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John Daly to use Vertical Groove Golf driver



We filed a report November 17 that Vertical Groove Golf was bringing a driver with, not surprisingly, vertical grooves to market. They’ll also be bringing the driver to the PGA Tour and Champions Tour: John Daly is set to put the Vertical Groove Driver in his bag immediately and has signed a multi-year deal with the Boston-based company.

According to a press release, Daly will serve as global ambassador for the company and will wear the VGG logo on his shirt collar and it will feature prominently on his golf bag.

“I’ve been hitting the ball further and straighter off the tee since putting the Vertical Groove Driver in my bag,” said Daly. “I’m hitting more fairways since switching to this driver and the sound of the club at impact is terrific. I’m looking forward to strong success in 2017 utilizing Vertical Groove technology on tour.”

“Having John Daly, a major champion and an acclaimed long driver, put our Vertical Groove Driver into play on the PGA Tour and PGA Tour Champions, is strong validation that this club performs at the highest level,” said Jeff Barry, Chief Executive Officer, Vertical Groove Golf, LLC.

Barry adds, “This is an exciting time for Vertical Groove Golf, and it’s only fitting that John Daly leads our stable of endorsees. Thanks to our leadership team of Rubin Hanan and Josh Miller, who were instrumental in this signing, I anticipate more exciting news from Vertical Groove Golf in the coming weeks.”


The USGA-conforming driver promises a 40 percent straighter ball flight on average, as well as more forward roll, and thus more distance.

The 450cc Vertical Groove Drive is available in both right and left-handed models. It is offered in 9.5, 10.5 and 12 degree lofts, and features a full range of Aldila NV2K series shafts as standard. The available flexes include: 45 gram L (Ladies), 50 gram A (Senior), 55 gram R (Regular), 65 gram S (Stiff) and 65 gram X (Extra-stiff). Suggested retail price of the Vertical Groove Driver is $399.99.

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  1. Rich Douglas

    Jan 11, 2017 at 10:34 pm

    Grooves don’t affect ball flight with the driver. If they did…

    … spin rates could be affected by different groove patterns, but you don’t see differences in grooves touted by ANY other manufacturer, until now.

    … the square groove controversy would have included examples from woods made non-conforming, but all anyone every looked at and talk about were irons.

    … you don’t want more backspin from grooves–you get plenty from the ball as it is.

    … if grooves affect spin, then sideways grooves would add…wait for it…more sidespin! And who doesn’t want that? (It would be the antithesis to their whole argument for this club.)

    I’m pretty open-minded to new technologies. In irons, for example, TM brought about the first real advancement in them with their slotted heads since Ping brought us perimeter weighting. But this looks like a cosmetic hype job. Besides, no one could pry loose from my hands my Burner Bubble woods! 🙂

    • Uhit

      Jan 12, 2017 at 8:11 am

      Some Bridgestone driver have special grooves:

      Now, a driver face is curved in several axis and not flat, like a iron head…

      …thus, depending on the impact position on the clubhead,
      you have a different loft and a different face angle, than within the middle…
      …this is causing deviations of the flight path of the ball – additional to the spin.

      If you are clever, you combine those effects, to get the desired ball flight…
      …this includes the possibility to use the effect of grooves in Addition to the geometrical aspect of the face curvature and the face deflection, which changes the curvature and angles during Impact.

      If all is said and done,
      I would not dismiss the posibility, that this head design, with its vertical grooves works…
      …whether it works as advertised is something we can find out during a test.

    • Mad-Mex

      Jan 15, 2017 at 5:39 pm

      Actually, Wilson reflex irons had the “slotted” heads in their irons back around 1978, TM first club was a driver in 1979-80 time frame. I do think their “bubble” shaft was greatly under rated.

  2. Deadeye

    Jan 11, 2017 at 8:26 pm

    Well, nothing against John. Just have to keep an eye on his driving stats this year. Looks like hype. Can’t believe the big manufacturers missed this one. A couple of years ago John was playing a bag full of Nike clubs at the Texas open. I was ten feet from him and his caddie. He was not wearing their clothes. Maybe they would not fit. Or maybe Nike only wants slim fit looking pros getting paid to wear their stuff. Ever notice that?

  3. Dave R

    Jan 11, 2017 at 6:02 pm

    Go get em John I wish you all the best on the greying tour.

  4. Steve S

    Jan 11, 2017 at 4:05 pm

    An old idea that’s been around at least 10 years. The patent is D515,642, a design patent that is form “form” not function. The only claim is “The ornamental design for a metalwood type golf club head, as shown and described.” If this were actually a “technology” based claim, a regular patent would have been filed to defend the improved technology or vertical grooves.

    This is marketing hype. If you hit this driver straighter it may be due to the shaft, better weighting or an expanded “sweet spot”. All of which would cause better strikes. But everyone else is doing those things so VGG wouldn’t “stick out”. Indeed, the Killer Bee driver had the same grooves, also licensed from the inventor.

    PT Barnum said or supposedly said, There’s a sucker born every minute”. I think most of them are golfers.

    • Thomas Hertwig

      Jan 11, 2017 at 6:48 pm

      you are so right……answering machine at their home office……said manufactured in Florida……maybe assembled but no way manufactured……whole operation is a scam……….can’t believe the press, what a bunch of idiots.

    • Jeff

      Jan 11, 2017 at 10:43 pm

      That’s borderline scandelous. I mean if it were in a different industry. And they wonder why sales are down, when the golfer demographic has been fleeced and re-fleeced for 50 years.

  5. Mike Honcho

    Jan 11, 2017 at 12:44 pm

    I stumbled across a copy of JD’s endorsement deal with Vertical Groove. They aren’t paying him in money. Instead its smokes, Diet Coke and 5gal buckets of gravy.

  6. Scooter McGavin

    Jan 11, 2017 at 10:47 am

    I’m surprised there are still people that actually care what John Daly does anymore…

  7. Ron

    Jan 11, 2017 at 9:58 am

    If I design a new club, can I get John Daly to play it? How much you think? A sleeve of ProV1 x-outs do it?

  8. Ryan

    Jan 11, 2017 at 1:39 am

    Aahh.. Let me feed oofa too. Open up ! Blast !

  9. Killer-B

    Jan 10, 2017 at 8:26 pm

    Just go pick up a Killer Bee B-Sting Driver from the used driver bin at your local golf shop. They are pretty much the exact same club.

    • Otho DuBoise

      Jan 11, 2017 at 3:08 pm

      Not exactly, they’ve used a few other things to help keep it straight. The head shape is supposed to do something, not sure what. They also said that theyve moved back the center of gravity and created some sort of curviture to the face. As a whole, not the same driver. If you want to use it, have a couple of guys request to have a demo in your area. But from the videos (non sponsored) i’ve seen- it looks pretty legit.

  10. Guia

    Jan 10, 2017 at 7:22 pm

    I read an article several years ago that claimed lines on a driver were decorative only and had no effect on the ball.

    I would like to see test done on drivers with lines and those without. Seems like another gimmick to me, until proven otherwise.

    • Otho DuBoise

      Jan 11, 2017 at 3:10 pm

      Thats definitely not true. The lines help “grip and push” the ball in a certain direction, thats why you have drivers the have different groove designs and microgroove technology (Bridgestone) to benefit certain levels of players.

  11. jc

    Jan 10, 2017 at 7:02 pm

    Have you heard about the new driver with grooves that point to the North East and South west..It makes your ball gade. And there is another model where you can rotate the face to change the direction. Coming soon.

  12. jc

    Jan 10, 2017 at 7:00 pm

    what happened to warrior golf which was on his bag last year?
    they were almost free, just ask for one.
    John would wear a watermelon on his head for money.

