Harris English, coming off a season in which he won more than $2.2 million on the PGA Tour that included a win and three more top-10 finishes, will tee it up at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions on Friday with new gear in hand.
English has joined Callaway, the company announced on Twitter on Thursday.
English also took to Twitter to say: "Just finished up my Pro-Am at Hyundai TOC and excited to officially be a part of the Callaway Team. Can't wait to get 2014 started tomorrow!"
According to our Alex Miceli, who is on the ground at Hyundai, English will still be playing the Titleist Pro V that he has played since turning professional. He will also keep the Ping Scottsdale putter in the bag that he won with twice last year and will also carry his Ping 3- and 5-wood.
English won the FedEx St. Jude Classic in 2013, nearly doubling his earnings from 2012. He played in two majors in 2013, finishing T-15 at the Open Championship and T-61 at the PGA Championship.
Lydia Ko is piling up the endorsement deals, but this one could be the most promising.
According to NewsTalkZB in her native New Zealand, the teenage LPGA star has signed with Callaway to use the company's clubs and equipment.
Ko will be coached by Sean Hogan, who is affiliated with the David Leadbetter Academy. Leadbetter is a Callaway guy, too.
Ko has been busy in the past two months after having turned professional in October:
- The teen won the Swinging Skirts Ladies Masters in December in Taiwan in her second start as a professional.
- She also announced that she was signing with IMG for management.
- Soon after, she signed a three-year endorsement deal with Australian bank ANZ.
As a 15-year-old, Ko won the 2012 Canadian Women's Open to become the youngest victor in LPGA history. She successfully defended that title in 2013 as an amateur.
For years, the thinking was players looking for a Ping driver that would maximize distance went with a G-Series driver. Better players who liked to work the ball went with an i-Series driver. With the introduction of the i25 driver, Ping is continuing to change those ideas.
"From a design standpoint, but really more from a perception standpoint, we've transformed the i-Series from being a better-player's product to being products that just provide less spin and a more boring trajectory," said Marty Jertson, Ping's director of product development. "Certainly in the driver category, the concept of workability, and better players needing workability, is pretty low in importance for most golfers. Even at the Tour level."
Like its predecessor the i20, the new i25 features a 460 cubic-centimeter titanium head. While previous versions had a fixed hosel, the i25 was designed with an adjustable hosel system that lets golfers add or take away .5 degrees of loft. It is compact and extremely light, because the sleeve is made from aerospace-grade aluminum and the screw is made from titanium.
While other manufacturers offer greater adjustable loft ranges, Ping always has advocated players get custom fit for every club. The ...
In some ways, creating a good fairway wood is more challenging than creating a good driver.
"What makes fairway woods so tough to design is that you have a really small window to get your launch and spin just right," said Marty Jertson, Ping's director of product development. "Even from a PGA Tour player's standpoint, if they get a fairway wood that spins a little bit too much, it just doesn't feel good and the ball balloons. If you get a fairway wood that just fractionally does not spin enough, shots will just fall out of the air."
With the release of the i25 fairway woods, Jertson and the team at Ping believe they have a club that could help more players achieve ideal launch conditions more often to make hitting tight fairways and long par-5s a little easier.
The i25 comes standard with an adjustable hosel system that allows golfers to increase or decrease the club's loft by .5 degrees. That may not seem like much, but it should help golfers hit shots to a specific distance, which is critical. It also should help players working with clubfitters create even gapping between their fairway woods ...
As clichés go, "You can't judge a book by its cover" is pretty popular.
According to Marty Jertson, Ping's director of product development, the G15 hybrid performed great, but because the club had an enlarged toe section and asymmetrical look at address, it turned some golfers off. With the new Ping i25 hybrid, Jertson said his designers were successful in repackaging the playing characteristics engineers loved in a more traditional-looking hybrid.
Made from 17-4 stainless steel, the i25 has a compact head with a non-glare, matte black finish. At address, players may see the club has a touch of offset, but it's a traditional look.
"We've created a club with a pretty small footprint from front to back, and moved the CG [center of gravity] pretty far forward," Jertson said. However, he said that because the CG position is still well behind the shaft axis, the i25 produces a much higher ball flight than its predecessor, the i20, while at the same time creating less spin.
"So really, we've got the physics of a G15-style hybrid in a totally different chassis," he said.
Even though the i25 hybrids create a higher launch angle, Ping wanted ...
