Among the 12 Titleist ball users in the competition, there was a definitive answer to a familiar question: Pro V1 or Pro V1x?
At Celtic Manor, 11 players used the Pro V1x. Only one, Steve Stricker, played the Pro V1.
For golfers with high or moderately high swing speeds (100 mph or greater), evidence continues to accumulate: Pro V1x is slightly longer off the tee and thus is the ball of choice, even if the Pro V1 is widely regarded to have a slim advantage in softness around the greens.
Behind Titleist ball users came TaylorMade with four, Nike with three and Srixon and Callaway with two each. Bridgestone also made the field.
Meanwhile, at the PGA Tour’s Viking Classic, the top four finishers (Bill Haas, Michael Allen, D.J. Trahan and Brendon de Jonge) used the Pro V1x.
Other weekend winners who played the Pro V1x: Steven Bowditch (Nationwide Tour), Michio Matsumura (Japan Tour), Pariya Junhasavasdikul (Asian Tour)and Michiel Bothma (South African Tour).
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Ryder Cup golf balls for the winning European team: Luke Donald (Titleist Pro V1x), Ross Fisher (Titleist Pro V1x), Peter Hanson (TaylorMade Penta TP), Padraig Harrington (Titleist Pro V1x), Miguel Angel Jimenez (Srixon Z-Star X), Martin Kaymer (TaylorMade Penta TP), Graeme McDowell (Callaway Tour ix), Rory McIlroy (Titleist Pro V1x), Edoardo Molinari (TaylorMade Penta TP), Francesco Molinari (Nike One Tour D), Ian Poulter (Titleist Pro V1x) and Lee Westwood (Titleist Pro V1x).
U.S. team: Stewart Cink (Nike One Tour D), Rickie Fowler (Titleist Pro V1x), Jim Furyk (Srixon Z-Star X), Dustin Johnson (TaylorMade Penta TP), Zach Johnson (Titleist Pro V1x), Matt Kuchar (Bridgestone Tour B330-S) Hunter Mahan (Titleist Pro V1x), Phil Mickelson (Callaway Tour iz), Jeff Overton (Titleist Pro V1x), Steve Stricker (Titleist Pro V1), Bubba Watson (Titleist Pro V1x)and Tiger Woods (Nike One Tour).
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Added Octane: Callaway’s new Diablo Octane driver, which will be available at retail in early November, made its PGA Tour debut at the Viking Classic. Former PGA champion Shaun Micheel used an 8.5-degree Octane to average 292 yards off the tee, almost 8 yards longer than his season average.
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Short shots: Callaway Golf and Italian automaker Lamborghini will collaborate on research and development, the companies announced Sept. 30 at the Paris Motor Show. They already have co-developed a carbon-composite material called Forged Composite that will be part of a Callaway equipment line to launch late this year and throughout 2011. . . . If Steven Bowditch had a club to thank in winning the Soboba Golf Classic on the Nationwide Tour, it was his Odyssey White Hot XG No. 7 center-shafted putter. Bowditch finished first in average putts per round (24.0) and putts per GIR (1.537). . . . Graeme McDowell’s crucial birdie putt on the 16th green in his singles victory over Hunter Mahan was made with an Odyssey White Hot No. 7. . . . Champions Tour player Gary Hallberg became the latest touring pro to win a tournament (Ensure Classic at Rock Barn) with a mixed set of irons. Hallberg combined Callaway X-Forged (4- and 5-iron) with Callaway X-Prototype (6-PW). . . . Robert Garrigus, the driving distance leader on the PGA Tour, added a TaylorMade R9 5-wood at the Viking Classic. Some of golf’s longest hitters, including Tiger Woods, have substituted 5-woods for 2-irons in the last few years.