  13. MT

    Jan 10, 2017 at 5:39 pm

    Ok John, we look forward to having you playing great again with that driver. And we will be watching stats and keeping fingers crossed that you really hit it longer. Good luck and hit it hard man:-)!!

  14. John

    Jan 10, 2017 at 3:51 pm

    I bought one for myself as a Christmas present. After hitting it on a simulator I can honestly say for me that it’s every bit as long as other drivers I’ve hit (Ping G that day) with the benefit of being straighter. I struggle with driver with half of my drives finding trouble & second shot being a punch out of trouble etc. With this driver I hope to limit the damage off the tee. I look forward to beginning 2017 with this driver in my bag. And no I do not work for VGG.

  15. S Hitty

    Jan 10, 2017 at 2:43 pm

    Good price, too

  16. Mason

    Jan 10, 2017 at 2:19 pm

    If vertical grooves are so revolutionary why haven’t any of the big companies with their expert engineers done it? Doesn’t make sense to me how something so simple like that could yield such straighter and longer shots.. Would love to try the club out myself and see if its true or not

  17. Ryan

    Jan 10, 2017 at 1:57 pm

    Lol m’mizzle ! I’m honored to feed the troll ! Open up ! Blast !

  18. Ryan

    Jan 10, 2017 at 11:40 am

    Solid golf club. I got to hit one about a month ago, flat trajectory and straight. Loved it. Trying to get my hands on one as soon as possible.

    • Joe

      Jan 10, 2017 at 2:03 pm

      I always get a kick out of guys trying to call others out for working at a place when they can’t even use their real name on a site.

      • LD

        Jan 10, 2017 at 3:51 pm


      • ooffa

        Jan 10, 2017 at 5:58 pm

        My real name is Mr. Vertical. Ryan you left your office door here at Vertical golf open. Did you forget your keys again? PS your bonus check for commenting on our company has been direct deposited.

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Tour News

Tour Rundown: Rahm gets win No. 2 and goes to world No. 2



Week two of the 2018 calendar season added events on the PGA Champions and European tours. The PGA caravan left Hawaii for California and found its first playoff of 2018, just as the Champions Tour reached the islands. The Euros teed it up in Dubai, and the Web.Com Tour stayed in the Bahamas for a second week. With an Asian Tour event in Singapore, the globe’s eyes were once again on professional golf. Time for Tour Rundown at warp speed!

Rahm continues to build career with win at CareerBuilder Challenge

For all of the final round, it looked like Jon Rahm would pull away for a 4-stroke victory. His driving was impeccable and his irons were dialed in. His putting stroke looked sound, but some of the birdies simply did not nest. Throughout the four-hole playoff with Andrew Landry, it seemed as if Rahm was destined to lose. Somehow, he persevered and won.

Rahm’s patience pays off with second PGA Tour win 

How many edges of holes were singed with putts and chips by Jon Rahm down the stretch? At least four, not counting the playoff. Fortunately for the Basque, only Andrew Landry made enough of a move to track him down temporarily. Rahm played like the 3rd-ranked player should, and now he’s the world No. 2 player. Perhaps the fact that he couldn’t or didn’t separate himself from his pursuers, yet had enough weaponry to pull out a victory, mattered more than a runaway triumph. Yet golf is a funny game. The only fairway Rahm missed in extra time came on the 4th hole. Despite that errant tee ball and his misses on the first three playoff holes, Rahm was able to drain the only birdie of the playoff and walk away a champion.

See the clubs Jon Rahm used to win

Landry and others made the most of their opportunities

Andrew Landry showed more gumption than anyone anticipated. The 2016 first-round leader of the U.S. Open stayed around even longer this week. A 72nd-hole birdie brought him to 22-under par and a tie with Rahm. The Arkansas alumnus drove the ball straight and far on each of the playoff holes, and never once sniffed a bogey. His irons brought him within birdie range but, like Rahm, he could not find the proper combination of line and speed. In the end, Landry missed last and settled (if such a term might be used) for a runner-up finish.

