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TOUR REPORT: Adam Scott goes Stealth, and we say “goodbye” to Scheffler’s Nike VR Pro?

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Our weekly Tour Report highlights important golf equipment changes that PGA Tour players make week-to-week. Unfortunately, the most important piece of equipment in the bags of PGA Tour players this week might be their umbrella.

Rain is in the forecast throughout the week and into the weekend at The 2022 Players Championship at TPC Sawgrass, but the Tour Report plays on rain or shine. We’re mudders here at GolfWRX.

In addition to rain gear, there were also a number of interesting equipment topics that arose this week at The Players. Let’s dive right in.

Check out all of our photos from The 2022 Players Championship here.

Will Scheffler finally change out his longtime Nike fairway wood?

In the world of equipment free agents, there may not have been a more sought after player than 25-year-old Scottie Scheffler, who’s fresh off two PGA Tour wins in his last three starts. On Wednesday ahead of The Players Championship, Scheffler announced that he’s off the market and has signed a multi-year equipment deal with TaylorMade.

He’s been playing a TaylorMade Stealth Plus driver throughout 2022, and he’s been using TaylorMade irons for his entire PGA Tour career, so this wasn’t a complete surprise.

My biggest question in this deal, though, is whether Scheffler will switch out his longtime Nike VR Pro Limited 3-wood, which was originally released to the public way back in 2011. TaylorMade didn’t specify terms of the deal, but said that he’d be adding Stealth fairways to his bag.

During the practice rounds at The Players, Scheffler had both his old Nike 3-wood in the bag, as well as a new Stealth 16.5-degree fairway wood that he was testing.

When I asked Scheffler on Wednesday which fairway wood he’d be playing this week, he said he wasn’t yet sure.

“I haven’t decided which one I’m using yet this week,” Scheffler said. “It’ll be a sad day [when the Nike comes out of the bag], but it has to happen eventually.”

It’s yet to be confirmed which fairway wood Scheffler has chosen, but we’ll keep an eye on it moving forward. When he does finally switch out the Nike for a Stealth, we’ll have to pour one out for the 11-year-old Nike; it had a good run.

Scottie Scheffler’s 2022 WITB at The Players Championship.

Adam Scott goes Stealth 

Scott was in the equipment news last week because he played in the first round of the 2022 Arnold Palmer Invitational without a driver in the bag order to hit more fairways.

This week, Scott, who is no longer a full Titleist staffer through the bag as of 2022, is back in the news. While Scott has used a Titleist driver throughout his entire career, he tested TaylorMade Stealth Plus drivers and fairways ahead of The Players.

For the first round, it seems Scott has pulled the trigger on using TaylorMade metalwoods. He used a Stealth Plus 10-5 degree driver (Graphite Design Tour AD-DI 8X shaft) and a 15-degree Stealth Plus fairway wood (Graphite Design Tour AD-DI 9X shaft).

It’s weird to see Scott using a driver that isn’t a Titleist, but this could be the new norm going forward. Now an equipment free agent, Scott will likely continue testing different driver and fairway wood setups this year. We’ll be keeping a close eye on his testing sessions.

“Toe”-ny Finau’s putting drill

While I was hovering around the putting green at The Players, I noticed Tony Finau putting with the toe end of his putter, rather than the face. And, honestly, his stroke looked fluid and he seemed to be rolling it very well.

Intrigued about this drill, I asked Finau what the deal was.

According to Finau, the drill helps him focus on hitting the center of the “face” due to the smaller hitting area, and it helps him keep his stroke path more straight-back and straight-through.

Since he loves the feel of this drill so much, though, there might be something bigger in the works. Finau likes the feeling of having so much mass directly behind the hitting area, so he told GolfWRX “there’s maybe some creative putter in the works.”

Maybe this toe-drill is more than a drill. Maybe it was actually a testing session for a new Ping prototype putter. Hmm, the possibilities!

Webb Simpson switches drivers…finally?

For the last four years, Webb Simpson had been using a Titleist TS3 driver, which was released back in 2018. Simpson is notoriously slow to switch into new clubs, so there was nothing too shocking about it.

At The Players Championship, however, Simpson showed up with a new TSi3 driver in the bag. Wow, finally!

Well, after speaking with Simpson this week, he actually used the TSi3 one other time in competition. According to Simpson, he played the first two rounds at the 2021 Fortinet Championship in Napa with his old TS3 driver, but he played the weekend with the new TSi3.

During his next five events, though, Simpson switched back into the TS3 because he said the TSi3 was spinning a little too low for him.

