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Henrik Stenson ditches legendary 3 wood for Callaway GBB Epic

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Henrik Stenson has ditched his legendary 3 wood in favor of a new Callaway GBB Epic at the Dubai Desert Classic. “You’re seriously making a big deal out of a 3-wood switch,” you might be saying to yourself. In this case, absolutely.

Related: Read more about Callaway’s GBB Epic fairway woods

GOLF-EPGA-UAE

For most PGA Tour players a 3-wood switch is barely a side note, but for Stenson it’s noteworthy because of how much the No. 4-ranked golfer in the world has relied on his Callaway Diablo Octane Tour 3 wood throughout the years.

The Diablo Octane Tour 3 wood was produced by Callaway in 2010, giving it an estimated current value of about $24, according to the PGA Value Guide. It’s been worth millions more to Stenson, however, who has relied on it more often than his driver off the tee under the gun. With the Diablo Octane Tour (see it in the cover image), Stenson has won eight times on the European and PGA tours, including the PGA Tour’s 2013 FedEx Cup and last year’s epic showdown with Phil Mickelson in The Open Championship at Royal Troon.

To be fair, Stenson has tried several new 3 woods throughout the years, including Callaway’s XR ’16 last season, but he always seems to resort back to old faithful when he’s playing his best.

Another interesting note: Based on the photos from Dubai, Stenson’s new 3 wood appears to have a bonded-hosel design instead of the adjustable hosel used on the retail version of the GBB Epic. That gives it an appearance at address that’s more similar to the Diablo Octane Tour, which also has a bonded hosel. Stenson is also using his old shaft in the new 3 wood, a Grafalloy Blue (X-Flex).

Related: See what GolfWRX Members are saying about Stenson’s 3 wood switch in our forum. 

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58 Comments

  1. joe

    Feb 22, 2018 at 3:46 pm

    I found a Titleist 983K with the same shaft in Stiff for $9.99 in the used bin at my local box store. Yes, I almost jumped at it and spilled the whole bucket of clubs over, and I did ask any questions, just went up and bought it, and the Titleist head was in Excellent condition, right from the first swing the thing launches long and straight!!!! Woohoo…selling a bunch of drivers on the ‘Bay now…I just bought an awesome driver for $9.99, hope to use this for 10 years.

    • jmvargas

      Jun 2, 2018 at 9:10 am

      he is still using the same shaft…as they say the shaft is the club’s engine..

  2. Dave R

    Feb 8, 2017 at 8:30 pm

    Why Change is it like a rest?

  3. Miuralovechild

    Feb 5, 2017 at 3:51 am

    It looks like he has gone with an Oban Kiyoshi tour ltd. in his 5 wood as well as the driver. I wonder why he wont put that in his 3 wood as well. Anyone? Quality wise, consistently, and feel have to be so much better with the Oban. I’ve heard that his 3 wood shaft plays like an XXX.

  4. Good wood

    Feb 3, 2017 at 8:52 pm

    I talked to Gareth the other day. He’s done with the diablo. He’s donating it to the HOF in Sweden.

  5. Tom54

    Feb 3, 2017 at 6:20 pm

    The fact that Henrik is still using his old shaft tells you all you need to know about the switch. I’m sure the new model is better but unless it has the same feel it won’t seem to be in his mind. Probably staring at the familiar blue shaft is all he needs

  6. M.S.

    Feb 3, 2017 at 5:05 pm

    It’s temporary only. Henrik stated this to the main Swedish golf site:
    -“…Most likely the Diablo is back when I get home, this new one is OK but I do know where I have Old Faithful….” (my translation)
    The truth is that during practice the face on the Diablo caved in, and without a spare head the Epic had to suffice.

  7. StillBoard

    Feb 3, 2017 at 4:16 pm

    And not once did you mention his Olympic medal.

  8. larry fox

    Feb 3, 2017 at 9:47 am

    I Love seeing you guys go at it! Such passion

  9. Mike

    Feb 3, 2017 at 8:59 am

    You can still get the Grafalloy blue pro launch from Sweden, I’ve got 3, one in my 9 degree GBB driver and the other two in the 3 & 5 woods, there bloody good at getting it up there, and a nice feel to boot.

    • TR1PTIK

      Feb 3, 2017 at 10:42 am

      Unless they’re simply named differently overseas, the Pro Launch is not the same shaft. There was only one Grafalloy Blue when it was originally released and it looks exactly as pictured. They later did a re-release of the Blue with a white shaft and Blue badge. They also released two Pro-Launch versions – a Red and a Blue.

