Categories
Equipment

Titleist Introduces New TSR2 & TSR3 Hybrids

The most played hybrids on the PGA TOUR since 2014, Titleist hybrids have always set the highest standard for performance and playability. The all-new TSR2 and TSR3 models – available for fittings and presale on Feb. 2 and in golf shops worldwide beginning Feb. 23 –continue to raise the bar with advancements and refinements that will benefit all players seeking long iron alternatives.

These new additions to the TSR metalwood family come in two distinct models: the TSR2 hybrid, which offers forgiving speed and performance, and the TSR3 hybrid, which delivers next-level precision and workability.

The TSR2 and TSR3 hybrids make their PGA TOUR debut this week at The American Express, joining a TSR metalwoods line that continues to gain momentum across the worldwide professional tours. The versatility and gapping options offered in the TSR hybrid lineup make for a seamless transition in players’ bags from TSR drivers and fairways.

“TSR2 and TSR3 hybrids offer players options at the top end of the bag,” said Tom Bennett, Principal Product Manager – Fairways & Hybrids. “Players can choose between the more classical shape and high launch of the TSR2 or the refined profile and adjustability of the TSR3. Both clubs provide a fast, forgiving, and high-launching long-iron alternative that gives the golfer the confidence to pull off any shot.”

TSR Hybrid Offerings:

TSR2: A high launching, mid-low spin, forgiving long-iron replacement, best-suited for players that deliver the club in a sweeping motion. An extended blade length, a deeper CG, and a reimagined sole shape bring even better forgiveness and improved turf interaction than its popular predecessors, all packed into a classic hybrid profile.

  • Features head weight adjustability (same as driver/fairway)
  • RH and LH Lofts: 18°, 21°, 24°


TSR3: 
A flatter trajectory, and a refined shape inspired by popular predecessors. Highly adjustable, featuring a new 5-position SureFit Adjustable CG Track System that allows players to dial in their ideal setup. Tailored to players seeking workability and precision, the TSR3 hybrid has a refined tour-inspired shape that gives players the confidence to hit any shot.

  • Enhanced 5-position SureFit CG Adjustability
  • Features head weight adjustability (same as TSR3 driver/fairway)
  • RH and LH Lofts: 19°, 21°, 24°

TSR Hybrid Performance and Technology:

  • Reimagined shaping and profiles: The TSR2 hybrids are classically shaped and have a slightly lengthened blade length, shifting the impact center further from the shaft, which increases face flex and results in more speed and forgiveness | TSR3 hybrids feature an iron-like hybrid profile inspired by popular predecessors, and a slight reduction in offset helps improve performance
  • Deeper, More Forgiving CG & High Inertia Body: In TSR2, Titleist engineers pushed the CG deeper while keeping it low, making high-launching and soft-landing approaches with maximum forgiveness even easier | TSR3 hybrids are more stable due to a higher inertia body, preventing deflection and twist when playing from difficult conditions
  • Faster Through the Rough: Added sole relief pockets on both TSR2 and TSR3 are designed to move the club faster through all rough conditions, heavy or light. Less surface area means less friction and less chance to drag or grab, also resulting in smooth turf interaction from the fairway.
  • Performance-Tuned Adjustability: With a refined 5-position SureFit Adjustable CG Track System, it is now easier than ever to dial in the exact setup you need in the TSR3 with a wider and more precise range of CG placements.
  • Player-Influenced Sound & Feel: Amazing sound and feel are paramount in the design of a superior golf club. Both hybrids have been tuned to deliver the acoustic and physical feedback each player needs to develop consistency and trust.

Availability and Price: Titleist TSR2 and TSR3 hybrids are available for fittings and presale on Feb. 2 and in golf shops worldwide beginning Feb. 23. | MAP: $299

Categories
LPGA Tour

LPGA Tour: Lydia Ko Wins 2022 Rolex Player of the Year Award, Vare Trophy

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., Nov. 10, 2022 ­– The LPGA Tour announced today that Lydia Ko earned the 2022 Rolex Player of the Year award with her win ­at the CME Group Tour Championship. Ko, who earned two additional victories this season at the Gainbridge LPGA at Boca Rio and the BMW Ladies Championship, is the 15th different player to win the award at least twice.

The 25-year-old also won the 2022 Vare Trophy for recording the season’s lowest scoring average of 68.988. Her season-long scoring average is the second-lowest Vare Trophy-winning scoring average in Tour history, behind Annika Sorenstam’s 68.70 in 2002. Sorenstam and Ko are the only two players to win the Vare Trophy with a scoring average in the 68s. Ko is the 12th player in LPGA Tour history to win the award in consecutive seasons and the 15th player to win the trophy more than once.

With the CME Group Tour Championship victory, the Rolex Player of the Year honor and the Vare Trophy, Ko now has 25 points toward qualifying for the LPGA Hall of Fame, two points shy of the 27 needed to be inducted.

“It’s a dream come true” for Lydia Ko

“I feel like it’s really difficult to compare, like, when I won the Player of the Year in 2015 to now. I don’t even — I don’t do stats very much, so I don’t even know what it is actually by numbers, but this year has been special,” said Ko following her win at the CME Group Tour Championship. “To win again at the Gainbridge so early in the season after winning in LOTTE last year, especially when I didn’t feel like I was ready, it kind of came to me as a surprise. Winning in Korea was special at a place where I was born, and it was my goal to have won there once. And to kind of do that, it was like a bucket-list thing.

You know, coming into these two events in the Florida stretch because I had won in Korea, I wanted to not have too high expectations. And obviously I wanted to end the season on a high but, you know, know that whatever happens and even though there’s a lot of things on the line, just know that it’s been a great season. And to be the Player of the Year and to win the Vare Trophy again and to win the CME Group Tour Championship, it’s a dream come true. To be able to do it in front of family and my team, you know, it’s a very special one.”

Ko entered the week in Naples, Fla. as one of four players with a mathematical chance of winning Player of the Year, leading the standings with 150 points, one clear of Minjee Lee and 20 ahead of Brooke Henderson and Atthaya Thtiikul. She also led Thitikul by 0.386 of a stroke heading into the final event, meaning the Thai rookie would have needed to score 35 strokes better than Ko to have a chance at the Vare Trophy.

The Kiwi set herself apart from the first day of play, managing the windy conditions throughout the week better than anyone to earn her second wire-to-wire victory of the season and of her career. By the end of the second round, Ko had a five-stroke lead on the field, but Irishwoman Leona Maguire made the most of Moving Day to tie things up before the final day. A 2-under 70 was all Ko needed on Sunday to finish -17 overall, two strokes ahead of Maguire, and secure the three season-ending titles.

Ko won her first Rolex Player of the Year award in 2015 after earning five victories that season, including her first major championship title at the Amundi Evian Championship. She earned her first Vare Trophy last year with a season-long scoring average of 69.329. Her accolades include the 2021 Founders Award and the 2014 Louise Suggs Rookie of the Year honor.

Ko celebrates her 19th LPGA Tour win

Along with her three victories this season, Ko notched 11 additional top-10 finishes, including third-place finishes at the Palos Verdes Championship presented by Bank of America, the Amundi Evian Championship and The Ascendant LPGA benefiting Volunteers of America.

Ko is now a 19-time LPGA Tour winner (ranked T29 on the LPGA Tour’s All-Time Wins List), with major titles at the 2015 Amundi Evian Championship and the 2016 Chevron Championship. She is a former World No. 1 in the Rolex Women’s World Golf Rankings, first achieving the top spot in February 2015 as the youngest player ever to be ranked No. 1 in professional golf. Ko is also the only amateur in history to win two LPGA Tour events, and officially joined the Tour as a 2014 rookie after petitioning for Membership in October 2013. Ko is a two-time Olympian representing New Zealand, winning the silver medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics and the bronze medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

The prestigious Rolex Player of the Year award was introduced to the LPGA in 1966. LPGA Tour players are awarded points at each official LPGA tournament based on top-10 finishes with the top points earner taking home the prestigious honor each year. Points are doubled at each of the LPGA’s five major championships – The Chevron Championship, the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship, the U.S. Women’s Open presented by ProMedica, the Amundi Evian Championship and the AIG Women’s Open.

The Vare Trophy was presented to the LPGA by Betty Jameson in 1952, in honor of the great American player Glenna Collett Vare. Vare Trophy scoring averages are computed on the basis of a Member’s total yearly score in Official Tournaments divided by the number of official rounds she played during a season.

(Text: LPGA)

Categories
Europe Travel

La Hacienda Alcaidesa Links Golf Resort – the new highlight on Andalusia’s Costa del Sol

Ambitious for the future

The US Millenium Hospitality Group has big goals. With La Hacienda Alcaidesa Links Golf Resort, it wants to become one of the leading and most luxurious golf resorts in Spain. It has entrusted this task to the Fairmont Hotels & Resorts Group, which is one of the most renowned luxury hotel brands worldwide.

The first steps have already been taken. The golf course, previously known as ‘Alcaidesa’, was rebuilt at a multi-million dollar cost and shines in a complete new splendour. The new, stylish clubhouse with its cool restaurant and the extraordinary beach club are already in place. The same goes for the huge driving range with new grass tees and the large putting, pitching and chipping area. Added to this is the already existing 18-hole Heathland Golf Course, so that the resort has two completely different golf courses.

By Easter 2024, a five-star hotel complex comprising 153 exclusive rooms and 51 villas is to be built on an area of 400 hectares.  Several more villas, all with private pools, will be available for purchase. Various restaurants and bars will be part of the complex as well as swimming pools, a spa and fitness centre and event facilities. A halfway house is under construction on the newly designed links course.

Millenium’s plan to become the flagship in Southern Europe with the resort seems to be working, because they have already been accepted as a member of the European Tour Destinations and are happy about this seal of quality.

All in white

As soon as you enter the white clubhouse of La Hacienda Alcaidesa Links Golf Resort, shining in the sun, you sense something special. The arc of tension is slowly built up, starting on the steps to the entrance. It continues as you cross the huge entrance hall and ends in front of an infinity pool with a view of the Mediterranean.

Unique: infinity pool at the clubhouse Terrasse (Photo: La Hacienda Alcaidesa Links Golf Resort)

The modern pro shop offers everything you need on a round. The rental clubs are of the best quality. The first tees of the two courses are in opposite directions. We first play the Heathland Course, which leads into the hinterland.

The Heathland Course

The 18-hole Heathland Course was designed by former Ryder Cup player Dave Thomas. The par-72 layout has a length of 6,373 m from the back tees and features different landscapes. While holes 1 to 5 and 17 and 18 are located on a plateau and resemble a heath landscape, the other courses wind their way down into the valley with magnificent views of the Mediterranean Sea, where several water hazards await.

This is also the case at the 13th, a par-5, where the tee shot has to be hit well in order not to land in the water hazard crossing the course head-on.

Challenging Par-5 on the Heathland Course (Photo: Juergen Linnenbuerger)

Due to the sometimes considerable distances between the individual holes and the considerable differences in altitude, a buggy is highly recommended. Some of these are brand new and of course equipped with GPS.

Unique Links Golf Course

The next day we played the only links course in southern Spain. The origin of the course dates back to 1992 and was designed by Peter Alliss and Clive Clark. Its current redesign is due to the US-American Kurtis Bowman, who redesigned all greens and added several bunkers. The course was only opened this summer but is already in great condition.

The par-72 course has a sensational layout and is suitable for all handicappers. The course is teed off from four tees. Players with a handicap of less than nine are recommended to use the white tees. The course then has a length of 5,841 m. At the moment, there is no table of playing conditions. I play off the yellows and am looking forward to the 5.5 km journey ahead of me. I know of no other course in Spain that offers such sensational views. The Rock of Gibraltar, which is clearly visible on a clear day, keeps attracting attention on various courses and distracts from the game. We are lucky with the weather and after a short initial rainfall, we enjoy the sunshine on the rest of the round.

