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Opinion & Analysis

Could Dollar Driver Club change the way we think about owning equipment?



There’s something about golfers that draws the attention of, for lack of a better word, snake-oil salesmen. Whether it’s an as-seen-on-TV ad for a driver that promises pure distance and also fixes your power slice, or the subscription boxes that supposedly send hundreds of dollars worth of apparel for a fraction of the price, there always seems to be something out there that looks too good to be true.

Discerning golfers, who I would argue are more cynical than anything, understand that you get what you pay for. To get the newest driver that also works for your game, it may take a $150 club fitting, then a $400 head, and a shaft that can run anywhere from $100 up to $300-$400. After the fitting and buying process, you’ve made close to a thousand dollar investment in one golf club, and unless you’re playing money games with friends who have some deep pockets, it’s tough to say what the return on that investment actually is. When it’s all said and done, you have less than a year before that driver is considered old news by the standard of most manufacturers’ release schedules.

What makes a driver ‘good’ to most amateur golfers who take their game seriously is a cross section of performance, price, and hubris. As for that last metric, I think most people would be lying if they say it doesn’t feel good having the latest and greatest club in the bag. Being the envy of your group is fun, even if it only lasts until you snap hook your first drive out of bounds.

As prices of general release equipment have increased to nearly double what it was retailing at only 10 years ago, the ability to play the newest equipment is starting to become out of the question for many amateur golfers.

Enter Tyler Mycoskie, an avid, single digit handicap golfer (and the brother of Tom’s shoes founder, Blake Mycoskie). Tyler’s experience with purchasing golf equipment and his understanding of uniquely successful business models collided, which led him to start the Dollar Driver Club. With a name and logo that is a tongue in cheek allusion to the company that has shaken up the men’s skincare industry, the company seeks to offer a new way of thinking about purchasing golf equipment without completely reinventing the wheel of the model that has seen success in industries such as car leasing and purchasing razors.

The company does exactly what its name says. They offer the newest, top of the line driver and shaft combinations for lease at a cost of about a dollar per day.

The economics of the model seem too good to be true. When you purchase a driver, you are charged $30 plus $11 for shipping and it’s $30 per month from then on. You can upgrade your driver at no extra cost each year and your driver is eligible for upgrade or swap after 90 days of being a member. After a year, the total cost comes to $371 with shipping, which sounds a lot nicer than the $500 that it would cost to purchase, as an example, a Titleist TS3 with a Project X Evenflow T1100 today.

The major complaint most people would have is that you still don’t own the driver after that year, but as someone with a closet full of old golf clubs that diminish in value every day, which I have no realistic plans to sell, that doesn’t sound like a problem to me or my wife, who asks me almost weekly when I plan on thinning out my collection.

The model sounds like an obvious win for customers to me, and quite frankly, if you’re skeptical, then it’s probably just simply not for you. I contacted the team at the Dollar Driver Club to get some questions answered. Primarily, I want to know, what’s the catch?

I spoke with a Kevin Kirakossian, a Division I golfer who graduated from the University of Texas-Pan American in 2013 and has spent virtually his entire young career working on the business side of golf, most recently with Nike Golf’s marketing team prior to joining Tyler at Dollar Driver Club. Here’s what he had to say about his company.

At risk to the detriment of our conversation, I have to find out first and foremost, what’s the catch?

K: There’s no catch. We’re all golfers and we want to offer a service that benefits all of our members. We got tired of the upfront cost of drivers. We’re trying to grow the game. Prior to us, there was no way to buy new golf clubs without paying full price. We take a lot of pride that players of all skill level, not just tour pros or people with the extra budget to drop that kind of money every year, can have access to the latest equipment.

With that question out of the way, I delved into the specifics of the brand and model, but I maintained a skeptical edge, keeping an ear out for anything that I could find that would seem too good to be true.

How closely do you keep an eye on manufacturers and their pricing? It would seem that your service is more enticing as prices increase in equipment.

