Connect with us


VIDEO: Tour pros hitting vintage clubs at Riviera



The World Golf Hall of Fame sent some vintage clubs to the Northern Trust Open for players to whack on occasion of the tournament’s 90th anniversary.

While images and a few clips have been floating around since Tuesday when the unique demoing occurred, the PGA Tour has posted a two-minute video of Rory McIlroy, Kevin Na, Charley Hoffman, Anirban Lahiri, and others teeing off with the weapons from a different era.

No word on the specs of the club from the 20s. The club from the 50s was some variety of MacGregor. And from the 90s: The original Big Bertha.

Also of note: Players were greeted with a sign that read in part, “Soft balls are provided to protect these authentic historic clubs,” so it unclear what exactly they were walloping, but it wasn’t the latest Pro V1.

Golfweek‘s Adam Schupack reports that, according to an on-site TrackMan, Rory McIlroy carried the 1920s hickory 226.1 yards, the 50s club 269.9, and he hit the Big Bertha 270.6.

The buried lede in all this: As you may have suspected, golf technology has improved juuuusst a bit in the past 90 years.

Your Reaction?
  • 139
  • LEGIT7
  • WOW3
  • LOL2
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP1
  • OB1
  • SHANK6

GolfWRX Editor-in-Chief



  1. Jack B

    Mar 4, 2016 at 1:02 pm

    Why was the hickory shaft driver so much shorter. Didn’t Bobby Jones belt them out there about 240?

    • stephenf

      Mar 10, 2016 at 9:51 am

      Jones hit it longer than that most of the time, but:

      1. We’re talking about carry distance.

      2. No matter what equipment you use, it takes a while to learn the nuances of its capabilities and how they interact with what you’re doing in your swing. Even with modern drivers, you’re generally going to get longer as you start finding the sweet spot more often (yes, there is such a thing even on the big heads) and getting in tune with the rhythm and timing that unloads the energy most efficiently and reliably.

      In short, you wouldn’t expect somebody to reach full distance potential a few minutes after picking up a club that is completely new to him/her.

  2. painter33

    Feb 24, 2016 at 12:46 pm

    No contemporary club (wood/driver) has the feel of real wood, whether solid persimmon or laminated maple. The “tick” of the ball off the insert was so preferable to the loud ringing noises that the big titanium clubs make, at least to me. I can clearly remember when Ping Eye 2 woods came out and everyone remarked on how big they were! Has anyone seen one recently and compared it to any new driver? It’s tiny. I also remember hitting bombs with steel shafts that were shorter than those in today’s drivers and how great the head feel was throughout the swing. One could swing a little harder knowing that the shaft wouldn’t deflect so much or the head wouldn’t twist. “Wait for the head” was the caution when graphite shafts came out – I never knew exactly how to do that! But, Titleist balata balls were killer until one bad strike cut it up. “Smiling” balls were everywhere.

  3. name

    Feb 23, 2016 at 12:28 pm

    Precept lady and hogan 392 are my 2 favorite balls ever.

  4. joro

    Feb 22, 2016 at 11:25 am

    As a former Wood Maker is have felt for yrs that we should go back and make Golf a game of skill again and not just length. Sure, the best today would probably still be the best,, but maybe not. Courses would not need to take up so much land and not a much maintenance. I also was a pretty good player in those days and had the privilege to play with some of the best and later in life make Woods for them. Those guys were amazing, watching Tommy Bolt hit a low slice around and under a large Oak and onto the green, those guys could play.

    Today it is stand up and bomb it as hard as you can, go find it and whack it again with your new 5,000 Dollar Driver made out of the steel from a Space Capsule, and finish the hole off with your 2,000 Dollar Scotty knock off of a 25 Dollar Ping Putter. What a shame.

    The feel and beauty of a nice Persimmon Dr., or the satisfaction of a great Iron shot off you blade, or a putt in the center with your basic Putter. The ball which was softer and more workable can be made today with the new materials available today could match the old wound balls so say the ball makers, but they are not wanted today, the Players today are all about length.

