Spring is here, and so is the year's first major: The LPGA's Kraft Nabisco Championship.

Last year, Stacy Lewis trusted her Pro V1x golf ball to a closing 3-under 69 and three-shot victory, the third consecutive win for Titleist golf ball players at Mission Hills. Yani Tseng (Pro V1x) won in 2010 and Brittany Lincicome (Pro V1x) in 2009.
 
"I think the golf ball is the most important thing at a major. The greens are always firm and you have to be able to control your shot and control the trajectory with the wind," Lewis tells Team Titleist.

"They're the hardest conditions we play all year and to know your golf ball is going to perform the same every time – it's a perfect thing."

Team Titleist recently spoke with Lewis, Lincicome, Angela Stanford (Pro V1)  and I.K. Kim (Pro V1) about their keys to success at Kraft and the importance of being able to trust your golf ball under major championship conditions.

See what they had to see in the above video.

Last year, Team Titleist members in five cities around the US were invited to come out to the course and test new prototype Titleist golf balls.

At Titleist, the R&D process is constant, with prototype and test golf balls being developed throughout the year. Most never make it past initial stages, others end up at various stages of golfer testing, whether at our testing facilities or on course with PGA Tour players or Team Titleist members.

The feedback the Titleist Golf Ball R&D team receives during these testing sessions is crucial in the design and development of the products that go to market. Once a Titleist golf ball is in the final stages, we then validate it through more golfer testing.

The golf balls tested by Team Titleist members last year were prototypes of the new NXT Tour, NXT Tour S, Velocity and DT SoLo golf balls, which first appeared on pro shop shelves early this year.

In the above video, Team Titleist members talk about their overall experience participating in this particular test panel.

To be eligible for future prototype golf ball and golf club testing locally in Australia and New Zealand, please make sure that you have registered for Team Titleist and that you have completed your Team Titleist profile.



Back-to-back 65's earned Titleist Brand Ambassador Michael Hoey his fourth European Tour victory over the weekend at the Trophée Hassan II in Morocco.

Trusting a Pro V1x golf ball and a bag of Titleist equipment – including 910 driver and fairway metals, AP2 (712 Series) irons and Vokey Design SM4 wedges – Hoey charged to victory with birdies on three of his last five holes at Golf du Palais Royal.

It was one of three wins for Titleist golf ball players last weekend around the globe, including Pro V1x loyalist Yani Tseng's second-consecutive triumph on the LPGA. Titleist Brand Ambassador Nick Cullen also trusted a Pro V1x golf ball to victory at the OneAsia Tour's season-opener.

 Through the first three months of 2012, Titleist Pro V1 and Pro V1x players have combined for 33 victories across the worldwide professional tours, more than six times the nearest competitor with six and more than all competitors combined.

A total of 3,898 players have teed up Titleist golf balls in those same competitions, more than six times the nearest competitor and more than all other golf balls combined.

In Morocco, Hoey rebounded from an opening 2-over 74 with rounds of 67-65-65 for a 14-under 271 total and three-shot victory. 

Also a winner of last year's Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, Hoey made 22 birdies and one eagle over his final 54 holes. Eight of those birdies came on holes 15 through 18.

“It’s all a bit surreal at the moment but it always feels like that for me,” said Hoey.

 “I was actually thinking that I might struggle to make the cut after shooting two over in the first round but I started swinging the club really well and the confidence was there so it was great to back that up with the scores too. The second round was a good 67 and then to shoot two 65s over the weekend was pretty special really.”

Hoey was one of 70 players in the field that relied on Titleist golf balls for their success, more than three times the nearest competitor with 21 and more than all other competitors combined.

Pro V1 loyalist Jamie Donaldson shot a course-record 61, including a back-nine 28, to share third place at 13-under 275 with Phillip Price (Pro V1x) and Robert Coles (Pro V1x). 

Here' a closer look at Michael Hoey's Titleist equipment:

BallTitleist Pro V1x
DriverTitleist 910D3 8.5º (Diamana Kai'li 70)
Fairways: Titleist 910F 13.5º (Diamana Kai'li 80)
Hybrid: Titleist 910H 18º (Fujikura Tour Spec)
IronsTitleist AP2 (712 Series) 3-PW (Dynamic Gold)
WedgesVokey Design SM4 54•11º, 58•09º (Dynamic Gold)

• LPGA: Pro V1x loyalist Yani Tseng's winning momentum continued at the LPGA's Kia Classic, where she led a 1-2-3-4 finish for Titleist Pro V1 and Pro V1x players.

