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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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Ryan Barath is a club-fitter & master club builder with more than 17 years of experience working with golfers of all skill levels, including PGA Tour players. He is the former Build Shop Manager & Social Media Coordinator for Modern Golf. He now works independently from his home shop and is a member of advisory panels to a select number of golf equipment manufacturers. You can find Ryan on Twitter and Instagram where he's always willing to chat golf, and share his passion for club building, course architecture and wedge grinding.

2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Tricky Rickie

    Apr 1, 2021 at 4:31 am

    Do you know there is only one, yes one Oklahoma State golfer to ever win a major?

  2. God Shammgod

    Mar 31, 2021 at 3:32 pm

    FYI, Mickelson gamed graphite shafted irons with Yonex pre-Choi.

    I’m not sure if he was the first though. Daiwa was a big Japanese manufacturer at the time and they had some guys on tour with their graphite shafts as well.

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Tour Photo Galleries

Wedge Stamping Caviar: Have More Fun Edition

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Pop open a tin of the finest beluga, GolfWRXers… In all seriousness, it’s less jelly-like substance, more richness of intrigue than salt-cured roe at Wedge Stamping Caviar as we present to you some of the finest instances of hammer-and-stamp work on the PGA Tour.

In this initial serving, we’re mining photos from October and November at PGA Tour stops, including the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, the Cadence Bank Houston Open, and the RSM Classic.

So grab your mother-of-pearl spoon and dig in — with restraint, please.

The traditional K.I.S.S. stamping on a BV proto: first and last initial, demonstrated here by Andrew Landry. Bonus points for the bounce angle (8) stamp.

When your last name is something imposing/interesting, you’re definitely stamping it on your wedge as Cole Hammer has done here in a “University of Texas” colorway.

Simple, perfect stamping for Xuewen Luo. 

Patrick Cantlay is still rolling with a SM7. Ultimate K.I.S.S. to stick with a previous generation wedge with stamped initials. Bent loft (47 degrees) is a classy touch. 

Excellent #perspective on Kevin Roy’s 54-degree Vokey.

Anytime a custom grind wears off the loft number, it’s caviar. Lovely patina on Woodland’s Wilson, too. 

Another favorite motif: Tiny initials pattern (as demonstrated by Palmer Jackson). 

The Webb Simpson traditional. Maybe the longest-serving stamping on Tour. 

Not a stamping on Akshay Bhatia’s Jaws Raw, but we’ll serve it up anyway for reasons immediately discernible to the seasoned palate. 

 

 

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Tour Photo Galleries

Photos from the 2022 RSM Classic

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GolfWRX was live this week from the RSM Classic in Sea Island, Georgia, for the last event of the 2022 calendar year.

We saw a few pros testing some 2023 prototypes — Jason Dufner in Cobra Aerojet woods — and got a look at a few potential new putters from Toulon.

We have: Eight general galleries. 12 WITBs — including some lefty love for Akshay Bhatia — and a ton of putters for your perusal.

Check out links to all our photos below!                                           

General Albums

WITB Albums

Pullout Albums

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Equipment

Photos from the 2022 Cadence Bank Houston Open

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GolfWRX was on site this week ahead of the 2022 Cadence Bank Houston Open at Memorial Park Golf Course.

The year is winding down, but the wraparound 2022-2023 season is just getting underway, so players are poised to do a bit of tinkering ahead of January equipment launches. To that end, we got an in-hand look at Justin Rose’s new prototype “JR” irons. We also spotted new shafts from KBS and Mitsubishi as well as new grips from SuperStroke.

Check out all of our photos below.

General Albums

WITB Albums

Pullout Albums

See what GolfWRXers are saying in the discussion thread.

 

 

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