Tee off to enjoy (Photo: Juergen Linnenbuerger)

The varied courses, the constant ups and downs and the great views over the course make the round of golf an unforgettable experience. Everything is extremely well-maintained and also perfectly matched visually.

The water hazards are impressively designed and interrupt the different shades of green of tees, fairways and greens with their brilliant blue. The course is not only great to play, but also meets the highest aesthetic standards. Some holes run directly along the sea.

Everything at its best (Photo: Juergen Linnenbuerger)

Development is already encroaching on some of the holes. This will increase further with the Fairmont Hotel La Hacienda, which is being built in terraces level with the back end of the beach with the best views across the course to the sea.

Directly along the beach (Photo: Juergen Linnenbuerger)

The palate will also be pampered

What could be better than finishing off a successful round of golf with a great meal and special drinks? The fact that this is possible at the resort is thanks to the Azotea Group. Behind it are the journalist Cristina Lasvignes and her husband José Manuel García. Among other things, they have founded various restaurants and bars in Spain under the Sal Verde brand that meet the highest standards.

Attractive location above the golf course (Photo: Juergen Linnenbuerger)

These include the Clubhouse Restaurant as well as the Arena Bar in the Beach Club, which is located directly below the golf course. Both combine a great ambience, the highest quality and outstanding creativity.

Arena bar at the beach club (Photo: Azalea)

Exceptional dishes and creative cocktails are created by the Michelin-starred Executive Chef Manuel Berganza and the renowned mixologist Luca Anastasio. The latter plays a special role in Sal Verde’s concept, because high-quality cocktails play an essential role in Sal Verde’s gastronomy concept.

Spectacular from the air as well (Photo: James Hogg)

Those who have a choice are spoilt for choice. Either you choose the Spicy Moscow Mule, the Senorita Margarita, the Amalfi Ten Tonic, the Galan or Paloma, or you try them all. With one exception, they were all new to me and impressed me as much as the menus of the latest Spanish star chef. The tuna tartare, popular in Andalusia, served here with truffles and spring onion dressing, melted in my mouth just as much as the mussels au gratin with spicy tomato sauce, to name just two of the various delicacies tasted.

As the Fairmont accommodation is still under construction, we are staying at the Aldiana Club near the golf courses while we get to know the new resort.

Adiós Aldiana Andalusia

The sun still rises every morning over the Aldiana Club Costa del Sol in Alcaidesa. But this will come to an end on 21 November 2022, because the resort will soon change hands. After the planned renovation, it will be called Sun Club Costa del Sol from next year and will continue as a four-star hotel under a new flag.

Sunrise at Aldiana Alcaidesa (Photo: Juergen Linnenbuerger)

The current all-inclusive concept will then be replaced by an offer that includes a choice of breakfast, half board or full board. It remains to be seen whether the great barbecue in the beach restaurant, which is still part of the club, will be offered.

I enjoyed the freshly prepared Andalusian specialities and especially the extremely spicy chorizo sausages. These remain in my positive memory as well as the varied and high-quality offer in the entire club. The well-maintained facilities and the friendliness and attentiveness of all the staff contributed in equal measure to my feeling of well-being during my stay. Not to forget the bright and clean room with the extremely comfortable bed.

Spicy and extremely delicious (Photo Juergen Linnenbuerger)

I am convinced that the Millenium/Fairmont concept will work out and that their guests will be delighted with the high-quality offer. I already am and look forward to another round on one of the most impressive golf courses in southern Europe. Hasta luego. 

Categories
Highlights Tours

US Masters 2022: Million dollar prize – this is how much money is at stake in Augusta

The official prize money for the US Masters 2022 was raised to 15 million dollars. In 2021, the prize money totaled $11.5 million. The raise is making the Masters one of the top tournaments on the tour, also financially, and the second best endowed tournament in golf behind the Players Championship ($20 million). The US Open and the PGA Championship both payed $12 million in 2021. According to reports, the organizers and sponsors even wanted to raise the prize money a little this year to underline the importance of the tournament.

One thing is for sure, whoever makes the cut at Augusta National can already look forward to a tidy handout in any case. Since 2019, the winner has received just over two million dollars, 600 FedEx Cup points and 100 points for the world rankings. In addition, a win at Augusta secures a PGA Tour card for five years, lifetime playing rights at the US Masters, and a starting spot at all majors for the next five years.

US Masters 2022: Smaller field = more money for everyone

Nothing is left to chance when it comes to the distribution of prize money at the US Masters. Instead, a clear scheme is followed that regulates the payout to the individual placings on a percentage basis. According to this scheme, the Masters champion always receives 18% of the total prize money, the runner-up still gets 10%, the third place 6.8%. If two or more players share a place, the prize money is divided among the players, as in any other tournament.

Augusta National: How to play a round of golf at the world’s most exclusive course

One reason why it is still possible to cash in well on the back places at the US Masters 2022 is the significantly smaller starting field compared to the PGA Tour. In terms of the size of the field, the fewest number of players make the cut after 36 holes at the Masters. Only the top 50 players (and stroke ties) make it to the weekend and thus receive a slightly higher share of the total prize money. Even those who miss the cut still receive $10,000, with only amateurs going away empty-handed.

This is how much money the top 50 players receive at the US Masters

Win: Scottie Scheffler, -10, $2,700,000

2: Rory McIlroy, -7, $1,620,000

T-3: Shane Lowry, -5, $870,000

T-3: Cameron Smith, -5, $870,000

5: Collin Morikawa, -4, $600,000

T-6: Will Zalatoris, -3, $521,250

T-6: Corey Conners, -3, $521,250

T-8: Justin Thomas, -1, $450,000

T-8: Sungjae Im, -1, $450,000

T-10: Cameron Champ, E, $395,000

T-10: Charl Schwartzel, E, $395,000

T-12: Dustin Johnson, +1, $330,000

T-12: Danny Willett, +1, $330,000

T-14: Kevin Na, +2, $225,333

T-14: Matt Fitzpatrick, +2, $225,333

T-14: Min Woo Lee, +2, $225,333

T-14: Harry Higgs, +2, $225,333

T-14: Lee Westwood, +2, $225,333

T-14: Talor Gooch, +2, $225,333

T-14: Hideki Matsuyama, +2, $225,333

T-14: Tommy Fleetwood, +2, $225,333

T-14: Jason Kokrak, +2, $225,333

T-23: Robert MacIntyre, +3, $138,000

T-23: Harold Varner III, +3, $138,000

T-23: Sergio Garcia, +3, $138,000

T-23: J.J. Spaun, +3, $138,000

T-27: Jon Rahm, +4, $111,000

T-27: Seamus Power, +4, $111,000

T-27: Viktor Hovland, +4, $111,000

T-30: Russell Henley, +5, $93,150

T-30: Sepp Straka, +5, $93,150

T-30: Hudson Swafford, +5, $93,150

T-30: Lucas Glover, +5, $93,150

T-30: Marc Leishman, +5, $93,150

T-35: Joaquin Niemann, +6, $75,562.50

T-35: Tony Finau, +6, $75,562.50

T-35: Patrick Reed, +6, $75,562.50

T-35: Webb Simpson, +6, $75,562.50

T-39: Patrick Cantlay, +7, $63,000

T-39: Bubba Watson, +7, $63,000

T-39: Tom Hoge, +7, $63,000

T-39: Si Woo Kim, +7, $63,000

43: Billy Horschel, +8, $55,500

T-44: Christiaan Bezuidenhout, +9, $51,000

T-44: Kevin Kisner, +9, $51,000

46: Cameron Davis, +12, $46,500

47: Tiger Woods, +13, $43,500

T-48: Adam Scott, +14, $40,050

T-48: Max Homa, +14, $40,050

T-50: Mackenzie Hughes, +15, $37,350

T-50: Daniel Berger, +15, $37,350

Categories
Highlights Tours

US Masters 2022: Will Jon Rahm continue the Spanish tradition at Augusta?

We are in a week unlike any other in the entire year. When the gates of Augusta National Golf Club open in April, the entire golfing world goes into a trance for seven days, triggered by the uniqueness and simple beauty of this tournament. In Augusta, everything simply fits and the entire scenery seems perfectly coordinated, as if in a choreography that has been rehearsed for years. For this very reason – and because Augusta is Augusta – the US Masters is considered the most prestigious and important tournament of the year, even among players.

US Masters 2022 – Tee Times

That’s how Jon Rahm sees it, too. Although the Spaniard lost his first place in the world rankings to Scottie Scheffler a few weeks ago, the bookmakers still consider the 27-year-old to be the biggest contender for the title at the 2022 US Masters, and for good reason. For one thing, Rahm has always finished in the top 10 in his last four appearances at Augusta, and for another, this golf course has a very special Spanish aura about it. Seve Ballesteros, Jose Maria Olazabal and Sergio Garcia have already won the Green Jacket, and now the next great Spaniard is to follow. But Jon Rahm is aware of the difficulty of this task, as he revealed at the press conference on Tuesday.

US Masters 2022: No major like any other


The Masters is unique. Not only because of its history, but also because it is the only major tournament that is played on the same course every year. Admittedly, the Augusta National Golf Club has made some minor changes to the course again this year, but anyone who has ever played the Masters can gauge exactly what to expect. Jon Rahm knows that, too: “It makes preparation a little easier. You can simulate the situations for different shots a little easier in practice than you can at the other three majors, when you play a new course every year,” says the world number two.

Based on this fact, but also on his strong results in recent years, the Spaniard considers himself well prepared for the coming week: “I know I can play well here and hopefully on Sunday I can be a little closer on the last nine holes than in recent years.”

Tiger Woods on US Master 2022: “I belive I can win!”

In addition to the beautiful golf course built by Perry Maxwell in 1937, it’s also the crowds of fans that make the tournament what it is today. For Rahm, the 2022 US Masters is unlike any other event. After limited crowds during the pandemic, they are returning to full capacity this year. And as if the anticipation wasn’t already high enough, Tiger Woods is also announcing his comeback for the same week. “We were on the 7 on Monday and Tiger was just playing the 2,” Rahm reports of his first impressions. “I’ve never seen such a big crowd on those two holes, even on a Sunday. There’s a lot more excitement in the air.”

Jon Rahm: “Justin Thomas is the only one who gets real tips from Tiger.”

If you want to hold your own at Augusta National Golf Club, you need a good mix of experience and your best golf game. Forty-two years ago, Seve Ballesteros became the first Spaniard to win the U.S. Masters, ushering in a small Spanish tradition that last continued in 2017 when Sergio Garcia won the Green Jacket. Jon Rahm knows about that tradition and would only be too happy to do his part:

“Since I’m the only Spanish player who is a Major champion but not a Masters champion, that would be something special. Hopefully I can be fourth on that list. There have been a lot of good Spanish stories here that I would like to add to.”

US Masters 2022: Hideki Matsuyama serves outrageous menu of Japanese cuisine

If Rahm can show his best game this week, he will undoubtedly be considered the top favorite. But the Masters wouldn’t be the Masters if even the best players in the world didn’t break a sweat in this setting. Experience is the be-all and end-all at Augusta. When Tiger Woods was about to play his first US Masters, then as an amateur, he got helpful tips from Seve Ballesteros about the condition of the greens and how best to master the difficult shots at Augusta. When asked if Rahm himself had ever asked Tiger for such tips, the Spaniard responded with a nice anecdote:

“Justin Thomas is the only one who gets real tips from Tiger. I asked him for tips once before, back in East Lake. He just turned around and said ‘it’s all about the feeling and just keep going’ and I stood there thinking ‘cool, thanks for that’. Then when I turned around he was standing next to JT telling him a whole dissertation.”

