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It’s Official: Rory McIlroy is with TaylorMade

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While Rory McIlroy didn’t specify exactly what he meant in his tweet at 11:02 a.m. Tuesday morning, “Final tweaks are made,” it was clear from the the presence of a custom TaylorMade Staff Bag in the photo that he had signed an endorsement contract with golf equipment manufacturer TaylorMade.

Minutes later, the official details from TaylorMade hit inboxes. Rory had signed a long-term contract with the company, and he would switch to a full bag of TaylorMade clubs, including a TaylorMade golf ball.

Earlier this year, it appeared that McIlroy was primed to signed an equipment contract with a different company. He was using Callaway’s new Epic metal woods and muscleback irons, as well as a custom Odyssey putter. There was also some Titleist equipment in his bag: the company’s new wedges and its Pro V1x golf ball. By Masters time, McIlroy had switched out his Callaway fairway woods for new TaylorMade models. 

McIlroy’s equipment saga was the result of Nike’s decision to exit the golf equipment business in August, which left the four-time major champion an “equipment free agent.” He said he would take his time — maybe as much as a year — to find the absolutely best equipment for his game. Nine months later, the search has ended with TaylorMade.

“My future rests firmly in my hands,” McIlroy said. “That’s why I choose TaylorMade. I’ve been around the game long enough and have tested most clubs on the market, but I have never been as excited about equipment as I am right now.” 

McIlroy’s TaylorMade Clubs

Rory_McIlroy_WITB_2017_Feat

  • 2017 M2 Driver (9.5 degrees)
  • 2017 M2 Tour Fairway (13.5 degrees)
  • 2017 M2 Tour Fairway (19 degrees)
  • P750 Tour Proto Irons (3-4),- “Rors Proto” Irons (5-9)
  • Milled Grind Wedges (48, 54, 60 degrees)
  • TP5x Golf Ball / #22

Related: See all the TaylorMade clubs McIlroy is using this week at The Players

TaylorMade’s press release about the signing of McIlroy is filled with the typical hyperbole, and rightfully so for a company that currently has equipment deals with the top-3 ranked golfers in the world (Dustin Johnson, McIlroy and Jason Day), but there’s also some interesting tidbits.

Screen Shot 2017-05-09 at 12.25.16 PM

For one, TaylorMade has designed a custom set of irons for McIroy called the “Rors Proto” that he will use as his 5-9 irons. And for those who think they can swing like McIlroy, TaylorMade passed along his launch monitor data with his new TaylorMade 2017 M2 driver.

246590-rorsnumbers-467282-large-1494277485-1

  • Ball Speed: 181 mph
  • Launch Angle: 12.3 degrees
  • Spin Rate: 2119 rpm
  • Average Carry Distance: 315.8 yards
  • Average Total Distance: 338.5 yards.
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32 Comments

  1. The Real Swanson

    May 10, 2017 at 4:26 pm

    Tosser.

  2. King of Carlsbad

    May 10, 2017 at 11:40 am

    Can Rory still collect when TM goes bankrupt?

  3. Teddy

    May 9, 2017 at 9:02 pm

    I guess the Epic driver wasn’t so “Epic” for Rory…

  4. H

    May 9, 2017 at 7:52 pm

    Let the TM dominance-Titleist take down finally come to its conclusion!

  5. Wenz

    May 9, 2017 at 7:36 pm

    Fairly sure his driver is 8.5 stamped with the actual loft being 8.25 as written in sharpie.

  6. Tony Rich

    May 9, 2017 at 6:53 pm

    Sellout……while he is chasing the money everywhere he goes…guys like Willett, Stenson and a guy named Walker are winning majors. He dominated tournaments with his Titleist sticks. He has become a question mark since joining Nike and now this. Stats said he hit 20% of his fairways last year using Taylor Made low CG driver, doubt he will improve on that.

  7. Moses

    May 9, 2017 at 5:36 pm

    I didn’t know Rory was a “6 time” major champion.

  8. Judge Smells

    May 9, 2017 at 4:50 pm

    I heard Wilson was in there right until they discussed the compensation involved

  9. Greg V

    May 9, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    Looks like he’s opening his left hand at the top of the swing, in the picture. Could be trouble, although Bobby Jones got away with it.

