a leap year for them in regards to any launches. The anticipation from me personally of what is to come is quite strong. I adore the irons. I have yet to meet one I didn’t love, and fitters across the country will speak to that in sales. The Srixon iron line has become a popular yet-sort-of-cult-classic among fitters and gearheads and rightly so. They are phenomenal.

The recently teased picture of the new driver on the USGA site more or less teased us of what is to come for the overall line. New Cleveland wedges are coming shortly and the golf ball has always been a solid component to the Huntington Beach company.

As much as anyone in the market, I believe Srixon could finish the year with some serious momentum going into 2021. The irons and ball have always been firestarters. My only wish for them, selfishly, is a more aggressive tour strategy in regards to landing one of the perennial top 10. It seems like a dumb thought, but I have always felt Cleveland/Srixon was always a serious hitter that at times seems to get lost in the conversation. Having a big gun on staff or a couple of them will remedy that quickly.

Callaway has an eye on big things for the golf ball

Callaway, a company that seems to do it all well, was actually a bit quiet since the lockdown started. After a solid release of the Mavrik line and some momentum in the golf ball area, I’m sure this lockdown probably felt like a kick to the shin.

However, this company is shifting in a good way. The idea that they were a golf club company that happened to make golf balls is slowly turning into a company with multiple major components that stand alone. TaylorMade is on a similar shift, and honestly it’s very interesting to watch. Do I think that anyone will ever catch Titleist in the ball category? No, I don’t. All of these mentioned golf balls are ridiculously good, but 75 years of trust and loyalty are hard to compete with. But that’s not the point, Callaway is a monster company that takes the golf ball conversation very seriously, and I believe this will serve them very well coming out of this craziness and help the momentum going into 2021.

 

 

 

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