Even if Rahm can’t hope for any tips from Tiger, it should also be enough if he fully trusts his game; after all, it made him the best golfer in the world last year. And there’s one more thing to be hopeful about. Rahm has his biggest fan with him again this week for the 2022 US Masters. “My son Kepa was a lucky charm at the U.S. Open. He wasn’t there at the British Open, so I hope he makes it lucky again this time.”

Categories
Live Satellite Tours Senior Tours

Legends Tour announces initial part of 2021 schedule

The Legends Tour today announces the first part of its International Schedule for 2021, marking the return of over-50s professional golf in Europe following the cancellation of the Tour’s 2020 season.

It follows the ground-breaking joint venture between Staysure Group CEO Ryan Howsam and the European Tour earlier this year, when Howsam acquired a controlling stake in the Staysure Tour which was rebranded as the Legends Tour, placing golf’s most iconic names at the forefront of the brand. 

Some of those iconic names, including Major Champions, former World Number Ones and Ryder Cup Captains, will host Legends Tour events in 2021 where amateurs will be able to tee it up alongside their golfing heroes in the innovative Alliance Pro-Am format. 

The season will begin in Austria when the Riegler & Partner Legends takes place from May 7-9 at Golf Club Murhof, with the Tour returning to the venue for the second time after its first appearance on the schedule in 2019. The Italian Senior Open will take place a week later from May 14-16 at a venue to be confirmed, before the first Senior Major Championship of the year, the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship at Southern Hills Country Club, Tulsa, Oklahoma, from May 27-30. 

June will begin with a return to Jersey for the first time since 2016 for the ICL Jersey Legends at La Moye Golf Club from June 4-6, before the Tour makes its first trip of the year to mainland Britain for the Farmfoods European Legends Links Championship at Trevose Golf & Country Club, England, from June 18-20. 

The U.S. Senior Open will take place at Omaha Country Club, Nebraska, from July 8-11, while the long-running Swiss Seniors Open at Golf Club Bad Ragaz, will return for its 24th edition at a date to be confirmed in July. 

The WINSTONgolf Senior Open returns to WINSTONLinks, Vorbeck, Germany, from July 16-18, one week prior to The Senior Open Presented by Rolex at Sunningdale Golf Club, England, from July 22-25. The Championship will be hosted at Sunningdale one year on from its original date following its cancellation due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. 

The prestigious Staysure PGA Seniors Championship will take place at Formby Golf Club, Southport, England, from July 29-August 1, moving from London Golf Club where it has been hosted since its return to the International Schedule in 2018. 

Former Ryder Cup Captain Paul McGinley will then welcome the Legends Tour to the island of Ireland for the first time since 2010 when the Irish Legends Presented by The McGinley Foundation takes place in Donegal at the stunning Rosapenna Hotel & Golf Resort from August 20-22. 

The Scottish Senior Open Hosted by Paul Lawrie will take place in September where the 1999 Open Champion will look to defend his maiden over-50s title which he picked up at Craigielaw in 2019. The date and venue for the event are still to be confirmed. The Farmfoods European Senior Masters will take place once again at Forest of Arden Marriott Hotel & Country Club, England, from October 1-3. 

Mark Aspland, Head of the Legends Tour, said: “We have been extremely excited to announce this schedule after the cancellation of our 2020 Schedule and we cannot wait to begin again next year. 

“We have used the time productively to strengthen our schedule for 2021 and give our members as many playing opportunities as possible. 

“I must place on record my thanks to all the partners, sponsors and federations who have made this schedule possible. We have a fantastic mix of old and new events and we are looking forward to visiting places we know well and venues and territories that are new to many of us. 

“We will be concluding the 2021 season with the Indian Ocean Swing Tour Championship events and we are working hard to add events through the season, particularly in the Autumn. Further announcements will be made early in 2021.” 

Ryan Howsam, Group CEO, said: “I would firstly like to say well done to Mark Aspland and his team for putting this schedule together. Following the announcement of the joint venture in September, we have been working together on the brand and marketing channels to improve the commercial value of the Tour and therefore enhance the playing opportunities for the Legends Tour members. We have identified several exciting projects that will enhance the Legends Tour over the coming years.

“There will be plenty of opportunity for amateur golfers to get involved in Legends Tour events, from playing in the Celebrity Pro-Ams, teeing it up in Alliance events and joining the Legends Club, our exclusive Membership Club for people who desire a more in-depth involvement in the Tour and our events.”

For anyone wishing to purchase playing spots in Celebrity Pro-Ams, Alliance events or to enquire about Legends Club Membership, please email Legends Tour concierge via: [email protected].

(Press release: Legends Tour)

Categories
Top Tours

European Tour: Major surge in viewing figures for Rolex Series events

The European Tour’s consecutive autumn Rolex Series events recorded a significant increase in viewing figures and engagement, continuing the recent surge in consumption of live golf in 2020.  

Sky Sports, the European Tour’s UK broadcast partner, reported the highest recorded viewing figures for European Tour events since data collection began, with the tournament average figures for the Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open and last week’s BMW PGA Championship up 81 per cent compared to 2019.   

Englishman Aaron Rai defeated Ryder Cup star Tommy Fleetwood in a play-off at The Renaissance Club to win his first Rolex Series title at the Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open and a week later Tyrrell Hatton claimed his third Rolex Series victory, finishing four shots clear of Frenchman Victor Perez at Wentworth Club.  

Both tournaments were played without spectators as the European Tour continues to operate a tournament bubble as part of the Tour’s health strategy based on UK government guidelines.

Instead, fans have been turning to their TVs and digital devices to stay in touch with the European Tour’s events, with the back-to-back Rolex Series events providing a premium viewer experience through enhanced broadcast and digital coverage.

Innovations included the introduction of TopTracer4K, an overall increase in the use of TopTracer to a total of nine tees, alongside the popular TopTracer fairway, enhanced augmented graphics, integrated aerial coverage from drones and the plane cam, shot by shot live statistics and enhanced audio from players and caddies. Viewers also continued to be brought closer to the action through the Sky Cart, in-round interviews and tournament winners celebrating their victories with their family via greenside video calls.

Live Golf is booming

Furthermore, highlights of the Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open and BMW PGA Championship also proved popular on terrestrial television in the UK, with peak figures of more than 750,000 on the BBC.

In addition to bumper viewing figures, the fortnight of Rolex Series events also recorded the 2020 season’s highest social media impressions, collectively exceeding the totals from their respective 2019 editions by five per cent. 

The success of the two Rolex Series events further demonstrated the sustained boom in demand for live golf since the resumption of the 2020 European Tour season, with viewing figures for the six-tournament UK Swing in July and August 64 per cent higher than the Sky Sports 2019 average for European Tour events. 

Rufus Hack, the European Tour’s Chief Operating Officer and Managing Director of European Tour Productions, said: “It has undoubtedly been a significant operational accomplishment to stage these events in the current circumstances and we have made a substantial investment in our health strategy to create the safest possible environment to continue providing live golf. We are therefore delighted with the response from fans on our broadcast and digital platforms, both across the two Rolex Series events which have created a real festival fortnight of golf, but also since our resumption in July. 

“We all badly missed live golf when it was suspended in April and May and these figures certainly underline the demand that exists to watch and enjoy live coverage of our sport.  Although we dearly miss fans being able to attend our events in person, through the latest innovations and with the support of our key broadcasters and partners, we are able to offer the most insightful viewer experience possible.”

Jason Wessely, Sky Sports Director of Golf said: “We’re delighted to see the continued interest in Sky Sports Golf coverage and it’s fantastic to see how many people enjoyed the two recent Rolex Series events. 

“Our team continues to work hard in testing times to bring the best golf coverage to Sky Sports subscribers and we look forward to bringing our customers plenty more world class golf in the coming weeks.”

Following the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship presented by EGA won by Lee Westwood in January, the Rolex Series concludes with the European Tour’s season-ending DP World Tour Championship, Dubai at Jumeirah Golf Estates from December 10-13. 

Alongside broadcast and digital innovations, the European Tour’s 2020 season will also continue to be underpinned by its #GolfforGood initiative, which has been raising money for charities and rewarding the true heroes of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Last week, David Howell’s hole-in-one at the BMW PGA Championship secured a donation of £71,675 for the tournament’s official charity, the Alzheimer’s Society, from tournament title sponsor BMW. That took the overall amount raised by #GolfforGood so far to £902,091. 

(Text: European Tour)

Categories
Top Tours

US Open 2020 Tiger Woods: “I don’t see any reason why it won’t get harder and get more difficult.”

Tiger Woods talked to the media after his not so satisfying first round of 73 at the US Open 2020 at Winged Foot. He expects the course to become even tougher over the next few days.

Q. Tiger, talk about the round a bit.

TIGER WOODS: Well, it was a bit of ebb and flow to the round today. I did not finish off the round like I needed to. I made a bunch of putts in the middle part of the round. It seemed like most of my drives on the front nine landed in the fairway and ended up in bad spots, and I tried to stay as patient as possible, and unfortunately just did not finish off my round the way I needed to.

Q. Do you take any positives that you made five birdies, made a bunch of putts?

TIGER WOODS: No, but I needed to finish off the round better, and I didn’t. As I said, I made a few putts the middle part of the round. Seemed like I wasn’t getting anything out of my round early on, and it flipped, and unfortunately I just didn’t finish off the way I needed to.

Q. What did you think of the conditions of the golf course, and was it how you expected or a little bit different in any way?

TIGER WOODS: I thought the golf course was set up fantastic. I thought that what they did with the hole locations were very fair today. It gave us an opportunity to make some birdies, and you look at most of the scores, and the guys took advantage of it.

Q. Do you expect it to keep getting firmer as the week goes on?

TIGER WOODS: Yeah, I don’t see any reason why it won’t get harder and get more difficult. I just think that the golf course is there to be had. They gave us a lot of opportunities with the hole locations. Obviously they could have made it a lot more difficult if they wanted to, but I thought it was very fair.

Q. Is there any solace knowing it’s going to be such a grind this week that shooting a sub-par first round isn’t anything near —

TIGER WOODS: Well, we have a long way to go. This is a long marathon of a tournament. There’s a lot of different things that can go on. I just wish I would have finished off my round better.

Q. Given how little you’ve played this year, when you strung those birdies together in the middle of the round to kind of reel it back in and preserve it, isn’t that a pretty positive sign for you going forward?

TIGER WOODS: Well, the middle part of my round, a lot of things went my way. Beginning part of the round it seemed like things weren’t going my way. Good tee shots were ended up in the rough in bad spots, and I had a nice little hot run there in the middle part of my round, hit a really good putt at 12, thought it was going to go in and then I lipped it out, and then made two bogeys after that. Didn’t finish off my round the way I needed to.

Categories
Live

Tiger Woods: I miss the energy and the positiveness

THE MODERATOR: We are pleased to welcome three-time U.S. Open champion Tiger Woods to the interview area. Tiger, who has won nine USGA championships, is making his 22nd U.S. Open appearance.

Q. You haven’t played a ton of golf this year, but for your last victory at ZOZO, you were coming off a bit of a break then. How were you able to peak that week in particular, and what has been missing maybe since then?

TIGER WOODS: Well, I was kind of hopeful that I’d be able to play ZOZO because I had just had knee surgery, and everything was kind of rounding into form. I felt pretty good. My knee felt a hell of a lot better and all of a sudden I putted well that week and was able to go on to win.


This year I really haven’t putted as well as I wanted to, and the times I did make a few swing mistakes, I missed it in the wrong spots. Consequently, I just didn’t have the right looks at it. I’ve compounded mistakes here and there that ended up not making me able to make pars or a birdie run, and consequently I haven’t put myself in contention to win events.

Q. In the list of courses that maybe have been the most difficult, where would you rank Winged Foot?

TIGER WOODS: Well, I think it’s right up there next to Oakmont and I think Carnoustie as far as just sheer difficulty without even doing anything to it. I think those three golf courses, they can host major championships without ever doing anything to them.