K: The manufacturers are free to create their own pricing. We work closely with manufacturers and have a great relationship with them. As prices increase, it helps us, even if they decrease, I still think it’s a no-brainer to use our service, purely for the fact that new equipment comes out every year. You don’t have a high upfront cost. You’re not stuck with the same driver for a year. It gives you flexibility and freedom to play the newest driver. If a manufacturer wants to get into the same business, we have the advantage of offering all brands. We’re a premium subscription brand, so we’re willing to offer services that other retailers aren’t. We’ll do shaft swaps, we’ll send heads only, we have fast shipping and delivery times. We’re really a one-stop shop for all brands.

What measures do you take to offer the most up to date equipment?

K: We will always have the newest products on the actual launch date. We take pride in offering the equipment right away. A lot of times, our members will receive their clubs on release day. We order direct from the manufacturers and keep inventory. There’s no drop shipping. We prefer shipping ourselves and being able to add a personal package.

The service is uniquely personal. Their drivers come with a ball marker stamped with your initials as well as a stylish valuables pouch. They also provide a hand signed welcome letter and some stickers.

Who makes up the team at Dollar Driver Club?

K: We’re a small team. We started accepting members to our service in 2018 and it has grown exponentially. We have four or five guys here and it’s all hands on deck. We handle customer inquiries and sending drivers out. It’s a small business nature that we want to grow a lot bigger.

When discussing the company, you have to concede that the model doesn’t appeal to everyone, especially traditionalists. There are golfers who have absolutely no problem spending whatever retailers are charging for their newest wares. There are also golfers who have no problem playing equipment with grips that haven’t been changed in years, much less worrying about buying new equipment. I wanted to know exactly who they’re targeting.

Who is your target demographic?

K: We want all golfers. We want any golfer with any income, any skill level, to be able to play the newest equipment. We want to reshape the way people think about obtaining golf equipment. We’re starting with drivers, but we’re looking into expanding into putters, wedges, and other woods. We’ve heard manufacturers keep an eye on us. There are going to be people who just want to pay that upfront cost so they can own it, but those people may be looking at it on the surface and they don’t see the other benefits. We’re also a service that offers shaft swaps and easily send in your driver after 3 months if you don’t like it.

At this point, it didn’t seem like my quest to find any drawbacks to the service was going well. However, any good business identifies threats to their model and I was really only able to think of one. They do require a photo ID to start your account, but there’s no credit check required like you may see from other ‘buy now, pay later’ programs. That sounds ripe for schemers that we see all the time on websites like eBay and Craigslist.

When you’re sending out a $500 piece of equipment and only taking $41 up front, you’re assuming some risk. How much do you rely on the integrity of golfers who use your service to keep everything running smoothly?

K: We do rely on the integrity of the golf community. When we send out a driver, we believe it’s going into the hands of a golfer. By collecting the ID, we have measures on our end that we can use in the event that the driver goes missing or an account goes delinquent, but we’re always going to side with our members.

The conversation I had with Kevin really opened my eyes to the fact that Dollar Driver Club is exactly what the company says it is. They want to grow and become a staple means of obtaining golf equipment in the current and future market. Kevin was very transparent that the idea is simple, they’re just the ones actually executing it. He acknowledged the importance of social media and how they will harness the power of applications like Instagram to reach new audiences.

Kevin was also adamant that even if you prefer owning your own driver and don’t mind the upfront cost, the flexibility to customize your driver cheaply with a plethora of high-quality shafts is what really makes it worth trying out their service. If for whatever reason, you don’t like their service, you can cancel the subscription and return the driver after 90 days, which means that you can play the newest driver for three months at a cost of $90.

In my personal opinion, I think there’s a huge growth opportunity for a service like this. The idea of playing the newest equipment and being able to tinker with it pretty much at-will really speaks to me. If you’re willing to spend $15 a month on Netflix to re-watch The Office for the 12th time in a row or $35 a month for a Barkbox subscription for your dog, it may be worth doing something nice for your golf bag.

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Scott is a writer with a love for all things golf. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science from the US Air Force Academy and can be found on twitter @commishidente.



