Alan Hocknell, affectionately known as Doc Hock, has a doctorate from Loughborough (England) University. That’s where he spent four years studying sports collisions (such as a golf clubhead hitting a golf ball) and also where he met Callaway Golf’s technical chief, Richard Helmstetter.
Helmstetter, on a recruiting visit, offered Hocknell a job. The Englishman accepted. More than 15 years later, Hocknell, 42, is still with Callaway. Hocknell, senior vice president of research and development, and his team have created two new drivers for 2014: Big Bertha and Big Bertha Alpha.
The Big Bertha Alpha is attracting most of the initial attention. The driver features a vertical center-of-gravity screw that can change the CG location up or down in the head, depending on the needs of the golfer. Before this development, attempts to manually alter the CG location were focused primarily on the horizontal axis.
“This will be a big PGA Show for us,” Hocknell said. “It’s not every day that Big Bertha is reintroduced.”