Some large, high-MOI putters look like a potato masher on a stick, but for golfers who have trouble with distance control on the green, high-MOI putters can be helpful. Balls hit almost anywhere on the face roll nearly the same distance.
The trouble is that some players just can't get past the looks.
Last season Ping released the Scottsdale TR line of putters and said the classic-looking heads enhanced distance control thanks to a new multi-depth grooved face insert. Now the company is releasing the Karsten TR putters to build on their success.
The key to the performance of the Ping Karsten TR putters ("TR" stands for True Roll) is the grooved face. After studying the effects of grooves on putts, Ping discovered that deeper grooves slow down putts more than shallow grooves. Armed with that knowledge, Ping designed the face of the Karsten TR putters to have grooves that are deeper in the sweet spot and shallower near the heel and toe areas. Theoretically, this creates a hitting surface that rolls the ball to about the same distance on well-struck putts and those that slightly miss the sweet spot.
"It's a patented technology and something that we ...
Part of Ernie Els' happy new year is a deal to play Adams Golf equipment.
Els wrote that he is "so excited about joining Adams," in a blog post that appeared today on the company's web site.
"Right now we’re working hard to finalize the configuration and exact specs of my set, focusing specifically on the Tight Lies fairway metals and XTD irons and hybrids," wrote Els, ranked No. 27 in OWGR. "Really can’t wait now to use them in competitive play later this month at the Qatar Masters."
The company expressed excitement in its own right at the pairing.
"Ernie's worldwide appeal and iconic status fit our international business growth as we extend our stronghold in hybrids to other categories." said John Ward, president of Adams Golf.
Els has won three majors with different equipment companies, the Associated Press reported: Lynx (1994 U.S. Open), TaylorMade (1997 U.S. Open and 2002 British Open) and Callaway (2012 British Open). The South African and Hall of Famer finished T-11 at the WGC-HSBC Champions in November.
"I’m 44 years of age and feel as committed as ever to trying to win another major, maybe two," Els ...
Trevor Immelman is ringing in 2014 by moving to TaylorMade's stable of staff players.
In a post on social media Wednesday, Immelman announced the move via his Twitter account, @TrevorImmelman: "Let's go 2014!! @adidas @adidasGolf @TaylorMadeGolf #3stripes #Adidas #TaylorMade pic.twitter.com/Id2WlEqbid"
Immelman wears adidas gear in the picture that's part of the post. The 2008 Masters winner is ranked No. 234 in OWGR. The South African finished T-20 at the McGladrey Classic in November.
To the naked eye, Phil Mickelson's driver is a blur when he hits tee shots. Often most people hear club/ball contact more clearly than they can see it. Since few golfers possess Mickelson-esque clubhead speed, it's not surprising that many would be wise to play a different ball than the five-time major winner.
With the release of the new Speed Regime family of golf balls, Callaway is trying to make it easy for players to find a ball that is optimized for their swing.
“Looking at all the data we have on golf-ball fittings, well, club fittings really, and taking those speed and launch conditions, our R&D guys were able to identify patterns for every speed ‘regime,’ “ said Greg Sabella, Callaway's director of golf ball marketing. “They were then able to design a golf ball to maximize performance at each one of those speeds.”
Each of the three balls – Speed Regime 1, Speed Regime 2 and Speed Regime 3 – are designed with different players in mind and with slightly different features. Here’s what you need to know:
• Speed Regime 1 (SR1): Designed for players with driver clubhead speed below 90 mph, the four-piece SR1 ...
One plus one plus one equals three, except when you're talking about Odyssey's latest line of putters, the Metal-X Milled series. In that case, it equals a new one.
"What we have tried to do with Metal-X Milled is incorporate technologies that we've had in three different lines into one," said Austie Rollinson, Odyssey’s principal designer.
Rollinson said Odyssey took the face pattern from its Metal-X line and put it in a one-piece, milled head design, like a ProType Tour. Then the company added the adjustable weight system from the ProType iX. Voila! A new putter line was born.
The original Odyssey Metal-X putters, released in early 2013, were designed with ovular depressions in the face insert, which the company said helps get the ball rolling faster on the greens. According to Odyssey, the oval pattern helps the face latch onto the ball, even if the putter is on the upswing.
"The oval depressions really increase the friction in the face," Rollinson said. "That friction is going to help when you make contact with the ball. It will help to launch it at a lower angle and with less backspin than it would usually have, to ...
