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WRX Insider: Top 5 equipment stories at the PGA Championship

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This week at Harding Park had a few key stories to track from a WITB standpoint. Some were huge, some were subtle. All are interesting.

Here are the top five equipment stories from the PGA Championship.

#5. Fleetwood goes to Ventus

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – AUGUST 07: Tommy Fleetwood of England plays his shot from the 14th tee during the second round of the 2020 PGA Championship at TPC Harding Park on August 07, 2020 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Tommy Fleetwood has one of the most eclectic bags on Tour. The Englishman is the epitome of finding the right 14 sticks no matter what. This week at Harding Park, he made what I would call a pretty substantial change to his driver set up. Being a player that has trusted the Mitsubishi Kuro Kage XTS 70 TX for a while now, Tommy not only switched shafts but switched companies going into the ever-popular Fujikura Ventus Black 7 X.

According to my source, Tommy was fighting a left miss with the normal setup and was searching for a way to stabilize the head a bit. The Ventus not only helped that but also kicked up the ball speed a touch. Obviously it helped, at the time this article was written he was two back of the leaders having put on a ballstriking display with a Friday 64.

#4. Fleetwood swaps in TM Proto 4 and 5-irons

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – AUGUST 07: Tommy Fleetwood of England plays a shot on the tenth hole during the second round of the 2020 PGA Championship at TPC Harding Park on August 07, 2020 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Tommy also swapped out his Srixon Z785 4 and 5-irons for two TaylorMade prototypes. The switch was in an effort to bridge the gap between his 5-wood and 4-iron. In past weeks, he had tested a TaylorMade SIM Max 4 Rescue. The switch required him to strengthen his 5-iron to gap properly, but ultimately that recipe wasn’t the right fit.

#3. Koepka goes back to his M5

If anything has been holding Brooks Koepka back this year, it has been his driver. Notoriously an intimidating player off the tee (especially on tough golf courses), Koepka had been struggling in 2020.

He started the season with SIM Max and quickly swapped that for the Callaway Mavrik he used up until early this week. According to my source, BK liked the ball speed and feel from the Callaway but felt going back to the M5 he used in 2019 put him back in a comfortable pocket, and as you can see, he is right at the top of the leaderboard again.

Another interesting nugget is the M5 switch required no tweaks, straight into the bag. When no wrenching is needed, you know that club is dialed.

Koepka has also gone back to his trusty Nike Vapor Pro 3-iron. Previously, BK had the TaylorMade P790 UDI in play, but this return comes as no surprise—that particular club draws strong affections from certain players, namely Koepka and Tony Finau.

#2. DJ lands on a 7-wood

Height, spin, and gapping have become a huge theme in the past weeks—especially in that no man’s land between 3-wood and 5-iron. Dustin Johnson is a player who is not afraid to experiment, and he has checked off every possible box.

At any given point this year he has had a 3-iron, 4-hybrid, utility, and now a 7-wood. Although these changes will be course-specific, the trend I’m seeing is players are looking for spin and versatility wherever they can find it. Most clubs in that range tend to be low spin, so if there is a way to find 400-500 RPMs flying out of the same window, its a bonus.

#1. Tiger ditches the “Elder Wand” (it won’t last)

At this point, I think the story even made it to CNN. When Tiger switches anything its world news, especially his trusty Scotty Cameron. In this case, he moved into a Scotty Cameron “Timeless Prototype,” which is a lead into the 2020 Studio Select collection at retail.

Two things going on here

  1. Ability to manipulate head weight to match up with green speed. Tiger’s gamer is, by today’s standards light at 327 grams. This experiment allows him to add subtract weight out of the head via weight ports in the sole.
  2. Added length to take the pressure off his back. Not the first time a player has done this. Freddy Couples, Rocco Mediate, and many others have gone to longer putters to encourage more upright posture.

At posting time, Tiger putted it all over the place on Friday, so although this switch is newsworthy, it won’t last. He’s just putting the Elder Wand in the reflection chair as I do with my kids.

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Johnny Wunder is the Director of Original Content, Instagram Manager and Host of “The Gear Dive” Podcast for GolfWRX.com. He was born in Seattle, Wash., and grew up playing at Rainier G&CC. John is also a partner with The Traveling Picture Show Company having most recently produced JOSIE with Game of Thrones star Sophie Turner. In 1997 Johnny had the rare opportunity of being a clubhouse attendant for the Anaheim Angels. He now resides in Toronto, On with his wife and two sons. @johnny_wunder on IG

5 Comments

5 Comments

  1. RJH

    Aug 9, 2020 at 1:05 pm

    Tommy changed from z785 long irons not z765.

  2. Micela Simpliciano Medina

    Aug 9, 2020 at 11:01 am

    You put the Elder wand in your kids?

  3. Benny

    Aug 8, 2020 at 4:19 pm

    Seriously Tiger comes into 2020’s first major with a new Tour Scotty and says its his back?
    Give me a break. This is all about marketing and for the best thing that ever happenned to Scotty Cameron…. Tiger Woods!

    • Jj

      Aug 8, 2020 at 5:35 pm

      And during an election year!

