A result of focused effort, strategy and performance, an invitation to the Masters is a dream come true for any golfer. A trip down Magnolia Lane, well, it's the most sought after drive in our sport.

There are only two events left to qualify for the first major of 2013, starting with this week's Shell Houston Open. Players are tirelessly working to dial in their swings, equipment and strategy to climb the leaderboard in Texas.

But, this week is the same as any other for our Titleist tour staff and R&D teams, walking step for step with our players on the practice facilities to make sure their equipment is performing at its best.

With such a special berth on the line, the majority of players in this week's Shell Houston Open field know that performance is the Titleist Pro V1 and Pro V1x golf ball. 101 players will trust a Titleist golf ball this week, more than 5 times the nearest competitor with 18.

Titleist was also the overwhelming top choice of the field in the irons (42), sand, lob and approach wedge (155) and putter (57) categories.

Enjoy the video above and continue to check back for updated blog posts and highlights of this week's winners across the worldwide professional tours.

Have you visited #MyTitleist? Here's a quick overview: You have two options to take part in MyTitleist photo sharing. (1) Upload your photo directly to the site or (2) use #MyTitleist in a caption of a photo on instagram. Each method will share on the MyTitleist page. For complete rules: http://www.titleist.com/company/mytitleist-challenge-rules.aspx

Be sure to participate in this month's challenge by completing this caption: Performance is...

#TeamTitleist

As players prepared for the culmination of the PGA Tour's Florida Swing at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, Team Titleist was on site to capture the sights and sounds of the Titleist Brand Ambassadors and golf ball loyalists seeking to make some noise this week.  While the task at hand - performing well at Bay Hill - is of immediate importance, it was noticeable among the participants that this event begins the three-week run-up to the first major of the year.  For some, it means improving their FedExCup standing or world ranking to secure an invite to Augusta, for others who are already in, it may mean tweaking their equipment or working on specific areas of their game.  Either way, it all adds up to a quality field and a great opportunity to provide Team Titleist with an inside the ropes look at our trip to Orlando ...

Now that the event is underway, we can also give you an inside look at the equipment numbers which add up to Titleist being the top performance choice of more players ...

At the Arnold Palmer Invitational, 79 players in the field of 132 will trust a Pro V1 or Pro V1x for their success. That's nearly five times the nearest competitor with 16 and more than all competitors combined.  Titleist was also the overwhelming top choice of the field in the sand, lob and approach wedge (132) and putter (37) categories.

Enjoy the video and continue to check back for updated blog posts and highlights of this week's winners across the worldwide professional tours!

When it comes to wedge design and the short game, you won't find a more passionate expert than Master Craftsman Bob Vokey.

So we decided to go to the source and catch up with the Voke on a few of his favorite topics: bounce, grinds and wedge fitting. 

And if you have a question for the Master Craftsman himself, feel free to post them in the comments section at the bottom of the page. We'll share a few of your questions with the Voke and get some more answers.

In the meantime, check out the Q&A below...

Team Titleist (TT):  Bob, you’re always talking about bounce and saying "bounce is your friend."  What exactly do you mean by that? 
Bob Vokey (BV):  I say bounce is your friend because it provides forgiveness on all types of wedge shots. Let me explain first what bounce is:  it’s the angle between the leading edge and lowest point on the sole. If you look at a wedge, the trailing edge is lower than the leading edge. This is the bounce angle. 

TT:  What about "effective bounce?"  How is that different from bounce angle?
BV:  The effective bounce is a little more art than science. It’s how the wedge will play around the greens.  It takes into consideration not just the bounce angle, but the sole width, the camber, and the sole grind. 

TT:  You’re famous for your Tour Grinds.  What exactly is a grind and what does it do for the wedge? 
BV:  The grind is the relief and contour that is ground into the sole of the wedge. A grind can provide shotmaking opportunities around the greens. For example, our M grind soles allow you to open the face of the wedge without the leading edge coming off the ground. We have all kinds of sole grinds, which we designate with a letter. 

