Tour report: Desert Dominance for Donaldson Headlines Three-Win Week for Titleist Ball Loyalists
Posted: January 21, 2013
It was a three-win week for Titleist golf ball loyalists around the world's professional tours, including two wins for the new 2013 Titleist Prototype golf ball.
At the Humana Challenge on the PGA Tour, Brian Gay trusted the new Titleist Pro V1x Prototype golf ball to victory in an all-Titleist Pro V1x playoff with Charles Howell III and David Lingmerth - with Titleist ambassador Scott Stallings (new Titleist 2013 Pro V1x Prototype) and Pro V1x loyalist James Hahn tying for fourth place.
The new Titleist Pro V1x recorded a further win at the Victorian PGA Championship on the Australian PGA Tour, when Titleist golf ball loyalist David McKenzie recorded his first career title with a 13-under total of 275.
And completing the trio of wins was Pro V1 loyalist Jamie Donaldson, who captured the first leg of the European Tour's Desert Swing at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship for his second European Tour title.
EUROPEAN: The 37-year old Welshman closed out his final round at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship with a 4-under round of 68 for a 14-under total of 274 and victory by one shot.
Donaldson, who had recorded his first European Tour win at last year's Irish Open, said after his victory, "I played the pro-am on Wednesday and thought the course was too difficult and I had no chance.
"I thought if I could get a decent finish I would be chuffed. To be holding this trophy is just mad."
Titleist ambassador and European Tour Rookie of the Year, Ricardo Santos, recorded a fourth place finish relying on 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.
Santos was joined in the top nine finishers and ties by fellow Titleist 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.
Other top finishers included Titleist golf ball loyalists David Howell (Pro V1x) and Joost Luiten (New 2013 Pro V1 prototype), who finished tied with one other in 6th place.
Titleist was the overwhelming ball of choice at the AbuDhabi HSBC Golf Championship with 75 players (60% of the field), nearly four times the nearest competitor with 19.
PGA TOUR: When the three-way playoff got underway at the Humana Challenge, the winner was still in doubt - the winning ball, however, was not, as all three players featuring were Titleist golf ball loyalists.
And with a birdie on the second extra hole, Brian Gay became the first player to win with the new 2013 Pro V1x prototype golf ball on the PGA TOUR.
With Pro V1x loyalist David Lingmerth eliminated on the first extra hole, Gay emerged victorious over fellow Pro V1x loyalist Charles Howell III when he slotted a five and a half foot birdie putt on the par 4 10th hole.
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), Angel Cabrera (107 Visa Open de Argentina), Louis Oosthuizen (Pro V1x/Volvo Golf Champions) and David McKenzie (Pro V1x), who had won the Victorian PGA Championship earlier in the day, in the new prototype victory circle.
Titleist was the overwhelmingly most played golf ball, with 106 (68%) 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 have already transitioned into the new 2013 Pro V1 (11) or Pro V1x (51) prototype golf balls. Titleist was also the top choice in the iron (42/27%), sand, lob and approach wedge (160/43%) and putter (57/37%) categories.
AUSTRALIAN: Despite getting off to a tough start with a bogey on the first, Titleist ball loyalist David McKenzie’s game came together when it counted to claim the first PGA Tour of Australasia tournament of the year and the first of his career - trusting the new 2013 Pro V1x Prototype ball for a two-shot win.
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 played Titleist golf balls for their success.
Titleist was the overwhelming most played ball at the event with 98 players (74%), nearly four times the nearest competitor with 25.