Connect with us

Equipment

Charles Howell III Q&A: Putter testing, being a “gearhead” and his favorite putting drills

Published

on

This week at the 2022 Waste Management Phoenix Open, 42-year-old Charles Howell III is making his 600th career PGA Tour start. Chucky Three Sticks, as he’s called, has been one of the most consistent golfers on Tour for the last two decades, amassing over $40 million in on-course earnings.

He’s also a massive gearhead who loves to test and switch equipment. While the full-time Titleist staffer is currently set with 13-of-14 of his clubs, he still enjoys testing putters – everything from Scotty Cameron’s to putters made from other manufacturers. As he discusses below, he just likes to keep things interesting.

A look at Howell III’s Titleist setup at the Phoenix Open.

On Tuesday ahead of the WM Phoenix Open, I caught up Howell III following a putter testing session on the TPC Scottsdale practice green. I noticed he was testing a bunch of different putters, and the session lasted for hours. I couldn’t help but talk to Howell III for a few minutes following the session to pick his brain.

Happy 600 to Chucky Three Sticks, and enjoy the quick interview below!

Tursky: So I just saw you grinding for hours, doing a little putter testing. What are you looking at? What are you seeing?

Howell III: So, for some reason I’ve putted my best historically with more of a Newport style putter with some amount of toe hang, but my eye always wants to go to a mallet putter. So I’m always in that… it’s why we’re golfers I guess. We’re strange creatures. But I’ll end up with a Newport style putter. I love the way the others look when they sit down. And then Tim Suzor, who helps me with my putting and I’ve known forever, he’s…none of it’s rocket science but we play so much we fall into these bad habits and weird stuff, it’s nice to have another set of eyes there to get your attention to go in [the right direction].

I feel like you had the same putter for a few months in a row there and ended up switching it out.

Three months is just way too long. It’s just way too long.

Is that a thing where you just can’t help yourself? Like you just have to look at something different?

I don’t switch anything else…I’ve played the same driver and driver shaft forever now. I’ve played the same 3 wood, etc., so you have to switch something. There’s also part of it, too, that it keeps it interesting and exciting. When you’ve played golf as long as I have, sometimes it’s just part of the fun of it to look at something else. It’s why we’re all gearheads, right? You don’t need any more reason to it than that.

I’m not a guy that can look at the same putter forever. I’m just not.

What are you working on technique wise?

A lot of posture and balance stuff. We’ve actually introduced quite a bit of games to make it more of a competitive environment on the practice green, similar to how you feel and what you do on the golf course.

It’ll be a certain amount of block practice, some setup and posture stuff, and then some games for the competitive side of it.

What are some of the games?

Well, we do a lot of holing a certain amount of putts before you can leave the green. We’ll do a lot of speed drills where you have to get a certain amount of balls between the front edge of the hole and a rod, let’s say 3 feet behind it. All different things like that just to make it a little bit competitive.

So how many putts in a row will you need to hit?

We’ll go from 8 feet and you have to make 5 in a row from both sides of the hole, so that would be 10 in a row. That game at times can take for-absolute-ever, and then you just give up and say, ‘The hell with it, I’m going to the driving range.”

But as long as there’s a balance between a certain amount of block practice for what we’re trying to do, and a certain amount of practice of like, let’s get out of that and into results and a little bit of competitiveness. So it doesn’t really matter what the game is, it just matter that it’s more a performance game as opposed to like a block game.

And you’re only doing putter testing, you’re not testing anything else?

No, it’s just putters. See it’s boring. See, it’s all boring. Just putters, because everything else is fine.

Your Reaction?
  • 30
  • LEGIT8
  • WOW2
  • LOL0
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP0
  • OB0
  • SHANK0

He played on the Hawaii Pacific University Men's Golf team and earned a Masters degree in Communications. He also played college golf at Rutgers University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.

2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Pingback: TOUR REPORT: Bryson DeChambeau’s new “LA Golf” prototype putter, and Collin Morikawa makes a big change – GolfWRX

  2. V

    Feb 12, 2022 at 1:13 pm

    Thank you for this. I always like reading CHIII’s interviews. Fun perspectives on equipment that many of us can relate to.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Equipment

Rounding out the lineup: Fujikura Ventus TR Red, Black

Published

on

What you need to know: Fujikura introduced the second-generation of its Ventus line with Ventus TR Blue in January. As expected, and as was the case with the original Ventus Blue, Fujikura is now adding Ventus TR Red (mid-high launch), and Ventus TR Black (low launch) to the family.