Fleetwood greets 2018 with title defense at Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship

Tommy Fleetwood looks for all the world to be a millenial hipster with his free-flowing hair and his strands of beard. In absolute contrast, he is equal parts passion and cold blood. When opportunity beckons, he doesn’t look away. Given the slightest opportunity to defend his 2017 Abu Dhabi title, Fleetwood assented and took charge.

How Fleetwood dispatched Fisher and the rest

Through 9 holes of Sunday’s final round, the tag for Tommy Fleetwood’s title defense percolated as He gave an admirable effort. Nine holes and six birdies later, that tag line had changed to How in the name of all that is known did he defend his title? And yet, there was Fleetwood with the fourth European Tour title of his career and third in the past dozen months. When Fleetwood needed a great drive, he got it. When he didn’t hit a great drive, he came through with a stellar approach. When his approach was off, he drained a long putt. And for good measure, he hit a wonderful pitch at the 18th, nestling the ball 5 feet for birdie, and made that. The end result was a 2-stroke margin of victory over the runner-up, Ross Fisher.

What is it about Ross Fisher?

Ross Fisher is eternally composed. Not like his countryman Colin Montgomerie (more on him later), who wore every disappointment like a Halloween mask. Yet, the two share a certain sad penchant for missing opportunities. Last October, Fisher wasn’t going to catch Tyrell Hatton in St. Andrews, but he was chasing immortality. He had a 25-foot putt for the first 59 at The Old Course…and missed. He had a 4-foot putt for the first 60 at the Old Course…and missed. He broke the course record with his 61, but, you know. Fisher has an 0-5 record in European Tour playoffs. On Sunday, he was victimized by Fleetwood’s marvelous back 9 of 30 strokes, but by his own inability to gather the fruits of opportunity. Case in point: Fisher made a long and testy putt for bogey on the par-5 10th, a hole that many birdied. Rather than use it as a springboard to return to his coach on the birdie train, he floundered with four pars and one bogey over his next five holes.

Kelly wins at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship

Jerry Kelly earned the 2017 PGA Tour Champions rookie of the year award, on the strength of consistent play and his first two tour titles. On Day 3 of the 2018 season, he added to his victory total with a 1-stroke win over Colin Montgomerie. A 2-stroke swing on 18 decided the fate of both…here’s how!

How Kelly klaimed the championship

For fans of Hideki Matsuyama and his deceptive reaction to fantastic shots, Mr. Kelly is guilty of the same on well-struck putts. He drops his putter from one hand and slumps his shoulders after mid-range putts. All the while, the ball is tracking toward the hole, and usually drops. Kelly played a fine round on Saturday, with 5 birdies and 1 eagle. It might have been the sole bogey of the round, on No. 16, that ignited his hockey-bred fire. The miscue allowed Colin Montgomerie to take a 1-shot lead into the final 2 holes, but Kelly’s birdie on No. 18 brought him the title. How’s that?

How Monty lost his opportunity

We forget how difficult it is to hold a lead in any event, at any juncture. Colin Montgomerie never figured the recipe out in major championships on the regular tour, but he had it down, for the most part, in regular tour events. On the Champions Tour, he has been quite solid, winning six times as a senior in the U.S. and five times in Europe. In the third round at Hualalai, Monty’s most reliable club betrayed him at the least opportune time. A drive into a fairway bunker at the last hole left him 100 yards to the green. He flew the putting surface with his approach and played an indifferent flop shot to 7 feet for par and a playoff. His effort was off the mark and the title slipped from his grasp.

Sergio’s Singapore Open

Despite this unexpected result, Sergio Garcia opened the 2018 season with a victory in Singapore. We’ll run down what he did right.

Sergio and Singapore on a Sunday

The #SingOpen2018 and @TheSergioGarcia made a perfect match on an extended final day. Wet weather forced a last-day completion of Round 3, and most golfers played more than 20 holes on the final day. Garcia stormed from behind with 66-68 over those final 36 holes to wrest the lead from Danthai Boonma of Thailand. Nine birdies and 1 bogey over that stretch of two rounds finished the task for the Spaniard, who looks to defend his 2017 Masters title in the spring.