  10. AndyUK

    May 9, 2017 at 4:12 pm

    Watched the live interview with him earlier today where he stated he was excited to play the TP5 ball as it was much more suited to his game and windy conditions compared to the Pro V. Said he spend 10 days of intensive testing. Kick in the teeth to Titleist, which is no bad thing.

  11. Lewi

    May 9, 2017 at 3:44 pm

    Looks to me, he has sold out to the highest bidder, used callaway through choice and the brand has boomed, Taylormade had no choice but to buy him to try and reverse the trend.
    Rory said he was staying club free for at least a year, amazing how money talks and changes people’s minds. Money obviously means more to him than titles

  12. golfraven

    May 9, 2017 at 3:38 pm

    You would think that Tiger and Rory now come as a pack of two. You cannot sign them up seperately. This is a big hit to Callaway and somehow the Epic line is loosing the charm since more and more players not hitting those drivers anymore. Wonder how much Tiger invested in TM and maybe Rory is joining to bail him out or both will take over TM. I guess Tiger will need to suck it up if Rory gets his signature clubs (irons and maybe wedges in the future).

  13. Tourgrinder

    May 9, 2017 at 2:25 pm

    Can somebody with more TaylorMade insight than me please let me in on the secret as to why more pros seem to be gravitating toward the M2 rather than the M1. Even those with an M1 driver seem to choose M2 fairway models and hybrids. But…the M2 driver seems to be preference for pros such as DJ, Rahm, Rose, Tiger Woods, and now McIlroy, plus many, many others. I’ve probably overlooked a boatload of other pros using the M2 rather than the M1. I thought the M1 was the flagship model and the M2 was the game-improvement model, if you could call it that.

    • SH

      May 9, 2017 at 2:40 pm

      We all want to find fairways and the M2 is a tad more forgiving for most. Besides, with all the hot melting, it’s not like these heads don’t have weight near the front

  14. Ibo

    May 9, 2017 at 1:06 pm

    I’d be excited too while pocketing $10M a year on top of $20M more from Nike.

    • Aaron

      May 9, 2017 at 6:49 pm

      This is technically inaccurate. Nike will supplement whatever Taylormade pays Rory to equal the amount they would have paid him (had he continued using their clubs). He’s technically making the same amount of money, just from two companies instead of one.

      • Earl

        May 16, 2017 at 12:31 am

        Well THAT is technically incorrect. For every amount above what Nike are paying RM, they will take “a percentage” out of his pay. So he is earning more.. just not the full 10 mil more.

  15. King of Carlsbad

    May 9, 2017 at 12:58 pm

    Hard to understand how TM has the budget for these signings. They are losing close to 9 digits a year and can’t find a buyer. Odd…

  16. Chris

    May 9, 2017 at 12:48 pm

    Taylormade’s player staff bill must be huge now, Rory, DJ, Jason Day, Sergio, Justin Rose…….

  17. chinchbugs

    May 9, 2017 at 12:44 pm

    Can Nike just buy TaylorMade already….

  18. Philip

    May 9, 2017 at 12:37 pm

    Sure he is playing the best equipment for his game, and it has nothing to do with him selling himself to the highest bidder … there is always more swampland for sale :o)

  19. Tom1

    May 9, 2017 at 12:25 pm

    exciting times……

  20. Eric

    May 9, 2017 at 12:18 pm

    He is using TMAG Proto Blades (saw a pic on instagram). Who knows who made them. Probably Miura. Just kidding, I have no idea.

  21. Soggy golfer

    May 9, 2017 at 12:13 pm

    I don’t see him playing TM irons maybe with the exception of the tour preferred blades. I feel like he has always played a firmer feeling iron and the TM P series is extremely soft. I know some really good players that tried them after a firmer feeling set (myself included) and it was counter productive.

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Equipment

American Express, Abu Dhabi Golf Championship Tour Truck Report: BK to Srixon? MCA has a ton of new shafts, Rickie goes graphite

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TaylorMade

Most of the big action for Team TaylorMade is taking place in Abu Dhabi with Rory and Tommy in the field. After extensive weeks of testing, this is what they have in the bag this week

Tommy Fleetwood WITB

Driver: TaylorMade SIM2 (10.5 degrees @8.5)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana DF 70 TX (tipped 1 inch, 44.75 inches)

3-wood: TaylorMade SIM2 Rocket 3 (13.5 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana DF 70 TX (42.5 inches)

5-wood: TaylorMade SIM2 (19 degrees @18.5)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana DF 80 TX (41.25 inches)

