Toy Box: FedEx Cup champ and Piretti distributor
Tuesday, September 24, 2013
FedEx Cup champion . . . and Piretti distributor
Henrik Stenson is vested in his Piretti putter in more ways than one. Not only did he make clutch putts with it throughout the FedEx Cup playoffs, he serves as the company’s Scandinavian distributor.
Piretti may sound Italian, but it’s a fictional name created by Mike Johnson, who started the putter company in 2008. His shop is located in Spring, Texas, where he makes high-end putters. (Most models cost $315, although a yet-to-be-released copper inlay version of Stenson’s putter will sell for about $950.)
Stenson has been using a Piretti putter since early 2011, and his current model is the Piretti Cottonwood II Prototype. It has the prototype designation because Johnson added a quarter-inch to the neck of the standard version, creating less toe hang and allowing Stenson to fully release the putter during the stroke. The Cottonwood II putter head weighs 365 grams, and the loft is 2.5 degree.
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What’s in Stenson’s bag?
In addition to the Piretti putter, Stenson used the following gear during his dominant play down the season’s homestretch: TaylorMade SLDR driver (10.5 degree, with Grafalloy Blue X shaft tipped 1.5 inches), Callaway Diablo Octane Tour 3-wood (13 degree, with a Grafalloy Blue X shaft), Callaway X Hot Pro 4-wood (17 degree, with a Grafalloy Blue X shaft), Callaway Legacy Black irons (3-PW, with Nippon N.S. Pro Modus3 120 X shafts) and Cleveland 588 RTX wedges (52 and 58 degree, with Nippon N.S. Pro Modus3 120 X shafts). He used a Titleist Pro V1x golf ball.
Stenson’s SLDR driver was new. After he broke his TaylorMade R1 driver in anger on the final hole of the BMW Championship, TaylorMade made two drivers for him – one was a duplicate of the R1 driver (9 degree) that he had been using, the other was the SLDR (10.5 degree).
Because the center of gravity of the SLDR is located in a low/forward position, the driver produces low spin. This has caused many touring pros, including Stenson, to increase their loft with the SLDR. The equation is simple: More loft plus less spin equals more carry distance, thus more overall distance.
TaylorMade says launch-monitor testing before the Tour Championship showed Stenson – using the SLDR – with 400 less rpm of spin and 10 additional yards of total distance.
Stenson’s Legacy Black forged irons from Callaway cannot be purchased in the United States. Originally, they were made for the Asian market, and recently were added to Callaway’s line in Australia and the U.K. According to Callaway, there are no plans to sell them in the U.S.
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Stenson wasn’t the only winner using the Titleist Pro V1x. It also was played by Julien Quesne (European Tour), Andre Stolz (Australasia) and Neil Schietekat (South Africa). Mark Wiebe (Champions Tour) used a Pro V1. . . . Justin Rose and D.A. Points played new TaylorMade SLDR 3-woods (15.5 degree) at the Tour Championship. SLDR fairway woods are not yet available to consumers. Sergio Garcia switched back to a counterbalanced TaylorMade Spider Mallet putter. No surprise there because Garcia counterbalances all his full-swing clubs, inserting Balance Certified weights in the butt end of every wood, iron and wedge.