 Tseng, 23, led wire-to-wire, closing with a 2-under 70 for a 14-under 274 total and six-shot victory, her second in a row and third in five events to start the season.

The World No. 1 won the RR Donnelley LPGA Founders Cup last week in Phoenix and also won the LPGA Thailand in February.

It marked Tseng's 15th victory overall and sixth in her last 12 starts.

"To win this week is just very special, especially with all the fans from everywhere coming out and supporting me today," said Tseng, who has broken par in her last 10 rounds. "That was so much fun to play in front of the crowd and winning this tournament."

Tseng was one of 98 Titleist golf ball players at the Kia Classic, more than seven times the nearest competitor with 13 and more than all competitors combined.

Sun Young Yoo (Pro V1x) was runner-up at 8-under 280, while Shanshan Feng (Pro V1x) and Jiyai Shin (Pro V1) tied for third, another shot back.

Of the 11 players who tied for 10th or better, nine trusted a Titleist golf ball for their success.

• ONEASIA: Titleist Brand Ambassador Nick Cullen kicked off the OneAsia Tour season with a win the Enjoy Jakarta Indonesia Open.

 Cullen, 27, rolled his Pro V1x in for birdie on the 17th to take a one-shot lead and got up-and-down for par on No. 18 to secure the victory.

"This means the world to me," said Cullen, who finished at 8-under 279, one shot clear of fellow Titleist Brand Ambassador David Smail (Pro V1x).

"I have been practicing hard and playing well but I didn't know what to expect when I came here."

A total of 114 players in the field relied on Titleist golf balls for their success, nearly 100 more than the nearest competitor with 17 and more than all other golf balls combined. Titleist was also first in hybrids (65); iron sets (57); and sand, lob and approach wedges (180).

• PGA TOUR: Titleist was the overwhelming golf ball of choice at the Arnold Palmer Invitational with 72 players, more than six times the nearest competitor with 13 and more than all other golf balls combined. Titleist also led the field in sand, lob and approach wedges (103); and putters (46).

• CHAMPIONS TOUR: At the Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic, 58 players teed up Titleist golf balls, more than six times the nearest competitor with nine and more than all other golf balls combined.

• NATIONWIDE TOUR: Titleis was No. 1 at the Chitimacha Louisiana Open with 102 players, more than eight times the nearest competitor with 12 and more than all competitors combined. Titleist also led the field in iron sets (37); sand, lob and approach wedges (137); and putters (53).

The PGA Tour is hanging out at Bay Hill Club & Lodge in Orlando, Fla., this week for the Arnold Palmer Invitational, the second-to-last tour stop before the gates open at Augusta National.

 Titleist Brand Ambassador Webb Simpson, who'll be teeing up his Pro V1x at the Masters for the first time this year, made his PGA Tour debut at Bay Hill in 2006 as an amateur. He played again as an amateur in 2008.

"It's always special to come back here... This is my sixth Bay Hill or sixth Arnold Palmer Invitational, which is a good amount more than any other tournament I played," Webb said. "So it's always nice to be back and feel like, you know, this is home."

Webb is one of 72 players in this week's field trusting a Titleist golf ball, more than five times the nearest competitor with 13 and more than all competitors combined. Titleist is also No. 1 in iron sets (32); sand, lob and approach wedges (103); and putters (46).

Check out Team Titleist's pics from the practice rounds this week in the slideshow below. We've also included a few bonus pics from the Tavistock Cup, which also played earlier this week in Orlando.

On the doorstep of golf's major season, Luke Donald and Yani Tseng raised trophies on opposite sides of America Sunday, both having trusted Pro V1x golf balls to impressive comeback victories.

Donald rallied from three shots back to win the Transitions Championship in a sudden-death playoff, while Tseng leapfrogged the competition with a back-nine 31 to win the RR Donnelley LPGA Founders Cup.

Those performances highlighted a four-win week for Titleist golf ball players around the world, as Pro V1x loyalists Julien Quesne (European Tour) and David Lipsky (Asian Tour) also found the winner's circle.

Titleist Pro V1 and Pro V1x players have now combined for 30 wins across the worldwide professional tours so far in 2012, six times the nearest competitor with six and more than all competitors combined.

A total of 3,384 players have teed up Titleist golf balls in those same events, more than six times the nearest competitor with 538 and more than all other golf balls combined.



