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Is the R&A coming for drivers?



R&A chief Martin Slumbers has issued a stark message which could bring an end to the likes of Bryson DeChambeau’s recent dismantling of golf courses – and it could also spell big changes for manufacturers.

Speaking to the Daily Mail, Slumbers unveiled the areas which the game’s two governing bodies are focusing on to help prevent golf courses being overpowered by today’s professionals, and hinted that significant changes could be on the way for modern driver technology.

“It is too simple just to say change the ball. Way too simple. You can do things with the ball. But it’s the relationship between ball and club which is most important, to me.

 The fundamental change in the golf ball since 1999-2000, with the introduction of ProV1 technology, is the ball spins less. And drivers have been designed so it spins even less, which makes it go further.”

Bryson DeChambeau’s unprecedented length off the tee has been a hot topic of discussion since golf’s restart. While Slumbers hailed the 26-year-old’s “extraordinary” ability to combine that power with accuracy, the R&A chief declared that he would be coming back to the issue to address the current lack of balance between skill and power in the sport.

“Bryson, I’m fascinated by. I’m not sure I can remember another sportsman, in any sport, so fundamentally changing their physical shape. But what is extraordinary is that Bryson isn’t the first one to put on muscle in golf. How he’s able to control the ball, with that extra power, is extraordinary. All credit to him, he’s a true athlete.

But I still come back to the belief that golf is a game of skill. And we believe we need to get this balance of skill and technology right. Once we feel that the industry is stable again, which isn’t going to be tomorrow, because we don’t know what’s going to happen over autumn and winter, we will be coming back to that issue in great seriousness.”

Part one of the R&A and USGA’s Distance Report concluded that the increased gains from the bombers off the tee in the game was “detrimental to the sport”. Per his interview with the Mail, Slumbers reiterated that the desire for a balance between skill and technology would head stage two of the report.

“My view is very much that golf is a game of skill. It’s important to have a balance of skill and technology. We did intend to publish the next stage in March, sending out to manufacturers our specific areas of interest. Specific topics we wanted to evaluate before considering what equipment changes we would – or would not – put in place.

It’s all been put on hold because the world has a lot more to worry about. And we were conscious of the golf industry having the time to recover. But we will bring that topic back – because it does need to be discussed.”


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Gianni is the Assistant Editor at GolfWRX. He can be contacted at Follow him on Twitter @giannimosquito



  1. Evan

    Jul 15, 2020 at 4:37 pm

    Reducing the cc on drivers would be interesting – back to say the great big Bertha cc head volume. And, given how much less the ball spins now, narrow up the fairways ~10%-15%. It would be interesting to see who’d benefit with those changes.

  2. George

    Jul 15, 2020 at 11:37 am

    I agree with a comment earlier! This should have been addressed long ago. That being said, the game needs to go back to old school. Narrower fairways , lined with trees and rough. Shaping shots has disappeared. Definitely need to re-evaluate equipment.

  3. Brandon

    Jul 15, 2020 at 11:15 am

    Slumbers: “It’s incredible the skill that Bryson has to have to keep the ball accurate at those distances.”

    Also Slumbers: “But golf should be a game of skill”

  4. Steve H

    Jul 15, 2020 at 10:36 am

    Stop overthinking it. Thick rough, narrow fairways and rock hard greens. Break out the earplugs. The money likes 350 yard drives and 20+ under tourneys. The Tour has a target score for every event and the only thing that changes it is Mother Nature and she doesn’t golf.

  5. Rich Douglas

    Jul 14, 2020 at 4:13 pm

    Bifurcation is something that has been under discussion for years. It’s not the technology that causes pause, it’s equipment sales.

  6. jason

    Jul 14, 2020 at 3:57 pm

    After Bryson’s 4th Major, then we can have this absurd and obtuse conversation.

    Also, Lance Armstrong completely changed his body type to much thinner and toned, which is MUCH harder than getting bigger. Plus he had cancer.

    • Craig

      Jul 14, 2020 at 9:58 pm

      Plus he had every PED known to man in his system.

      • Jack Nash

        Jul 15, 2020 at 4:25 pm

        Some people just don’t want to remember that part.

  7. Erik

    Jul 14, 2020 at 3:33 pm

    The issue is not the ball or the club, it is the players. If the problem were the ball and/or the clubs, amateurs would have gained as much as the pros, probably more due to a greater percentage of of center hits being corrected. If you check driving distance numbers, amateurs are up 8 yards from 1996 to 2019. The pros are stronger, more flexible, better coached, and have access to better data. Bryson more than anyone just proved that by adding 40 pounds of muscle adjusting his swing and driver based on trackman data and gaining 23 yards on average.

    • Craig

      Jul 14, 2020 at 10:01 pm

      Amateurs have gained. Not the high handicappers because they just hit it sideways, but for good players compared to mid 90s distance there is at least 20 yard gain.

      • Harry Vardon

        Jul 15, 2020 at 4:01 pm

        You have some data to back up your “20 yards” number or is your personal estimate aka mild BS.

        Most of the posters on this website are completely out of touch with the average golfer. You all talk like you are experts and scratch or better. 99% of you are armchair QBs who predict the past and reminisce about the future.

