Old grooves about to disappear forever
Friday, September 4, 2009
I’ve heard enough about Tour players and their new grooves for 2010.
These are the best players in the world. They will adjust quickly to less aggressive 2010 grooves.
Let’s talk about the golfers who matter the most – the amateurs and everyday golfers who are the foundation of the game.
What should amateurs know about grooves?
First, if amateurs use Surlyn-covered golf balls (this includes most bargain balls), they don’t need to worry about grooves. Old grooves, new grooves, it won’t make any difference. The harder Surlyn balls will perform the same regardless of the grooves (comparatively speaking, Surlyn doesn’t offer much spin).
Second, if amateurs use more expensive urethane-covered balls, they should be advising their friends and loved ones to give them wedges for Christmas or at any time during 2010.
Why? Because wedges with high-spinning box grooves (also called square grooves or U grooves) provide maximum spin with urethane balls. Yet these wedges will be manufactured only through 2010. On Jan. 1, 2011, production of wedges with these grooves will cease (although retail outlets can sell them until the supply is exhausted).
Most amateurs can use these “old” grooves until at least 2024. This provision includes most competition at the club and local levels.
The only amateurs compelled to use the “new” grooves will be those who qualify for professional events or play in the biggest, most important amateur tournaments.
Even then, the global switchover for high-level amateur competition won’t occur until 2014 (as decreed by the USGA and R & A).
It is in the best interest of virtually every amateur golfer to purchase box-grooved wedges before they disappear.
My advice: Buy wedges like they are going out of style. Why? Because they are going out of style.