We take a look inside the bags of the players teeing it up at Royal Troon to see what new gear they might be putting in play to try and win the Open Championship
The Open is a unique event on the golfing calendar that requires tweaks to the set up of the clubs in players bag in order to navigate the undulating terrain and blustery conditions. We’ll see a lot of players put utility irons in the bag to keep the ball low off the tee, while others will knock some bounce of their wedges to interact with the firm, tight turf around the greens.
One of the biggest equipment stories to break in the lead up to the start of the Open was that Charl Schwartzel has left Nike to sign with Parsons Xtreme Golf, or PXG. He has only been testing the clubs for a couple of weeks but has decided to put them in play at Royal Troon.
“From clubs to club maker, I feel like PXG is behind me,” Schwartzel said in a release. “They have taken an interest in all aspects of my game and are committed to helping me play the best golf of my life. I had the opportunity to speak with Bob Parsons, and his enthusiasm for the game of golf and golf equipment is infectious.”
Schwartzel follows a number of high-profile signings for PXG, including Billy Horschel, Ryan Moore and last year’s Open Champion Zach Johnson. He will use an 0811X Prototype driver, 0311 3- and 5-irons, 0311T 6-PW and an 0311T 54° wedge and will add to these nine clubs over the next few months.
Mizuno unveiled a new wedge that staff player Luke Donald will have in the bag this week. The T7 is set to replace the T5 model and continues to be offered in both satin chrome and blue finishes. We’ll have more on these wedges in due course.
As well as being the number one ball at the Open this week and since records began, Titleist are also continuing the roll out its 917 Prototype driver. This tweet was from last week’s Scottish Open at Castle Stuart.
Another special product was unveiled to us on Tuesday when Ping CEO John Solheim paid us a visit holding a limited edition Anser putter. They are made from the original Anser putter mould and will be released in limited numbers to celebrate 50 years since the launch of this iconic golf club. The face of each putter will ground by John Solheim himself and there are tungsten weights in the heel and toe to bring it up to modern head weights.
TaylorMade is this week paying homeage to the iconic Open Championship scoreboard by rolling out special yellow and black tour bags, which will be used by Justin Rose and world number 1 Jason Day.
In the world of golf footwear, some FootJoy staffers including Lee Westwood have been testing out a new prototype spikeless shoe called the Pro SL.
Finally, American Brandt Snedeker was seen with this special Union Jack tour bag paying homeage to ‘one of his favourite weeks of the year’.