  1. Jeremy

    Jun 12, 2019 at 3:42 pm

    This is a great concept. I just found out that you can purchase the driver if you love it and all you monthly payments go towards the purchase price. They also told me that as a member, i get free shaft swaps at anytime, i just have to pay for the shipping which seems reasonable. I have a driver that i like but have been really wanting to try something new to see how good it is. now i can do that for only 90 bucks. if i like it i may play it longer or even buy it. not sure yet but i love the flexibilty.

  2. ButchT

    Apr 21, 2019 at 12:38 pm

    No senior shafts available?

    • Francis Sullivan

      Oct 25, 2019 at 9:47 pm

      I am 70 years old need light shafts

  3. steve

    Apr 21, 2019 at 10:18 am

    There is a retail shop in Sacramento, California that offers some pretty high-tech fitting technology at no charge, to get you into a club that fits your skill set. How about a golfer getting fitted for a club and learning to be consistent with it. That should last at least a couple of years (minimum) if he or she is any good and willing to make an effort. Chasing that elusive driver is nothing more than throwing money down The drain. However, the reality is that manufactures know consumer golfers are a bunch of suckers!

  4. genius man

    Apr 20, 2019 at 8:27 pm

    there’s no difference between the 913D2 and TS2 for 97% of golfers, the other 3% aren’t renting their goddamn clubs.

    moronic concept that i’m sure will steal millions from morons.

    • Genius Man 2.0

      Apr 23, 2019 at 11:43 am

      The core of your statement is true, for most golfers, there is no difference in performance for a wide span of years. However, I find the statement of “moronic concept” quite ridiculous. There is a large number of people, in fact, the majority of consumers, who would upgrade every year if they could. As a result for most of us paying $30 a month is going to mean we get three years with the newest product in the bag for the price the driver is currently retailing. As a result, there is a clear market at a reasonable price, resulting in a brilliant concept. But hey keep swinging that 913D2 if that’s what you want to do!

  5. Mark Brownell

    Apr 20, 2019 at 2:22 pm

    Love the concept, but the have a couple of concerns. I wonder about the word “damaged outside of what the OEM manufacture warranty covers” Obviously we would all agree about structural damages, but paint blems are not covered in OEM warranties. Wondering if you had a paint chip or blem that they would put you on the hook for that?

    Also the shaft options that I can see are limited to 4 or 5 per club. That seems a far cry from the articles implications.


  6. Milo

    Apr 20, 2019 at 1:36 pm

    Now can they do other clubs as well?

  7. BeachBum

    Apr 20, 2019 at 1:18 pm

    Sounds like a great way to make golf more expensive!
    I love the latest and greatest equipment but any real golfer knows that changing your Driver every 6 months isn’t going to make you better. Unless you are playing 300 rounds a year, you should be able to keep a driver for 3-5 years.
    I’m still playing a Titleist 905S that I bought used for $100, and I still blow it by all my buddies by 20-30 yards, guys that are playing the latest and greatest.

  8. Tiger

    Apr 19, 2019 at 8:44 am

    I signed up nearly a month ago and to date still no driver. I keep getting excuses that they are back ordered. So if you’re going to sign you better check they have it in stock or you will be waiting….

  9. Wilymo

    Apr 19, 2019 at 8:19 am

    Seems like a decent idea that could benefit a large number of people. Especially those that live in areas where the golf season might only be 4-5 months and they aren’t into the whole buy/sell thing. Seems comparable to the camera lens rental market. Of course you could spend $1000 on a lens, use it and sell it and be better off than renting it for say $100 for a weekend. But not everyone wants to spend so much money up front and deal with selling it.

  10. Tiger Noods

    Apr 19, 2019 at 12:23 am

    Frankly, this is a good way to long-term-demo some things, assuming you can get them. I can’t see having this all the time, but if I wanted to try out some stuff, I’d call it money well spent.

    Basically, to make sense, you need to make a call on it within 2 months.

