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Posted: January 21, 2013
For players who rely on the performance of a Titleist golf ball on the professional tours, Sunday was a round-the-clock day of victory.
Before the sun was up in the US, Pro V1x loyalist David McKenzie had already triumphed as he captured his first PGA Tour of Australasia title, with a victory at the Victorian PGA Championship. Just a few hours later, Pro V1 loyalist Jamie Donaldson hoisted his second European Tour trophy, following a dramatic victory at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship. And as night fell Sunday in California, Pro V1x loyalist Brian Gay became the first player to win a PGA Tour event with the new 2013 Titleist Pro V1x prototype golf ball, in a playoff victory at the Humana Challenge.
PGA: When Brian Gay (New 2013 Pro V1x prototype), Charles Howell III (Pro V1x) and David Lingmerth (Pro V1x) began a three-man playoff at the Humana Challenge, the winner was still in doubt, but the winning golf ball was not. It would be a Titleist.
Gay went on to birdie the second playoff hole, secure his fourth career victory and become the first player to win with the new 2013 Pro V1x prototype golf ball on the PGA Tour.
All three players fired four rounds in the 60’s and finished regulation at 25-under par 263 following stellar closing rounds of 62, 63 and 64 by Lingmerth, Gay and Howell, respectively.
"It feels amazing right now. I'm still in a little bit of shock. It kind of happened so fast there at the end the way things went down," said Gay.
Gay first tested his new 2013 Pro V1x prototype golf ball at the 2012 Shriners Hospitals for Children Open (pictured right), and put it in play the following week with a T29 finish at the Frys.com.
In fact, the top five finishers, including overnight leader Scott Stallings (new 2013 Titleist Pro V1x prototype golf ball) and James Hahn (Pro V1x) who tied for 4th one shot out of the playoff, made it a sweep of the top five positions on the leaderboard for Titleist golf ball loyalists.
In addition to becoming the first player on the PGA Tour to win with the new 2013 Pro V1x golf ball, Gay is the seventh across the worldwide professional tours since seeding began, joining Luke Donald (Pro V1x/Dunlop Phoenix), Adam Scott (Pro V1/Australian Masters), Hiroyuki Fujita (Pro V1/Japan Series JT Cup) and Angel Cabrera (Pro V1x/107 Visa Open de Argentina) and David McKenzie (Pro V1x), who won the Victorian PGA Championship earlier today, in the new prototype victory circle.
Titleist was the overwhelming most played golf ball with 106 of the 156 players in the field relying upon the #1 ball in golf, more than six times the nearest competitor with 16. A total of 62 players in the field this week also put a new 2013 Pro V1 (11) or Pro V1x (51) prototype golf ball in play. Titleist was also the top choice in the iron (42), sand, lob and approach wedges (160) and putter (57) categories.
EUROPEAN: Titleist Pro V1 loyalist Jamie Donaldson earned his second career European Tour title by one shot in dramatic fashion at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship. Donaldson, who captured the 2012 Irish Open for his first European Tour win, closed with a 4-under par 68 en route to a 14-under 274 victory total, and had to watch while his two closest pursuers failed to birdie the final hole and force a playoff.
"I played the pro-am on Wednesday and thought the course was too difficult and I had no chance," said Donaldson.
"I thought if I could get a decent finish I would be chuffed. To be holding this trophy is just mad."
Sixteen players finished among the top 10 and ties at the event, including 2012 European Tour Rookie of the Year and Titleist Brand Ambassador Ricardo Santos who placed solo 4th, three shots behind Donaldson. Santos relied upon the new 2013 Pro V1x prototype golf ball and a new Titleist 913D2 (8.5) driver for his success. In addition to the new driver which he put in play for the first time, Santos carried a Titleist 913Fd (13.5) fairway metal, 910H (17.0) hybrid, two new 712U prototype utility irons (3, 4), MB irons (5-P) and Vokey Design SM4 sand (56) and lob (60) wedges.
Other top finishers included David Howell (Pro V1x) and Joost Luiten (New 2013 Pro V1 prototype, 913D2 driver, 910Fd fairway metal, AP2 2-iron, CB irons, Vokey Design SM4 sand and lob wedges, Scotty Cameron Select Newport 2.6), who tied for 6th place.
Among the eight players tied for 8th place were full product line Titleist Brand Ambassadors Jason Dufner, George Coetzee, Anders Hansen and Jbe Kruger.
Dufner, who closed with a 4-under par 68, put a new Scotty Cameron Select GoLo S5 putter in the bag this week. Dufner previewed some of the new Cameron Tour models on the practice putting green on Monday and immediately gravitated to the S5. After practicing with it, Dufner said he felt it was easier to make a consistent stroke and achieve a consistent center strike with the new center-shafted putter and put it into competitive play on Thursday. Titleist was the top choice in golf balls at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship with 75 players relying upon a Pro V1 or Pro V1x, nearly four times the nearest competitor with 19. Titleist was also the favorite in the sand, lob and approach wedge category with 138, nearly twice the nearest competitor with 70.
• • •
AUSTRALASIAN: For the first time, Titleist Pro V1x loyalist David McKenzie entered the winner's circle on the PGA Tour of Australasia with a victory at the Victorian PGA Championship.
The 45-year-old trusted his new 2013 Pro V1x prototype golf ball to a 2-under-par 70 for a two stroke victory.
"Words are eluding me now. I actually lost a Victorian PGA by missing a short putt about 20 years ago, so it’s nice to actually win,” said McKenzie.
Titleist Brand Ambassador Stephen Dartnell (Pro V1, 913D2 driver, 913F fairway metal, 913H hybrid, MB irons, Vokey Design wedges, Scotty Cameron putter) secured solo third place, another three shots back from second place, as eight of the top 10 finishers trusted Titleist golf balls for their success.
Titleist was the overwhelming most played ball at the event with 98 players, nearly four times the nearest competitor with 25.