Back-ups for Ben Curtis

Posted: March 21, 2007

Steve Mata and Bob Vokey went through the bag with 2003 British Open champion Ben Curtis on the range today. Ben has been playing the new 907D2 driver all year and was looking for a backup. His driver has 8.5° of loft with an Aldila VS Proto 70-S shaft. Ben, who also won the Booz Allen Classic and 84 Lumber Classic last year, isn't one to change his equipment very often. However, he did ask Mata to make a backup set of the Titleist Forged irons he has been playing for the last two years. Voke is also making backups to Ben's SM54 and SM60 prototype wedges. Bob has made a special grind with more heel-toe trailing edge relief which will play with the effective bounce reduced. Bob says that Ben is a very creative wedge player and this grind helps him hit a variety of shots. As usual, Ben will be wearing the colors and logo of the local NFL team this week - the Miami Dolphins. Ben said he still gets fans rooting for him because of his NFL outfits, especially during football season. -- Joe Gomes

Ben's Vokey SM54 prototype wedge.

Ben and Mata talk irons on the range at Doral.

Ben makes sure that Mata has all of his specs dialed in.

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Robert Sellman

Ben, do you change the bounce on your wedges from week to week?

Robert Sellman

First off, I love this new site!!!  What a great looking wedge that Ben plays.  Do many other tour players use a different grind on their sand wedges, or mostly their lob wedges?   Is there any chance we'll see a club similar to Ben's (Spin Milled M grind) come to the retail market -  similar to the special grind 60M retail that I've been using for 3 years? Thanks and keep up the great site!

Robert Sellman

Ben does not change wedges from week-to-week. The special grind that Voke has employed on Ben's wedges allows him to hit a variety of shots from all kinds of turf conditions.

Many Tour players incorporate special grinds on both their sand and lob wedges to allow for more creativity in their wedge play.

Robert Sellman

Where does Steve Mata get those funky hats????

Robert Sellman

Please see <a href="/2007/03/20/steve-mata-with-prom-meesawat/#comments" rel="nofollow">comment #3 here</a> for info on Mata's hats.

Robert Sellman

Great new site for us Titleist loyalists, thanks guys!  My question has to do with the picture of Ben's backup wedge.   I see it has the designation of TVD, which from what I understand means "Tour Van Design".  I have read that these TVD wedges are being tested out on Tour as we speak.  Can you tell us what's different about them from current Vokey wedges and if there are any plans for a retail release.  Keep up the good work.

Robert Sellman

Rob: TVD  does, in fact, stand for Tour Van Design.  The name originally came about from the on-site custom grinding that we did on Tour of our existing stock Spin Milled (SM) series wedges.  The requests for these grinds primarily come from players who want to add a little more versatility to their stock SM wedge.  It mostly includes heel, toe and trailing edge relief which allows those players who want to open their wedge for additional loft and bounce to slide under the ball without the leading edge coming too far off the turf and sand.  Since each wedge is customized to a player's personal specifications, there are no plans to offer them for sale to the general public at this time.  I hope this helps.

<strong>Bye. Voke</strong>

Robert Sellman

"Since each wedge is customized to a player’s personal specifications, there are no plans to offer them for sale to the general public at this time. I hope this helps."

Titleist did release the Special Grind MVP series of wedges a while ago, and I still play the 60M to this day, one of my favorite wedges of all time.  I personally think all players could benefit from heel, toe, and trailing edge relief on their wedges, and many other companies are using grinds on their stock wedges now.   JAT.

Robert Sellman


I read with great interest your response to Titleist Golf Clubs regarding the TVD wedges.  I am extremely disappointed that these wedges will not come to market.  I have a 54° Vokey Spin Milled wedge.  I do not play a 60° Vokey because there are no options for heel relief.  I would love to have a Vokey Spin Milled with the M grind.  How can I get one of these?


David Murray

2002 U.S. Mid-Amateur Contestant

Robert Sellman

Voke works with many players to develop custom grinds that work best for specific players in specific conditions.  These grinds serve as a kind of developmental testing process that often help shape our in-line offerings but are rarely brought to market in their prototype form.