Stenson Earns First Win of the Season
Since his victory over Phil Mickelson in an epic Sunday battle for the 2016 Open Championship, Henrik Stenson’s best PGA Tour finish had been a tie for second at World Golf Championships-HSBC Champions last fall. That all changed with a stellar 4-birdie finish over the final nine holes at Sedgefield Country Club to edge out Ollie Schniederjans for the Wyndham Championship.
For the native of Sweden, who now resides in Orlando, this was his fifth victory on Tour.
One interest fact about the clubs Stenson used this week in Greensboro was he didn’t carry a driver but instead his almost legendary Diablo Octane 3-wood which he used as a driver. Averaging 294 yards off the tee for the four rounds and 75% of the fairways, he parlayed this strong off-the-tee performance into being able to hit 89% of the greens in regulation. The 13-degree loft Callaway Diablo Octane Tour model is a 2011 design proving that in some instances the latest technology may take a backseat to what works.
Stenson’s irons are also a bit unusual. His Callaway Legacy Black irons are a cavity back design that the company does not sell here in the United States.
Stenson’s Winning Gear
- Driver/Strong 3-wood: 13-degree Callaway Diablo Octane Tour (Grafalloy Blue shaft)
- Fairway Wood: 18-degree Callaway XR Pro (Oban Kiyoshi Tour Limited 60 X shaft)
- Irons: 3-iron through pitching wedge Callaway Legacy Black (Nippon Modus 120X shafts)
- Wedges: 50- and 56-degree Callaway Mack Daddy Forged and a 60-degree Mack Daddy PM Grind (Nippon Modus 120X shafts)
- Putter: Odyssey White Hot XG #7H
- Ball: Titleist Pro V1x
- Wyndham by the Numbers
At the final event before the playoffs Titleist led the ball count with 113 contestants using either the Pro V1 or Pro V1x compared with 18 for the nearest competitor. Titleist was also tops in hybrids (29) and irons (48 sets). Vokey Design Wedges were number one with 212 (approach, sand and lob) plus Scotty Cameron putters were the brand of choice with 64. TaylorMade’s M1 and M2 drivers won that category with 72 in play while Titleist drivers were second with 41, Callaway third with 20 and Ping had 17.
- In Case Anyone Should Ask
The Wyndham Championship started in 1938 as the Greater Greensboro Open and is played over the challenging Sedgefield Country Club course. Opened in 1926, it’s only regular season Tour event on an original Don Ross design. Though it’s likely to change the position of the Wyndham in the PGA Tour’s schedule sandwiched between the PGA Championship and the start of the FedEx Cup playoffs, it has been the last chance for those outside the top 125 on the points list to get inside.
Also the event is often skipped the top ranked players who see it as a breather before the tough six weeks following, capped by either the Presidents Cup or in alternate years the Ryder Cup. This year the only top 25 players in Greensboro were the winner Henrik Stenson at ninth and number 24 Kevin Kisner. The old GGO was a favorite of Arnold Palmer and he played 13 times though he never won and Sam Snead was victor a record eight times.
- Spider Tour
It is expected that TaylorMade will expand the Spider Tour putter line soon offering a variety of alignment aids, hosel configurations and balance points. The current Spider Tour in red, black or platinum is the most played single model on the PGA Tour with such top stars as Jason Day, Dustin Johnson and Joh Rohm using it.
- Mizuno CLK Hybrids
Seven years ago Mizuno introduced the MP CLK hybrids and now the new CLK is a welcome update with a slot in the sole to help additional face flex and a “Wave” configuration on the sole to reduce turf drag. The face of maraging steel has a reduced thickness and the center of gravity is positioned to produce lower spin. An 8-positon hosel helps the CLK hybrids fit as long iron substitutes in the recently introduced MP-18 model irons. CLK hybrids should be in shops next month with a Fujikura Speeder Evolution shaft as stock and priced at $249 each.
- Acushnet v. Costco
Acushnet, makers of the Titleist Pro V1 and Pro V1x, has filed suited against retailer Costco saying the Costco Kirkland Signature golf ball infringes on 10 of Acushnet’s patents and making an accusation of false advertising. This legal action was in response to an earlier suit by Costco saying claims by Acushnet as to performance of the Kirkland Signature ball and advertising in a letter from their lawyers were false. Stay tuned—this one’s not over yet.
- Exotics CBX Fairway Woods
With lab testing to back up their claims, Tour Edge Golf says the new Exotics CBX fairway woods are tour-caliber and the longest and lowest spinning when tested against other popular brands. The CBX has a larger beta titanium face cup that’s more forgiving and brazed to a stainless steel body.WHAT'S YOUR REACTION?