TT:  Which sole grind is the most popular and which is your personal favorite?
BV:  Well, the S grind which came from my work with Steve Stricker, that’s been extremely popular on the 60.07 and 58.09 models. It just fits a lot of players. My favorite is probably the M grind, because that was the one that started it all. 

TT:  Which bounce and grind do you recommend for the weekend golfer?
BV:  Well, you should definitely be fit by an authorized Titleist fitter. It’s the only way to truly know which wedge works for you. 

TT:  Why is wedge fitting so important?
BV:  Think of most amateur golfers. They only hit 6 - 8 greens in a round, if they are having a good day. So on the majority of holes, you are going to be using a wedge. And wedges are required to hit so many different shots - bunker shots, fairway shots, lob shots, little pitches. Wedges need to be versatile and every player is different. It’s never one size fits all for wedges. That’s why we have so many options. 

TT:  What is involved with a wedge fitting? 
BV:  Our wedge fittings have two main aspects: bounce fitting and yardage gapping. In the bounce fitting portion, we figure out your swing type. Most players fit into one of three types:  slider/sweeper, neutral, or driver/digger. That will help us recommend some bounce options to try. I always make sure when I am fitting someone that they also take the recommended sand wedge to the bunker. You need enough bounce to get out the bunker every time. 

TT:  What about yardage gapping? 
BV:  It’s becoming even more critical because pitching wedges are getting stronger in loft. Many pitching wedges are 45º or even 44º. So if your next wedge is a 56º sand wedge, there is a huge gap in there. It could be 30 yards. Ideally, wedge gaps would be 10-15 yards. 

TT:  So is the 52º, 56º, 60º combo becoming obsolete? 
BV:  Well, not obsolete but we are fitting more players into 50º, 54º, 58º set compositions. It just makes sense if you have 44º or 45º pitching wedge. That way you will have a nice yardage gap between the pitching and sand wedge. 

TT:  How many wedges should I carry? 
BV:  It really depends on your overall set make up, but almost every Tour player carries at least 3 wedges. Wedges are your scoring clubs. We’ve found that most amateurs can’t dial back a wedge. It’s very hard for them to hit a half wedge or ¾ wedge. So having an extra wedge that you can swing full is going to help lower your scores. 

TT:  Any final fitting advice Voke? 
BV:  Go see your local PGA pro!  It will really help your wedge game.  

Confidence was the name of the game this weekend as Titleist golf ball players trusted the performance of their Pro V1 and Pro V1x golf balls to success across the globe.

Pro V1 and Pro V1x golf ball loyalists have now combined for 27 wins on the worldwide professional tours, nearly five times the nearest competitor with six and more than all competitors combined.

The 5-win weekend featured Kevin Streelman trusting a new 2013 Pro V1x to earn his first career PGA Tour victory at the Tampa Bay Championship while fellow Pro V1x loyalist Thomas Aiken recorded his second career European Tour victory at the Avantha Masters in India.

Solid play from Pro V1 loyalist David Frost resulted in a victory at Toshiba Classic on the Champions Tour and fellow Pro V1 player Ted Purdy took home top honors at the PGA Tour Lationamerica’s season opener at the Abierto Mexicano de Golf.

And rounding out the highlights, Pro V1x loyalist Stacy Lewis charged up the leaderboard on Sunday at the LPGA’s RR Donnelley Founders Cup to card her second win of the season and ascend to No. 1 on the Rolex Women’s World Golf Rankings.

Here’s the Team Titleist weekend wrap-up…

PGA TOUR:  Titleist golf ball loyalist Kevin Streelman earned his first career PGA Tour title with a two shot win at the Tampa Bay Championship. Streelman, who relied upon the New 2013 Pro V1x golf ball, closed with a bogey-free 4-under par 67 en route to a 10-under 274 victory total. In fact, Streelman did not make a bogey over the final 37 holes on the difficult Copperhead course at Innisbrook.