    The “good old days” are to be no more and only those of us who experience that will know how good it was to have to play the game. I know, I am a dinosaur, but so are a lot of the greats of the past. Oh well.

    • Slick

      Feb 22, 2016 at 12:28 pm

      For an old dinosaur, you’re spot on Joro!

      Don’t get me wrong, Bubba is a tremendous talent, but the way fans marvel at the way he works the ball is the way almost EVERY good player back in the day had to.

      IMHO, it was more fun, and the clubs were prettier too.

      This, just another dino’s opinion.

  5. Jimmy

    Feb 21, 2016 at 12:53 am

    When I first took up the game when i was 12-13 I used Macgregor Tourney Oil-Hardened from early 70’s and Macgregor Tourney 1960’s Blades with 1-iron to Sand. The irons sole was thinner than a Dime and topline that was non existent. If i Turned the ball over and hit a 20 yard hook I could get it too roll out to around 260, but only 220 with a Fade.
    The irons were very very penal even on 1/8 inch mishits but It forced me to learn how to find the centre of the club face. I learned how to hit the 2iron fairly consistently and used it in the wind all the time. Never became a great player (8ish index) but I strike the ball far better than my handicap. I credit that to learning the swing on those clubs.

  6. dg7936

    Feb 19, 2016 at 11:25 pm

    The manufacturers forfeited their control over equipment in the late 80’s when Callaway started rolling. Ever since, the golf industry has been selling equipment that prevents real skill development, other than the player’s irons that haven’t changed as much as the remaining clubs and hybrids. Long shafts, exotic metals, high-tech balls, etc all diminish, not improve, the shot making skills. As Eric stated, we’d lose a significant percentage of tor players if the equipment didn’t bail them out. The apex of modern golf was played in the Faldo/Norman/woosnam/Ballasteros era, after that the equipment took over.

    • mhendon

      Feb 20, 2016 at 8:41 pm

      ” We’d lose a significant percentage of tour players if the equipment didn’t bail them out.” Hmmmm so who would be playing in their place, mister avg joe blow weekend 20 handicapper? I think not. Those guys would still be the ones on tour regardless of the equipment they use.

    • Fahgdat

      Feb 21, 2016 at 3:15 am

      You’re real clueless prat.

  7. Psyber

    Feb 19, 2016 at 4:03 pm

    Would’ve been better if they provided time period accurate balls for each club.

  8. MWolverine1969

    Feb 19, 2016 at 2:59 pm

    They must have been using some type of super-soft ball, especially when every player noted how quiet their strike was. When I played my Hogan persimmon woods with a balata ball in high school, the loud “crack” of wood on ball could be heard 3 holes away! We had one guy on our team that had a Taylormade bubble burner driver, I hit it once and said “no way, this will never catch on”! Lol, real insight…

  9. Shallowface

    Feb 19, 2016 at 1:46 pm

    When the USGA devised its Overall Distance Standard in 1976, that should have been the end of technological advancement in golf equipment.

    Woods made of metal or molded materials such as Carbon Graphite could have been allowed as a concession to manufacturing costs, as well as solid core golf balls. They just should have had to conform to 1976 standards.

    Apologists point to all of the weightlifting and fitness training as the reason for the distance the ball goes today. Just how much strength does it take to swing a 12 ounce stick? We don’t see these supposedly superior athletes swinging driver swingweighting at E5 now do we? The training of today is walking a tightrope between injury prevention and causing injuries.

    It is unfortunate that the governing bodies of golf did not have the courage to do what every other major sport has done and limit technological advancement. We don’t see aerodynamic footballs, hot baseballs or metal bats, and for good reason.

    • Fahgdat

      Feb 21, 2016 at 3:16 am

      You know nothing.

      • Shallowface

        Feb 21, 2016 at 4:10 pm

        Son, I’ve forgotten more than you’ll ever know.
        Now, get off my lawn.
        Said no one EVER!
        In 3…2…1…
        All of the classic WRX crap played in one post!

  10. Mario

    Feb 19, 2016 at 4:38 am

    While the drivers are a little bit longer today the real game changer was the ball. When the pro v1 style of ball came out everybody on tour gained 20+ Yards off of the tee.