    • jgpl001

      Feb 3, 2017 at 1:08 pm

      Feel?

      One thing the Grafalloy Blue doesn’t have is feel, it’s a stout, solid lump, it just bombs the ball low with low spin, excellent if you have th SS though…I did 10 years ago and loved it then

      • TR1PTIK

        Feb 3, 2017 at 4:20 pm

        If he’s talking about the Pro Launch version I’d agree that it does have decent feel. Until the middle of last season, I gamed the original Blue and it absolutely was a board. If I could have controlled the clubface better I would have stayed with it though because I could definitely hit some bombs (my version of bombs anyway).

      • indyvic

        Feb 3, 2017 at 11:49 pm

        I bought the original from a reputable Golf Store on the advice of the club fitter and had it installed in my driver. Took it to the range, never felt a thing. Took it back within an hour. jgpl001 is correct “if you have the swing speed.”

      • Ommmmmm

        Feb 4, 2017 at 3:19 am

        It’s the best shaft ever made, perfect feel and load, stiff as a telephone pole, you can rip it without it ever moving. Only the strong need to use it. I love it

  10. DAVID NATHAN WEEKS

    Feb 3, 2017 at 7:17 am

    The diablo will be back soon enough.

    • Scott

      Feb 3, 2017 at 4:37 pm

      This. I’d bet good money that by the Masters he has the Diablo back in the bag, and is right now willing to try the Epic as part of his contract to help Callaway move product.

  11. BooBunkie

    Feb 3, 2017 at 3:11 am

    Well, that 3 wood may not make it to The Mahztaz, and neither will Eldrick! Dude just bailed on the tourney in Do Buy! Sheesh, his walking yesterday looked painful. Well, whata’ya think, is that a
    wrap for 2017?

  12. MBA-J

    Feb 2, 2017 at 10:10 pm

    “Legendary?” Strong language for a dude with one major and eight total wins. The overemphasis of marginal accomplishments have turned various sports halls of fame into “halls of ‘very good.'”

    • Alvaro

      Feb 3, 2017 at 7:22 am

      Well, when you have made almost 40M$ playing golf, won The Open, 19 professional wins, The FedEx Cup, The Race to Dubai twice while hitting 3w 80% of the time and sometimes outdriving peers hitting a drive, you can consider that a legendary 3 wood, yes.

    • TR1PTIK

      Feb 3, 2017 at 10:38 am

      You obviously only watch the PGA Tour. I feel sorry for you…

  13. S Hitter

    Feb 2, 2017 at 9:20 pm

    Same shaft though, eh? lol can’t get rid of that shaft

  14. Dill Pickleson

    Feb 2, 2017 at 9:12 pm

    god help us.

  15. The dude

    Feb 2, 2017 at 8:30 pm

    When is it not considered a 3 wood…..since his “3 wood” is said to be ~ 12deg…

    • Jim

      Feb 3, 2017 at 2:27 pm

      Exactly – for some reason we speak of woods only in odd numbers these days …1,3,5, etc. Historically a 12 degree club would have been a 2 wood; more recently a “strong 3”.

      • McPickens

        Feb 6, 2017 at 1:17 am

        wouldn’t that be more like a “spoon” or a “brassie”? I also do not like the odd numbers only. I currently game a 16 deg. fairway wood. I would call it a 4 wood, but no, today that would be a 3 wood HL.

  16. BooBunkie

    Feb 2, 2017 at 5:12 pm

    We’ll see if the 3 wood makes it to the Mahztaz!!

  17. Branson Reynolds

    Feb 2, 2017 at 5:04 pm

    This is why i like when guys don’t have equipment contracts. I like to see what they actually like to play with.

    • Golfer

      Feb 2, 2017 at 7:11 pm

      He does have a contract…

      • S Hitter

        Feb 2, 2017 at 9:19 pm

        lol yeah isn’t he with Callaway?

        • Branson Reynolds

          Feb 3, 2017 at 9:01 am

          Damn fellas, give me the benefit of the doubt on being a complete moron. I was saying that Stenson switching from the ol’ trusty to the latest and greatest($$$) is why i like no equipment contracts. I like to see what people actually want to use, not what they get paid to use.

    • Crash Test Dummy

      Feb 2, 2017 at 9:37 pm

      He probably doesn’t have a shaft contract with Grafalloy. The Grafalloy Blue is a really interesting choice because it is a pretty old shaft. It is a good shaft though. I think if he had a shaft contract, he would probably be using one of the new premium shafts.

  18. westphi

    Feb 2, 2017 at 4:54 pm

    We’ll see if it stays. One tournament is hardly a “commitment.”

