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Phil Mickelson finally found a hybrid he loves

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Editor’s note: We filed this piece for PGATour.com’s Equipment Report

Phil Mickelson, by his own admission, hasn’t historically been “high on hybrids.” There are several reasons the reigning PGA champion hasn’t had much success with the clubs in the past: Too much variability in spin and ball flight, depending on where the ball is struck on the face. Too difficult to flight the ball down. Inconsistent distance.

Given Mickelson’s apprehension around members of the hybrid family, it’s interesting to note that he is carrying one of Callaway’s new Apex UW (utility woods), which were released to retail this week.

Mickelson’s Apex UW (Photo c/o Callaway’s Johnny Wunder)

What’s different about this hybrid for Mickelson?

“It gives me a consistent apex and a consistent spin rate from different lies that hybrids haven’t given me, and the ability to hit from the rough and control the flight and bring it down that fairway woods don’t,” Mickelson told Callaway’s Johnny Wunder.

Mickelson’s UW hybrid is reportedly bent to 17 degrees, tightening the gap between his longer clubs while also allowing him to hit a variety of shots. The Apex UW utility wood was designed to combine the best features of higher-lofted fairway woods, hybrids, and a more neutral ball flight.

(Photo c/o Callaway’s Johnny Wunder)

“The reason why I like it is the center of gravity is more forward, or plays like an iron, so I don’t get the jumpers out of the first cut and then the big spin ones out of a tight lie, Mickelson said Wednesday from the PGA TOUR Champions’ Constellation FURYK & FRIENDS. “And the relief on the back sole allows me to open the face and keep the face open through impact in the rough on the chop rough shot, as opposed to having the back of the sole close the face through impact. It allows me keep the face open and have some loft so I can get it out of thicker, longer, heavier rough a lot easier.”

Read the full piece on PGATour.com.

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3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. Paulo

    Oct 7, 2021 at 5:05 pm

    How can that be Michelson’s wood in first photo. He’s left handed

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Golf clubs of the top 50 LPGA pros (WITB)

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Women’s golf is becoming increasingly popular and is catching up to men’s golf rapidly. This study on the increasing purse sizes of LPGA major tournaments confirms this fact. The purse of the Women’s PGA Championship has nearly doubled since 2013. You can read more about it here.

At this moment, the number of female golfers in the world is probably the highest in recorded history, and this number is rising year by year. Each year, thousands of young girls grab their first golf clubs and embark on their golfing journeys. These budding lady golfers often wonder which clubs their role models use to win the most prestigious tournaments.

Driven by this fact, our team at Golf Reporter looked into the golf bags of the top 50 LPGA professionals. We found some shocking statistics that might surprise many of you. In this article, we’ll talk about the golf clubs used by the top 50 LPGA pros, including the driver, fairway woods, hybrids, irons, wedges and putters.

However, it is worth noting that this data is for 44 out of the top 50 LPGA pros. The information for the remaining 6 golfers was either wholly or partially unavailable. These are Pajaree Anannarukarn, Yealimi Noh, Wei-Ling Hsu, Shanshan Feng, Su Oh, and Lauren Stephenson. That is why we have left those 6 out of this study.

We have compiled all the data into a table for your convenience. Here it is.

Analysis and Findings

After collecting the data and codifying it into a table, we began looking for patterns, and we found some quite interesting ones. We have classified them into respective club categories.

Drivers

The driver and the putter are the only two clubs guaranteed to be in every golf bag. Or so we thought. Oddly, one LPGA pro does not use the driver, and she’s quite a prominent figure.

We’re talking about world number 5, Ariya Jutanugarn of Thailand. She does not have a driver in her bag. Instead, she uses her 3-wood or her utility iron in the tee box.

Apparently, Ping drivers are all the rage among LPGA pros as 10 of them opt for them, with Ping G425 being the most popular. Patty Tavatanakit (world number 3) is the highest-ranking LPGA pro who uses Ping drivers. Not far behind is TaylorMade, with 8 users, including Moriya Jutanugarn (world number 11), who uses the M2 driver.

Callaway, PXG, and Titleist are the next ones in line, with 7, 6, and 5 users, respectively. The world number one, Nelly Korda, uses the Titleist TSi1 driver with Graphite Design Tour AD IZ 6S shaft.

Most of these LPGA golfers have different loft settings, but 15 of them prefer to go with the 9 degrees option. Furthermore, 10 players have chosen Fujikura shafts as their preferred option, while 9 others prefer Graphite Design or Mitsubishi shafts.

Fairway Woods

The configuration of fairway woods varies from person to person. Some prefer to use only a single club, while others prefer two or even three. Usually, 3-wood is the widely used choice of most golfers, and this list conforms to this fact. Everyone in this list uses a 3-wood, except one.

Nanna Koerstz Madsen is the only pro in the top 50 who doesn’t use the 3 wood. Interestingly, she’s also the only one who uses the 4-wood.

17 of these golfers also use a 5-wood along with their 3-wood. However, only four LPGA pros still use the extremely rare 7-wood, including the world number one, Nelly Korda. Her sister Jessica Korda, Leona Maguire, and Lizette Salas are the other three who use the 7-wood.

Here, Callaway has managed to get the better of its rivals by securing the trust of 11 golfers. Callaway is followed by Ping and TaylorMade, with 9 and 7 players, respectively. PXG, Titleist, and Srixon come next, with 6, 5, and 4 users, respectively.

Hybrids

34 LPGA pros from the top 50 keep hybrid golf clubs in their bags, which clearly suggests their widespread popularity among women golfers. This number is significantly higher than their male counterparts. You can read more about this here. In addition, nearly half (16) of these hybrids using women golfers prefer to play with a 19-degree loft.

