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Cameron Champ cracked his driver right before teeing off on Sunday

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Golf’s new sensation, Cameron Champ, triumphed at the Sanderson Farms Championship over the weekend, and he did so without the ideal preparation on Sunday afternoon. The 23-year old arrived on the range ahead of Sunday’s final round with a four-shot lead attempting to land his maiden PGA Tour title, and 30 minutes before his tee time the American cracked the head of his PING G400 Max driver.

Champ may have just a handful of appearances on the PGA Tour so far, but he has already made a name for himself with his incredible raw power. At his opening event of the season at the Safeway Open, Champ lead the field in both average club head speed (129.66 mph), and ball speed (192.67 mph). To put those numbers into perspective, the top average in both categories for the 2017/18 season was 124.67 mph from Keith Mitchell for club head speed and 182.22 from Trey Mullinax for ball speed.

The Californian, by all accounts, dealt with the adversity excellently. According to Golf Channel’s Justin Leonard, Champ calmly asked his father to retrieve a backup club from his car, casually saying, “Don’t worry, not a rush, I’m not going to hit it until the third hole.”

Champ lead the field in two of his opening three rounds for strokes gained off the tee, and cracking the head of his trusty driver just before the off on Sunday looked to be far more costly than Champ had imagined, as he saw his four-shot lead evaporate over the front nine in Mississippi.

However, Champ kept his head and rattled off five birdies in his last six holes to take the title by four. Speaking after his round, Champ commented on his shock at the incident, and the difficulties he faced because of it.

“It was very unexpected. Then my backup is my old one I have that week. I didn’t bring a new driver head. It was an older one from my previous driver. I know the weighting was just a little bit off, so just tried to hit as many balls as I could on the range with it just to get used to it a little bit. I tried to manage it. Obviously I knew mostly today was probably mixed with nerves and adrenaline and just trying to find my tempo and my swing and whatnot.”

Manage it he did, with Champ leading the final round in driving distance and proving that he is not just a sensation with the driver, but also very adept at dealing with adversity.

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Gianni is a freelance writer. He holds a Bachelor of Arts as well as a Diploma in Sports Journalism. He can be contacted at gmagliocco@outlook.com. Follow him on Twitter @giancarlomag

13 Comments

13 Comments

  1. The dude

    Oct 30, 2018 at 3:57 pm

    How do you crack the top??

  2. Tom

    Oct 30, 2018 at 1:54 pm

    Crown suffered structural failure? Sounds like a design flaw or QC issue!

    • geohogan

      Nov 9, 2018 at 9:57 am

      Jamie Sadlowski had to have specially made clubheads with less COR. He cracked off the shelf clubheads after a few shots. At those speeds shaft tips (0.335 inch diameter) will also break relatively quickly.

  3. dat

    Oct 29, 2018 at 4:01 pm

    typical WRX’r

  4. Tom54

    Oct 29, 2018 at 3:05 pm

    At nearly 130 mph swing speed he may need to have several drivers on hand. Wonder what the max speed is when these drivers are put through their tests. Glad to see him get his first win.

  5. ~j~

    Oct 29, 2018 at 2:52 pm

    Happens to the best of us. ????

  6. Rick

    Oct 29, 2018 at 2:29 pm

    “F#$%K”!!!!!!!!!

    -Ping

  7. Peter

    Oct 29, 2018 at 1:19 pm

    Isn’t this exactly why tour trucks are there?

    • Tim

      Oct 29, 2018 at 1:31 pm

      Tour trucks usually pull out wed or thurs. Some stay around longer especially at majors and it also depends on the length of drive to next event.

    • Chris

      Oct 29, 2018 at 1:32 pm

      The tour trucks usually leave after Wednesday.

    • mlb

      Oct 29, 2018 at 3:04 pm

      A tour truck would have made no difference. The kid is strong

  8. Greg V

    Oct 29, 2018 at 12:10 pm

    So, what was his old driver?

    and if you are Cameron Champ, why not travel with a spare head.