 PGA TOUR: Slowly but surely, Luke Donald crept back to the top of the leader board Sunday in Tampa with a bogey-free 5-under 66 at Innisbrook's Copperheard Course. His 13-under 271 total was matched by three players, including Pro V1 loyalist Robert Garrigus.

On the first hole of the four-man playoff, Donald was faced with a difficult approach shot from the right rough, 159 yards from the pin at the par-4 18th. His Pro V1x launched toward the flag stick, hit the front of the green and stopped 6 feet from the hole.

"I didn't even see the pitchmark but it just must have carried the bunker and rolled up perfectly," said Donald. "That's the hardest green on the course.  … Obviously that shot just came out perfectly."

Donald made birdie, while his three competitors made par, to earn his fifth-career PGA Tour victory. He also has won five times on the European Tour.

The round of the day belonged to Titleist Brand Ambassador Scott Piercy, who made a Sunday morning charge with a front-nine 29.

Trusting a Pro V1x golf ball and bag full of Titleist equipment, including a new Scotty Cameron Select GoLo putter, Piercy posted a bogey-free 9-under 62 to get to 12-under 272, one shot out of the playoff.

A total of 91 players relied on Titleist golf balls for their success, more than four times the nearest competitor with 22 and more than all other golf balls combined. Titleist was also No. 1 in sand, lob and approach wedges (122); and putters (55).

 • LPGA: Yani Tseng rolled her Pro V1x for five birdies on the back nine Sunday to win for the second time in her last four starts.

On day filled with rain, hail and a few weather delays, Tseng closed with a 4-under 68 for an 18-under 270 total and one-shot comeback victory over two players, including Pro V1x loyalist Na Yeon Choi.

Titleist was the overwhelming golf ball of choice at the event with 91 players, more than seven times the nearest competitor with 12 and more than all competitors combined.

Of the 13 players who tied for 10th place or better, 10 trusted a Titleist golf ball for their success.

Three shots back standing on the 10th tee, Tseng birdied five of the next six holes and jumped to the top of the leader board, her 14th LPGA victory clearly in sight.

"I told myself, we have nine more holes, okay, three shots back. You still have a good chance on the back nine," said Tseng, who played the back nine in 7 under during her opening-round 65.

"Just play like on the first day, try to make birdie every hole. I played 7 under here before, so maybe I can do it again. I played 5 under, so it was pretty close."

Tseng, who captured the Honda LPGA in February, has not finished outside the top-10 in any of the four events she has competed in this season.

 • EUROPEAN PGA: Pro V1x loyalist Julien Quesne fired a course-record 8-under par 64 to win the Open de Andalucía Costa del Sol, capping off his first-career European Tour victory with a career-best shot.

At Ahola GC's treacherous par-4 18th, Quesne hit 4-iron and watched his Pro V1x golf ball land 6 feet from the hole. He made the putt for birdie to post a 17-under 271 total, two shots clear of Titleist Brand Ambassador Matteo Manassero.  Eduardo De La Riva (Pro V1x) finished another shot back as Titleist Pro V1x players secured the top three positions on the leaderboard.


“I’ve been dreaming about this moment since I was 10," said Quesne, who birdie four of his final five holes Sunday. "From the 15th hole I was asking my caddie to keep an eye on the scores, so I knew that if I holed my putt on 18 I would have a very good chance of winning."

“My four iron on 18 was the best shot I’ve ever hit. I’m very proud that I won shooting a 64, finishing with a birdie on 18, the toughest hole on the course. I will remember this day for the rest of my life."

Quesne was one of 90 players in the field that relied on Titleist golf balls for their success, more than three times the nearest competitor with 23 and more than all other golf balls combined. Titleist was also No. 1 in sand, lob and approach wedges (133).

• ASIAN: David Lipsky claimed his first Asian Tour title by winning the Handa Faldo Cambodian Classic in an all-Pro V1x golf ball playoff with Elmer Salvador.

Lipsky, a 23-year old rookie who won the Asian Tour's Qualifying School in January, won on the first extra hole with a chip-in birdie.

He was seven shots out of the lead going into the final round, but closed with a seven-under-par 65 to force a playoff at 15-under 273.

A total of 92 players trusted Titleist Pro V1 and Pro V1x golf balls for their success, more than three times the nearest competitor with 24 and more than all competitors combined. Titleist was also first in iron sets (40); and sand, lob and approach wedges (126).


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