What’s new

Spread Tow: Improving on the original Ventus Red and Ventus black design, and like Ventus TR Blue, TR Red and TR Black feature “Spread Tow” fabric in the butt-end section to increase torsional stiffness. Spread Tow, essentially, is a checkerboard-like design that weaves fibers together to increase strength and reduce weight. According to Fujikura, the torque is 10 percent stiffer in the section that uses this design.

Additional technology

The Ventus family’s secret sauce is still “VeloCore,” which is a multi-material construction that uses ultra-stiff Pitch 70 Ton carbon fiber to increase stiffness. This enables players to hit the center of the face more often due to a reduction in twisting and droop on the downswing.

Per Fujikura, Enso analytics continue to shown one of the highest stress points of the shaft is the mid/handle section during the transition and downswing. Accordingly, engineers focused on this section of the shaft in the development of Ventus TR with the goal of minimizing twist and ovalization — and maximizing consistency and stability.

In terms of feel, Fujikura says feel is similar to the original Ventus Red and Black but with increased stiffness and lower launch/spin.

What Fujikura says

Fujikura’s Product Marketing Manager, Spencer Reynolds, explains exactly what Spread Tow is and why it’s effective:

“Essentially, there’s a standard carbon weave and then there’s a Spread Tow carbon weave. What a Spread Tow does is it takes all these individual strands of carbon and irons them flat into a tape, and then weaves those over-under, over-under almost like a checkerboard pattern. So there’s very little space for resin to accumulate, you get super low resin content, and then you also get a lot of strength in varying directions. It can take pull and load in multiple directions. Another benefit is that it’s super lightweight. You’re getting an incredible amount of strength, in an ultra-lightweight package.”

Read much more about Spread Tow and the Ventus TR profile in our Ventus TR Blue launch piece.

Regarding the line extension, Reynolds said:

“Any time we incorporate a new technology into a shaft offering, it’s always in the conversation to expand and integrate that technology into additional profiles. The immediate adoption, success, and performance gains we saw from VENTUS TR Blue led us to enhance the line with additional profiles. Expanding VENTUS TR offerings provides fitters more options in the VENTUS line to fit, and ultimately help a wider range of players improve the performance of their drivers and fairway woods. With six VENTUS profiles available with varying performance characteristics, the VENTUS line is truly firing on all cylinders.”

Pricing and availability

MSRP: $350 through 600-plus authorized Fujikura Charter Dealers and select OEM custom programs

Available at retail: End of August

Flexes: TR Red (R2-X flex, 59 grams – 89 grams), TR Black (S-X flex, 59 grams – 89 grams)

 

 

 

Your Reaction?
  • 3
  • LEGIT0
  • WOW0
  • LOL0
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP0
  • OB0
  • SHANK0

Continue Reading

Whats in the Bag

Sungjae Im WITB 2022 (August)

Published

on

Driver: Titleist TSi2 (8 degrees, 0.75 degree flat lie)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD DI 7 X

3-wood: Titleist TS3 (15 degrees, 0.75 degree flat lie)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD DI 8 X

Hybrid: Titleist 818 H2 (19 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD DI 105 X

Irons: Titleist T100 (3-9)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100

Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM7 (48-10F @47, 54-08M @53, 60-04L)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100

Putter: Scotty Cameron Flowback 5 Prototype
Grip: SuperStroke Traxion 1.0PT

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x

Grips: Golf Pride Tour Velvet

More Sungjae Im WITBs

Your Reaction?
  • 10
  • LEGIT1
  • WOW0
  • LOL0
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP0
  • OB0
  • SHANK0

Continue Reading

Whats in the Bag

Joohyung Kim’s winning WITB: 2022 Wyndham Championship

Published

on

  • Joohyung Kim what’s in the bag accurate as of the Wyndham Championship. Kim’s decision between 2-iron, 3-iron, hybrid is course dependent. More photos from the event here.

Driver: Titleist TSR3 (9 degrees, A1)
Shaft: Fujikura Atmos Black 6 X

3-wood: Titleist TSR3 (13.5 degrees, A1)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Tensei 1K Pro White 70 TX

Irons: Titleist T200 (2-3), Titleist T100 (4-PW)
Shafts: Fujikura Ventus Black HB 10 TX (2), Project X 5.5 (3), Project X 6.0 (4-PW)

Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM9 (52-12F, 56-10S), Titleist Vokey Design WedgeWorks Proto (60-A)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100

Putter: Scotty Cameron TourType GSS Prototype
Grip: SuperStroke Traxion Tour 2.0

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x

Grips: Golf Pride MCC, Golf Pride MCC Align (2-PW)

Your Reaction?
  • 74
  • LEGIT10
  • WOW5
  • LOL0
  • IDHT0
  • FLOP1
  • OB0
  • SHANK2

Continue Reading

WITB

Facebook

Trending