        The only people over powering courses or in danger of doing so are the professionals. Golf has been heading towards bifurcation for a long time. It’s the only way they will save the pro game and satisfy the manufacturers.

        How many of you experts are playing from the back on 7000+ yds courses? Probably just about zero.

        • Jack Nash

          Jul 15, 2020 at 4:28 pm

          I hit my best drive in ages the other day. 220 yds wind aided. Then again almost 70 yrs old with a new knee one that’s shot, along with a hip. I’m happy to hit it in the fairway.

  8. Donn Rutkoff

    Jul 14, 2020 at 1:50 pm

    Do club pros see the same distance problem among regular golfers? Club tournaments, USGA Amateurs, NCAA? Are regular distance golfers now permanent losers and only the longos winning at all these other levels? Isn’t this just a Tour level thing? Is it a problem in LPGA?

    • Craig

      Jul 14, 2020 at 10:05 pm

      Elite amateurs have the same problem. LPGA it is less problem because they can just move back to the mens tees on most course without major course renovation, but they have big gains as well. Driving distance leader is 27 yards longer on LPGA compared to 1995.

      Basically the only people that haven’t experienced gains are those that can’t hit the ball straight, double figure handicappers.

  9. Larry B

    Jul 14, 2020 at 12:09 pm

    Titleist just showed how to rein in the distance with the dimpleless Pro V1 test, which cut distance by 50% to 60%. With a little engineering, a rule limiting either the number of dimples or the percentage of ball surface area allowed to be covered with dimples could make a distance limited ball for tour play, while still keeping competition between the ball marketers. Jack was right, control the ball.

  10. brenner

    Jul 14, 2020 at 11:06 am

    Who the fck cares if greens are being driven. Which old guy that can’t hit it 200 yards suddenly determined that hitting it long is not allowed. Roll back distance and that will be the last golf tournament I ever watch. So sicj and tired of shitty, short hitters who are jealous of bombers trying to change the game. Its so fucking cringe. Watching the last ryder cup in Europe was the most boring form of golf in history, and thats the type of trash yall want at every event?

  11. Shallowface

    Jul 14, 2020 at 10:44 am

    Regulating drivers would be another one of those things (so common today) where it looked like someone was trying to do something, but would have no real effect.

    The problem is the low spin rate of the ball. Frank Thomas, who was the USGA Technical Director in the late 90s, never could get his head around the idea that pros would play anything but high spinning wound balls. I knew as a kid back in the 70s playing cheap Spalding rocks that the wound ball would eventually disappear. The hard ball popped high immediately off the clubface and was just fine for the short shots. It was superior for everything else, so none of this was a surprise to me.

    The apologists will tell you that Tour driving stats haven’t changed all that much in recent years, but that is because the ball goes so far that a lot of clubs other than drivers (a 300 yard 4 iron for example) are hit from tees and all of that goes into the stats. But, the real problem isn’t the driver. It’s the 225 yard 7 iron, and that is entirely due to the ball. If you could lay up to 225 and still hit a 7 iron into a green, where is the stress in that? 225 used to be a 4 wood on Tour.

    What needs to happen is determine how much a wound ball spun back when the original Overall Distance Standard took effect in the 70s, and legislate that spin rate into the rules. FOR EVERYONE.

    That is what needs to happen. But it won’t. If the USGA or R&A attempted that, the result would be worse than them getting sued. They would be ignored. Rendered completely irrelevant. The PGA Tour would be the new rule making body. The USGA and R&A only have the authority they are granted, by individuals, member-guests, scrambles or professional tours. They will surface and bluster about this issue every so often, but at the end of the day they’ll do nothing and like it.

  12. Billy C

    Jul 14, 2020 at 7:31 am

    Too late IMO…They have sat back until the ball is going so far greens are being driven and now all of the sudden its a problem. Jack told them years ago to roll it back but it fell on deaf ears.

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TaylorMade unveils 2020 PGA Championship staff bag and headcovers (and we’re giving a set away!)



TaylorMade has launched its commemorative staff bag, as well as headcovers, to celebrate the opening major of 2020 at TPC Harding Park.

For the first time in its 102-year history, the PGA Championship will be hosted in the Bay Area. To honor the occasion, the staff bag from TaylorMade is accented by the San Francisco Giants’ traditional cream, orange, and black colorway.

GIVEAWAY: TaylorMade PGA Championship Staff Bag and Headcovers! Super Limited!

The commemorative bag also features the TaylorMade logo in the same font used by the MLB franchise and is decorated by eight stars on the bag’s upper with each representing a Giants’ World Series victory.

The three stars in orange signals wins captured in San Francisco, while the five stars in white represent wins in New York before the club’s 1957 relocation.

The interior lining of the bag shows the San Francisco Chronicle headlines that followed each of the team’s most recent championships.

Additional nods to the city include stitching of Lombard Street on the handle, an outline of the city’s skyline on the lower paneling, and an image of the iconic Golden Gate and Bay Bridges across the base.

A WGH insignia acknowledges the 29th President of the United States, and the venue’s namesake, Warren G. Harding.