  19. jgpl001

    Feb 2, 2017 at 4:24 pm

    Totally agree

    If he keeps it the bag it would be a massive endorsement – I might even get one

    His 3 wood is as important as an arm or a finger to him

  20. Golfraven

    Feb 2, 2017 at 4:23 pm

    Epic fail!

  21. Kevin B

    Feb 2, 2017 at 4:07 pm

    When you find that one 3-wood you can hit no matter what, you keep it! I am upset I made that mistake many years ago and thought, newer was better. I have now found one that I think I can keep until it breaks, an 07 burner 3W.

    • 3 metal stinger

      Feb 2, 2017 at 5:02 pm

      Thanks for letting us know. Jk no one cares, hold this L again

      • Kevin B

        Feb 2, 2017 at 7:33 pm

        Thanks.

        • 3 metal stinger

          Feb 2, 2017 at 8:02 pm

          L

          • Kevin B

            Feb 2, 2017 at 8:03 pm

            Thanks again, but I think the only person taking an “L” as you call it, is yourself. What grown man follows around another man on a golf forum, to troll? I think its hilarious so I hope you keep them coming, but I really wonder how pathetic your life must be. Anyways, thanks again for the laugh!

      • Tony Rich

        Feb 3, 2017 at 12:52 am

        You’re a waste a space 3 metal….he loves his 3W, I love my Titleist PT 13*, the one Tiger could played and could use right now. Got to TMZ if you want to be tough.

  22. Juan

    Feb 2, 2017 at 3:44 pm

    The Epic fairways haven’t been getting nearly the level of buzz as the drivers, but if Stenson sticks with this one, that’ll be a pretty solid endorsement.

  23. Branson Reynolds

    Feb 2, 2017 at 3:34 pm

    There’s a small handful of people in the world that find this interesting, and that’s why I love golfwrx. Because they’re all here.

  24. Progolfer

    Feb 2, 2017 at 3:28 pm

    They’re either paying him through the nose to play it, or he’s getting driver-like numbers out of it. Either way, I wouldn’t doubt seeing his trusty rusty back in the bag before Augusta…

    • TR1PTIK

      Feb 2, 2017 at 4:08 pm

      While I’m sure there’s stock lying around somewhere in a corner at Callaway HQ, you’ll notice that the shaft he has bonded to the Epic is the older (original) version of the Grafalloy Blue which makes me wonder if he didn’t actually pull the shaft from his Diablo Octane.

      • WilCox

        Feb 2, 2017 at 4:53 pm

        No, Stenson liked the original Blue so much that he stashed some away when Grafalloy moved on to the newer versions. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Diablo back in the bag at Augusta.

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Tour News

The Masters Tour Truck Report: Bryson’s new driver, Adam Scott’s new irons, RIP Freddie’s Squareway

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Welcome to this Masters edition of the Tour Truck Report. Normally, there aren’t many major equipment changes the week of a major golf tournament. However, Bryson James Aldrich DeChambeau—and we mean this in the best possible way—is anything but normal.

Thus, it’s not totally surprising to see DeChambeau testing a new Cobra RadSpeed Prototype driver at Augusta National.

Here’s what Cobra VP of R&D Tom Olsavsky had to say about the new weapon.

“The big thing here is speed, and Bryson has a lot of it. To help build a driver specifically tuned for his dynamics, we removed the adjustable weights to save mass from the housings and have focused on internal changes to help him reduce miss-hit variance.”

”The other thing we did was increase the face thickness of his drivers to prolong durability. Bryson hits a lot of golf balls, and with the amount that he hits both in standard practice and his speed training sessions, we wanted to help eliminate any durability concerns. We also suggest that he rotates the heads during sessions—and the adjustability in the hosel makes that easier to do.”

”Now speaking of the face, we specifically removed the Infinity Face on this new head, because it allows us to change the face radii easier and reduce the toe radius to help with his toe misses.”

More on the smattering of other pre-Masters equipment switches below.

Titleist

Adam Scott has been testing 620 MB irons for the past few weeks, according to our source. There’s a good chance they go in play Thursday. The Australian is also debating between a Vokey SM8 60-06K and 60-A.

Callaway

Phil Mickelson is reportedly considering putting with a glove on this week, for what that’s worth.

Jon Rahm continues to play Epic Speed Sub Zero Prototype 3 and 5-woods, as well as a prototype Stroke Lab steel putter shaft.

Photo via Callaway’s Johnny Wunder.