In the two months prior to The Players, Simpson was out with a neck injury and had time at home to get dialed and conduct some product testing. He ended up figuring out the setup of the new TSi3, and eventually found 2-3 mph more ball speed compared to his old TS3 gamer.

It appears Simpson has finally committed to the switch.

Head over to PGATOUR.com for our full writeup on Simpson’s switch, and our exclusive quotes.

Custom Scotty Camerons abound

There were a bunch of new custom Scotty Cameron’s floating around the golf bags of PGA Tour players this week. It’s uncertain which of them will actually go into play, but I wanted to highlight some of them for your viewing pleasure.

Check out some of the awesome custom Scotty’s we spotted this week:

Paul Casey

Kevin Streelman

Webb Simpson

Hideki Matsuyama

 

All-new staff bags from Ping and Odyssey

You may see the caddies of Callaway and Ping staffers carrying bags with a new look this week. Odyssey revealed it’s new colorful “#1 putter in golf” staff bags, and Ping staffers will be using a yellow “PLD” staff bag.

The “PLD” stands for “Putting Lab Design,” which are the new custom Tour putters that released to the public this week, allowing general consumers access to Tour-level milled putters and fittings. For more on that story, click the link here.

Rahm switches back

Well, that was quick.

Jon Rahm’s brief experiment with an Odyssey White Hot OG #7S prototype putter, apparently, is over.

As a reminder, Rahm switched out of his 2021 U.S. Open-winning Odyssey White Hot Rossie S putter during the final round of the 2022 Genesis Invitational, opting instead to use an Odyssey White Hot OG #7S putter to help with his stroke and release. He then continued to use the #7 putter for the 2022 Arnold Palmer Invitational.

At The Players Championship, though, Rahm was back using his trusty Rossie S. He spoke to the press following his first round 69 to explain why it was back in the bag:

“It just needed a timeout last week. That’s it. Luckily we had — I’m going to start calling them browns because they weren’t even greens. They were browns last week [at Bay Hill], and that was enough to not want to use it again…

“It’s been a month of seeing putts go by the edge of the hole that were good, and that’s what it was. Sometimes — I’m usually the last person to ever blame the putter. But I felt like I needed to because that was kind of out of sorts.

“You know, went back to it today, and I feel like I almost — sometimes when you’re working on something and something is not working properly, I feel like I myself at least can put too much attention to it and I can be thinking too much on what’s going on with the putter, and I feel like this weekend completely reversed it.

“I said, it’s all good, let’s relax, and let’s try to get the speed of the greens. There’s nothing wrong technically. I tried to just get the speed of the greens, and it worked out beautifully. Almost kind of got me out of being too technical and more into putting as an art.”

Check out the full story over on PGATOUR.com.

Wolff’s custom logo golf ball

Last week at Bay Hill, young Matthew Wolff used TaylorMade Pix golf balls with Arnold Palmer umbrellas on their covers. This week, he’s using Pix golf balls with dancing wolves all over them.

The custom golf balls look cool, of course, and they continue to highlight TaylorMade’s ability to create unique Pix-style designs for players.

FootJoy x Buscemi shoes

Jon Buscemi (Steve Buscemi’s cousin) is a popular streetwear fashion designer, and he collaborated with FootJoy to create new Premiere Series Collection golf shoes for The Players Championship. Don’t be surprised to see FootJoy athletes such as Justin Thomas and Ian Poulter rocking them this week.

Six Figure Sneakerhead has a full write-up on GolfWRX about the collab, so if you’re interested in more info, check that out here.

Dustin Johnson tests putters (as always)

UPDATE from the first round: Johnson actually DID switch putters this week! Click here to read the full story and see which putter he used in round 1 at The Players.

Every single week, Dustin Johnson tests a slew of different putter designs. Also, every week, Johnson ends up using the same TaylorMade Spider Tour Black putter (pictured on the right) in competition.

Plain and simple, Johnson likes to tests putters. He doesn’t change his actual gamer often, but he tests a number of different putter designs every week.

This week at The Players, we took in-hand photos of what he was testing. Check out the full forum thread here.

Kuchar’s quest continues

Matt Kuchar has been employing a right-hand armlock style of putting the last year or so, and he’s been testing out different Bettinardi putters to find the right fit.

According to Bettinardi rep David Kubiak, Kuchar wanted to try out a center-shafted Bettinardi armlock putter with the shaft placement well behind the face. Kubiak says it’s unlikely this putter goes in the bag this week, since Kuchar saw the putter the first time at The Players, but it could be an option going forward.

Kuchar’s quest to find the right putter to suit his inventive putting style continues.