Reply with your favorite major moment in the forum thread below for a chance to win a staff bag and headcovers. These are not coming to retail!

GIVEAWAY: TaylorMade PGA Championship Staff Bag and Headcovers! Super Limited!

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GolfWRX Classifieds (08/04/20): Ping Crossover, Nike Pro-Combos, Ping G-Stretch



At GolfWRX, we love golf equipment plain and simple

We are a community of like-minded individuals that all experience and express our enjoyment for the game in many ways. It’s that sense of community that drives day-to-day interactions in the forums on topics that range from best driver to what marker you use to mark your ball, it even allows us to share another thing – the equipment itself.

One of the best ways to enjoy equipment is to experiment and whether you are looking to buy-sell-or trade (as the name suggests) you can find almost anything in the GolfWRX BST Forum. From one-off custom Scotty Cameron Circle T putters, to iron sets, wedges, and barely hit drivers, you can find it all in our constantly updated marketplace.

These are some of the latest cool finds from the GolfWRX BST, and if you are curious about the rules to participate in the BST Forum you can check them out here: GolfWRX BST Rules

Member Wedge Ninja – Nike Pro Combo iron set

(cue music) “You’re simply the best…. do, do, do do. Better than all the rest” (music fades out). This is one of the best Nike irons ever made, in pretty darn great shape at a great price – more than half the cost of a new forged iron set.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Nike Pro-Combos

Member DWCobraJr – Ping G410 CrossOver

Look, we get it, long irons are hard to hit. So why do you continue to struggle? Get yourself this G410 Crossover and say hello to more hit greens.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Ping Crossover

Member wjoyce5001 – Ping G-Stretch 3 wood

Looking for a big beautiful 3 wood to smash off the tee? Look no further than this Ping G Stretch 3 wood with 13° of loft. Designed for distance and forgiveness this is a great club for precision off the tee or a driver for your half set!

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Ping Stretch fairway

Remember that you can always browse the GolfWRX Classifieds any time here in our forums: GolfWRX Classifieds

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Puma unveils Rickie Fowler, Bryson DeChambeau and Gary Woodland’s 2020 PGA Championship scripting



Puma Golf has unveiled the apparel which Rickie Fowler, Bryson DeChambeau and Gary Woodland will wear in their pursuit of the Wanamaker Trophy this week – which includes pieces from the brand’s recently launched Love/Haight Collection .

Rickie Fowler will wear Puma’s IGNITE PROADAPT shoes while Bryson & Gary will wear the company’s PWRADAPT CAGED shoes – including a LE San Francisco-inspired pair in a blue, tie-dyed colorway.

In addition, Rickie & Bryson will both use the limited-edition Love/Haight COBRA x Vessel Tour Staff Bag, tying back to the rest of the Tie-Dye collection. Over the weekend, Gary will continue to sport the Red, White & Blue, donning pieces from Puma’s Volition America Collection, which benefits the Folds of Honor Foundation.

Rickie Fowler 2020 PGA Championship Scripting:

Thursday: Haight Polo – Ibiza Blue- $80

Jackpot 5 Pocket Pants – White – $85

IGNITE PROADAPT – white – $200

Trucker P Snapback – Love/Haight – $35

Friday: Road Map Polo – Bright White – $65

P Snapback Cap – Peacoat – $30

Jackpot 5 Pocket Pants – black – $85



Cloudspun Taylor Polo – Lupine – $70

Jackpot 5 Pocket Pants – $85


COBRA Crown C Cap – $22


Haight Polo – Vibrant Orange – $80

Jackpot 5 Pocket Pant – orange – $85

P Snapback – Love/Haight – Orange – $35


Bryson DeChambeau 2020 PGA Championship Scripting:


Pique P Polo – peacoat – $70

Jackpot Pant – white – $80

Tour Driver Cap – white – $40

PWRADAPT CAGED – grey – $150


Haight Polo – Barbados Cherry – $80

Jackpot Pant – White – $80

PWRADAPT CAGED – Grey – $150 


CLOUDSPUN Scatter Polo – High Rise – $70

Jackpot Pant – black – $80

PWRADAPT CAGED – black – $150


Caddie Stripe Polo – Red – $65

Jackpot Pant – Peacoat – $80

PWRADAPT CAGED – Red, White, Blue – $150

Gary Woodland 2020 PGA Championship Scripting:


Volition Flight Polo – – Barbados Cherry – $75

Jackpot Pants –peacoat – $80

PWRADAPT CAGED – Grey Violet- $150


Haight Polo – Ibiza Blue – $80

Jackpot Pants – white – $80

PWRADAPT CAGED Love/Haight – $170


Volition Piolet Polo – Dark Denim – $75

Jackpot Pants – White – $80

PWRADAPT CAGED – Red, White, Blue – $150


Volition CK6 America Polo – quiet shade – $75

Jackpot Pants – white – $80

PWRADAPT CAGED – Red, White, Blue – $150

Per Puma, the Love/Haight Collection celebrates the nostalgia of Tie Dye, inspired by the iconic Haight-Ashbury neighborhood in San Francisco, the heart of free-spirited bohemian culture, and the unofficial birthplace of tie dye.


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