See the clubs Sergio used to win

The battle for second ended in a tie

With Garcia separating himself from the peloton, attention turned to Boonma and cast for the runner-up resolution. After three stellar rounds (70-68-65), Boonma stumbled in Round 4 with 73, finishing in a tie for 4th with countryman Jazz Janewattananond. Satoshi Kodaira of Japan and South Africa’s Shaun Norris each birdied the final hole to finish tied for second at 9-under, 5 blows behind the champion.

Hello, World for Sungjae Im at Web.Com Opener

Sungjae Im, all of 19 years of age and pegging it in his first Web.Com event ever, gave us a Hello-World moment with a closing 65 and a 4-shot win over Mexico’s Carlos Ortiz. How did the young Korean pro flu powder his way to the top of the podium? We’re asking ourselves the same question

How Im became I’m The Champ

Im entered the final round of the Great Exuma Classic in a tie with Ortiz, but eyes were on proven winners like Rhein Gibson, Steve Marino and Erik Compton. Sungjae Im went out in Round 4 and played perfect golf. He had 4 birds on his outward half, then seized the trophy by both handles with 3 more chirps on holes 14 to 16. Simply put, there was nothing that Ortiz or any other entrant could do, beyond bow and salute the victor.

How Ortiz and the others took the shock

Carlos Ortiz did what he had to do during Tuesday’s final round. He played a solid round, minus-3 with 5 birds and 2 bogies. He stayed ahead of Gibson and all the others, but would have needed to turn his bogies into birdies to tie Im atop the board. Rhein Gibson began round four like a boss, with birdies on 5 of the first 6 holes. He reached 8-under and looked like the eventual winner. The engine sputtered, and it was 1-birdie-1-bogey-10-pars the rest of the way. Gibson would have needed 10-under on the day to tie for the trophy, but with a few more birdies along the way, would he have frightened Im? Who knows!

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Wednesday’s Photos from the 2018 CareerBuilder Challenge



GolfWRX is live from the 2018 CareerBuilder Challenge at the TPC Stadium Course at PGA West (7,113 yards, par 72) in La Quinta, California.


The field this week is headlined by Jon Rahm, who’s currently ranked No. 3 in the Official World Golf Rankings after his second-place finish at the 2018 Sentry Tournament of Champions two weeks ago. Joining him in the field are notables John Daly, Brian Harman, last week’s Sony Open champion Patton Kizzire, Phil Mickelson, Jimmy Walker and Bubba Watson.

Defending-champion Hudson Swafford notched his first career victory at the 2017 CareerBuilders Challenge, where he won by one stroke over Adam Hadwin. He’ll be back in the field this year to defend his title.

Check out our photos from the 2018 CareerBuilder Challenge below!

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Discussion: See what GolfWRX Members are saying about the photos in our forums

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Tuesday’s Photos from the 2018 CareerBuilder Challenge



GolfWRX is live from the 2018 CareerBuilder Challenge at the TPC Stadium Course at PGA West (7,113 yards, par 72) in La Quinta, California.


The field this week is headlined by Jon Rahm, who’s currently ranked No. 3 in the Official World Golf Rankings after his second-place finish at the 2018 Sentry Tournament of Champions two weeks ago. Joining him in the field are notables John Daly, Brian Harman, last week’s Sony Open champion Patton Kizzire, Phil Mickelson, Jimmy Walker and Bubba Watson.

Defending-champion Hudson Swafford notched his first career victory at the 2017 CareerBuilders Challenge, where he won by one stroke over Adam Hadwin. He’ll be back in the field this year to defend his title.

Check out our photos from the 2018 CareerBuilder Challenge below!

Tuesday’s Galleries

Special Galleries

Discussion: See what GolfWRX Members are saying about the photos in our forums

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19th Hole