And with that, we conclude this week’s Tour Report from The Players Championship. Enjoy the fifth major, and hopefully we see some sunshine and a Sunday finish. We’ll be back at it, rain or shine, next week at the Valspar Championship to conclude the Florida Swing.

Check out all of our photos from The 2022 Players Championship.

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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.

14 Comments

14 Comments

  1. Hammer Driver Dude

    Jun 1, 2022 at 11:08 am

    FYI Golfwrx the “hammer” putter already exists ping could steal that crappy idea.

  2. Pingback: TOUR REPORT: The unusual gear connection between Scottie Scheffler and Max McGreevy – GolfWRX

  3. Pingback: The top 10 gear stories of 2022 (so far): Where do Tiger’s FootJoy shoes rank? – GolfWRX

  4. Pingback: Adam Scott's Latest Club Switch - White Eagle Sport

  5. Pingback: TOUR REPORT: Adam Scott’s latest club switch, and a 5-wood from 12 years ago – GolfWRX

  6. BobbyN

    Mar 14, 2022 at 2:00 pm

    The golf gods have spoken. Change out your old faithful 3 wood and hit multiple shots in the water as punishment for your sins.

  7. Bob

    Mar 14, 2022 at 12:19 pm

    For God’s sake Adam, get the 905R with the ProForce V2 out and go back to work!

    • BobbyN

      Mar 15, 2022 at 12:46 am

      Best driver ever!

      • Bob

        Mar 16, 2022 at 4:31 pm

        That’s the best he’s driven it in his career. The shaft is still made it is that good.

  8. El Culebrón

    Mar 11, 2022 at 4:46 pm

    Enough with the Armlocked putters. Those are anchored putters and should be banned.

  9. Crashtestdummy

    Mar 11, 2022 at 3:44 pm

    Kuchar’s prototypes make total sense. Instead of having to jacked up the loft on arm putters because of the severe shaft lean, just move the putter head forward to have standard degrees of loft on the putter. I like it.

    • Twitter lord

      Mar 11, 2022 at 11:30 pm

      Clearly is not “standard loft” on that putter….. Looks like -10 degrees, yes negative 10!!!! Are you blind?

  10. Jay Arr

    Mar 11, 2022 at 12:36 pm

    You got to be nuts to change out your 3w after you won the last 2 of 3 tournaments on the pga tour. Almost like Tiger changing his swing after winning 6 tournaments.

    Why is it so hard for humans to just leave things alone! lol

  11. H.R. Fernandez

    Mar 11, 2022 at 10:00 am

    Nice rundown.

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Equipment

SPOTTED: Cleveland RTX 6 ZipCore Tour Rack wedges at the 2022 Shriners Children’s Open

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New golf equipment was showing up left and right on Monday at the 2022 Shriners Children’s Open at TPC Summerlin in Las Vegas.

In addition to launching new ZX7 MKII irons, Cleveland-Srixon also brought out new RTX 6 ZipCore Tour Rack wedges for PGA Tour players to test for the first time.

While we don’t yet have details on the new wedges yet, based on the overall aesthetics, nomenclature, and design of the wedge, it appears the new RTX 6 ZipCore Tour Rack wedges could be set to replace Cleveland’s previous RTX ZipCore models.

Speaking with GolfWRX recently, Cleveland Product Manager Casey Shultz explained what the former RTX ZipCore wedges were all about:

“RTX ZipCore is designed for the better player with a well-developed short game that can take advantage of the added versatility the line brings to improve their shot-making capabilities around the greens, while still experiencing added forgiveness and consistency over what can typically be found in a blade wedge.”

“RTX ZipCore is the first product we introduced with our ZipCore technology, a low-density material within the hosel that helps to shift the CG and raise MOI, adding spin, enhancing control, and boosting consistency all within a traditional blade style shape. This wedge also has the newest Rotex face design with the sharper, deeper, and closer UltiZip grooves for maximum spin performance. On top of this, a new heat treatment process has been added to ensure these grooves stay sharp and this spin continues round after round.”

While we don’t know exactly what the new “6” is referencing, it could possibly mean these wedges are the sixth edition of “RTX” wedges, since the Cleveland RTX 4 wedges came out in 2018, and the company followed those up with the RTX ZipCore wedges in 2020.

Also, Shultz briefly explained the continued benefits of the Tour Rack program:

“Tour testing and feedback has a big influence on the design of our wedges, especially when it comes to grind offerings and appearance at address. We constantly are making modifications to the grinds for tour players and take notes of what works and what doesn’t and work this feedback in to future designs as well as custom grinding options available in our Tour Rack program.”

