Phelps can swim, but he hopes to “sink” with Ping
Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps can swim — he has 70 medals in international competition that confirms it. But recently, he’s been spending more of his time learning how to sink — sink putts that is.
Phelps has signed an endorsement contract with Ping to play a full set of the company’s custom-fit clubs, including the new G25 driver, fairway woods, hybrids and irons. Around the greens, Phelps will be using the new Tour wedges with Gorge grooves and Scottsdale TR (True Roll) Senita putter.
PING customized his new set in a red, white, and blue theme honoring his 22 medals in Olympic competition. But at 6-feet 4-inches tall, Phelps needed more than aesthetic changes to his clubs to make them work for him. His G25 irons are 1 inch longer than standard and 3 degrees upright. To accommodate his large hards, his grips are 1/32 inches over standard.
Phelps’ official debut with the clubs starts when he tees off at the Annexus Pro-Am at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, where he’ll be paired with Masters Champion Bubba Watson.
“Michael is a legendary sports icon, and we all watched with great pride as he represented the United States while dominating his sport in international competition over the last decade,” said John A. Solheim, PING Chairman & CEO. “We’ve custom-built his clubs to ensure he has every chance to improve and we believe he’ll dedicate himself to golf with the same intensity he gave to swimming. His global presence as a golfer will bring PING tremendous exposure and just as importantly, shed additional light on the game in general.”
Phelps golf career is only five years young. In that time he has been able to establish a handicap of 16, just two shy of how many gold medals he has won. Golf fans and swimming fans will be able to see more of Phelps’ Ping set when Golf Channel’s “The Haney Project” airs on Feb. 25, where the swimming star will be the subject of an eight episode series with Hank Haney.
“I know how difficult the game of golf is, but I’m really serious about getting better and the experts at PING have already helped me a lot,” Phelps said. “They looked at my swing on the range and dialed me into clubs that perfectly fit my stance and swing. Considering how tall I am and the length of my arms, they showed me how important and beneficial it is that I play with custom-fit clubs. Once I had clubs that were built specifically for me, my ball flight improved right away. PING has a long history of helping golfers play better, so I’m excited to see how much I can continue to improve my game with the help of their equipment.”
Here’s what’s in Phelps’ bag:
Driver: Ping G25 (9.5 degrees)
3 Wood: Ping G25 (15 degrees)
Hybrid: Ping G25 (20 degrees)
Irons: Ping G25 (4 through U Wedge)
Wedges: Ping Tour with Gorge grooves (54 and 58 degrees, SS grind)
Putter: Ping Scottsdale TR Senita
Check out the photos in the gallery below: