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Posted: December 25, 2014
We've reached the Top-5 in our countdown and because we're always looking to improve our scores, we're shining the spotlight on a couple favorite tips from our exclusive 18 Shots series. In the #5 spot, we bring you some great advice from Titleist Staff Professionals Michael Breed and Martin Hall.
Check out the original posts below.
18 Shots Presented by Titleist: Michael Breed on Hitting from Uneven Lies
Not every lie on the golf course is perfectly flat and golfers need to know how to adjust to all kinds of situations to help encourage a confident swing.
As Titleist Staff Professional Michael Breed tells us in this latest edition of 18 Shots Presented by Titleist, it's important to adjust your alignment, stance and grip to compensate for an uneven lie.
In this tip, Michael focuses on how to approach a shot when faced with a lie above your feet. A few of his keys... grip down and aim right of the target to ensure solid contact and better control.
Bring this shot to the course and click on the image below for even more great tips and advice for your game.
18 Shots Presented by Titleist: Ball Above Feet with Martin Hall
You’ve probably heard in the past that if the golf ball is lying well above your feet, you can expect to see your ensuing shot draw or hook toward your target. However, did you know that the loft of the club plays an extremely important role in the resulting direction of your shot?As Titleist Staff Professional and Director of Instruction at Ibis Golf and Country Club Martin Hall explains, higher lofted clubs will usually have a more dramatic effect on ball flight and direction than lower lofted clubs.In our latest episode of 18 Shots Presented by Titleist, Martin demonstrates how to adjust your setup and alignment to stay on target when facing this challenging shot.#TeamTitleist
Posted: December 24, 2014
The countdown rolls on and at #6 on our list, we take a behind-the-scenes look at the golf ball prototype-testing phase of the development process, featuring Team Titleist members.
Video: The Team Titleist Performance Golf Ball Testing Experience
On the list of our favorite activities here at Team Titleist, testing prototype golf balls is definitely at the top. So when the R&D team knocks on our door, seeking Team Titleist members for a new test panel, we get right to work.
Involving Team Titleist members in the prototype-testing phase is a critical part of our player testing and performance validation activities. The feedback we receive is essential to helping us along the path to developing the best performing golf balls in the game.
Most recently, R&D asked us to set another test panel in motion for what we would later find out to be prototype versions of the new Titleist NXT Tour, NXT Tour S, Velocity and DT SoLo golf balls. We hit the road with our cameras in tow, excited to spend time with Team Titleist members and hear exactly what they're looking for in a golf ball.
Check out the video above to hear what some of our fellow Team Titleist members had to say about the experience.
Posted: December 23, 2014
The countdown continues and as we make our way to #7 on the list, we decided to include a special bonus post. First up is the introduction of the Vokey WedgeWorks TVD-M and TVD-K grind wedges with new TX3 grooves, followed by the inside story of Titleist Brand Ambassador Scott Stalling's winning SM5 wedges.
Check out the original posts below...
Vokey Wedge Works Introduces New TVD-M and TVD-K Models with Spin Milled TX3 Grooves
FAIRHAVEN, Mass. (April 29, 2014) – New Titleist Vokey TVD wedges, designed by Master Craftsman Bob Vokey, provide golfers with the performance and versatility for improved shotmaking through new Spin Milled TX3 grooves and the tour’s most popular shapes and grinds.
Vokey TVD wedges are the result of Vokey’s continuous collaboration with the best players in the world. Since 2004, Vokey Design wedges have been the #1 wedge on the PGA Tour and the most played wedge at every level of competitive golf.
TVD, meaning “Tour Van Design,” originated from Vokey’s work on-site at Tour events, at his grinding wheel inside the Titleist Tour Van shaping and grinding wedges based on players’ needs. The TVD shape is lower in the par (or heel) area and more rounded in the toe for a classic look.
The new Vokey TVD-M and TVD-K models, two of Vokey’s most-requested grinds on the PGA Tour, are available beginning May 7 on Vokey.com and through authorized Titleist accounts as part of the WedgeWorks Exclusives lineup. Each model is offered in two finishes (California Chrome and Black Ion) and fully-customizable – from length, lie, loft and weight porting, to toe engraving, personalized stamping, custom grips, shafts, shaftbands and ferrules.
All TVD wedges now feature the new, deeper Spin Milled TX3 grooves, delivering more spin for precision trajectory and distance control and improved greenside performance. TX3 scorelines, a progressive design with seven percent larger groove volume, produce additional backspin by channeling away grass and sand for improved contact between the ball and groove edge. Proprietary Spin Milled technology also provides trajectory and distance control through precisely milled grooves and machined face texture, significantly reducing the chance of “flyers” from the rough.
The new Vokey TVD-K – available in 54º to 60º lofts – is the culmination of Vokey’s work with several PGA Tour players, including Adam Scott and Jason Dufner, to develop a sole that is playable in a variety of conditions. TVD-K features a wider, more cambered sole than any other Vokey model, making it very easy to use out of the bunker but still playable for a variety of shots around the green. The newest addition to the series, the TVD-K 54, provides a wide-sole sand wedge option that is not available in the new Vokey Spin Milled 5 (SM5) lineup.
“The K grind has been a huge hit for us,” Vokey said. “It’s only been on Tour for a couple of years but we already have 30 guys using it. I think the secret is the cambered sole. It is wide and forgiving, but the camber keeps the club moving through the turf. So it’s playable in a variety of conditions.”
The new TVD-M – available in 50º to 60º lofts – is the result of PGA Tour feedback on the design, shape and performance of the original TVD series. The new TVD-M has a more rounded teardrop profile, matching the shape of the TVD-K, with increased playability from the crescent-shaped M grind sole. The moderate effective bounce of the TVD-M makes it an excellent all-condition wedge.
“We’ve had a lot of requests to match up the chassis, or shape, of the TVD-M with the TVD-K,” Vokey said. “It’s the natural progression of the series. We now have three distinct shapes in the Vokey family: the SM5 with a high toe peak, the rounded teardrop of the TVD, and the compact look of the Hand Ground series. We have a look to fit anyone’s eye.”
NEW MODELS: For 2014, all TVD models feature the new Spin Milled TX3 grooves for additional spin with trajectory and distance control. The lineup also features the new TVD-K 54º, a wider sole sand wedge with camber. The TVD-M line has a new shape, with a more rounded teardrop profile.
NEW LOOKS: Vokey TVD-M and TVD-K wedges are available in two finishes, California Chrome and Black Ion, both exclusive to WedgeWorks. Both models also feature all-new Vokey graphics.
TVD VS. SM5: The K grind offerings in the Vokey SM5 line (58.11, 60.11) have slightly wider soles and 1º more effective bounce than TVD-K (58.10, 60.10). The TVD-M 56.12 model has similar sole width with 2º more effective bounce than the SM5 56.10M.
CUSTOMIZATION OPTIONS: Like all WedgeWorks offerings, golfers can craft their wedges to fit both their game and personality with a nearly endless array of custom options.
WedgeWorks Exclusives offer four different character stamping styles – Straight, Freestyle, Snow and the new Snow Dot option – in up to eight letters and/or numbers and one of 12 paintfill colors, from Oceanside Blue and Cerveza Yellow to Key Lime and Cowboy Orange.
“There isn’t a wedge I make on Tour that doesn’t have some type of personalized stamping,” said Vokey Tour Rep Aaron Dill, who works on the Titleist Tour Van. “Jason Dufner, for example, likes me to stamp ‘DUF’ on all his wedges. Zach Johnson has the names of children. Kevin Na has ‘NA’ in snow stamping all over the wedge. It’s totally personal.”
There are four toe-stamp options – Tour Saw, BV Custom, BV Diamonds and BV Clover – in 48 total possible color combinations. Golfers can also choose from seven different custom shaftbands and three ferrule options.
WedgeWorks offers BV grips in a variety of textures and colors to match the player’s look and feel preferences. New this year is the Vokey Whiteout Green Multi-Compound grip from Golf Pride along with the Vokey Niion Green grip from Golf Pride. Vokey also offers the WedgeWorks-only Kangaroo Leather grip in pinot red from GripMaster.
A high-performance shaft matrix includes wedge-specific shafts such as the Dynamic Gold Spinner and KBS Hi-Rev. The full complement of the Titleist custom shaft matrix is also available including graphite and lightweight shafts. WedgeWorks wedges can be laser etched on the shaft with up to 20 characters or numbers, offering an easy way to highlight a birthday, event or a player’s full name.
All Vokey wedges can be adjusted for length, loft and lie angle. Weight porting on the back of the wedge to dial in a specific swingweight is also available.
PRICE AND AVAILABILITY: Vokey TVD-K and TVD-M wedges will be available May 7 through WedgeWorks on Vokey.com or by custom order, with a suggested retail price of $160 plus personalization packages.
ON THE WEB: http://www.vokey.com/
The Inside Story on Scott Stallings Winning SM5 Wedges
Titleist Brand Ambassador Scott Stallings won the Farmers Insurance Open on a difficult Torrey Pines course that featured major-like conditions with narrow fairways, thick rough and firm greens.
And as he came down the stretch, Stallings relied on his Pro V1x golf ball and new Vokey Spin Milled 5 (SM5) wedges for two key up and downs over the final four holes to secure the victory – marking the first PGA Tour win for SM5.
The story behind Stallings' SM5 wedges, one that began less than 30 miles from where he raised the trophy last Sunday, highlights the Vokey team's commitment to proper wedge fitting and providing golfers with the most options in the industry to precisely dial-in their wedge game.
So to bring Team Titleist the inside story, we went straight to the source and caught up with the Vokey Team to get the scoop...
The journey started at the end of 2013 when Scott visited the Titleist Performance Center in Oceanside, Calif., to work with Master Craftsman Bob Vokey and Vokey Tour Rep Aaron Dill. Vokey first studied Stallings' swing type, which tends to be very steep into impact.
"He's definitely a digger," Vokey said. "He tends to use the front of the wedge most of the time. So we looked to give him more bounce to keep the impact lower on the face."
Stallings agreed he needed more bounce but also requested a sole grind with versatility around the greens.
"The first thing we tried was the TVD M grind in the 50º model, but it was digging on him a bit," Dill said. "He needed more bounce so we tried the SM5 50.12 with a full sole."
Stallings liked the slightly wider sole of the F Grind – "It's wider in the gap wedge than my old Vokey 200 Series and it moved through the turf really well," he said. "But I do like to open the face on certain shots with my gap wedge."
So Dill proposed a compromise: bend the 50.12 two degrees weak to 52.14 and then hand grind in an M sole. By bending the club two degrees weak, this added two degrees of bounce and also reduced the offset of the club. Vokey took the wedge back to the Tour Department and worked his magic.
The team tweaked Stallings' sand wedge in a similar manner, taking a 54.14 F Grind and making it a 56.16 with an M Grind.
"Now both his gapper and his bunker club have high bounce with versatility. Perfect for Scott," Vokey explained.
For the lob wedge, Stallings tried a number of grinds, including the wide sole K, the straight ribbon S and the crescent M. Stallings felt most comfortable with the S Grind 60º but was looking for a little more bounce, so Dill took an SM5 58.07 and bent it to 60.09. This added two degrees of bounce and reduced the offset. "More bounce and less offset, that's exactly what I wanted," Scott said.
Stallings put the new SM5's in play for the 2014 season and relied on them heavily during a tough final round at Torrey Pines.
"It was definitely as tough as any major I've played in," he said. "The up and downs on 15 and 17 were absolutely key. I appreciate all of the work of Bob and Aaron. They are truly the best in the business."
Check out Vokey.com for more details and keep an eye out for the new SM5 wedges as they will be available in golf shops beginning March 14.
The SM5 line, featuring new TX3 grooves for more spin and control, offers 21 different loft/bound/grind combinations to satisfy all swing types, shot-making styles and short-game conditions.
Get even more details on the new SM5 line here: http://www.titleist.com/teamtitleist/b/tourblog/archive/2014/01/22/titleist-introduces-new-vokey-spin-milled-5-wedges.aspx
Posted: December 22, 2014
Our countdown of the top posts of 2014 moves on. At #8 on our list is an exclusive #TeamTitleist video illustrating the importance of selecting a golf ball that works on every shot.
Check out the original post from August 8, 2014.
You Have Many Swing Speeds
It’s a fact. Every golfer has more than one swing speed.
Think about the last round of golf you played and you’ll quickly realize that you hit a number of different shots all at varying swing speeds.
From a half-wedge or a full-wedge shot, to an approach shot with a 5-iron or 8-iron, or a tee shot, every shot is going to have a different swing speed. This is an important concept of golf ball development and it’s why we design golf balls to perform on every shot.
“A golf ball must perform for all golfers of all swing speeds on all shots,” says Titleist Golf Ball Fitting Manager Mike Rich.
“Titleist golf balls perform for all swing speeds on all shots.”
At Titleist, we also spend a lot of time with golfers of all skill levels testing golf balls and capturing launch condition data to help us learn even more about all of the different shots that golfers are hitting throughout their rounds.
It’s these experiences working with real golfers and listening to them talk about what they are looking for in golf ball performance that fuels our passion to help golfers shoot lower scores.
Posted: December 19, 2014
We are back with our popular Team Titleist Member Spotlight series, and in the latest edition we catch up with long-time Team Titleist member George T.
We learned many things about George, including why his hybrid is his favorite club, why he has two different markings for his Pro V1x and how he learned to groove his swing.Check out the interview below to learn more about George T.Team Titleist (TT): How did you get started in golf? Who introduced you to the game? George T. (GT): I didn’t become an active golfer until I reached my 40s, but my first introduction to golf was through my brother. He’s 14 years my senior, and back in the late sixties, he asked me to caddy for him during a round. As I recall, the bag was bigger than me, but I wouldn’t let that get in the way of an afternoon with my brother. After that day, I’d borrow my dad’s clubs, which were left handed, and hit those practice wiffle balls out in the yard. I remember my father telling me to replace my divots, which I laugh at now, because we had just moved into a new home, and the yard was still mostly dirt. I’m sure he was just trying to teach me proper etiquette. Over 30 years later, my real passion for the game began. In 2001, a few rounds of golf with co-workers awoke the competitive juices that had been sleeping since I put down a baseball glove years and years ago. My wife bought me a new set of irons for my 40th birthday and I proceeded to break 90 for the first time. From that point on, my passion for the game began.TT: How do you mark your Titleist? GT: I used to try and mark my Titleist Pro V1x with sketches of guitars and martini glasses, but let’s just say that my art school daughter didn’t get those talents from me. I’ve since resorted to a very simple, large red or black dot above the Titleist logo. For those unfortunate, and lately too frequent, occasions where I’m hitting a provisional, my second ball has the same large dot below the number. I also draw a line to help align my putter head. TT: What’s your favorite Titleist club in the bag? GT: While I like every Titleist club that is in my bag, I’d have to say that my favorite is my 910H 19* hybrid. My home course has a couple of tight par 4’s and I’ve developed a strategy of aiming to the right side of the fairway and drawing the ball back to the center. This club has just suited my swing so well. I hope I’m not tempting fate when I adjust the loft to 20.5* for next season, as I’ve just picked up a 915H 18*.TT: How often are you thinking about your golf game and getting better. What are you currently working on?GT: I think about my game pretty much 365 days of the year, recalling good/bad shots and more often, smarter course strategy. I feel this season, I didn’t manage the course as well as I should have, either approaching a shot with a grip and rip mentality, or making a lazy swing at vague targets. While my scoring average and handicap are about the same, I was never in that zone where I shot low like I had in previous years. So my mental check list going into rounds next year will be to visualize and commit to each shot. And while it is tougher to practice right now on the frozen tundra, I need to improve my short game. Just way too many poor chips and missed putts. In addition to the new hybrid, I just picked up a new Newport 2. While I’m stuck indoors, I’m using my Team Titleist alignment sticks and I’m working on my putting.TT: Can you recall the best golf shot you’ve ever hit? GT: I’ve never had a hole-in-one, so determining my best shot ever is a tough call. It’s kind of like asking what your favorite song is – it depends on your memory at that moment. My best shot occurred this year during the Club Championship on the par 3 sixth hole at Pequot Golf Club. It’s a downhill shot and on this particular day, the hole was playing around 155 yards. Using my AP2 7 iron, my ProV1x never left the flagstick. The ball hit the bottom of the stick on the fly but didn’t go in. When I reached the green, I discovered a crater about the size of half the ball. It took me several minutes to fix the hole before I tapped in my birdie from 8 inches. I didn’t win the Club Championship, but I did get closest to the pin honors that day, so I got that going for me.TT: What’s the best piece of golf advice that you have ever received? GT: The best advice I’d ever received was from my father, who told me to loosen my grip and to just let the clubs do what they’re designed to do. Take an easy, smooth swing and let the club do the heavy lifting.