    • Actual Big Brain

      Aug 9, 2020 at 8:24 pm

      Yeah definitely Scotty Cameron marketing (like they need it) they were definitely cooking that up during a pandemic that’s 100% the focus is marketing and getting tiger woods to change the putter he has literally won everything with… yeah definitely marketing… we got a big brain over here huh? More like semi developed…

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GolfWRX Classifieds (09/23/20): PXG fairway, Titleist driver, Miura irons

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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 Bgpreg24 – Miura MB-001 irons

Miura irons, especially blades, always demand attention, and this mixed set with MB001 and CB1008 will also demand some exacting ball striking.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Miura Irons

Member Pingman4 – PXG 0341X fairway

As far as underrated fairway woods go, PXG easily makes some of the best-looking, best-performing ones on the market. This is your chance to get one for a great price.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: PXG 0341X

Member CaptainBogey – Titleist 913 driver

This listing is very straight forward—which is where you should also be hitting your driver. Great Titleist driver at a great price!

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Titleist 913

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

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What GolfWRXers are saying about trying single-length irons after Bryson DeChambeau’s U.S. Open win

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In our forums, our members have been discussing a ‘single length iron re-boot’. WRXer ‘disco111’ asks fellow members if anyone is now going to adopt the single-length iron strategy following Bryson DeChambeau’s incredible recent play, and WRXers have been having their say on the single length approach.

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.

  • Lobber: “I played one length for a bit and actually did quite well with them. But I think the real key to success is bulking up and adding 40 lbs!”
  • puttingmatt: “I would say try them, to each his own. That said, thinking success in the professional ranks rarely passes down to the everyday amateur, especially in equipment. I would suggest golfers stop comparing themselves to the professional players, and while you may think you can play like the new U.S. Open champion with clubs like these, reality, begs to differ.”
  • sdedalus23: “I set about this summer to make the game easier through club setup. To do so, I was going to either get the cobra forged tec blacks one length or the Ping G410’s. I went with the one lengths (4-G) to give them a try. I haven’t found problems with gapping thus far, but the short irons are a bit of a challenge. I am a high ball hitter, and they hit it incredibly high; so high that I have had a bit of a problem in the wind. I also found that my 54 and 60, which are still variable length, became less consistent with half shots due to the differences in length. Overall, my scores haven’t changed much (still mid to low 70’s) as they are generally predicated on how I am driving the ball because my iron play generally sucks. “
  • scotterhd2: “This thread got me. Have a set of F8 OL irons in the backup bag. Just ordered a JumboMax Ultralite grip. I think I’m going to put it on the PW and give them another test.”

Entire Thread: “Single length re-boot”

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GolfWRX Spotted: PXG Blackjack putter

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Bob Parsons has always done things his own way, and just a little bit earlier today he hit send on an Instagram post that debuted a brand new PXG putter—the Blackjack, a high-MOI “winged” design featuring a wrap-around tungsten weight bar to boost forgiveness.

Since that debut earlier today, the putter and all of the details surrounding it are now live at PXG.com

View this post on Instagram

Ready to get lucky? Our amazing new Blackjack Putter launches on 10.13 but I'm giving you and a friend the chance to win one before you can buy it! To enter, like this post, then you and a friend both follow me here. Then, include your friend’s Instagram handle (including the @) in the comments section of this post. MAKE SURE YOU And YOUR FRIEND BOTH FOLLOW ME! If both of you don't follow me, it's not an official entry. That's it! You're in! 10 people will win PXG's all new Blackjack putter (5 contestants plus their nominee). 1 of those contestants will *also* win a full bag of custom fit, latest generation #PXG clubs plus $1,000 just for fun! Jackpot baby! Here are the details: Employees and 3rd party contractors of PXG are NOT eligible. Sorry! Winners will be drawn 9.29, 10.2, 10.6, 10.9, 10.13. The winning entry drawn on 10.13 will take home not only Blackjack Putter, a FULL BAG of PXG clubs, and $1,000. Some restrictions do apply. Grand prize goes to both individual posting here and the friend. Click the link in my bio to read the rules and good luck! #PXGTroops #GolfLife. @PXG. Nobody makes golf clubs the way we do. Period!

A post shared by Bob Parsons (@drbobparsons) on

If there is one underrated part of PXG’s club lineup, it’s the company’s putters. They pack a lot of technology into both traditional-style putters and more modern designs.

Technology

  • Optimized face pattern – Like with previous PXG putters, the pyramid face pattern optimizes the ball speed across the putter face by reducing speed on center strikes while also retaining speed towards the heel and toe, all providing a soft feel. The face ensures consistency in all parameters that affect roll including; initial ball velocity, launch angle, spin rate, and skid.
  • Tungsten weighting – For maximum stability, the putter has an added tungsten frame along the perimeter to boost MOI and create a deeper center of gravity. The Tungsten works alongside the lightweight aluminum frame to remove mass away from the center while still having ports for weight customization.

Specs, price, and availability

Based on Mr. Parsons’ post, the putter will be available for order starting October 13th, although a retail price has not been set yet. Like other putters in the PXG line, it will come with a number of hosel configurations, and thanks to the adjustable weighting, it can be built exactly to the desired spec.

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