Welcome to the January 2009 issue of Equipment Reviews, sent out monthly exclusively to the loyal customers of Edwin Watts Golf. If you haven't already signed up for your free Equipment Reviews subscription, then please click here - there's no obligation and you can cancel at any time.
Along with the beginning of the 2009 PGA Tour comes a slew of new equipment-endorsement contracts, which is typical of every January. While Tiger’s still with Nike and Phil with Callaway – and even though the economy is tight -- several other household names, and a few less common, have found new product sources for the year. David Toms – a former longtime Cleveland Golf equipment player – has returned to the company after a two-year hiatus. The company also nabbed Boo Weekley to play its Srixon balls and continue using Cleveland clubs and a Never Compromise putter. Stewart Appleby left Bridgestone for Callaway and a multi-year contract. PING renewed deals with Hunter Mahan, Bubba Watson, Mark Calcavecchia, Nick O’Hern, Daniel Chopra and Jeff Maggert. Bridgestone Golf expanded its relationship with Brandt Snedeker, to now include golf clubs (he previously just played a Bridgestone ball). TaylorMade inked to its staff Arjun Atwal, Matthew Borchert, Paul Goydos, Scott Gutschewski, Richard S. Johnson, Frank Lickliter II, Steve Lowery, David Mathis, Leif Olson, DA Points. Rick Price, Patrick Sheehan, Brian Vranesh, Duffy Waldorf, Charles Warren, Aaron Watkins and Tim Wilkinson. Shaft company UST signed Stewart Cink to play its products, while FootJoy inked Padraig Harrington to a multi-year agreement, to wear the new SYNR-G shoe.
Adams Speedline Driver
One of Nick’s Picks this month, this titanium driver was a winner on several 2008 Tours even before it arrived in Watts shops for 2009. Its amazing aerodynamic design handles airflow very efficiently, generating less air drag and a high clubhead speed. A scooped-out heel and toe design, dome-shaped crown, and how the relatively small clubface area gradually transitions to the rest of the clubhead body collectively cause air to flow up the clubface and stay attached to the crown longer during the downswing, minimizing drag. That helps the clubhead move faster into the ball, potentially yielding extra tee shot yardage. It’s offered in both standard and draw versions. The club sounds and performs solidly, and it yields a long carry with a lively landing. Perhaps that’s why Golf Digest’s “Hot List” gave this new product the gold star rating.
Cleveland CG12 American Flag Camo Wedge
Finished with a camouflage pattern and U.S. flag exclusively for Watts customers, Cleveland Golf’s CG12 wedge combines a classic design with advanced manufacturing processes. The aggressive “ZIP” grooves are milled to maximum conforming dimensions, using a proprietary CNC mill bit. This greatly improves shot consistency and spin control. An innovative plating process is also implemented – and the integrity of the grooves is maintained by the application of a proprietary coating to each groove, for protection during the face sandblasting process -- to help make these ZIP grooves Cleveland's most consistent, precise and visible ever. It’s no wonder Cleveland wedges are so popular on Tour. In fact, CG12 wedges have been used on Tour by a slew of pros, including Vijay Singh and Woody Austin.
HOT GEAR NEWS
Throngs of PGA Tour pros – including Adam Scott, Davis Love III, Kenny Perry and Camilo Villegas -- have already begun playing Titleist’s all-new Pro V1 and Pro V1x balls, which will hit Watts shops in February. The balls are engineered for longer distance and greater durability…Mizuno announced the MX-700 driver featuring a “Hot Metal” Ti-9 titanium clubface that’s plasma welded to a 6-4 titanium body. The clubhead’s low-and-deep CG yields a centrally located sweet spot for low spin and a high, penetrating trajectory. Mizuno calls it the company’s largest MOI driver ever, as well as the longest and most forgiving. Matching fairway woods are also coming soon…Fujikura Composites unveiled the Motore F1 Series shafts for woods and hybrids. Their High Inertia Tip stores more energy during the downswing then releases it just before impact – for long distance and accuracy…Tour Edge has come out with the stainless steel GeoMax Chipper club bearing 37 degrees of loft, a wide, radiused sole, and a long Winn grip, allowing you to easily choke up on the ball. This is one of several chipper clubs from popular companies on the market this year…Cleveland Golf’s new CG7 and CG7 Tour irons combine a lightweight Gelback Technology insert that dampens vibration with progressively sized micro-cavities for optimized CG location in each clubhead. Both iron models have heel/toe muscle weighting for forgiveness. The company also debuted the HiBORE Monster XLS driver, a 460cc giant with high MOI, USGA-maximum clubface size and 24 grams of weight packed low and deep in the perimeter. It’s offered in standard, draw and Tour versions…Cobra’s high-MOI and low-CG S9-1 and S9-1 Pro drivers come in various models that collectively fit all golfers. The clubs feature a new “Hotter 9 Points” clubface technology that maximizes power from anywhere across the clubface. Matching fairway woods are also available…Adams Golf added Chad Campbell to its PGA Tour staff. Campbell will wear the company's hat, carry the tour staff bag and play the Idea Tech a4 irons, an Adams hybrid and the Insight Tech a4 driver… Nickent’s new 5DX Ironwood has squared wings in the rear, which collectively raise the club’s MOI and enhance ball speed and accuracy. Extreme perimeter weighting includes two tungsten-polymer xw inserts and one adjustable weight plug on the sole.