Justin Thomas will go to St. Louis to defend his PGA Championship title with the third win of this season under his belt taking the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational by four strokes of Kyle Stanley. It was also the second victory on Tour for a driver of the yet to be released to retail, the Titleist TS series. Thomas used a TS3 model and Michael Kim was the first winner with a TS driver when he triumphed at the John Deere Classic with a TS2.
Though technical details and pricing have not been announced for the TS drivers these 2019 model replacements for the 917 D2 and D3 were first seen on the practice at tee at Shinnecock Hills prior to the U.S. Open in June. They were immediately put into play by 17 out of 35 Titleist staffers in the Open including Thomas. The Titleist TS2 will not use the D2’s reversible weight cartridge and the cartridge in the smaller headed TS3 has been relocated. Neither the TS2 or TS3 appears to have the sole channel behind the club face of the 917s. There are companion fairway woods to the TS2 and TS3 also in play on Tour.
Driver: Titleist TS3 9.5°, Mitsubishi Rayon Diamana BF-Series 60 TX shaft
Fairway Wood: Titleist TS3 15°, Mitsubishi Tensei CK Blue 80 X shaft; Titileist 915Fd 18°, Fujikura Motore VC 9.2 X shaft
Irons: Titleist 718 AP2 4-iron & Titleist 718 MB 5-9, True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 Tour Issue shafts
Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM6 Raw 46°, True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100 shaft; Titleist Vokey Design SM5 Raw 52°, 56° & Titleist Vokey Design SM6 Raw 60°, True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400 shafts
Putter: Scotty Cameron for Titleist Futura X5 prototype
Ball: Titleist Pro V1x
Barracuda Championship Won by Putnam with Srixon
The modified Stableford points format of the Barracuda Championship is ideal for players who like taking chances and Andrew Putnam was successful with a four point victory. He played the Srixon Z-STAR XV ball which has a four-layer construction, a dual core and urethane cover with their Spin Skin friction coating for more spin control greenside.
In Putnam’s bag as he travels to the PGA Championship, earning a spot by virtue of his Barracuda win:
Driver: TaylorMade M2 2016 model 8.5°, Aldila Rogue Silver 65X shaft
Fairway Wood: Cleveland Launcher DST 13°, Miyazaki Black 85X shaft
Hybrid: Adams Idea Pro (18 degrees), with Graphite Design Tour AD Hybrid shaft
Irons: Srixon Z745 3-iron & 5-PW, True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400 shafts
Wedges: Cleveland RTX-3 50, 56° & 60°, True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400 shafts
Putter: Odyssey White Hot RX Rosie
Ball: Srixon: Z-Star XV
In Case Anyone Should Ask:
Week’s Equipment Counts:
At Firestone for the WGC Bridgestone in the field of 71 after Justin Rose and Adam Hadwin withdrew Titleist Pro V1 or Pro V1x balls were played by 46 contestants and Callaway Chrome Soft or Chrome Soft X by 10. Titleist is also had the most in the hybrid (9) and irons categories (18) while Vokey Design wedges were first in the approach, sand and lob wedge (88) category and Scotty Cameron putters are tied with the Odyssey brand at the top with 25 in play. Odyssey was #1 putter in every other tournament on every major tour including the Ricoh Women’s British Open and the Barracuda Championship last week.
At the opposite field Barracuda Championship in Reno 78% or 103 of the 132-man field played Pro V1 or Pro V1x golf ball versus 10 using Chrome Soft or Chrome Soft X. Titleist tied at the top in hybrids (19) and was first in irons (39). Vokey was tops in approach, sand and lob wedges with 169.
Bag Bay: In the category of things you may need on the course Bag Boy now has accessories that fit on their push carts including a Mini Soundbar Bluetooth speaker ($49.95) and an Electronic Hand Warmer ($29.95), both being available Oct. 1. They join other accessories presently at retail including a 3-in-1 Fan with optional mister ($39.95) and a Universal Bluetooth Speaker ($29.95) plus a Universal Solar Charger ($34.95).
Srixon Soft Feel: As the first of their new offerings Srixon has announced the 11th generation of the Soft Feel ball in the lower end price category at $19.99 per dozen. According to the company the key features are an Energetic Gradient Growth Core for high-launch and low spin off the tee with an ultra-soft feel; a Soft, Thin Cover of ionomer that promotes greenside spin and softer feel on pitches, chips and putts; a 338 Dimple Pattern upgraded to reduce drag and improved resistance to wind for more accuracy and consistency.