This one or Oakmont here is either one or two.

Q. Can you talk about your preparation for this golf course based on your previous performances here and the highest winning scores here in the past?

TIGER WOODS: Yeah, I was able to come up here right before I played in Boston, take a look at the golf course, and I was able to get my sight lines. This golf course is going to be one of the more difficult ones. The winning scores here have never traditionally been very low. I don’t see that changing this week.


The golf course is going to be hard. It depends on how difficult they want to set up these pins, give us a chance at it. But with the forecast, it’s going to be difficult no matter what.

Q. How much did a difficult venue like Olympia Fields in your last start help you prepare for Winged Foot?

TIGER WOODS: Yeah, Olympia Fields was hard. It was fast, dry, which is unlike this golf course right now. It’s going to obviously dry out, but the rough is very sticky here and very thick and lush. Olympia Fields, the rough was high, but generally most of the lies we had in the rough were downgrain, and guys were able to get the ball up near the greens, but obviously the greens were difficult.


Most of the lies we’ve had so far this week, they’re not really downgrain, so it’ll be interesting to see how much the USGA will cut the rough down and allow us to try and be a little bit more aggressive and get the ball up around the greens.

Q. How will the experience be different for you at a U.S. Open without fans?

TIGER WOODS: It’s going to be — you know, it’s something that unfortunately this is our new reality. This is something we’re getting used to. It’s not something we like. We want the fans and we want the atmosphere out there, but safety is first.

Q. What is your health preparation like each week as you play in a tournament compared to your practice prep? Which takes more? Which is harder to get feeling good and feeling like you’re ready for a tournament compared to your health prep and feeling good with your body?

TIGER WOODS: Well, the health comes first. Whether or not I feel physically good enough where I can put in the practice, that’s my unfortunate reality. I’ve had four back surgeries. Trying to be healthy enough so that I can practice and I’m able to spend the time that I want, that I need to.

Q. Which takes more time?

TIGER WOODS: What’s that?

Q. Practice or just getting loose?

TIGER WOODS: Well, I have to train in order to practice, and I have to get my back loose enough to where I’m able to practice. That’s just the way it is.

Q. Gary Woodland was just in here telling us a funny story about you guys being at Liberty National and you had to get him straight on how many U.S. Opens you had won, but then you guys concluded that among your four, you don’t have one on a private course. Do you distinguish at all U.S. Opens on private courses versus public courses?

TIGER WOODS: You know, I think that USGA events — how can I put this? This year is unique. We don’t have a lot of qualifiers, and we don’t have access into the event like we’ve had in years past. Whether we play on a public course or private course is irrelevant. I think that the qualification is what makes this event so unique, is that we’re able to qualify for this event and have unique opportunities.


Unfortunately this year it’s not one of those.

Q. You grew up playing public courses; do you regard the Old Course as a muni?

TIGER WOODS: The Old Course?

Q. Yeah.

TIGER WOODS: I think the Old Course is unique in whatever you want to call it. I think that — it’s where the home of golf is, and the fact that everyone has a chance to play it, I think that’s what makes it so special.

Q. Coming off the tennis U.S. Open, Serena and Rafa are both in positions to tie some big records coming up, and you’re one of the few people who qualify to answer this. Does it get harder to win a major the closer you get to the all-time mark and why?

TIGER WOODS: You know, I think it gets harder to win as we all age. I think that when you’re in your prime, in your peak years, you have to take advantage of those opportunities so that when you get to the all-time marks, you have the opportunity.


I think that whether it’s Rafa or Fed or Serena, they’ve been so consistent and so dominant for such a long period of time, that’s how you get to — you can have those all-time marks. Consistency over a long period of time is the hallmark of those records.

Q. You’ve talked in the past about when you practice your putting, you go back a lot of times to what you and your dad used to work on. Is that still the case, or have you mixed up the routine over the years?

TIGER WOODS: I have changed the routine and some of the things that I’ve done over the years, but I still go back to what my dad always taught me, which is obviously putt to the picture. Whatever I’m working on at that particular time, once I get out there and I putt, just putt.

Q. I think ’06 here was the first tournament you played after your dad passed. How difficult was it for you that week, and then in the month that followed? Just talk about your mindset and getting ready to win one for him at Royal Liverpool.

TIGER WOODS: Yeah, when I didn’t win the Masters that year, that was really tough to take because that was the last event my dad was ever going to watch me play. He passed not too long after that, and quite frankly, when I got ready for this event, I didn’t really put in the time. I didn’t really put in the practice, and consequently missed the cut pretty easily.


But after that I was able to do some practicing, did some — probably some pretty good grieving after this championship, played well at the Western and then went on to really play well at the British. I think it was just — I was not prepared to play and still dealing with the death of my dad.

Q. Only 15 players in the field played in the 2006 U.S. Open. Do you see that as an advantage?

TIGER WOODS: Well, the golf course has changed a lot since then. Obviously the greens, they’ve all been redone, and most of the holes are a lot longer than when we played in ’06. But technology has changed, and the golf ball is going further. Guys are hitting it further. So we’re playing from about the same spots. It’s just whatever — it seems like every green you have to walk back a little bit further.

Q. Can you describe what it meant to you after all the surgeries and the years of not winning majors to come back and win the Masters, and was there anything special that you felt that week that you can relate to this week? How do you rate your chances here?

TIGER WOODS: Well, when I won the Masters last year, it was — I was not feeling particularly well prior to that. My neck was bothering me. I didn’t play in Bay Hill. For some reason I felt physically better and my training sessions felt good. I changed shafts in my driver right before the event, and I was able to start turning the ball over.


Then all of a sudden I put myself in contention and I wasn’t really — I wasn’t leading but I was near the lead, and each day I progressively got a little bit better, and come Sunday, I put all the pieces together.

Q. Several players here have said that of all the people out on Tour, you feed off the fans more than anything. In that regard, I know you said you miss them, but in that regard, how much do you miss the fans?

TIGER WOODS: Well, for me in particular, I miss the energy and just the positiveness that the fans bring and just that electricity. But that’s something that I’ve been playing in front of for over two decades. That’s something I’ve been a part of, and I’ve been lucky enough to be a part of that.


What we’re dealing with right now is not what we all want, but it’s our reality, and it’s the energy that’s just not quite the same without the fans.

Q. Even without the fans, is there something special about coming back to the New York metropolitan area and playing?

TIGER WOODS: Yeah, I think that this area has some of the best golf courses on the planet, but also what makes coming up here and being a part of these events are the fans and the energy that this entire area brings. They love sports. It’s a shame that we’re not going to have that atmosphere out here this particular week, but obviously everyone will be watching and be supporting at home or wherever is the safest.

Q. Still meaningful to you that a lot of these fans will be rooting for you even if they’re home?

TIGER WOODS: Absolutely it is. It’s not the same without the fan experience, but as I said, this is our reality for right now.

Q. Are you using your standard Scotty Cameron?

TIGER WOODS: Yes, I am.

Q. A strategy question: With fairways this hard to hit and rough this penal, it seems like everyone is going to be missing a lot of fairways. Do you anticipate hitting a lot of drivers so you aren’t too far back, or do you anticipate laying back to keep it in the fairway?

TIGER WOODS: Yeah, you know, I think a lot of that is dependent on which way the wind is blowing. The forecast three of the four days will be blowing out of the north, and I think that that will make a difference. Some of the tee shots that we hit today, slightly different wind than what we played on Sunday, and so I think that strategy-wise it’s ebb and flow.


For me in particular I’m trying to play to certain areas. Whatever club that is, could be 5-wood, could be driver or a 3-wood. I’m trying to play to a specific spot and then move on from there.

THE MODERATOR: Thank you, Tiger. Good luck this week.

Categories
PGA Tour

“DJs” winning interview after his FedExCup victory

MICHAEL BALIKER: Dustin, this was your 11th trip to East Lake this week. You’ve been chasing this trophy for a long time. How satisfying is it to finally get it done?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: Yeah, it’s definitely very satisfying to be the FedExCup champion. Obviously coming in here I was in first with a two-shot lead, and I needed all those strokes that I could get. It’s a tough golf course, but I feel like I played pretty solid all week.

Obviously yesterday was a great round, and then obviously today was — I played — got off to a great start and I played really well coming down the stretch.

Yeah, it was a tough day, tough golf course, and I’m definitely excited it’s over and that I can celebrate a little bit now instead of — it was a grind out there. But I’m very proud to be the FedExCup champion.

Q.  What was the level of concern with your game leaving here last year and how does it feel to go from finishing last here last year to now winning this year?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: I don’t even remember what happened last year. That was a long time ago. I was playing a little better coming in this season.

“Being a FedExCup champion is something that I really wanted to do”

Q.  Were you nervous today?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: I was nervous. I always get nervous because it means something. Yeah, I mean, I get nervous on the first hole, kind of settled down a little bit, and then obviously the back nine definitely could feel it, just because there were a lot of really good players around me and they were playing well.

So I knew I was going to have to shoot a good score on the back nine if I wanted to win.

Q.  Paul Azinger said a long time ago that only two things would really rattle a player, playing for cash or playing for prestige. Which one meant more to you today?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: Probably the prestige for sure just because being a FedExCup champion is something that I really wanted to do. I wanted to hold that trophy at the end of the day. It was something that I wanted to accomplish during my career, and obviously I got one of them. Now I’m going to try to get me another.

Q.  There’s a lot of big names on the trophy. Were you kind of annoyed that yours wasn’t on it?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: A little bit, but like I said yesterday, I think a couple times there I didn’t really have control of what was going on just because of my play, but obviously today I was in control of winning the trophy or not.

If I played well, I was going to win; if I didn’t, I wasn’t going to. I like that situation a lot better.

Q.  Can you talk about how important that putt was on 13 and your emotions when you banged it off the back of the cup?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: Yeah, I mean, obviously I hit my — obviously the drive went just in the left rough there and I hit a good shot right where I wanted to, just short right of the green.

But it was just one of those — my ball was sitting in the first cut. I thought I was going to catch it clean and didn’t and it came up short. Yeah, that putt was definitely kind of the turning point for me there on the back nine. You know, obviously it gave me the confidence and kind of kept the round going in the right direction.

Stepped up, hit a really nice drive on 14; hit some really quality shots really the rest of the way in. That was a big putt.

Q.  When you look at what you’ve done this post season, you’re exactly one shot away from being absolutely perfect, obviously, in the playoff which you didn’t really have much control over in that situation. Can you characterize this run compared to some of the other runs you’ve had in your career these last few weeks?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: Yeah, feel like the game is in really good form, playing some solid golf, and obviously contending every week. I’m playing probably some of the best golf I’ve ever played.

Like I said, there’s plenty of room for improvement.

“It’s more about the trophy”

Q.  Obviously it’s a big amount of money and I’m sure it means a lot to you, but I’m just curious if you can think back to a time in your career when there was an amount of money that might have been a lot less that really changed your life, that really might’ve mattered in terms of whether it was your career or just whatever, paying back sponsors or anything that you might have — where that money would have really had a huge impact on you even if it might have been a lot less.

DUSTIN JOHNSON: Yeah, absolutely. When I went through all three stages of Q-school and got my TOUR card I think they gave me like a $25,000 check. Yeah, I thought I was rich because I didn’t have but a couple hundred bucks in my bank account probably.

Then I went to the first tournament in Hawai’i, I think I finished 10th, and I don’t know, it was a hundred grand or something.

So yeah, that was big, and obviously that was a lot of money to me.

Now obviously I’m very thankful for FedEx and the amount of money they donate for us to be whoever is the FedExCup champion, but it’s not about the money for me. It’s more about the trophy.