In hybrid clubs, Ping is back on top with 9 players choosing their products. PXG is the 2nd most popular brand with 6 users. Other giants, including TaylorMade and Titleist, have only four users each. This might suggest that these brands have apparently not won the trust of women golfers when it comes to hybrids. Callaway is even farther behind with merely 3 users.

Irons

Similar to fairway woods, the configuration of irons varies from golfer to golfer. However, we found an arrangement that has repeated itself several times, 16 to be exact. The majority of LPGA pros favor a 5-iron to pitching wedge assortment. While only four golfers avoid the 5-iron and have 6-iron to pitching wedge iron sets. In addition, Nippon has established itself as the most preferred choice for iron shafts as 10 LPGA pros choose their products.

Here too, Ping has emerged as the most trusted choice with 10 players. Srixon makes a surprise appearance with 6 users along with Titleist and PXG. They are followed by TaylorMade and Callaway, each of whom is used by 5 players.

Wedges

Titleist makes a dramatic recovery in the wedges section. Titleist Vokey wedges have cemented themselves as one of the most reliable wedges for LPGA pros with 16 users. World number one, Nelly Korda, along with 8 others, uses their latest SM8 version.

Ping and PXG are the next most popular brands with 9 and 8 users, respectively. Cleveland Golf makes a dramatic appearance with 4 users, with Minjee Lee (world number 10) as the highest-ranking golfer who uses them.

Callaway and TaylorMade also fail to make a mark with only a handful of users. 4 players use Callaway wedges while only 2 choose TaylorMade wedges.

Putters

Callaway makes a strong comeback in the putters category, thanks to their state-of-the-art Odyssey putters. 12 golfers play with Odyssey putters, with Ariya Jutanugarn (world number 5) and Inbee Park (world number 6) as the highest-ranking golfers.

Titleist’s Scotty Cameron putters are not far behind with 10 users. Current world number one, Nelly Korda and her sister Jessica (world number 7), both use Scotty Cameron putters. Besides these two sisters, three others from the top 10 (total 5) are regular Scotty Cameron putter users.

Ping comes in at the third spot with 9 users. Leona Maguire (world number 8) is the highest-ranking golfer to use Ping putters. Other brands like TaylorMade and PXG are at 4th and 5th positions, respectively, with 5 and 4 players.

Bettinardi Golf makes its first appearance with two users, Patty Tavatanakit (world number 3) and Nasa Hataoka (world number 18). Other brands to make an appearance are Piretti and Swag Golf.

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What GolfWRXers are saying about TaylorMade’s 300 Mini Driver

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In our forums, our members have been sharing their recent experiences with TaylorMade’s 300 Mini Driver. The Mini Driver came out earlier this summer, and with more and more WRXers testing out the new addition from TaylorMade, they’ve been discussing the club at length in our forums.

Here are a few recent posts from members on the Mini Driver, but make sure to have your say at the link below.

  • bjh1: “Have been bagging my TM300 Mini at 13.5 as my primary driver for about a month now, and I am loving it. According to my Garmin stats, I’m averaging 248 yards with the mini vs 262 I was getting with my Epic Flash, but my dispersion is waaay better. Also, it’s been very wet here for the past 3 weeks so that yardage is pretty much all carry, so when it dries out, I’d expect it to be about the same yardage as the big driver. Love the look, the feel, and the sound of it. And I’m able to hit it on some holes I used to hit a 5-wood or iron on because I’m just so much more confident that it will go reasonably straight.”
  • meh: “I am loving the mini!!!!! I have mine (13.5) lofted down a little. I keep looking for a driver (just moved on an epic LS and getting a Mizuno st-z), but I’m not sure why. Misses with the mini are much better than a miss with the driver.”
  • christof87: “Early thoughts on 300 Mini in 13.5 in the stock stiff shaft: On course: 1 round and 5 tee shots hit with it – takes a bit of adjustment with setup to get comfortable. Range: Able to hit it off a mat okay, but would need more time with it to give a good view. Distance: It’s probably 10-15 yards longer than my 13.5 degree 3 wood at the same loft off a tee. Flight off the tee: tends to be low-ish and very flat.”
  • me05501: “I reverted to my Mavrik 3+ for the time being. The Mini Driver is a neat product, but it behaves just like my driver in my hands, and my driver is pretty reliable anyway, so no real advantage to carrying the MD. I’m keeping my eyes peeled for another SLDR Mini…that club was money for me in a way the Original One and TM300 were not.”

Entire Thread: “What GolfWRXers are saying about TaylorMade’s 300 Mini Driver

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Coolest thing for sale in the GolfWRX Classifieds (10/7/21): L.A.B. Directed force 2.1 putter

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At GolfWRX, we love golf, plain and simple.

We are a community of like-minded individuals that all experience and express our enjoyment of the game in many ways. It’s that sense of community that drives day-to-day interactions in the forums on topics that range from best driver to what marker you use to mark your ball. It even allows us to share another thing we all love – buy and selling equipment.

Currently, in our GolfWRX buy/sell/trade (BST) forum, there is a listing for a L.A.B. Directed force 2.1 putter

From the seller (@tincup_jeff): “L.A.B. Directed force 2.1 w/ White Polar BGT Stability shaft.  34.5″, 71 degree lie angle.  Comes with upgraded USA flag head cover ($100 value).  This putter cost close to $900 to build on their website and I waited 6 weeks for it.  Gamed 2 rounds, not a single mark on it.  Could pass for new.  Then I bought the $100 head cover… My loss, your gain at…$725 shipped.”

To check out the full listing in our BST forum, head through the link: L.A.B. Directed force 2.1 putter

This is the most impressive current listing from the GolfWRX BST, and if you are curious about the rules to participate in the BST Forum you can check them out here: GolfWRX BST Rules

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