It appears that Cleveland’s Tour Rack has helped produced a new offering of RTX 6 ZipCore wedges, which we spotted at the 2022 Shriners Children’s Open below.

Check out the two wedges we saw in Las Vegas, and click here to read what GolfWRX Members are saying about the wedges.

Click here for more photos of the RTX 6 ZipCore Tour Rack wedges!

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2023 Titleist Pro V1 golf balls secretly began tour seeding last week

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We’re used to seeing new equipment at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, and indeed it’s the tournament at which Titleist has begun tour seeding for the next iteration of the Pro V1 golf ball in the past. This year, however, staffers apparently couldn’t wait until Vegas and “tour validation,” Titleist’s term for the process of tour seeding and feedback, actually began at last week’s Sanderson Farms Championship.

According to Titleist, Garrick Higgo, M.J. Daffue, and Gary Woodland, who had tested prototype versions of the 2023 Pro V1 and Pro V1x, were clamoring to put the balls in play. Higgo (Pro V1), Daffue (Pro V1x), and Woodland (Pro V1x) became the first three players to game the 2023 models in competition.

This week, Titleist Golf Ball R&D reps Fordie Pitts and Jeff Beyers will be fitting players at TPC Summerlin.

2023 Titleist Pro V1

Jordan Spieth had this to say about the development process behind the new Pro V1.

“The Pro V1 and ProV1x, as a whole, are the best balls in golf so it’s hard to say, ‘How are you going to possibly make that ball better when it’s already the best?’” said Jordan Spieth. “I think when you think of anything being the best, you’re really going against yourself then. You’re trying to beat your former self versus worrying about the competition. And I think Titleist does that. They continue to push being the best and continuing to stay No. 1 – and that’s a really difficult thing to do.”

2023 Titleist Pro V1x

Reigning Masters champion, Scottie Scheffler, described the paces he’ll be putting the new Pro V1 through:

“First thing I’ll always do is take them to the short game area. For me, that’s always the most important. From there I’ll go to the range and just look at numbers, carry, stuff like that. From there, I’ll go out on the course and just start hitting shots. So same thing I do in the short game area, have a few of my ball, have a few of the new ball and just try and hit the same shot and see how the ball reacts, see what it does in the wind and just go from there.”

“One shot that I’m always practicing is when I take some off of it. I need to see that it’s still the same (distance) gaps between my full shot and when I’m taking some off of it. When I’m practicing on the driving range, if I have a little mishit or if a shot doesn’t feel right…I usually have a really good feel for how far it actually carried. If my stock wedge is 140 and I’m trying to hit at 135, and maybe I catch a little bit off and I’m like, ‘man that really feels like 132,’ if it goes that distance, that’s really important to me. And that gives me a lot of faith in what that golf ball’s going to do.”

Stay tuned to GolfWRX for more on the 2023 Titleist Pro V1 and Pro V1x.

“White boxes” of 2023 Titleist Pro V1, Pro V1 golf balls at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.

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Equipment

New Ping G430 drivers hit USGA Conforming List

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On Monday morning, Ping’s G430 lineup of drivers landed on the USGA Conforming List.

In apparent keeping with the G425 line breakdown — low spin, maximum MOI, draw-biased — the family looks to include the G430 LST, Max, and SFT drivers, all of which feature both right-handed and left-handed models.

Per the description on the USGA site, the LST driver contains a “carbonfly wrap” crown, with each new driver also featuring a weight port for adjustability and an apparently forged face ala the G425’s T9S+ forged face. This would suggest Ping may be implementing a carbon fiber crown and deviating from titanium.

Ping had no additional comment on the G430 drivers at this point, but with the clubs now deemed “conforming,” we wouldn’t be surprised to see them on the PGA Tour at this week’s Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.

Ping G430 LST

Ping G430 Max

Ping G430 SFT

As well as the new lineup landing on the USGA Conforming List, GolfWRXers have spotted the new drivers on social media, with some photos appearing to show the new driver in a black/gray/yellow colorway.

Here’s what our members have been saying about the new additions from Ping in our forum, but make sure to check out the entire thread at the link below and have your say.

  • MakersMarsh3: “Sound and feel are AWESOME. The carbon fiber and crown are more of a grey to me??? Has the slight 2 tone to it. The 3W wood seems to be the biggest improvement.  I have a hard time looking down on them and I thought it looked sweet.”
  • belh22: “Love the color scheme personally.”
  • m9: “The head looks to be an MOI beast, and the tungsten weight at the back appears to be smaller than that of the G425.”

Entire Thread: “Ping G430 lineup of drivers land on USGA Conforming List”

 

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