Q.  Was there a time back say 10, 12 years ago where you had to get over the idea of thinking how much money a missed putt would cost? Is that an important part to being successful, to not think about the money even though it’s a lot?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: Well, at this stage of my career I’m fortunate enough where I don’t need to think about that. It’s more — it’s all about winning and the trophies. The money is not — I don’t really care about that. I want to win tournaments, and I want to win trophies.

Q.  Sounds like you talked to Wayne over the weekend; can you maybe share the insights of that conversation that you guys had?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: He was playing golf and I asked him how he was playing. He said he was hitting it pretty good but Janet was yelling at him because he wasn’t playing good enough that was about the extent of the conversation.

Q.  You addressed this a little bit, but was this maybe more important in some ways to you given the five strokes — obviously wanting to win the FedExCup and so forth, did it take on any greater significance in that regard to you?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: I didn’t really understand. Sorry.

Q.  Did you need this win in your eyes?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: Well, yeah, I needed the win. Last week I had the lead going into the final round. Played a really good solid round, made a great putt to get into a playoff, but ended up losing in the playoff.

Having a five-shot lead today, it’s something, yeah, I needed to finish it off, especially give myself a lot of confidence going into the U.S. Open here in — what, it starts in 10 days or something, or less.

Obviously got a couple days to celebrate with Paulina and the kids, and then got to get back to grinding again.

Q.  These last four weeks you and A.J. seem to have been especially dialed in in your routine on the greens, and I think there might have been a couple adjustments made in how you guys are going about things. I wonder if you could kind of explain that and just what role he really played in this run that you’ve been on here recently.

DUSTIN JOHNSON: Yeah, A.J. is a big part of the game. Obviously he’s my brother. We’re a good team. He reads the greens well, and a lot of times, too, I know we’re doing well when — you know, because I started using the line at the PGA on the putter when I was putting, and so he’s been doing the AimPoint for a while.

So I know when I line it up and we’ve got it in the same vicinity that we’re doing a good job. He’s done a great job over the last four weeks, four tournaments, and I’m glad to have my brother on the bag with me.

“He’s going to be on my bag for a long time”

Q.  You talked about needing this win and things like that, but from him being an unproven guy out here who had never caddied on the TOUR until now, how much do you think he’s kind of validated himself as being worthy of being out here and being one of the top caddies in the game?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: I think from the first time he came out he was — he played golf growing up. He played basketball through high school and college, but he was always a decent player.

Yeah, I mean, it didn’t take him long to catch on. He’s a very good caddie and he would do well for anybody, but he’s going to be on my bag for a long time.

Q.  Have you played Winged Foot?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: I have not played it.

Q.  What have you heard about it if you have heard about it, if you’ve asked questions about it?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: That it’s a very good golf course, difficult but fair.

Q.  How would you compare the way you’re playing now with the spring of ’17 when you were blowing through Riv and Match Play and Mexico and things like that?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: It’s similar. It’s getting there. I think I was playing really good then. Obviously I’m playing very well now. Like I said, I feel like I can play better, though.

You know, at times I’m firing on all cylinders, but there’s times where I’m not. I’m playing good enough, though, to where I can keep it where I still can give myself a chance to win.

Compared to spring of ’17, almost there.

Q.  Kind of along those lines, it’s kind of exhausting to get through this stretch and have to do all these virtual interviews and stuff like that —

DUSTIN JOHNSON: But thanks for all your questions. (Laughter.)

Q.  But the fact that the U.S. Open is coming up, the fact that we still have the Masters, are you kind of excited now the way that fits into this weird season?

DUSTIN JOHNSON: I am. I am excited. Obviously I’m playing well. I’ve got a lot of confidence in the game, so I’m really looking forward to the next obviously couple months.

But then I’m also — after that I’m looking forward to some time off. It’s been a long stretch, but it’s made it a lot easier playing well, that’s for sure.

MICHAEL BALIKER: Thanks, Dustin. Congratulations.

(FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports)

Categories
European Tour

Ryan Fox wins the 2022 Seve Ballesteros Award 

Ryan Fox has won the 2022 Seve Ballesteros Award after being voted Player of the Year for last season by his fellow professionals on the DP World Tour.

The 36-year-old becomes the first New Zealander to win the prestigious award since Michael Campbell received the honour in 2005, and it comes after an outstanding season during which he won twice and finished in a career-best second place on the DP World Tour Rankings presented by Rolex.

Fox polled 50% of the votes cast in total by the DP World Tour members, with DP World Tour Rankings winner Rory McIlroy taking second place ahead of the 2022 U.S. Open Champion Matt Fitzpatrick in third.

The Kiwi was presented with the trophy by one of Seve’s sons Javier and his daughter Carmen, both of whom travelled to this week’s Hero Dubai Desert Classic on the DP World Tour – a tournament won by Seve himself in 1992 – to officially welcome Fox to the illustrious list of winners. 

Consistently good performances in the 2022 season

Fox started 2022 in fine style, picking up his second DP World Tour title at the Ras al Khaimah Classic in February before an emotional victory at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in St Andrews in October.

The 2016 Challenge Tour graduate dedicated his victory at the Home of Golf to the late cricketing great Shane Warne, whom he paired up with in the popular Pro-Am format on numerous occasions, including finishing runners-up together in the 2021 contest. 

In addition to his pair of victories, Fox showed remarkable consistency to notch up four second place finishes – at the Soudal Open, Dutch Open, Horizon Irish Open and the Nedbank Golf Challenge – as well as a further four top tens.  

His excellent form led to a meteoric rise up the Official World Golf Ranking as he climbed from outside the top 200 into the world’s top 50 for the first time, peaking at a career-best 23rd after his victory at the Old Course. 

The Player of the Year Award, named after the legendary Seve Ballesteros, last year amalgamated with the former Golfer of the Year award to become one singular honour voted for by the players, helping further commemorate the Spaniard’s incredible legacy.

Ryan Fox (center) next to Carmen and Javier Ballesteros. (Photo: Getty)

“It’s kind of surreal”

Fox said: “It’s probably not something that I expected ever in my career. I would like to say it’s something I dreamed of, but you look at those names on the trophy and I probably don’t count myself as one of those. That is pretty cool, and to have Javier and Carmen come out and present it made it even more special.  

“Last year I thought I had a chance but a few other guys played pretty well, Rory, Matt, Jon Rahm, especially at the end of the year.  So when Keith Pelley told me I was pretty shocked and obviously pretty chuffed as well. To have your peers vote for you makes it that extra bit special. 

“Obviously Dunhill Links was a big highlight for me last year, to win around the Home of Golf, it doesn’t really get any better. I shared the experience with Shane Warne for the previous four or five Dunhills that I played, and it was a bit sad without him there last year. To honour him that way made it even more special.

“Seve is such an icon of golf, and I’m a bit of a golf nut. I knew the history of Seve but probably didn’t quite understand then, growing up in New Zealand, quite the influence he had over here. It’s cool to hear the stories from some of the older guys that played with him, but to have my name on the Seve Ballesteros Award, it’s kind of surreal. It’s pretty cool to be part of a little bit of history in that regard.”

Javier Ballesteros: “He’s a fantastic guy”

Keith Pelley, Chief Executive of the DP World Tour, said: “Ryan’s form throughout 2022 was nothing short of outstanding. His two wins were undoubtedly the highlight, but to record a further eight top tens shows a remarkable level of consistency that clearly impressed his peers.

“Ryan is not only an immensely popular member of the DP World Tour, but also someone who cares deeply for the Tour as is illustrated by the valuable work he does, and the intelligent opinions he offers, as a member of our Tournament Committee.

“I also want to say thank you to Javier and Carmen Ballesteros for making the effort to travel to Dubai to present the award to Ryan. It meant a lot to him and to every one of us at the DP World Tour to have them there to represent their father.” 

Javier Ballesteros said: “Well, I’m very happy that Ryan got the award. I think it’s important that Ryan got it with two wins, and of course he played a full season on the DP World Tour.  It left me very happy,  considering he’s a fantastic guy as well. 

“For me, it’s very important and we are very proud to have our father’s name on this award. It’s a prize that is given by the players and to have his name on the award, it’s a very good way to keep his legacy alive.”

(Text: DP World Tour)

Categories
Equipment

Arccos Golf announces new features and platform extensions for 2023

Arccos – the pioneer of big data and Artificial Intelligence for golf – today announced a series of product innovations and platform extensions as it continues to leverage the power of its unrivalled and largest on-course dataset that now includes 700 billion data points and more than 625 million shots taken by Arccos users during over 13.5 million rounds.
Geared to help golfers and golf businesses harness the power of data to perform their best, Arccos releases for Q1 2023 will include:


● On-Course Data API – allows companies of all sizes to build products and services that leverage on-course data for any player in the Arccos ecosystem (SSO authentication process), with notable application to instruction, fitting, ecommerce, media & travel

● Launch Monitor Data Capture – phase 1 of Arccos’ work to combine on-course & off- course data allows players to simply & easily enter session parameters plus 8 key characteristics that help fuel Arccos’ A.I., including “smart carry” distances
● A.I. Rangefinder with Enhanced Personalization – leverage weather, slope & launch monitor data inputs to provide even more accurate yardages to any point on the course, including new “smart carry” distances and club recommendations
● New Arccos for Apple Watch – in addition to A.I. rangefinder and caddie for club recommendations it now allows Arccos users with Apple Watch to start and play a round without the need to access their iPhone (optimized for Series 5 and newer)


“We remain focused on developing products and services that help our rapidly growing membership play smarter and shoot lower scores, and providing our partners with access to the type of rich, contextualized data that fuels their R&D processes,” said Dave LeDonne, Arccos’ Vice President of Product. “We’re now recording millions of shots every week, plus billions of data points that surround those events. This allows us to really lean into our data science and A.I. work to build some pretty amazing things,” he added.
News of these latest developments follows the recent announcement of a new partnership with SRIXON® and CLEVELAND GOLF®, which joined PING, TaylorMade and Cobra in providing customers with access to a free set of Smart Sensors and free 45-day trial of the award-winning Arccos Caddie platform.
Golf’s first Artificial Intelligence platform, Arccos Caddie automatically tracks your shots while delivering in-round insights and personalized Strokes Gained analytics for every game facet and each club in your bag. The system is highlighted by an A.I.-powered rangefinder, smart club distances and caddie advice for every golf hole on earth. These innovations helped new Arccos members who played at least 10 rounds lowered their handicap index by an average of 5.71 strokes in their first year of membership.

The Arccos Caddie system and the Arccos Caddie Link wearable are permitted under the Rules of Golf (USGA Decision Numbers 2018-0414 and 2020-0305).

Categories
European Tour

Hero Dubai Desert Classic: A thrilling contest with Rolex as Official Partner and Timekeeper

With the much-anticipated return of the 2023 Rolex Series, the attention of the golfing world will turn to the iconic Hero Dubai Desert Classic – the second Rolex Series event of the year. Celebrating its 34th edition, the 2023 tournament promises to be a thrilling contest with Rolex as Official Partner and Timekeeper.

Spanning more than 50 years, Rolex’s support for golf is one of the most enduring and successful partnerships in sport. The Swiss watchmaker’s relationship with the game began in 1967 when Arnold Palmer, joined by close friends and fellow members of The Big Three, Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player, became Rolex’s first golf Testimonees. Since then, Rolex’s association with golf has grown exponentially, permeating all levels of the sport, providing unwavering support for elite and amateur players alike, governing bodies, all the Major championships and the main professional tours, as well as the finest events on the golfing calendar.

Founded in 1989, the Hero Dubai Desert Classic was the first DP World Tour event to be staged in the Arabian Peninsula. Rolex became Official Timekeeper of the DP World Tour in 1997 and the event became part of the prestigious Rolex Series – the tour’s premium event category – in 2022. It is renowned for having one of the strongest and most international fields, proving a tough competition for the world’s leading golfers.

