Poulter unveils white Cobra driver in Shanghai

Ian Poulter during the second round of the HSBC Champions in Shanghai.

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Only 500 of the LE model will be sold (with a $625 price tag).

Ian Poulter leaves little to the imagination when it comes to making a fashion statement. This week in China, he’s even sporting a white-headed driver.

It was never a sure thing that Poulter, a Cobra staff member who won the 2010 Accenture Match Play Championship with a ZL driver (9.5 degrees), would play the company’s new Limited Edition ZL driver in competition.

But the mystery ended Thursday when Poulter put the eye-catching LE into play at the WGC-HSBC Champions in Shanghai.

The standard ZL is all-black – the head is black, the Aldila Voodoo shaft is black, the Cobra/Golf Pride proprietary grip is black.

In stark contrast, the ZL LE is all-white – white head, white Fujikura Motore Speeder shaft, white Golf Pride Tour Wrap 2G grip. Only 500 of the LE models will be sold. The cost is $625 (the Motore Speeder alone has an MSRP of $399).

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The ZL and the ZL LE are multi-material drivers. The crown and sole are constructed of carbon fiber, while the body and face are made of titanium. They feature Adjustable Flight Technology, with three face angle settings (neutral, open and closed).

In shifting Poulter into the LE model, Cobra sent its ace tour services manager, Ben Schomin, from Cobra’s California headquarters to Poulter’s Lake Nona home in Orlando, Fla.

Sent him there twice, actually.

Said Schomin, “I made two trips in nine days. Ian is very particular with drivers. We had to get all the specs exactly right. It was a pretty big hurdle we got over (to do it so quickly).”

Cobra took promotional photos of Poulter dressed entirely in white, holding the white driver.

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In the HSBC tournament, Poulter unveiled the all-white LE in the opening round by wearing all-black.

The LE’s white color obviously caught Poulter’s fancy. “It’s really very cool,” said the stylish Englishman, widely regarded as one of the coolest golfers on the planet. “It’s really very unique and different than any driver I’ve seen. Its performance is great, too. It has the identical performance to the driver I’ve won with twice.”

Poulter can thank Schomin for matching the two drivers.

The next challenge for Schomin: He will be crossing the country to Florida once again to build a driver for teenage phenom Alexis Thompson, another Cobra staff player.

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