TaylorMade

After a week in the SIM2 Max, Dustin Johnson has returned to his 10.5-degree SIM Max. Fujikura Speeder 661 X, of course.

Matthew Wolf has a new Project X HZRDUS Smoke Black RDX 60 TX shaft in his 9-degree SIM2.

Cobra

Sources confirmed Bryson DeChambeau will put the Cobra RadSpeed Prototype in play.

Ping

Lee Westwood has swapped his hybrid for a Ping G425 7-wood.

Cameron Champ has switched from a Ventus Blue back to the Project X HZRDUS Smoke Green 70 6.5 TX he played last year.

Matthew Fitzpatrick tested a G410 9-wood. Unclear whether he’s putting it in play.

In a case of tailoring equipment to the course, Joaquin Niemann added loft to his G425 3-wood to hit a high draw at the downhill 495-yard 10th at Augusta.

Others, free agents

In other news, we’re hearing Fred Couples may bench his beloved 2008 vintage Callaway FT-i Squareway 3-wood for a TaylorMade SIM2 Max. We’ll have to see what Boom Boom booms his 3-wood shots with on Thursday. He may also have his old Bridgestone irons in play.

Matt Kuchar demoed a LAGP putter shaft with a SuperStroke grip in a new Bettinardi BB8 Tri-Plane putter. He has also reportedly decreased the loft from seven degrees to four on the wand as he is using a new armlock putting method.

Collin Morikawa is testing Vokey SM8 60-04L with reduced ribbon for Augusta’s firm, tight lies.

The legend Jose Maria Olazabal has a new Vokey SM8 58-08M in the bag.

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Valero Texas Open Tour Truck Report: Stenson back in Diablo, Rickie’s limited-edition driver, latest AutoFlex-er

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With the Masters next week, players who have punched their tickets to Augusta National will be making the proverbial “final tune-ups” to gear and games at TPC San Antonio.

Those who are without an iconic Masters invitation card have but one path into the field of the first major of the year: a Valero Texas Open victory.

Accordingly, there’s a whiff of desperation blowing in the Texas wind. Even players who can count themselves among the fortunate next week are searching—such as Henrik Stenson, who is returning to his beloved Callaway Diablo Octane Tour 3-wood.

As a reminder, you can check out all our photos from the Valero Texas Open here

Callaway

Phil Mickelson is testing a new prototype version of the PM Grind wedge. Unfortunately, Callaway is mum on any further details!

Also on the Phil phront: Mickelson put a Fujikura Ventus Black 6 TX shaft in his Mavrik driver.

As mentioned in the introduction, Henrik Stenson has shelved his Mavrik 3-wood in favor of his immortal beloved, Diablo Octane Tour 3-wood.

Stenson is also gaming an Odyssey 2-Ball Ten putter.

Branden Grace is testing an AutoFlex shaft.

Titleist

Bernd Wiesberger is testing a new TSi2 13.5-degree fairway wood with a TPT Hi 14 shaft (he’s currently gaming a 15-degree TSi2).

Lanto Griffin moved into a TSi3 (10 degrees, D4 SureFit setting).

Chesson Hadley is testing a TSi3 (10 degrees). He’s seeing better control and increased ball speed. (Hadley is currently in a 10-degree TSi2).

An update, of sorts—and an aesthetically pleasing one—on Byeong Hun An’s 60-T

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Aaron Dill (@vokeywedgerep)


Cleveland/Srixon

Graeme McDowell is testing Mitsubishi MMT iron shafts.

Cobra

Rickie Fowler has the limited edition Cobra Palm Tree Crew (PTC) RadSpeed XB in play.

Jason Dufner is testing Mitsubishi MMT iron shafts in his King Cobra Forged CB irons.

Scott Garrison (SEG Golf)

Brian Gay had a KBS Hybrid shaft installed in his TaylorMade SIM2

KJ Choi added a LAGP shaft to his Cobra RadSpeed driver.

Gary Woodland had new KBS Hi-Rev 2.0 Black wedge shafts installed

Sam Bennett’s Bettinardi BB8 raw putter got a LAGP putter shaft and SuperStroke grip.

Free agents

Charl Schwartzel has his old Nike wedges back in the bag.

Equipment free agent extraordinaire Ryan Moore swapped out his Mizuno MP-18 irons for Ping Blueprint.

As a reminder, you can check out all our photos from the Valero Texas Open here

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Tour Photo Galleries

Most interesting photos from Tuesday at the 2021 Valero Texas Open – Part 2

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This week, the PGA Tour is at TPC San Antonio on the Oaks Course for the Valero Texas Open. GolfWRX was on-site Tuesday to catch a glimpse into the bags of some of the world’s top golfers.