The flagship Majlis Course at Emirates Golf Club, with its distinct backdrop of shimmering skyscrapers, once again hosts the Hero Dubai Desert Classic from 26-29 January. With the 2023 Ryder Cup on the horizon and qualifying spots to play for, the 2023 tournament presents a timely opportunity for players to find form early in the season.

2023 is set to welcome some of the biggest names in world golf and Rolex Testimonees have a proud history of success in Dubai. Those to have prevailed on the Majlis Course and lift the coveted Dallah Trophy include Fred Couples (1995), José María Olazábal (1998), Thomas Bjørn (2001), Tiger Woods (2006, 2008) and most recently, Rafa Cabrera Bello (2012). Fellow Spaniard and Rolex Testimonee Jon Rahm enjoyed an impressive finish to the 2022 season, which saw him claim a record third DP World Tour Championship title in Dubai at the nearby Jumeirah Golf Estates in November.

Speaking about the Rolex Series, Rahm said: “I have been fortunate enough to win Rolex Series events pretty early on in my career. Given the prize money and strength of field at these events, they always demand an extremely high level of golf and performance. As a Rolex Testimonee, there is also added motivation because you want to make sure a Rolex Testimonee wins. Hopefully, the Rolex Series will continue for a very long time due to its prestige and the fact that it represents such key moments throughout the year for us players to focus on in the calendar.”

2023 also marks the return of the Race to Dubai Rankings in Partnership with Rolex and the sixth anniversary of the Rolex Series. The Hero Dubai Desert Classic is the second of five Rolex Series events held throughout the year. The Series consists of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship (19-22 January), the Hero Dubai Desert Classic, the Genesis Scottish Open (13-16 July), the BMW PGA Championship (14-17 September), and the season-ending DP World Tour Championship, Dubai (16-19 November).

(Text: Rolex)

Categories
Ladies Tours Live Senior Tours

“ Return of the Champions ”

Under the High Patronage of His Majesty King Mohammed VI, the Royal Moroccan Golf Federation and the Hassan II Trophy Association, chaired by His Royal Highness Prince Moulay Rachid, are organizing the 47th Hassan II Golf Trophy and the 26th Lalla Meryem Cup at the Royal Golf Dar Es Salam in Rabat from February 6 to 11, 2023.

47th Hassan II Golf Trophy

Legendary golfers will be starting off this PGA Tour Champions edition of the tournament – a highly anticipated event that will surely bring back many memories for tournament fans who have followed the Hassan II Golf Trophy since its creation.

Indeed, since the Hassan II Golf Trophy began under the initiative of His Majesty the Late King Hassan II in 1971, the tournament has attracted players from the World Golf Hall of Fame, including Billy Casper, Bob Tosky, Sam Snead, Gary Player, Lee Trevino, Payne Stewart, Severiano Ballesteros, Vijay Singh, and Ernie Els, among other illustrious names. All of these world-class players have graced the fairways of the Red Course at Royal Golf Dar Es Salam. 

This edition will welcome 66 golf legends who have won a total of nearly 200 victories on the American PGA Tour, including three major tournaments. To the great delight of spectators, this year’s slate will feature former Hassan II Golf Trophy winners such as Colin Montgomerie (in 1997), David Toms (in 1999), Roger Chapman (in 2000), and Santiago Luna, the record-holder of wins (1998-2002-2003). Also present will be Bernhard Langer, José Maria Olazabal, Retief Goosen, and Tom Lehman, all former participants in the Hassan II Golf Trophy.

The Lalla Meryem Cup

The Lalla Meryem Cup, which is part of the Ladies European Tour (LET) will bring together, on the Blue Course, the European elite of women’s golf. Among the 96 players expected, a record number of national participants is expected, headed by Ines Laklalech , winner of the Lacoste Ladies Open de France in 2022 and qualified for the LPGA for 2023, Maha Haddioui, who has represented Morocco on two occasions at the Olympic Games and Malak Bouraeda, first Moroccan to qualify for the US Women’s Open.

These two competitions will take place simultaneously on the same site, perpetuating a tradition of diversity established in 1993 by His late Majesty King Hassan II, illustrious founder of both tournaments.

Young people are also honored. A junior competition in the pro- am format is planned on the Green Course with young golfers from the First Tee program and professional players. First Tee, very popular in the United States, is a non-profit organization created in 1997, which has made it possible to understand and respond to many problems that characterize society by teaching life skills through the practice of Golf.

This event will, as usual, be open to the general public free of charge. Entertainment on the courses and catering areas as well as a playground will guarantee a complete experience for all visitors to discover golf through practice and play.

The significant efforts made by the Royal Moroccan Golf Federation and the Hassan II Golf Trophy Association for the success of these events attest to a desire to succeed and further promote the culture and practice of golf in Morocco.These competitions also reinforce the tourist attractiveness of the Kingdom as a golfing nation par excellence.

Categories
Panorama

Golf Post Community Award 2023: These destinations are recommended by the community

For golfers, it is obvious to combine the annual vacation with the game of golf and make it a golf trip. Both within and outside Europe, the Golf Post community has already had unforgettable experiences and can make first-class recommendations. The clear favorite, however, is right next door: most of the golf courses that receive an award from the Golf Post Community, as well as all category winners, are located in our neighboring country of Austria. This speaks above all for the strength of the Austrian Golf Post Community, but also for Austria as a sought-after golf travel destination.

Golf Post Community Award 2023: The category winners

The Adamstal Golf Club in the foothills of the Alps in Lower Austria won five stars in the “Landscape” category. With a total of 27 holes, the golf course nestles into the hilly mountain panorama and amazes many a golfer. Streams, terrain steps, forest clearings and rock formations make the course unique and the golfing experience at the Golfclub Adamstal an unforgettable one!

The Golfclub Zillertal Uderns was remembered by most community members for its excellent maintenance. In the category “course condition” the golf course impresses with excellently maintained fairways. At 550 meters above sea level, the flat golf course invites to a sunny playing season from March to November under best conditions.

In the “welcome culture” category, the Murstätten Golf Club in southern Austria came out on top with five out of five stars. Whether golf course, restaurant or golf school – cordiality is written in capital letters at the Golfclub Murstätten, so that the club can call itself the winner in the category “Welcome Culture”. With a total of 27 holes in beautiful natural surroundings, the course is a popular destination that our community will rave about for a long time to come.

The Golf Club am Mondsee was voted top club in the “value for money” category by the Golf Post community. Last year, the golf club already won a community award, and this year it can also call itself the category winner. The Austrian golf course promises a coherent overall package at a fair price. Idyllic location and beautiful ambience at the Mondsee as well as Drachensee meet challenge and vacation flair.

In the last category, the “Gastronomy” category, the winner is the Dolomitengolf Golf Club in East Tyrol. This is also a repeat offender in the history of the Golf Post Community Award. Among other things, the golf club is remembered for its restaurant, which attracts not only golfers but also excursionists and gourmets. The restaurant promises culinary variety from small snacks for in between meals to daily fresh recommendations from the kitchen team.

From golfers for golfers

The Golf Post Community Award was presented for the fifth time this year, and for the first time international golf clubs were also honored. The “jury” here is the Golf Post Community, whose ratings paint an authentic picture of golf facilities in Germany. Golf clubs all over the world can also be rated beyond Germany. Up to five stars can be awarded in each of five categories. A total of 15 facilities outside Germany receive the coveted “Top Golf Club” award thanks to the best ratings. 35 other international clubs with an average rating of at least 4.5 out of 5 stars will receive the award as a recommendation from the community.

The international top golf clubs:

  • Golfclub Dolomitengolf Osttirol (Austria, category winner “gastronomy”)
  • GC Adamstal – Franz Wittmann (Austria, category winner “Landscape”)
  • GC Zillertal Uderns (Austria, category winner “course condition”)
  • Golfclub Murstätten (Austria, Category Winner “Welcome Culture”)
  • GC Achensee (Austria)
  • Club de Golf Alcanada (Spain)
  • GC Reit im Winkl Kössen (Austria)
  • GC Wilder Kaiser Ellmau (Austria)
  • Golf Club Novo Sancti Petri (Spain)
  • Gardagolf Country Club (Italy)
  • Diamond Country Club (Austria)
  • GC Kitzbühel (Austria)
  • Aphrodite Hills Golf (Cyprus)
  • Golfclub Klagenfurt-Seltenheim (Austria)
  • The Montgomery Maxx Royal (Turkey)

More Golf Post community recommendations worldwide:

  • GC am Mondsee (Austria, category winner “value for money”)
  • Gloria Golf Resort Belek (Turkey)
  • Grazer Golfclub Thalersee (Austria)
  • Pula Golf (Spain)
  • Lopesan Meloneras Golf (Spain)
  • Golf Club Crans-sur-Sierre (Switzerland)
  • Golf Club Salzburg Gut Kaltenhausen (Austria)
  • Mieminger Plateau Golf Park (Austria)
  • Monte Rei Golf & Country Club (Portugal)
  • Golf Son Gual (Spain)
  • Golf de Andratx (Spain)
  • Marco Simone Golf & Country Club (Italy)
  • GC Radstadt (Austria)
  • GC Seefeld (Austria)
  • GC Mondsee (Austria)
  • Canyamel Golf (Spain)
  • Franciacorta Golf Club (Italy)
  • Ile aux Cerfs Golf Club (Mauritius)
  • De Texelse Golf Club (Netherlands)
  • Carinthian Golf Club Dellach (Austria)
  • Colony Club Gutenhof (Austria)
  • Golfpark Klopeinersee-Südkärnten (Austria)
  • Praia d’El Rey Golf & Country Club (Portugal)
  • Pine Cliffs Golf & Country Club (Portugal)
  • Robinson Club Nobilis (Turkey)
  • Costa Navarino – The Dunes Course (Greece)
  • Lana Golf Club (Italy)
  • Arzaga Golf Club (Italy)
  • Golf Club Dolomiti (Italy)
  • Golf Club Linz St. Florian (Austria)
  • GC Schwarzsee (Austria)
  • Golfpark Bregenzerwald (Austria)
  • Golf Club Murau Kreischberg (Austria)
  • Arabella Golf Son Quint (Spain)
  • Golf Santa Ponsa I (Spain)

You have already played these golf courses? Then rate them now in the Golf Post Course Finder. Other golfers will benefit from your experience and you can also view tens of thousands of reviews and plan your next golf experience. You can also rate all other golf courses in Europe.

Categories
Equipment

 Wilson Golf Introduces New Dynapower Club Range

 Nearly 70 years after Wilson Sporting Goods Co. redefined expectations around power and distance in iron play, Wilson Golf is introducing an all-new Dynapower range of Woods and Irons to present one of the most successful franchises in the game’s history to another generation of golfers.

Wilson Golf revitalises the Dyna-Powered legacy

Revitalising the Dyna-Powered legacy that revolutionised the game with game-changing weight distribution on its iron sets from 1956 onwards, the rebirth of the famous franchise as a modern classic includes the first Wilson Tour spec fully adjustable driver and distance inspired irons, plus fairway woods and hybrids. 

“We first changed the game of golf seven decades ago and it’s time to do it again,” said Tim Clarke, President of Wilson Golf. “Just like the original concept, these newwoods and irons are built with adding more power in mind, as we continue to innovate and deliver top-of-the-line products that raise the confidence of golfers at all skill levels. This time we’ve used advanced AI technology to redefine golf club power options and we’re extremely proud of this new line of Dynapower products and the impact they can have,” he added.

Wilson Dynapower Driver

The new Dynapower Driver is one of the most adjustable drivers ever created by Wilson andavailable in both Carbon and Titanium head options. It comes with a host of custom fitting combinations – from swing weight, flex, shaft, loft & lie – that enable golfers to find the perfect club off the tee, depending on preferred shot shape and ball flight. 