  11. Bryan Hopkins

    Apr 18, 2019 at 11:38 pm

    So let me get this straight… I can spend $500 and own my own driver, play with it for multiple (let’s say 3) years, and then sell it at the end for (let’s say $200). Total net cost of $300 for a 3 year driver.

    Or I could use this model and spend $371 per year to rent a driver that I never truly own. Total net cost for 3 years = $1,113.

    Sounds like a tough one…

    • Bryan

      Apr 19, 2019 at 1:13 am

      Nailed it haha

    • Samson

      Apr 19, 2019 at 9:20 am

      You must not have sold clubs in a while. No way are you getting 200 bucks on a 3 year old driver. Not too mention that you can purchase the driver from dollar driver club at anytime and your monthly payments go towards the purchase price.

    • David Brozenic

      Apr 20, 2019 at 5:43 pm

      Yeah right Bryan, good luck selling your 3 year old driver for $200.

  12. dat

    Apr 18, 2019 at 10:37 pm

    Wasn’t there a shaft trial company that did a similar thing? Sounds stupid. I tried the dollar shave club, products weren’t very good and it sure wasn’t a dollar…

  13. BobbyLightGonnaDo.......

    Apr 18, 2019 at 9:57 pm

    After some poking around on thier site it kinda doesnt sound like a terrible way to finance a new driver if you really “need” a new one. They offer the option to buy out remaining balance at the end of the year and they are only charging industry standard prices. From what i understand its like a 0% loan and good luck finding money that cheep anywhere else. Then again im with the guys who buy the stuff 1-3 years old for a fraction of the price, play it for a year then hopefully get 1/2 my money back but usually it ends up in a pile that eventually goes to the kids at the first tee.
    Cool idea they have and hopefully it works (imagine it will to an extent) hopefully the other dollar club doesnt slap them with a copyright infringement lawsuit.

  14. Nick

    Apr 18, 2019 at 9:47 pm

    For the past few seasons I’ll buy a nice used driver head for about $175, use it for a season, sell it the following season for about $100, then repeat. That seems a heck of a lot cheaper than this.

    • constantine

      Apr 19, 2019 at 9:27 am

      if you like sloppy seconds have at it. Nothing like taking the plastic off a brand new driver. Every driver sent out is brand new.

  15. Rich Douglas

    Apr 18, 2019 at 8:52 pm

    If you purchase a $500 driver and sell it a year later, you’ll probably get around $200 for it. The numbers don’t make sense.

    I used to be such a club ho, chasing one drive (or set of irons, or putter) after another. But then I got fitted professionally for the driver and switched to single-length irons (also fitted professionally). I’ve held onto both for more than two years now–a personal record. I’ll switch only when there is an obvious advancement–really obvious. Like Ping bringing out a single-length set or some amazing advancement in drivers. (No, the TM twisty face thing or Callaway’s “jailbreak” doesn’t qualify.) Like give me a new driver I can fit at 43.5″ in graphite and not lose distance. Otherwise, I’ll just enjoy my best-fit equipment and continue chasing the perfect golf ball.

  16. Chris

    Apr 18, 2019 at 8:44 pm

    What a stupid idea. You could just buy the driver and still have at least $200-250 left in equity. Sell that, and boom, your driver cost you $250-300 to play for the season.

    • samson

      Apr 19, 2019 at 9:25 am

      you must not have read the part that the money you spend monthly goes towards the purchase price if you want to buy it. So you can do the exact same thing you are talking about but try it risk free before making that decision and if the driver you picked doesnt work for you, you upgrade to something else instad of having to spend a few trying to flip for the right price. . It is about performance and ease of access.

  17. IHL

    Apr 18, 2019 at 8:22 pm

    “To get the newest driver that also works for your game, it may take a $150 club fitting, then a $400 head, and a shaft that can run anywhere from $100 up to $300-$400.”

    who the hell does this? most places will do a fitting at no charge if you’re buying from them. and very few people need a $400 shaft. most will fit into one of the many “stock” offerings from the manufacturer.

    this is like leasing a car, but much worse financially. most golfers don’t change drivers every year. so you’re paying over $700 over the course of 2 years for a driver that retails for $500.

