>> Y.E. Yang’s decisive shot on the final hole of the PGA Championship was hit with a TaylorMade Rescue TP hybrid (21 degree). This was a 2007 model, designated on the sole as a Rescue 4.
Yang’s chip-in on the 14th green was executed with a TaylorMade Z TP wedge. Although the wedge was marked as a 48-degree model, it actually was bent to 50 degrees. Why? To increase the bounce and to fit into the progression of Yang’s set.
There are lessons to be learned here. Yang removed the 54-degree wedge he often uses and replaced it with another hybrid. For the longest course in major championship history, he wanted two hybrids – 19 and 21 degrees.
So Yang carried a TaylorMade r7 TP pitching wedge (47 degrees) along with 50- and 58-degree wedges (the 58 was a Nike SV).
Because of factors such as manufacturing tolerances and minor bending in a loft-and-lie machine, stated lofts can be deceptive. Yang’s bag also included a TaylorMade V Steel 5-wood (18 degree).
Yang also carried an r7 Limited driver (8.5 degree), TaylorMade Burner 3-wood (13 degree) and TaylorMade r7 TP irons (5-PW). His putter was an Odyssey White Hot 2-Ball, and his ball was a TaylorMade TP Red LDP.
>> Yang used an Aldila NV 75 shaft in his driver, along with Aldila NVS 105 hybrid shaft in the 19 degree and an Aldila NV 105 hybrid shaft in the 21 degree. He had Honma ARMRQ shafts in his two fairway woods and True Temper Project X 6.5 steel shafts in his irons. (Rory McIlroy, who tied for third, also played the Project X 6.5 iron shafts).
Aldila came out on top in the wood shaft category (including hybrids) at the PGA Championship, totaling 112 to 99 for runner-up Fujikura. Mitsubishi Rayon was third with 80, followed by True Temper (72), UST Mamiya (61), Graphite Design (27) and Matrix (27).
In a Grand Slam of sorts, Aldila won the all-wood shaft count in each of the year’s four majors.
>> Retief Goosen and Johan Edfors used leather grips from GripMaster on their irons and woods. These are not the wound leather grips of the past, but rather one-piece, slip-on leather grips.
Available in round and ribbed versions, they are distributed by GripMaster USA. They cost about $14 apiece.
>> Corey Pavin and Bob Estes carried vintage Bulls Eye putters at the PGA. Pavin is a longtime Bulls Eye user, while Estes has switched in and out of the model over the years.
Estes said he likes the lighter weight of the older Bulls Eye putter heads. “I’ve got more control of the putter this way,” he said. “I’m controlling it, instead of it controlling me. I’m just old school, I guess.”
>> Darren Clarke put a new Titleist putter in his bag. The putter, available to consumers in October, is a Del Mar model from the new Scotty Cameron California Series.
>> Kenny Perry and Metropolis (N.Y.) Country Club head professional Craig Thomas played TaylorMade’s new Raylor fairway hybrid. Both chose the 22-degree model.
The sole of this new Raylor is nothing like the sole of TaylorMade Raylor fairway woods from the 1980s. This one has a large metal sole shaped like a V, similar to the shape used in the old Ginty by Stan Thompson.