    • Johnny Penso

      Oct 30, 2018 at 4:18 pm

      Probably an old McGregor persimmon driver because, according to some here at WRX, it’s almost as long as a modern driver, it’s the ball that made all the difference back in the day.

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Accessory Reviews

Talking with Alonzo Guess of Sunfish…and a look at the insane headcover they made GolfWRX

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We last talked with Alonzo Guess of Sunfish in November of 2017 after the Nashville-based company launched a custom headcover and accessory builder on its website.

The company has been producing custom headcovers, yardage books, and other accessories since 2013 when it entered the market with its signature wool headcovers.

We wanted to see what was up, and Guess was kind enough not only to answer a few questions, but to design a pretty incredible GolfWRX driver cover using some raw assets we sent over.

BA: What’s new at Sunfish since we last talked? 

AG: 2018 was a great year for innovation at Sunfish. We worked hard to develop new design and construction techniques, and it has been really exciting combining these new creative elements into one of a kind headcovers and accessories. 2018 was our eighth year in business, but it was probably the most significant in terms of innovation. We’re excited to see where we can go from here!

BA: Looking at your websites, I know one of the new things you developed is something you call Photoflux. What exactly is Photoflux?

AG: Photoflux is our proprietary high-resolution printing process, that gives us the ability to apply to our products anything from photos to complex patterns to intricate logos. The level of resolution and detail is truly unmatched, and can’t be achieved with embroidery. We apply it to our leather and Duraleather products, even our hand-made copper ball markers and divot tools! Those are really exciting, because we can make custom copper ball markers with full color logos, on demand

BA: How the heck did you come up Photoflux?

AG: A customer ordered a scorecard holder with his family photo to be embroidered on each side. We made the piece and weren’t happy at all with the result. The embroidery process couldn’t do justice to the photographs. It was clear that there were certain limitations to embroidery, and we were motivated to overcome them. After months of trial and error, long hours and strenuous testing against sun, rain, and wear, we developed the current process.

BA: What are ways the Photoflux process can be used?

AG: Photoflux is perfect for applying photos, but can also be used for intricate logos or family crests. Really any graphic element can be expressed accurately using Photoflux, including shading. Recently we’ve had fun developing custom patterns such as tiger fur and using them as stripes on headcovers. The sky’s the limit!

Photoflux is best in concert with other design techniques, such as embroidery, laser engraving, and precision cutting and sewing. The featured piece (shown in this feature) incorporates Photoflux, precision cutting and sewing, laser engraving and embroidery. The result is as much artwork as it is a functional golf accessory.

BA: What are the limitations of the technology…what products can you apply Photoflux to?

AG: It’s great for leather and Duraleather headcovers, putter covers, scorecard and yardage book holders, alignment stick covers, cash covers, valuables pouches, wine bags, barrel style tartan headcovers…and even copper ball markers and divot tools!

BA: Tell me about this headcover you made for GolfWRX. I suggested the use of a graffiti wall, a GolfWRX logo, and skeleton hand holding up one finger to denote one club/driver, and you really went to town!

AG: So for the headcover you have, we used Photoflux to apply the graffiti wall image to the top of the cover (did you notice the ‘GolfWRX’ spraypaint in there? We threw that in there for you as an Easter egg!). On top of that, we embroidered the skeleton hand. For the stripe, we laser cut the outline of a typical urban skyline, and laser engraved the chain-link fence pattern over the top, than sewed that down. The bottom portion is a Photoflux image of GolfWRX that you sent over.

With so many new ways to decorate and manipulate the materials, we’re really excited about combining it all for our fans and customers to create really unique products. We feel the sky is the limit, and we hope this headcover illustrates that.

 

 

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Equipment

New XXIO Prime woods, hybrids, and irons aim for lightweight power

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XXIO’s latest club offerings, XXIO Prime, looks to offer easy distance and easy accuracy for the moderate swing speed golfer, according to the company.

XXIO Prime woods

xxio-prime

XXIO Prime Woods feature a new re-designed hosel structure, and reduced stiffness at the tip of the driver shaft, which is designed to help moderate swing speed golfers to close the clubface through impact.