Employing advanced Artificial Intelligence methods, thousands of clubhead aesthetics were analysed using the same computer design process that produced the award-winning Wilson D9 wood range. Simulating a wide variety of data variations to produce the most effective design possible, it resulted in the deployment of exclusive PKR2 Technology on both Carbon and Titanium heads, providing a dynamic face thickness optimised over an extended area of the clubface for fast ball speeds and maximum forgiveness on off-centre hits. A new dynamic 6-way adjustable hosel enables fitters to make quick shaft changes, while golfers can benefit from easy one-click launch and spin adjustments.

“Research shows golfers hit 25% more GIR from the fairway, while around 60% of average 10-handicappers hit the green from 125-150 yards out, so that’s why the powerful new Dynapower Driver offers many golfers the best opportunity to post better scores,” said Jon Pergande, Manager of Wilson Golf Club Innovation based in Chicago. 

Aimed at the avid golfer looking to work the ball off the tee, the lightweight Carbon composite panels on the crown and sole, plus a 12g weight moves the Centre of Gravity low and forward creating a lower spinning driver head with neutral to fade ball flight tendencies.

Designed more at the aspirational player looking to maximise distance with a straighter ball flight, the Titanium head incorporates a 16g rear weight that produces a high MOI driver with a deep, rear Centre of Gravity delivering a forgiving higher launch angle with a neutral to draw bias.

Wilson Dynapower Irons

Engineered primarily for the aspirational 10+ handicap golfer, the Dynapower Irons – featuring a distinctive Wilson red tread for men and teal for women – have been designed to appeal aesthetically to single digit players looking for more distance and occasional mishit management in their game.

They feature variable thickness for each section of the face to make more of the clubface hot, especially the centre-to-toe area where approximately 85% of shots are hit.

“The face on the new Dynapower irons is the thinnest we’ve ever designed relative to the overall average thickness,” said Pergande. “The thinner topline, generous offset and a longer smooth hosel provides a pleasing look at address and the AI methods helped us to reposition weight to drive new solutions for both power and distance,” he added.

Using advanced Artificial Intelligence methods in designing irons for the first time – the same computer process used successfully with the Dynapower and D9 woods – thousands of clubhead data variations and aesthetics were analysed to produce the most effective and pleasing shape possible. The resulting design then incorporated the pioneering Wilson Power Hole 3.0 technology to deliver maximum ball speed across the face of each club.

The latest clubs from the brand with more Major wins in irons than any other (62) feature heel-to-toe weighting for a higher MOI and a lower centre of gravity design to deliver stability on off-centre hits that also fuels higher launch and steeper descent angles. 

Wilson Dynapower Fairway Woods and Hybrids

Designed using the same AI techniques as the Driver, the new Wilson Dynapower Fairway Woods and Hybrids feature a high MOI head design and advanced Tour-inspired shape for full confidence off the tee and deck. The stylish fairway woods incorporate a 12g rear weight that delivers a forgiving high launch angle and ball trajectory. Testing by Tour players during the development of the clubs has resulted in a flatter profile for a clean setup behind the ball. 

The Dynapower Hybrid features variable face thickness and internal weighting to position the Centre of Gravity low and back to produce an easy-to-launch ball flight that is more forgiving. The Tour-preferred flatter profile is also incorporated for confidence at setup.

For more information on the new Dynapower range and all Wilson Golf products, including woods, irons, wedges, putters, balls and accessories, visit www.wilson.com.

Categories
Equipment Products

More Carbon, More Fargiveness: Taylor Made Introduces the Stealth 2 Drivers

One year ago, Taylor Made Golf Company transformed the trajectory of driver technology with the groundbreaking Stealth CarbonwoodTM drivers, featuring the first-of-its-kind lighter and faster 60X Carbon Twist FaceTM. After a strong year in the marketplace and on professional tours across the world, carbon-face driver performance is just getting started as TaylorMade introduces the Stealth 2 Plus, Stealth 2 and Stealth 2 HD drivers.

Stealth 2 Carbonwood drivers combine the speed of Stealth with technological advancements that create a new level of forgiveness.

This is Fargivness

Building on the speed producing success of the original 60X Carbon Twist Face that optimised energy transfer for fast ball speeds, the new face design in Stealth 2 features an advanced version of Inverted Cone Technology (ICT). The new ICT is designed to maintain ball speed on off-centre strikes and increase forgiveness, or as we like to call that combination: Fargiveness.

A more pronounced ICT produces a thinner face on the edges and a thicker centre face, engineered to spread speed around the perimeter. Stealth 2’s face weighs just 24g (2g lighter than the original Stealth face) and is designed to have an expanded COR area for a larger sweet spot and boosted performance across the entire face.

“There are two main ways to produce forgiveness in a driver, by optimising the face and by optimising the body. Building off the 60X Carbon Twist Face in the original Stealth that led to ball speed gains for golfers across various skill levels, with Stealth 2 we challenged ourselves to bring more forgiveness in each of the three models. We accomplished that through introducing our modified face construction focused on forgiveness on the outside of the face, and a brand-new carbon-based modular body construction.”

Tomo Bystedt, Senior Director Product Creation, CarbonwoodTM and Metalwoods

The More Carbon the better

Stealth 2 is the first driver in TaylorMade’s history that has more carbon (including composites) than any other material by volume. TaylorMade has gradually increased the usage of carbon over the last five years and when compared to first generation Stealth there is a 75 percent increase in carbon in Stealth 2 Plus and nearly double in Stealth 2 and Stealth 2 HD.

What does more Carbon mean? More Carbon creates more discretionary mass that can be re-located for a higher Moment of Inertia (MOI) and optimal CG location. The additional carbon has enabled our engineers to increase total MOI in the Stealth 2 Plus driver by nine percent from Stealth Plus.

Carbon is seen in Stealth 2 drivers with a: Carbon Crown, Carbon Reinforced Composite Ring, Carbon Sole and the 60X Carbon Twist Face. The only parts made of metal in Stealth 2

clubheads are the titanium collar on the front of the club that holds the hosel and frames the face, and front and rear weights that vary by model.

The added Carbon Reinforced Ring provides constructional strength, durability and mass savings that allowed engineers to form a more complex and functional shape.

“The modular carbon body construction of Stealth 2 represents our commitment to carbon as the leading material in every TaylorMade driver we produce. It was clear that the breakthroughs we had with Stealth were just the beginning in terms of the performance we can extract from this technology platform. A primarily carbon-based head construction is revolutionising where we are able to position mass in a driver and this allows us to finely tune the launch, spin and MOI in each of the three Stealth 2 driver models.”

– Tomo Bystedt, Senior Director Product Creation, Carbonwood and Metalwoods

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Groundbreaking Technology remains

Stealth 2 maintains various technological innovations that made the original Stealth driver a powerhouse at all levels of golf.

The 60X Carbon Twist Face is encased by a polyurethane nanotexture cover that is used to fine tune launch and spin to optimise total distance regardless of playing conditions.

The Inertia Generator remains the foundational source of refined aerodynamic properties. The result is a slippery-fast head shape that aids in swing speed generation on the downswing while retaining high MOI, for golfers at every level.

TaylorMade’s flexible Thru-Slot Speed PocketTM design is engineered to maximise ball speeds and produce additional forgiveness on low-face strikes.

Our engineers obsessed over creating the perfect acoustics with Stealth 2 in order to produce a sound and feel that TaylorMade drivers are known for. We used a combination of carbon panel curvature, shape, and thickness to finely tune acoustics, delivering a sound profile that is both bright and powerful.

Performance Comparison of Stealth 2 Plus, Stealth 2 and Stealth 2 HD

STEALTH 2 PLUS

Because of weight savings from the usage of carbon materials, engineers were able to incorporate the use of a 15g sliding weight track designed to help golfers dial in shot shape by shifting mass on the sole to create the desired ball flight. Stealth 2 Plus is the lowest spinning driver in the family.

STEALTH 2

The reconstructed Stealth 2 driver delivers high MOI performance with a heavy 25g tungsten weight positioned on the Inertia Generator. The TSS (TaylorMade Swingweight System) weight is strategically located on the sole to encourage optimal launch and spin properties, delivering complete performance while allowing the driver to be tuned for

swingweight in custom. The carbon ring on Stealth 2 and Stealth 2 HD stands out, as it is completely red and visible at address unlike Stealth 2 Plus.

STEALTH 2 HD

Engineers utilised weight savings from the full-body carbon construction to shift the Inertia Generator with its heavy 30g weight closer to the heel in Stealth 2 HD, creating high launch and draw-bias with extreme MOI. Stealth 2 HD is the most stable and forgiving driver in the family.

STEALTH 2 HD WOMEN’S

Featuring a lighter head weight than the standard HD model and a unique colourway, Stealth 2 HD Women’s driver is designed to enhance clubhead speed. It maintains the high MOI head design for easy, high launch with a draw bias.

SPECIFICATIONS, AVAILABILITY AND PRICING

Stealth 2 Plus, Stealth 2 and Stealth 2 HD drivers will be available for preorder on January 10 and at retail on February 17.

Stealth 2 Plus has an RRP of £529 / EURO 669 / SEK 7,299 / NOK 6,799 / DKK 4,999 / CHF 689 and will be offered in 8°, 9° and 10.5° lofts. Shaft offerings include Mitsubishi Kai’li Red 60 (X, S, R) and Project X HZRDUS Black (Gen 4) 60 (X/6.5, S/6.0). Stealth 2 Plus comes stock with Golf Pride’s Z-Grip Plus 2 Black/Red (52g).

Stealth 2 and Stealth 2 HD have an RRP of £499 / EURO 649 / SEK 6,999 / NOK 6,499 / DKK 4,899 / CHF 669 and will be offered in 9°, 10.5° and 12° lofts. Stealth 2 shaft offerings included Fujikura Ventus Red TR 5 (S, R, A) and Mitsubishi Diamana S+ 60 (X, S, R). The Stealth 2 HD shaft offering is Fujikura Speeder NX Red 60 (S) and 50 (R, A). Both models come with Golf Pride’s Z-Grip Plus 2 Black/Red (52g) grip.

Stealth 2 HD Women’s comes in 10.5° and 12° lofts with Adila Ascent Ladies 45 shaft and Lamkin Ladies Sonar (38g) grip.

For all offerings, numerous custom shaft and grip options are available through our Custom department. The custom process allows us to build the ideal club for any golfer – it’s not women’s equipment or men’s equipment, but the right equipment.

MYSTEALTH 2 PLUS IN YOUR ELEMENT

TaylorMade continues its investment in personalisation with the MyStealth 2 programme to allow golfers to have advanced personalisation in the Stealth 2 Plus Model:

  • Face Colour: Red, Black, Yellow, Blue, Light Blue, Bright Green, Pink, Orange, Purple
  • Ring Colour: Red, Black, Gold, Silver, White, Charcoal
  • Crown Finish: Gloss or Satin
  • Top Line: Black or White
  • Sightline: Logo or No Logo
  • Weight Colours: Black or Chrome
  • Custom MyStealth 2 Headcover MyStealth 2 has an RRP of £599 / EURO 759 / SEK 8,349 / DKK 5,699 / CHF 779 and is offered in the Stealth 2 Plus model in 9° and 10.5° loft in both RH and LH. Preorder begins January 10 at TaylorMadeGolf.com and available at select retailers starting February 17.

(Text: TaylorMade)

Categories
Equipment Products

TaylorMade Stealth 2 Fairways: Versatile Designs and Breakthrough Technologies to Fit Golfers of All Abilities

TaylorMade Golf Company continues its technological innovation in the fairway wood and RescueTM categories with the announcement of the Stealth 2 fairway and Stealth 2 Rescue family. The latest line of Stealth 2 fairway woods and RescueTM clubs continues to feature with breakthrough movable weight technologies and versatile designs.