    • Eric

      Feb 19, 2016 at 4:13 pm

      Jack Nicklaus has been saying that they have to get control of the golf ball for years. Half the guys that are on tour today would disappear without the modern equipment. It makes up for a lot of deficiencies in their games. The same thing goes for amateurs.

      • Shallowface

        Feb 20, 2016 at 9:04 am

        With the warm weather across much of the country, today is going to be a very difficult day for a lot of golfers.
        They are going to find out that, despite thousands of dollars in new equipment purchased over the winter, they are still as bad or worse than they were last year.
        And this in spite of the fact that, in the 40 plus years I have been playing the game, the driver has gone from being the hardest club in the bag to hit to the easiest, and the ball has changed to the point where it is really hard to hit a crooked golf shot, especially when compared to the balata ball of the 70s. If you weren’t around to experience the difference, there’s no way you can imagine it. The difference is staggering.
        It will be a difficult day, and my heart goes out to them.

    • Shallowface

      Feb 20, 2016 at 8:57 am

      It used to be accepted that one got 2.46 yards for every MPH of clubhead speed with the driver.

      Now it’s 2.7, and more if you can swing even faster, which is the part that is really wrong.

      And that is almost entirely the ball. It’s not about spring like effect, because an iron with, for example, 30 degrees of loft goes a lot further than it used to as well.

    • Fahgdat

      Feb 21, 2016 at 3:17 am

      Precept Lady (a Bridgestone) started it all.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


What GolfWRXers are saying about Kevin Kisner’s new Callaway X Forged CB irons



In our forums, our members have been discussing Kevin Kisner’s new Callaway X Forged CB irons which he has in the bag at this week’s CJ Cup. WRXers have been commenting on the switch and the clubs themselves in our forums.

For lots more photos, check out the full thread here.

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.

  • btyh: “Holy offset.”
  • Glf_LU: “These are interesting. Not going to make a rush to judgement until I see them in person. It does look like a little more offset than I would expect to see in this model.”
  • bcflyguy1: “Kisner is not one to make a lot of equipment changes (see the GBB driver he’s still using), so if these do have staying power in his bag that will be interesting to see. I have to wonder if there’s something different about his set, because like others have mentioned there appears to be more offset on his than I recall seeing in the samples I’ve had in hand.”

Entire Thread: “Kevin Kisner’s new Callaway X Forged CB irons”

Your Reaction?
  • 5
  • LEGIT1
  • WOW0
  • LOL0
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP0
  • OB0
  • SHANK2

Continue Reading


WATCH: PGA Tour players play hole blindfolded and it’s hilarious/amazing



As part of a Srixon campaign, four PGA Tour players recently participated in a three-hole challenge, with each hole being a different game; hole No. 1 was blindfolded, hole No. 2 was costumes and distractions, and hole No. 3 was alternate shot with a baseball bat. The teams were Smylie Kaufman and Sam Ryder against Shane Lowry and Grayson Murray.

Watch the full video below, since it is quite entertaining (albeit not the type of golf that Old Tom Morris surely had in mind), but in particular, make sure to check out the first hole where Lowry and Ryder play a full hole completely blind folded. It’s amazing to watch how badly Ryder struggles, and how Lowry nearly makes par.

Cleveland-Srixon’s marketing department has been hard at work crafting these viral-esque ad campaigns; if you remember, former long-drive champion Jamie Sadlowski recently dressed as 80-year-old Grandpa Jamie to fool range-goers. That video has since gathered over 1.2 million views on YouTube.

Your Reaction?
  • 41
  • LEGIT5
  • WOW3
  • LOL10
  • IDHT1
  • FLOP0
  • OB0
  • SHANK1

Continue Reading


Think you had a bad weekend on the course? At least you didn’t do this



We hope this golfer didn’t take the ultra-premium golf equipment plunge before sending his clubs to a watery grave. Either way, this was an expensive (and strangely calm) reaction to a bad round.

Your Reaction?
  • 20
  • LEGIT2
  • WOW4
  • LOL13
  • IDHT2
  • FLOP3
  • OB2
  • SHANK15

Continue Reading