Forged from Super-TIX PLUS Titanium, the new cup face includes a sweet spot that is noticeably larger than previous designs, which aims to increase distance performance significantly. The Super-TIX PLUS Titanium Cup Face is thinner, lighter and stronger than previous additions, creating a maximum COR across the face, which aims to increase ball speed and distance.

According to Chuck Thiry, Vice President of XXIO USA

“The speed increases, higher launch angles, and draw bias of the new Prime will show immediate results from swing one. It’s legit lightweight power for the players that absolutely need it the most.”

Featured in the XXIO prime woods is the SP-1000 shaft, with TORAYCA T1100G carbon fiber and NANOALLOY resin, which creates a strong but lightweight club. Along with the lightness in the shaft, XXIO has made weight savings in the grip and club head, which aims to produce woods that are both fast and easy to swing.

The XXIO Prime woods feature an expanded toe and narrowed heel, a tungsten-nickel inner weight that is low and deep, a lighter hosel repositioned closer to the center of the face, and reduced stiffness at the tip of the shaft, all with the aim of offering golfers with maximum forgiveness from their woods.

The XXIO Prime woods will be available from March 1 and will cost $579,99.

XXIO Prime hybrids and irons

The new XXIO Prime hybrids feature an expanded COR and a lower center of gravity, which is designed to increase distance and ball speed while delivering a straighter ball flight.

The hybrids from XXIO contain a Forged Maraging Steel Cup Face which includes a large sweet spot which aims to increase distance performance.

Just as with the woods, the XXIO irons also feature the Super-TIX PLUS Titanium Cup Face, though along with this, they also contain a CNC milled speed groove, which significantly increases the COR, creating a larger sweet spot, designed to provide greater distance, ball speed and accuracy.

Both the hybrids and irons include the SP-1000 Shaft, with TORAYCA T1100G carbon fiber and NANOALLOY resin. The hybrids and irons also feature weight savings in the grip and club head, with the aim of increasing swing speed.

With an expanded toe and narrowed heel, plus a crown step that moves weight low and deep, XXIO claim that this is their most forgiving suite of Prime hybrids. While with two high-density tungsten nickel sole weights and an overall profile that is 3mm shorter than the previous model, the company also claims to have created their most forgiving irons yet.

Speaking on the new XXIO Prime series, Chuck Thiry stated

“XXIO Prime is, quite frankly, the most unique and beneficial product ever available to moderate swing speed players. Period. People might think that is marketing hype, but they simply haven’t hit Prime yet.”

Both the XXIO Prime hybrids and irons will hit retail stores on March 1. The Prime hybrids will cost $379.99, while a single graphite iron will be available for $259.99.

 

 

 

 

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Equipment

SPOTTED: 2019 Mitsubishi shafts

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The Diamana shaft line from Mitsubishi Chemical is probably one of the most iconic in the sport. Released in 2005, Blueboard, Whiteboard, and Redboard, were the first generation of shafts.

Photos of the full fourth generation Diamana lineup, offering new materials and technology, along with new names, have surfaced in the GolfWRX forums. Like previous generations, each color shaft offers different ball flight and spin characteristics.

“RF” is the highest launching and spinning in the Diamana line, offering high launch and mid spin, while the “BF” is the mid-launch and mid/low-spin model. Finally, the “DF” is mid/low-launching and the lowest-spinning shaft in the lineup.

All of the fourth generation Diamana shafts use updated technologies and materials that you would expect from a premium lineup. DIALEAD pitch fiber is helps reduce shaft deformation, while still producing exceptional energy transfer.

Each shaft contains MR70 carbon fiber that is 20 percent stronger than conventional materials and Boron fiber for its compression strength and shaft reinforcement. ION plating has been done before in the Diamana line, in vacuum chambers — silver alloy ions are bonded to the shaft to give it a chrome-like finish that can’t be replicated by paint.

See what GolfWRX Members are saying in the forums.

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