Irons: TaylorMade P7TF (4-PW) 
Shafts: Project X Rifle 6.5

Wedges: Callaway MD5 Jaws Raw (52-10S, [email protected], 60-08T)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue  S400

Putter: Odyssey White Hot Pro 3
Grip: SuperStroke Mid Slim 2.0

Grips: Golf Pride Tour Velvet Cord (D, 3W, 5W, 7W, and wedges), Iomic Sticky @12:30 (irons)

Ball: TaylorMade TP5x ’21 Proto

Rory McIlroy WITB

Driver: TaylorMade SIM2 (10.5 degrees @8.5)
Shaft: Fujikura Ventus Black 6 X (45.5 inches, 59.25 lie, D4)

3-wood: TaylorMade SIM2 (15 degrees @13.5)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro White 80 TX (43.25 inches, 58 lie, D4)

5-wood: TaylorMade SIM2 (19 degrees @ 18.25)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro White 90 TX

Irons: TaylorMade P7MB (4-PW)
Shaft: Project X Rifle 7.0 (6.5 in PW)

Wedges: TaylorMade MG2 (52-09SB, 56-12SB, 60-08LB)
Shaft: Project X Rifle 6.5

Putter: TaylorMade Spider X Copper (34.25 inches, 2.5 loft, 70 lie)

Ball: 2021 TaylorMade TP5x (#22)

Grips: Golf Pride Tour Velvet Cord (58R 1+1, logo down)

Matthew Wolff WITB

Driver: TaylorMade SIM2 Max (10.5 degrees @9)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD TP 7 TX

3-wood: TaylorMade SIM2 Titanium (15 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD XC 8 X

Irons: TaylorMade P7MC (3-PW)
Shafts: Project X 6.5

Wedges: TaylorMade MG2 (50-09SB, 56-12SB, 60-09LB)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100

Grips: Golf Pride ZGrip Cord (+3 double-sided tape)

Putter: TaylorMade Spider X Proto (33 inches, lie at 70, 3.5 loft, D4)
Grip: TaylorMade Red/Black

Ball: TaylorMade TP5 ’21 PIX

Other TM news 

Doc Redman put the new Aldila Ascent Red 70 TX in his SIM2 (60 TX pictured below).

Sepp Straka put the new MCA Kaili White 60 TX in his SIM2.

Titleist

The Fujikura Ventus Red trend continues with Russell Henley moving from his KBS TD to Ventus Red 7 X in a TSi4.

Tyler Duncan was testing a custom K Grind lob wedge. He was inspired by Kevin Na’s win and looking at Aaron Dill’s pics on IG. Can you blame him?

Justin Thomas (Abu Dhabi) moved out of Ventus Red 6 TX (tipped 1 inch) in his TSi3 (9 degrees) into a Graphite Design Tour AD IZ 6 X. According to my source, JT was looking for a specific feel with the driver and also one that dialed in the launch windows on a little cutter he has been working on. We will keep you updated if it sticks or if any of the info changes.

Callaway

Akshay Bhatia put the new Apex Utility Prototype in play with a KBS Tour Hybrid Prototype 105 X shaft. Shay also put the new Epic Max LS driver (9 degrees @8.5) with a Project X HZRDUS Smoke Green “Hulk” 75G 6.5 TX.

Kevin Na tested Callaway’s Epic Max LS (9 degrees) with a Graphite Design Tour AD GP 6 X. No need to panic, that original Epic gamer ain’t goin’ anywhere till it keels over and dies.

Phil Mickelson was spotted testing a Fujikura Ventus Black 6 X shaft in a Mavrik Sub Zero. Not confirmed if it will indeed go in play.

Ping

Scott Stallings (non-staff) put a Ping G425 LST (10.5 degrees @11) driver in play with an MCA Kaili White 60 TX (tipped 1 inch @45.25).

Abraham Ancer (non-staff) also converted to the Ping G425 LST (9 degrees @7.75) with an MCA Tensei AV Raw Blue 65 TX (tipped 1 inch @45).

Cameron Champ lost his clubs en route to Palm Desert and the Ping Tour squad had to build a brand new set of sticks from scratch, top to bottom. Thankfully the gamers showed up and Cam was left with a fresh new backup set.

