European Tour Update – Johnnie Walker Championship
Posted: August 28, 2009
The Titleist Tour Support Vehicle (TTSV) rolled into the idyllic setting of Gleneagles this week for the Johnnie Walker Championship. With another quality field assembled for the event the team were expecting another busy week working with the players but the first job of the week was to break out the brushes and give the TTSV a good scrub!!! The TTSV travels many thousands of miles throughout the European Tour season and was in need of a little TLC following its trip up to Gleneagles. Fortunately the team aren’t afraid of getting their hands dirty and Titleist Tour Representatives Guy Smith and Ryan “Hunty” Hunt stepped up to the plate. Ryan is the latest recruit to our Tour Team and if his skills with the hosepipe are anything to go by he will be a welcome addition to our staff. Welcome aboard Hunty!!!
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The sight of the TTSV gleaming in the (occasional) sunshine clearly caught the attention of a number of Titleist Ambassadors and many of them stepped aboard with requests for new equipment. The most popular request from the players this week was for new Vokey Design Wedges and the first player to put in his request was Titleist Ambassador and this year’s Irish Open winner Shane Lowry. Shane had his first taste of the world golf events a few weeks back at the Bridgestone Invitational and whilst there he’d picked up a new Vokey TVD 60° wedge. Shane really likes the wedge and was keen to get his hands on a 57° version to add to his arsenal. The club was built on board the TTSV and Shane took it away with him for testing.
Model: Vokey TVD M-Grind
Shaft: True Temper Rifle 6.0
Loft: 58° (adjusted to 57°)
Grip: Golf Pride BCT Black .580 Round (Std)
Personalised Stamping: SL
Young Argentinian Titleist Ambassador Tano Goya was another player looking for a new Vokey Wedge, this time a back-up for his current gamer, a Tour Chrome Spin Milled 60-T. The players hit many thousands of wedge shots and, as they don’t too often miss the sweet spot, they will tend to wear them out quite quickly. Tano now has a replacement as and when he needs it. In addition, Goya was also interested in trying the 909F2 with a new specification. Tano has been using the new Mitsubishi Kai’Li shaft in his 909 driver and was keen to test it out in a 909 fairway. The new fairway will be built for Tano in our workshop back at our European headquarters and delivered to him shortly. Whilst on the TTSV Tano also took the opportunity to grab a new putter, a particularly sweet Scotty Cameron Newport 009 in a 3-black finish.
Other players looking for new Vokey Wedges at Gleneagles included Titleist Ambassadors Branden Grace, Carlos Del Moral, Callum Macaulay, Gregory Bourdy and Chinnarat Phadungsil. South African Branden Grace took away a 56° version of the TVD 60° Vokey that he has in the bag, whilst Carlos, Callum, Gregory and Chinnarat all took away back-ups for their current wedges.
Frenchman Gregory Bourdy also took a fancy to one of the many putters that we have on board the TTSV. The putter in question, a Scotty Cameron Circa Bullet Bottom with a honey-dipped chromatic bronze finish, is now firmly in Gregory’s possession and likely to be coming to a tournament soon.
Gleneagles saw the welcome return to the European Tour for Denmark’s Søren Hansen following recent events in the United States. Since we last saw Søren he has made some pretty significant changes to equipment which we thought would be of great interest to our blog readers. First off; the driver!! Søren has put the 909D2 in the bag and is one of the first players on the European Tour to be using Aldila’s latest shaft offering the RIP. Søren’s 9.5° D2 is fitted with the 70g X-flex version of the shaft. The second and perhaps most significant piece of news regarding Søren’s equipment is a change of irons. Having stayed loyal to a set of Titleist 670 blades for a number of years Søren has just put in play a set of the new Titleist MB irons. These irons have only recently made their debut on Tour and Søren has made an immediate switch. We have some pictures of the new blades in this week’s slideshow and be sure to keep an eye on the Tour as we firmly expect the new MB to be a firm favorite among the players.
Model: Titleist MB
Shaft: True Temper Dynamic Gold S400
Length: Std (#6 @ 37.5”)
Lie: 2° Flat (#6 @ 60.5°)
Grips: Tour Velvet .580 Ribbed (Std)
Next week sees the European Tour head to stunning Switzerland for the Omega European Masters. Set at altitude high in the Swiss alps the event offers some stunning vistas and a golf course to match. Each year the trip to Crans-sur-Sierre is one of the most popular stops on Tour and many of Europe’s elite, including Rory McIlroy who narrowly missed out in a playoff at last year’s event, will be teeing it up in search of the title. We will be there as always and have another installment of the blog for you this time next week.