  18. Wileyz

    Apr 18, 2019 at 7:41 pm

    So If I understand this correctly, you’re going to pay $371 to use a $550 product for a year (excluding upgraded shafts) and at the end of the year you own nothing. Personally, I’d pay the extra $175, own it and sell it for $300 at the end of the year. That way it only cost me $250 to use it for the year. The only way this works is if you must have an upgraded shaft.

    • Drew

      Apr 18, 2019 at 7:57 pm

      Great point. However, the website says you can buy it after paying for a year. I’m curious on what that price would be.

      • Chris Ewalt

        Apr 19, 2019 at 9:10 am

        Just normal retail, I was very skeptical of this too, but I researched it a lot, and found no sketchy details.

  19. Michael Gower

    Apr 18, 2019 at 5:39 pm

    I am a member and it’s works exactly how Dollar Drive Club states it does. I joined last year, got my driver, and just last month swapped it out for a newer model. You pay the shipping for them to send you the driver but they pay the return shipping for your old driver. Customer service is top notch.

    Not a shill and I was skeptical before I signed up. Try it for yourself and see if it suits you.

    • Jay

      Apr 18, 2019 at 11:27 pm

      I’m a member too, it’s awesome. I got fitted, purchased the shaft I needed and I just use the head from DDC… I want to upgrade to something form this year, but I’m very happy with the driver I have. I will probably purchase it from them, but the best part is I dont have to decide. It’s literally 1$ a day, and these guys are financing it.

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Opinion & Analysis

The Wedge Guy: What you CAN learn from tour pros



I have frequently noted how the game the PGA Tour players play is, in most ways, a whole different game than we “mere mortal” recreational golfers play. They hit their drivers miles it seems. Their short games are borderline miraculous. And they get to play from perfect bunkers and putt on perfect greens every single week. And it lets them beat most courses into submission with scores of 20-plus under par.

The rest of us do not have their strength, of course, nor do we have the time to develop short game skills even close to theirs. And our greens are not the perfect surfaces they enjoy, nor do we have caddies, green-reading books, etc. So, we battle mightily to shoot our best scores, whether that be in the 70s, 90s, or higher.

There is no question that most PGA Tour players are high-level athletes, who train daily for both body strength and flexibility, as well as the specific skills to make a golf ball do what they intend it to. But even with all that, it is amazing how bad they can hit it sometimes and how mediocre (for them) the majority of their shots really are — or at least they were this week.

Watching the Wells Fargo event this weekend, you could really see how their games are – relatively speaking – very much like ours on a week-to-week basis.

What really stood out for me as I watched some of this event was so few shots that were awe-inspiring and so many that were really terrible. Rory even put his win in jeopardy with a horrible drive on the 18th, but a very smart decision and a functional recovery saved him. (The advantage of being able to muscle an 8-iron 195 yards out of deep rough and a tough lie is not to be slighted).

Of course, every one of these guys knocks the flag down with approach shots occasionally, if not frequently, but on a longer and tougher golf course, relative mediocrity was good enough to win.

If we can set these guys’ power differences aside, I think we all can learn from watching and seeing that even these players hit “big uglies” with amazing frequency. And that the “meat” of their tee-to-green games is keeping it in play when they face the occasional really tough golf course like Quail Hollow. Do you realize less than 20 of the best players in the world beat par for those 72 holes?

It has long been said that golf is a game of misses, and the player who “misses best” is likely to be “in the hunt” more often than not, and will win his or her share. That old idiom is as true for those of us trying to break 100 or 90 or 80 as it is for the guys trying to win on the PGA Tour each week.

Our “big numbers” happen for the same reasons as theirs do – a simply terrible shot or two at the wrong time. But because we do not have anywhere near their short game and recovery skills, we just do not “get away with” our big misses as frequently as they do.

So, what can you take away from that observation? I suggest this.