Titleist Brand Ambassador Cameron Tringale (New 2013 Pro V1x, 913D3 driver, 910Fd fairway metal, 913Hd hybrid, MB irons, Vokey Design Spin Milled wedges, Scotty Cameron GSS prototype putter) posted a final round 5-under 66 to finish five shots back in solo third place.

Fellow Titleist Brand Ambassador Greg Chalmers (New 2013 Pro V1x, 913D3 driver, 913Fd fairway metal, 913Hd hybrid, CB irons, Vokey Design SM4 wedges) and Titleist golf ball loyalist Luke Donald (New 2013 Pro V1x) were among three players who tied for fourth, as four of the top six finishers all played the new 2013 Pro V1x.

Seven more players tied for seventh place, including Titleist Brand Ambassador Ben Kohles (New 2013 Pro V1x, 913D3 driver, 913H hybrid, CB irons, Vokey Design SM4 wedges, Scotty Cameron GoLo putter), and Titleist golf ball loyalist Shawn Stefani (New 2013 Pro V1x) and a rookie (Pro V1x, 910D2 driver, 910F fairway metal, 913H hybrid, AP2 irons, Vokey Design SM4 wedges, Scotty Cameron 009 prototype putter) who secured a temporary PGA Tour membership with his performance.

Just the stats...  Cameron Tringale topped the field in Strokes Gained - Putting (2.098), while tying for 3rd in Greens in Regulation (73.6), hitting 51 of 72 for the week ... Ben Kohles topped the field in Driving Accuracy (82.7%) with his New Pro V1x and Titleist 913D3 combination, hitting 43 of 52 fairways.  He was also 8th in Total Putting (52.3) ... Another Titleist Brand Ambassador, Erik Compton tied for first in Greens in Regulation (73.6%), hitting 53 of 72 for the week, while ranking 9th in Driving Distance (288.9). Compton, who tied for 30th overall, made his fifth cut in seven events this season, and tied his season-best single round with a 65 on Friday ... Streelman, Chalmers and English all tied for the lead in Birdies with 19.

Titleist was the most relied upon golf ball in the field of 156 with 106 players, nearly five times the nearest competitor with 22. Titleist also was the overwhelming top choice in the sand, lob and approach wedge category with 164 Vokey Design wedges in play, more than three times the nearest competitor with 53.  In addition, 57 players relied upon a Scotty Cameron putter for their success on the difficult greens at Innisbrook.

• • •

EUROPEAN TOUR: Titleist Pro V1x loyalist Thomas Aiken posted four consecutive rounds in the 60's to collect his second career European Tour title with a three shot victory at the Avantha Masters in India. Aiken, who fired a 10-under par 62 on Saturday to build a three shot lead, closed with a Sunday 67 en route to a 23-under 265 victory total. 

Titleist Brand Ambassador Gaganjeet Bhullar (Pro V1x, 913D2, 913Fd fairway metal, AP2 irons, Vokey Design SM4 wedges, Scotty Cameron Newport 2 putter) and Titleist golf ball loyalist Liang Wen-chong (Pro V1x) finished solo second and third, respectively, as Titleist players occupied the top three spots on the leaderboard.  Bhullar birdied three of the last five to close with an 8-under par 64 and set the clubhouse target at 20-under par, while Aiken's playing partner Liang recorded a hole-in-one at the seventh and finished another two shots back.

Titleist was the most relied upon golf ball in the field of 156 with 103 players, more than five times the nearest competitor with 19.  Titleist was also the top choice in the iron (42) and sand, lob and approach wedge (154) categories.