TaylorMade presents new Stealth 2 Plus fairway

The flagship model of the line is Stealth 2 Plus fairway, which features a heavy 50g sliding weight on the sole. This weight allows for three main settings, each with its own performance characteristics – creating three different fairway woods in one. The middle setting is the most versatile for optimal playability off the deck or off the tee. This standard setting will fit a wide range of golfers and has mid launch, mid-spin and consistently powerful distance.

Players can manipulate the weight to fit their swing or desired launch conditions. Shifting it to the front reduces spin and creates a piercing trajectory for added distance off the tee. This setting is also ideal for high-spin golfers who want to knock off spin for increased roll out and distance.

“We anticipate the forward setting being popular on Tour, particularly among players like Collin Morikawa who have historically used our 13.5° Rocket 3-wood for increased distance and a low spin/low launch. The versatility of Stealth 2 Plus will allow for this type of “rocket” setting but ultimately its versatility is its greatest appeal. Adjusting the movable weight creates noticeable performance differences in terms of launch, spin and distance, allowing golfers to dial in the preferred flight characteristics that their game, course and conditions require.”

Tomo Bystedt, Senior Director of Product Creation

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Positioning the weight all the way back is the most forgiving setting. It adds spin and increases MOI for enhanced performance on off-centre strikes. This setting also encourages a steeper descent angle with more spin, creating a performance option for players who possess the power and speed to attack par 5s with their second shots – helping them to hold the green more easily.

The combination of the sliding weight along with an FCT Loft Sleeve gives Stealth 2 Plus a massive spin and loft range, checking in at +/- 2° of loft and approximately +/- 550 RPMs of spin. These two functions allow players to customise the club to fit their specific needs and playing style.

The Stealth 2 fairway builds on the success of the original Stealth fairway, which was among the most played fairway woods on the PGA Tour in 2022. It features a slightly lower profile 3D carbon crown that pushes CG down and pulls mass away from the high toe area, allowing more weight to be positioned rearward for optimal forgiveness and maximum playability.

The V SteelTM sole continues to play a pivotal role with the Stealth 2 fairway. This iconic TaylorMade technology is dual-purpose:

  1. 1)  Helping to drive weight low for deeper CG.
  2. 2)  Improving turf interaction and providing the versatility to take on a variety of lies.

Joining the TaylorMade Family: Stealth 2 HD

Another unique addition to the TaylorMade fairway family is the all-new Stealth 2 HD, engineered to maximise forgiveness and deliver easy playability for golfers at every level. A radical departure from traditional TaylorMade designs, it features an ultra-high MOI construction with an oversized 200cc head.

A larger, low-profile sole helps the club hug the ground at address and makes it easier to achieve a high launch, while internal weighting encourages a draw-bias ball flight. Stealth HD has the highest MOI of any TaylorMade fairway wood and expands the limits of forgiveness in terms of off-the-deck playability. For golfers who have historically struggled to produce successful shots with their fairway woods, this ground-breaking design will be an exciting and easy-to-hit alternative.

Every Stealth 2 fairway and Rescue features a new Advanced Inverted Cone Technology, an intelligent design that optimises the face thickness profile of each individual club type to ensure peak performance regardless of face size, shape or material. Engineered to maximise speed and enhance durability, the design is thinnest at true centre and around the edges, with a thicker mantle surrounding centre face.

“Advanced ICT takes a proven TaylorMade concept and pushes it to the next level. We’ve now optimised variable face thickness for each individual club, so that every face on a Stealth 2 fairway or Rescue has been specifically engineered for that club. This design feat is a testament to our team’s relentless drive to improve on every aspect of our products year after year.”

-Matt Johnson, Principal Engineer, Advanced Design

SPECIFICATIONS, AVAILABILITY & PRICING

Stealth 2 Plus, Stealth 2 and Stealth 2 HD fairways will be available for preorder on January 10 and at retail on February 17, 2023. Stealth 2 Plus has an RRP of £379 / €479 / SEK 5,299 / NOK 4,999 / DKK 3,699 / CHF 489 and will be offered in 3/15° and 5/18° lofts. It will be offered in the Mitsubishi Kai’li Red FW (75X, 75S, 65R), with a variety of custom shaft options available. Stealth 2 Plus fairways come stock with the Golf Pride’s Z-Grip (52g).

Stealth 2 and Stealth 2 HD have an RRP of £299 / €379 / SEK 4,199 / NOK 3,999 / DKK 2,999 / CHF 389. Stealth 2 will be offered in lofts of 3/15°, 3HL/16.5°, 5/18°, 7/21° and 9/24°. Shaft offerings include Fujikura Ventus TR Red FW (6-S, 5-R, 5-A), with a variety of custom shaft options available. Stealth 2 HD will be offered in lofts of 16°, 19° and 22°. Fujikura Speeder NX

Red is the stock shaft offering with a variety of custom shaft options available. Both models come stock with Golf Pride’s Z-Grip (52g).

Stealth 2 HD Women’s Fairway is offered in lofts of 16°, 19° and 22°, and comes stock with the Aldila Ascent Ladies 45 shaft and Lamkin Ladies Sonar grip.

STEALTH 2 PLUS, STEALTH 2 AND STEALTH 2 HD RESCUE CLUBS

For the first time, TaylorMade is releasing a trio of Rescue clubs within the same family: Stealth 2 Plus, Stealth 2 and Stealth 2 HD, each designed with a specific golfer and performance goal in mind.

Stealth 2 Plus Rescue features a compact tour-inspired shape that lends itself to enhanced shot making. It combines the control and workability of a long iron with the added forgiveness of a Rescue.

Compared to the original Stealth Rescue, CG is positioned lower in the Stealth 2 head for a more centred CG projection that leads to optimal launch and spin. A mass pad positioned at the back of the club further increases MOI for forgiveness and playability.

Stealth 2 HD is new to the family and utilises a larger but lower overall profile along with internal draw-bias weighting to deliver high launch and easy-to-hit performance. Higher lofts than traditional Rescue clubs promote better launch and help golfers get the ball airborne faster at moderate swing speeds.

With versatile designs and breakthrough technologies, the Stealth 2 family of fairway woods and Rescue clubs has the potential to change the trajectory of fairway and hybrid design for years to come. Golfers of all abilities will be able to find a club that fits their needs and helps them improve their game.

SPECIFICATIONS, AVAILABILITY & PRICING

Stealth 2 Plus, Stealth 2 and Stealth 2 HD Rescues clubs will be available for preorder on January 10 and at retail on February 17, 2023. Stealth 2 Plus has an RRP of £249 / €329 / SEK 3,499 / NOK 3,299 / DKK 2,499 / CHF 329 and will be offered in lofts of 2/17°, 3/19.5° and 4/22°. It will be offered in the Mitsubishi Kai’li Red HY (95X, 85S, 75R) shaft, with numerous custom shaft options available. It comes stock with the Golf Pride’s Z-Grip (52g).

Stealth 2 Rescue has an RRP of £239/ €299 / SEK 3,299 / NOK 3,099 / DKK 2,299 / CHF 299 and will be offered in lofts of 3/19°, 4/22°, 5/25°, 6/28° and 7/31°. It will be offered in the Fujikura Ventus Red TR HB (7-S, 6-R, 5-A) shaft, with numerous custom shaft options, as well as Lamkin’s Crossline 360 grip (47g).

Stealth 2 HD Rescue has an RRP of £239/ €299 / SEK 3,299 / NOK 3,099 / DKK 2,299 / CHF 299 will be offered in lofts of 3/20°, 4/23°, 5/27° and 6/31°. It will be offered in the Fujikura Speeder

NX Red (60-S, 50-R, 50-A) shaft, with numerous custom shaft options available. Stealth 2 HD Rescue comes stock with the Lamkin Crossline 360 grip (47g).

Stealth 2 HD Women’s Rescue offerings include the Aldila Ascent Ladies shaft and the Lamkin Ladies Sonar grip (38g). Loft offerings include 4/23°, 5/27° and 6/31°.

(Text: TaylorMade)

Categories
Equipment Products

TaylorMade Golf Unveils Stealth HD Irons

TaylorMade Golf, the industry leader in innovation and technology, today announces the all-new Stealth HD irons – an unconventional approach to helping developing golfers find success in the game.

TaylorMade presents all-new Stealth HD irons

The original Stealth iron featuring Cap BackTM design for more forgiveness excelled at bringing golfers everywhere better shots more often and will continue as the brand’s marquee game improvement iron. With the addition of Stealth HD, the company welcomes a wider breadth of golfers to Team TaylorMade with a more forgiving, easy-to-launch max game improvement option.

Development of this iron started from the ground up, as TaylorMade embarked on a journey to create an iron unlike any other in the brand’s history. Product creationists and engineers surveyed golfers in the max game improvement demographic to understand what they need, how they play golf and gather data on their performance. Research included extensive product testing as well as in-depth interviews with the target golfers for Stealth HD.

Taking design inspiration from the data, Stealth HD was engineered to deliver performance where this player needs it most. An ultra-low-profile head shape in the long irons drives CG lower to help get the ball airborne with ease – a critical component for defining success among this player set. Progressive head sizes, meaning that each club is uniquely shaped and gets incrementally larger from 5-iron through pitching wedge, help independently optimise the performance of each iron.

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An increased sole radius and innovative step-down design along the bottom of the club round out the all-new shape. Testing confirmed that increasing the sole arc from heel to toe led to more shots high on the face, which translates to higher launch and further helps this golfer get the ball airborne. The step-down sole is designed to boost playability by reducing the amount of surface area that contacts the turf.

An asymmetric draw-bias face was incorporated in direct response to golfer interviews, as players within this demographic associated “successful shots” with any result that flew straight or had a draw shape. High COR and fast ball speeds are an added benefit of the new face construction.

In addition, TaylorMade increased loft throughout the Stealth HD iron set to correspond with findings from a proprietary simulation tool – which factors in relevant design variables to optimise carry distance, launch angle and spin at slow to moderate swing speeds.

A high launching, easy-to-hit iron with surprisingly exceptional feel.

“In working with players in this category, we exhausted all optimisation tools to determine the ideal loft for each iron in the set. Incorporating higher lofts was done purposefully and with intent. Our goal was to provide as much launch and spin as possible without sacrificing distance, and what we found was this design strategy often led to increased carry distance for the

developing golfer when compared to traditional super game improvement irons with stronger lofts. By combining this totally unique construction with our existing technologies, we created a high launching, easy-to-hit iron with surprisingly exceptional feel.”

Matt Bovee, Director, Product Creation Irons

While the head was made for slow to moderate swing speeds, performance effects are seen at every level of skill and speed. The Stealth HD iron is a great option for fitters and any player who struggles to launch the ball consistently. The full package of design elements provides forgiveness and distance for developing golfers, all while maintaining a premium aesthetic.

In addition, Stealth HD irons incorporate proven TaylorMade technologies such as Cap BackTM Design, a Thru Slot Speed PocketTM and the ECHO® Damping System, a trio that creates a flexible and responsive face with exceptional feel.

SPECIFICATIONS, AVAILABILITY & PRICING

Stealth HD irons will be available for preorder on January 10 and at retail on February 17, 2023. Stealth HD irons have an RRP per iron of £129/ €170 / SEK 1,815 / NOK 1,715 / DKK 1,286 / CHF 170 for steel and £143/ €190 / SEK 2,029 / NOK 1,929 / DKK 1,429 / CHF 190 for graphite and will be available from 5-PW with AW, SW and LW (RH Only) available. Stock shaft offerings include KBS Max 85 MT (steel) and Fujikura NX Red/Silver (graphite), with a variety of custom shaft options. Stealth HD irons come stock with the Lamkin Crossline Black/Red grip (47g).

Stealth HD Women’s Irons offering includes the Aldila Ascent Ladies shaft and the Lamkin Ladies Sonar grip (38g).

(Text: TaylorMade)