The Open 2017 Gear Round Up - We outline the changes the pros will be making the clubs in their bags for the year's third major at Royal Birkdale
The Open 2017 Gear Round Up
It wouldn’t be an Open Championship equipment round-up story without starting with the typically unorthodox approach of Phil Mickelson to the clubs in his bag.
In his defence, the last time he switched things around he took home the Claret Jug so there’s clearly method in the madness. That was back at Muirfield Golf Club in 2013 where he didn’t carry a driver, instead opting for an oversized, low spinning three wood that he could use off the tee to keep the ball low and off the fairway too.
Lefty has gone with a similar approach for Royal Birkdale in 2017, revealing that he plans to replace his Callaway Great Big Bertha Epic Sub Zero driver with a 13-degree Callaway X Hot 3Deep fairway wood.
It’s a club that has been part of his bag on and off for the last four years and was designed specifically with Mickelson in mind. It’s 25cc larger than the standard 3-wood with a taller face to aid performance off the tee.
“We came out here and spent Saturday and Sunday in the conditions and winds we’re going to see,” Mickelson said on Tuesday, “and there wasn’t even a driver for me until we got to 15 — for the way I wanted to play the golf course and avoid the bunkers. Even on 15, 16, 17, 18 where you could potentially hit driver, it wasn’t the right fit. And there was another couple of clubs I wanted to have in the bag instead.
“I’ll put in the 3-wood I used at Muirfield when I won in ’13 — it’s a hot 3-wood. I can get a lot out of it but it’s much easier for me to hit low. So even if I’m into the wind, I hit it every bit as far as I do a driver.”
Mickelson tees off at 15:10 with Francesco Molinari and Marc Leishmann. You can see the rest of the Open Championship tee times for rounds one and two here.
The Ping G400 driver looks to continue to be a popular choice among its staff players including Lee Westwood, following on from the US Open where it lead the driving accuracy and distance stats. Westy was also seen sporting a US Open limited edition pair of red FootJoy Pro/SL shoes during a practice round.
Rafa Cabrera-Bello will be looking to continue his winning streak, having won the AAM Scottish Open using some prototype Titleist 718 irons.
Sergio Garcia has put a TaylorMade M2 2-iron in play this week. Martin Kaymer has switched to the Spider Red Tour putter and both Ernie Els and Justin Rose have added a TaylorMade UDI 1-iron.
Rose will continue to play his TaylorMade Rose Proto irons pictured in the above tweet, which will be housed in one of the special TaylorMade Open Tour bags also revealed this week.
John Daly will use the Vertical Groove driver following his victory using on the PGA Tour Champions, a model that has recently become available in the UK.
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