Toy Box: Tiger wins with all Nike
All Nike clubs for Tiger Woods
At the Arnold Palmer Invitational, Tiger Woods carried all Nike clubs in his first PGA Tour victory since 2009.
Woods has used various graphite driver shafts in recent years, but he has stuck with a Graphite Design Tour AD DI-6X in his Nike VR Tour driver (8.5 degree) since mid-2011.
The rest of Woods' bag: VR Pro Limited Edition 3-wood (15 degree), SQ II 5-wood (19 degree), VR Pro Blades (3-PW), VR Pro wedges (56 and 60 degree), Method 001 putter and a Nike One Tour D ball.
Woods, who has experimented with putter grips this year, was back to Ping's Pingman Blackout putter grip. He has used that grip off and on for years.
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K.J. Choi copies World No. 1 Luke Donald
If you can't beat 'em, then join 'em.
Following Luke Donald's victory at the Transitions Championship, K.J. Choi approached Odyssey's tour rep and asked for a duplicate of Donald's White Hot XG No. 7H. The only change was Choi's request for the Super Stroke Fatso grip.
Other than that, the swingweight, length, loft, lie and head design were identical. Choi averaged 29.5 putts per round at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, tying for 29th in that category.
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Phil Mickelson adds new KBS shafts
Phil Mickelson has switched to KBS Tour V2 steel shafts in his Callaway irons. Except for an X Forged 09 4-iron, the irons were Razr X Muscleback (5-PW).
The V2 steel shaft is a stiffer version of the KBS Tour shaft used by almost two dozen players on the PGA Tour. Both shafts weigh 130 grams. The new V2 shaft is stiffer near the tip section. For a high-ball hitter such as Mickelson, it keeps the trajectory down.
This is the third KBS shaft to make an appearance on the PGA Tour. Besides the KBS Tour, there is also the KBS C-Taper. In general terms, the V2 is the strongest of the three. The C-Taper is next, while the original KBS Tour produces the highest trajectory.
In effect, KBS shaft engineer Kim Braly made this new shaft for Mickelson. At this point, no other player has tested it or used it, according to Braly.
In his previous start at Doral, Mickelson played the final round with the V2 shafts. He continued to test them during his week off before Bay Hill.
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Bill Haas tests Titleist 4-wood
Playing alone during a pre-tournament practice round, Bill Haas was seen testing a Titleist prototype 4-wood.
Why? Haas was thinking ahead to the Masters. Specifically, he was thinking of the second shot at Augusta National's par-5 15th.
"I don't know (what I will carry at Augusta)," said Haas, one of the few players on the PGA Tour to carry a 2-iron. "The window I like is a little lower (than the trajectory provided by 4-wood)."
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David Duval, who has no equipment contract with a major manufacturer, played the new Bridgestone B330 ball and used Bridgestone J40 irons and wedges at Bay Hill. . . . Charlie Wi, who contended at Bay Hill, used a new TaylorMade RocketBallz Tour driver (9.5 degree). He also played with a new RocketBallz 4-wood that was built to 3-wood length (43½ inches). . . . William McGirt exchanged his TaylorMade Tour Preferred MC irons for the Tour Preferred CB model. Initially he wanted just the 4-, 5- and 6-irons, but he added the 7, 8 and 9 as well. McGirt said he can achieve a higher trajectory with the CB irons but still work the ball effectively. . . . Sam Saunders, Arnold Palmer's grandson, missed the cut at Bay Hill but averaged 291.8 yards with a new driver - a Callaway Razr Fit (8.5 degree) with an Oban Proto 75 X shaft.