• • •

LPGA:  Titleist golf ball loyalist Stacy Lewis (Pro V1x), coming off a victory in Singapore two weeks ago, captured the LPGA Founders Cup on Sunday to vault to No. 1 in the world.  Lewis, who trailed by four shots entering the final round, closed with an 8-under 64 en route to a tournament record 23-under 265 total. It was the seventh win of Lewis' LPGA Tour career.  Angela Stanford (New 2013 Pro V1) finished in solo third place at 17-under.

Titleist accounted for a tournament-leading 83 golf ball players in the field of 132, nearly seven times the nearest competitor with 12.

• • •

CHAMPIONS TOUR: Titleist Pro V1 golf ball loyalist David Frost (Pro V1) fired a final round 65 to capture the Toshiba Classic by five shots, tying the tournament record of 19-under 194 set by Titleist Brand Ambassador Jay Haas in 2007. Frost, who shot a 63-66-65, led wire to wire en route to his fourth career Champions Tour victory. In four events this season, Frost hasn't finished out of the top 10, posting ties for ninth, fifth and losing in a playoff in the season-opening Mitsubishi Electric Championship.

Haas (New 2013 Pro V1, 910D2 driver, 910Fd fairway metal, 910H hybrid, 909H hybrid, CB irons, Vokey Design SM4 wedges, Scotty Cameron GoLo M3 putter) finished tied for third with Peter Senior (Pro V1) at 11-under.

Titleist was the top choice in golf balls in the field of 81 with 58 players trusting a Pro V1 or Pro V1x for their success, seven times the nearest competitor with 8. Titleist was also the field favorite in the iron (20), sand, lob and approach wedge (69) and putter (20) categories.

• • •

PGA TOUR LATINOAMERICA: New 2013 Pro V1 golf ball loyalist Ted Purdy closed with a 2-under par 70 to capture the Abierto Mexicano de Golf, the season-opening event for the PGA Tour Latinoamerica. Purdy finished at 7-under-par 281 for his first win on tour, one shot clear of Titleist Brand Ambassador David Vanegas (New 2013 Pro V1). Purdy also has one career win on the PGA and Web.com Tours.

Titleist was the top choice in golf balls in the field of 144 with 112 players teeing up a Pro V1 or Pro V1x, more than five times the nearest competitor with 20. 

• • •

ONEASIA: Titleist was the most relied upon golf ball in the field of 159 with 100 players, more than three times the nearest competitor with 31. Titleist also was the overwhelming top choice in the hybrid (75 vs. 20 for the nearest competitor), iron (53 vs. 15 for the nearest competitor) and sand, lob and approach wedge (169 vs. 52 for the nearest competitor) categories.

Eight of the 11 players who finished among the Top 10 and ties relied upon a Titleist golf ball for their success.

Australian Scott Strange (New 2013 Pro V1) closed with a 5-under-par 67 to finish alone in second, while fellow Titleist Brand Ambassador and countryman Nick Cullen (New 2013 Pro V1x) finished another shot back for solo third place.

• • •

SOUTH AFRICA: Titleist was the most relied upon golf ball in the field of 156 with 111 players, more than three times the nearest competitor with 30.


CLICK IMAGE TO LAUNCH GALLERY

From the Bear Trap at the Honda Classic and Doral's Blue Monster, the PGA Tour's Florida Swing has no shortage of challenging layouts and holes where players look to escape trouble. This week players will face the infamous Snake Pit (holes 16, 17 and 18) as they come down the stretch at Innisbrook's Copperhead course looking to avoid the big numbers.

And speaking of numbers, this week at the Tampa Bay Championship 106 players in the field of 156 will trust a Pro V1 or Pro V1x for their success. That's nearly five times the nearest competitor with 22 and more than all competitors combined.

Titleist was also the overwhelming top choice of the field in the sand, lob and approach wedge (164) and putter (56) categories.

Earlier in the week, we snapped some pictures of the players as they got to work on the range in hopes of charming their way up the leaderboard this weekend on the Copperhead course. 

Good luck to all of the players in the field!

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