Play within your own reliable strength profile and skill set. Play for your average or typical shot, not your very best, whether that is a drive, approach shot, or short game recovery. And don’t expect a great shot to follow a bad one.
If, no, when you hit the “big miss,” accept that this hole can get away from you and turn into a double or worse, regroup, and stop the bleeding, so you can go on to the next hole.

We can be pretty darn sure Rory McIlroy was not thinking bogey on the 18th tee but changed his objective on the hole once he saw the lie his poor drive had found. It only took a bogey to secure his win, so that became a very acceptable outcome.

There’s a lesson for all of us in that.

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Opinion & Analysis

Ways to Win: Horses for Courses – Rory McIlroy rides the Rors to another Quail Hollow win



Tell me if you’ve heard this before: Rory McIlroy wins at Quail Hollow. The new father broke his winless streak at a familiar course on Mother’s Day. McIlroy has been pretty vocal about how he is able to feed off the crowd and plays his best golf with an audience. Last week provided a familiar setting in a venue he has won twice before and a strong crowd, giving McIlroy just what he needed to break through and win again. A phenomenal feat given that, not long ago, he seemed completely lost, chasing distance based on Bryson DeChambeau’s unorthodox-but-effective progress. McIlroy is typically a player who separates himself from the field as a premier driver of the golf ball, however this week it was his consistency across all areas that won the tournament.

Using the Strokes Gained Stacked view from V1 Game shows that Rory actually gained the most strokes for the week in putting. Not typically known as a phenomenal putter, something about those Quail Hollow greens speaks to McIlroy where he finished the week third in strokes gained: putting (red above). He also hit his irons fairly well, gaining more than 3.6 strokes for the week on a typical PGA Tour field. Probably the most surprising category for McIlroy was actually driving, where he gained just 1.3 strokes for the week and finished 18th in the field. While McIlroy is typically more accurate with the driver, in this case, he sprayed the ball. Strokes gained: driving takes into account distance, accuracy, and the lie into which you hit the ball. McIlroy’s driving distance was still elite, finishing second in the field and averaging more than 325 yards as measured . However, when he missed, he missed in bad spots. McIlroy drove into recovery situations multiple times, causing lay-ups and punch-outs. He also drove into several bunkers causing difficult mid-range bunker shots. So, while driving distance is a quick way to add strokes gained, you have to avoid poor lies to take advantage and, unfortunately, McIlroy hurt himself there. This was particularly apparent on the 72nd hole where he pull-hooked a 3-wood into the hazard and almost cost himself the tournament.

It’s rare that a player wins a tour event without a truly standout category, but McIlroy won this week by being proficient in each category with a consistent performance. From a strokes gained perspective, he leaned on his putting, but even then, he had four three-putts on the week and left some room for improvement. He gained strokes from most distances but struggled on the long ones and from 16-20 feet. Overall, we saw good progress for McIlroy to putt as well as he did on the week.

McIlroy also had a good week with his irons, routinely giving himself opportunities to convert birdies where he tied for seventh-most in the field. When he did miss with his irons, he tended to miss short from most distances. His proximity to the hole was quite good, averaging below 30 feet from most distance buckets. That is surely a recipe to win.

When you add it all up, McIlroy showed little weakness last week. He was proficient in each category and relied on solid decision-making and routine pars while others made mistakes on the weekend. Sometimes, there is no need to be flashy, even for the best in the world. It was good to see McIlroy rejoin the winner’s circle and hopefully pull himself out from what has been a bit of a slump. Golf is better when McIlroy is winning.

If you want to build a consistent game like Rors, V1 Game can help you understand your weaknesses and get started on a journey to better golf. Download in the app store for free today.


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Club Junkie

Club Junkie: Fujikura MC Putter shaft review and cheap Amazon grips!



Fujikura’s new MC Putter shafts are PACKED with technology that you wouldn’t expect in a putter shaft. Graphite, metal, and rubber are fused together for an extremely consistent and great feeling putter shaft. Three models to fit any putter stroke out there!

Grips are in short supply right now, and there are some very cheap options on Amazon. I bought some with Prime delivery, and they aren’t as good as you would think.

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