Srixon

Rumor has it that former world No. 1 Brooks Koepka has inked a deal with Cleveland/Srixon to play its Z-Star XV ball, ZX7 irons and Cleveland Zip Core Wedges. Koepka showed up to Palm Desert with a new set of irons with Tour Issue X100 shafts, a Srixon utility, and his trusty Nike Vapor Pro 3-iron and TaylorMade M5 driver with an MCA Diamana D+ Limited 70 TX shaft. We will continue to update to confirm or deny the rumors. Awesome news for Srixon and BK if true.

Cobra

Rickie Fowler made some significant changes to his bag coming into Palm Desert. The Cobra staffer put the REV33 MB’s back in the bag this time with a fresh set of Mitsubishi Chemical MMT 125 TX graphite shafts. Fowler, who has tested quite a few different shafts over the years, going from KBS C-Taper S+ to Tour Issue X100, loved the integrity of the MMT’s.

In testing, they tried a set that was soft stepped as well as the current set that is straight in. The overall takeaway was integrity on mis-hits and hitting a very specific flight window all while keeping spin the same. Fowler also had the new Cobra RadSpeed Driver in the bag with a Mitsubishi Tensei Orange 60 TX shaft.

Jason Dufner put the new Aldila Tour Concept 60 TX in his Rad Speed Driver (70 TX pictured below).

Free Agents

Scottie Scheffler finally swapped out his TaylorMade P730’s for a brand new set of P7TW’s (5-PW). Like his older set, they come fully loaded with True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100 shafts. Scottie did keep his Srixon Utility 3-iron and Z785 4-iron in the bag, however.

Newly minted free agent Ryan Moore showed up to the Desert with a bag only a true gear junkie could love. The six-company bag featured a TaylorMade SIM Driver, TSi2 3-wood, Srixon hybrids, Mizuno MP-18 irons, and Cleveland Zip Core wedges.

Paul Casey put the Titleist TSi3 driver in the bag with a Mitsubishi Diamana D+ Limited 70 TX shaft.

KBS seeded out a new Proto graphite shaft. The yet-to-be-named new edition to the TD line has a higher modulus material on the bottom third to increase stability and lower torque. The feedback with the original TD from players with fast speeds: it needed to be stiffer. This “newer version,” which will probably only come in the category 4 and 5, is very firm.

Patrick Reed went back to his Ping G400 LST driver—that’s all on that.

 

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Tour Photo Galleries

Photos from the 2021 American Express

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GolfWRX is live at The 2020 American Express as the tour returns to the mainland United States following its Hawaii Swing.

Brooks Koepka, Patrick Reed, Patrick Cantlay, and of course the tournament’s host, Phil Mickelson, will all tee it up in La Quinta, California, this week.

We have an abundance of special galleries as new gear floods the tour as players return to the continental U.S. for the first time in 2021, as well as general galleries for your perusal.

Special galleries

General galleries

See what GolfWRXers are saying in the forums. 

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News

New troops: PXG announces additions to tour staff for 2021

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Earlier this week, it was the Brooklyn Nets making big news in the NBA with player acquisitions. Now in the golf world, it’s PXG, who is also adding to its roster with a number of new players on both the PGA Tour and the Korn Ferry Tour.

The newest members of the PXG roster, which they like to call “troops” are

  • Jim Herman
  • Sung Kang
  • Danny Lee
  • Luke List
  • Henrik Norlander
  • Adam Schenk
  • Kyle Stanley
  • Hudson Swafford

Speaking to the switch, Sung Kang said

“PXG makes some of the best performing equipment in golf. I know, with the support of Bob Parsons, his team, and PXG clubs, that I am going to be able to take my game to the next level!”

The professionals from the Korn Ferry Tour joining current PXG staffers Scott Langley and Grant Hirschman include

  • Kevin Dougherty
  • Nicolas Echavarria
  • KK Limbhaust
  • Justin Lower
  • Seth Reeves
  • Charlie Saxon

“Between grit and their love of the game, every one of these new players brings something special to the course. We are proud to welcome them all to the PXG Troops and honored that they have chosen to put PXG in play.” -PXG founder and CEO Bob Parsons.

These players join a long list of PXG staff players, which also includes LPGA Tour players Lydia Ko, Katherine Kirk, Austin Ernst, Christia Kim, Brittany Lang, Haley Moore, Celine Boutie, Ryann O’Toole, Gerina Piller, Jennifer Song, Linnea Ström, and Mina Harigae.

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