The field of 144 is getting ready to battle starting Thursday for the $7.7 million purse, with $1.386 million going to the winner. The tournament is also the last event where players can qualify for The Masters, just like Canadian Corey Conners did last year.

Don’t forget you can check out all our image galleries in the GolfWRX Tour Equipment forum.

Hunter Mahan going “G”

OSU—Oklahoma State University—is a golf powerhouse. Golfers from OSU who have gone on to great professional careers include Charles Howell III, Rickie Fowler, Matthew Wolff, Viktor Hovland, and of course one of the “OG’s” Hunter Mahan who also happens to by playing a Ping combo set with a new G425 long iron.
Yeah, I shoehorned all that in there.

Charles Howell’s bag is a treasure trove of gadgets

Charles’ bag includes an Orange Whip, alignment sticks, extra alignment sticks, extra driver shafts, and multiple putters. This is why gearhead golfers love CH3.

Phil loves to flex

 

Phil Mickelson will always be a showman, and this week as he tunes up for Augusta National he was flexing all kinds of gear on the range at TPC San Antonio.

  • Three drivers in the bag
  • Custom Callaway alignment stick cover
  • Double launch monitor/iPad set up
  • His own “Air Phil” logo on his shoes
  • And how can we forget those calves?

The second coming of the 2-Ball is upon us

I can remember it like yesterday. It was the summer of 2001, I just got a brand new set of irons, I was working at a golf course and playing every single day, and the Odyssey 2-Ball had just been released. That putter was everywhere, and 20 years later in 2021, I have those same feelings all over again—minus the whole “working at a golf course and playing every day” thing.

The new Odyssey 2-Ball Ten is all over professional golf right now, and we spotted more than one on the putting green in Texas.

Hideki gonna Hideki

Here is your weekly reminder that Hideki Matsuyama “out gears” every other golfer on tour when it comes to the weekly testing of driver shafts and putters.

Branden Grace is looking to go “Auto”

Branden Grace, how sweet the swing,
So flowing and so free,
The AutoFlex shaft, he is trying,
Might be the final key….for him to win for the second time this season.

Branden already won this year at the Puerto Rico Open and in Texas this week he was on the range deep into testing with the AutoFlex shaft in his Callaway Epic Speed Triple Diamond.

Japan forged Apex MB’s still going strong

The very limited edition “Japan forged” Callaway Apex MB’s which were originally made exclusively for Francesco Molinari have still been finding a place on the tour—and my goodness, they look fantastic.

Fluff is like the Energizer Bunny

Famous PGA Tour caddy Mike “Fluff” Cowan is 73 years young, looking fit, and still an absolute boss!

You don’t always need a staff bag

Luke Donald was seen grinding away on the range, and lucky for his caddie, Luke’s rig has been made a little bit lighter this week by swapping out the traditional staff bag with a tour stand bag instead.

It’s True, seriously

Former Ping staffer turned free agent, turned Scratch Golf staffer and part-owner, turned free agent, turned PXG staffer, turned free agent once again Ryan Moore has been playing a mixed bag that included Ping Blueprint irons, and an ever-changing array of wedges and woods.

The one constant for Ryan is his dedication to his True Linkswear shoes (a company he co-owns with his brother), and his love for his alma mater UNLV. This is why Ryan Moore is a True GolfWRX gear head legend!

It’s BACK!!!

It’s no secret Henrik Stenson has been struggling recently on the course, and like many golfers, it appears that he is looking to right the ship, or at least free it from the banks of the Suez Canal of poor play by going back to his faithful Diablo Tour strong 3-wood.

The mega combo set

Canadian Adam Hadwin isn’t well known as being a gearhead in the traditional sense, but it doesn’t mean he isn’t afraid to mix things up. His iron set is a combo of three different models which include the Apex MB, Apex TCB, and an older model Apex UT.

The graphite godfather is in the field

Everyone made a big fuss when Bryson went to all graphite in his clubs, but the true modern graphite iron shaft godfather is KJ Choi. He has used a variety of graphite iron shafts going back to 2003 and he has a yet-to-be-identified set in his Srixon ZX7’s.

You know, maybe there is something to graphite iron shafts and weight lifting, since it has been well documented KJ Choi was a competitive powerlifter in his teens before turning his attention to golf. So before we give Bryson all the credit for beefing up and using graphite shafts, we should remember KJ was doing it before Bryson was in diapers.

Don’t forget you can check out all our image galleries in the GolfWRX Tour Equipment forum.

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