Tiger Woods switched into a Nike VRS Covert 2.0 Tour driver (9.5 degree). Rory McIlroy uses the same driver in a different loft (8.5 degree).
Even bigger news from Woods, though, was his driver shaft. He went from a 73-gram Mitsubishi Diamana White Board to a 103-gram Blue Board.
Woods has used the 103-gram shaft in his fairway woods for years. The reason for the heavier driver shaft: Better accuracy.
Zach Johnson added Titleist 714 AP2 irons (5-9) to his bag last week, but his 60-degree Titleist Vokey Design Hand Ground 60-V wedge stole the show. Holing a 58-yard shot to force a playoff against Tiger Woods will do that.
“The V-Grind has been around for a while,” said Dave Neville, marketing manager for Vokey Wedges. “It’s one of the grinds that (Bob Vokey) likes the best because it’s a high-bounce, crescent sole.”
Neville said a version of the V-grind wedge has been in Johnson’s bag since 2007, and he used it at Augusta National when he won the Masters that year. The measured bounce of the club is about 18 degrees, but its effective bounce is 12 degrees. That makes it especially good in soft conditions such as the players faced at Sherwood Country Club, but it can be challenging when courses get firm.
The club is available to the public for $350 through the WedgeWorks Hand Ground program at www.vokey.com.
Johnson also had a Titleist 913D2 driver with a 73-gram Diamana Blue Board shaft.
– Jim Achenbach contributed
After the U.S. Golf Association announced a ban on anchored putting methods would go into effect starting in 2016, several manufacturers released counterbalanced putters designed to provide anchored-style stability in a style that will remain legal. Titleist has just announced it is releasing a counterbalanced version of the putter Adam Scott used to win the 2013 Masters, the Scotty Cameron Futura X Dual Balance.
Milled from 6061 aluminum, the Futura X Dual Balance is a high-MOI mallet that features two 10-gram weights in the sole – one in the heel and one in the toe – as well as a 20-gram weight at each end of the back wing section. These weights help the Futura X Dual Balance resist twisting on off-center hits, which should help golfers keep the ball on their intended target line. The weights also lower the club’s center of gravity, but because so much of the head’s weight is behind the player’s hands at address, Titleist says that initiating the backswing and keeping it on the intended path are much easier.
In a release, Cameron said, “With Futura X Dual Balance, the goal was to slow down the butt end of the putter and ...
Wilson Golf played a major role in starting what might be called the Thin Face Revolution with its unique Reflex iron in 1979.
The Reflex had a slot cut in the sole, and Wilson planned to tell the world about the slingshot effect resulting from flex-face design. Not so fast, said the U.S. Golf Association, instructing Wilson to keep a low profile. The iron never received much publicity, and five years later it was out of production.
Fast forward to 2014, when thin faces in irons likely will make a huge impact. The USGA has adopted a new attitude about flex-face irons – it’s OK to talk about them. So companies are talking aggressively. All the major manufacturers have thin-faced irons, and Wilson is in the mix with its new Staff C 100 iron.
The language of the Thin Face Revolution includes descriptive terms such as floating faces, unsupported faces, flexible faces, ultra-thin faces, hot faces and trampoline faces. What they do is flex upon impact with a golf ball. Golfers will hear a lot more about thin faces and their ability to better transfer energy and boost distance.
Metalwoods also have thin faces, but their spring-like effect has ...
Big Bertha is back.
Callaway Golf will use the famous name for two new drivers and a line of fairway woods for 2014.
One of those new drivers, the Big Bertha Alpha, will feature a unique adjustable weight pin inserted vertically in the head. This pin, called the Gravity Core, has a heavy end and a light end, and it will change the center of gravity depending on whether the heavy end is positioned up or down in the head.
Callaway introduced the original Big Bertha driver at the 1991 PGA Merchandise Show. It was the first oversized metal driver, and it changed golf. Metal heads grew larger and larger throughout the 1990s and into the following decade, leading the U.S. Golf Association in 2004 to limit the size of driver heads to 460 cubic centimeters.
Now, almost 23 years after the debut of Big Bertha, Callaway is set to resurrect the name in the most ambitious driver project ever launched by the Carlsbad, Calif., manufacturer. The two Big Bertha drivers will be unveiled at the 2014 PGA Merchandise Show and are scheduled to be available at retail Feb. 14.
When Chip Brewer took over as Callaway Golf chief ...
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