LPGA TOUR | Hilton Grand Vacations Tournament of Champions
Titleist Brand Ambassador Danielle Kang was the only player to shoot all four rounds in the 60s, and the only player to break 70 on both weekend days, as she claimed the LPGA’s 2022 season opener.
- Kang – playing a Pro V1x golf ball and full bag of Titleist equipment, including TSi3 driver, Vokey Design wedges and Scotty Cameron Special Select Squareback 2 tour prototype putter – closed in 4-under 68 for a three-shot victory on a blustery, chilly Sunday at Lake Nona Golf & Country Club.
- Kang led the field in Greens in Regulation at 81.94% (59 of 72) and Putts per GIR (1.68). She needed only 115 putts over the four rounds (leading the field), and never 3-putted.
- Off the tee, she was 8th in fairways hit (78.57%) while averaging 245.5 yards.
WITB | Danielle Kang
Golf Ball: Titleist Pro V1x
Driver: TSi3 9.0°
Fairway Metal: TSi3 18.0°
Hybrid: 816H2 23.0°
Irons: 716 CB 5-9
Wedges: Vokey Design SM7 46.10F, 50.08F, 54.14F, WedgeWorks 58.06K
Putter: Scotty Cameron Special Select Squareback 2 tour prototype putter
TSi DRIVERS LEAD THE WAY ON LPGA
- Titleist TSi drivers were the most played drivers at the Hilton Grand Vacations Tournament of Champions, led by winner Danielle Kang and her TSi3 9.0° model.
- Four of the top seven finishers played a TSi driver, including Kang, the third-place finisher (TSi3 9.0), Nelly Korda (TSi1 10.0°) and Jessica Korda (TSi4 10.0°).
- The 2021 ANA Inspiration Champion (TSi2 9.0°) and 2016 ANA Inspiration Champion (TSi3 9.0°) also switched this week to TSi drivers.
- Said Kang: “This Titleist driver, I absolutely love it. I used to play a competitor for a long time, but when I first hit this TSi3, I never felt better compression on the face, on the ball. My misses narrowed down. The dispersion of the driver was more compact, so I loved that feel. And driver’s really important because I really value being in the fairway so that I can utilize the irons. So I really like to be able to attack pins. I’m an aggressive player, and where I position myself off the tee is really important.”
- Titleist was also the most played golf ball, utility iron (T1), iron, wedge and putter (T1) at Lake Nona.
PGA TOUR | The American Express
Playing a Titleist Pro V1 golf ball, Hudson Swafford claimed his third PGA TOUR victory with a closing 8-under 64 on PGA West’s Stadium Course.
- Swafford, who rolled his Pro V1 in for nine birdies and one eagle Sunday, played his final three holes in 3 under to win by two shots.
- Swafford led a 1-through-5 finish for Titleist golf ball players, as nine of the top-10 finishers played a Pro V1 or Pro V1x golf ball.
- For the week, Swafford finished fourth in Strokes Gained: Approach (+4.308) while making a tournament-leading 29 birdies, with five of those (plus an eagle on No. 16) on the back nine Sunday.
CHAMPION CLAIMS FIRST WIN FOR NEW SCOTTY CAMERON PHANTOM X PUTTERS
- The winner of The American Express became the first player to win using a NEW Scotty Cameron Phantom X putter, having put the NEW Phantom X 7.5 model in play for the first time Thursday in the desert.
- He first tested the putter Tuesday morning on the putting green at PGA West. A few putts later, he asked Scotty Cameron Tour Rep Drew Page to put on his preferred grip (Scotty Cameron Matador Mid). The next day, he told Page, “It’s in.”
- “The first time he put it down, the putter just set up perfect for him,” Page said. “He was really impressed how it sat on the ground, and thought it looked great. It’s been the same story for many players who’ve put Phantoms in play. ‘Man, this thing sets on the ground perfect. I really like the way it looks.’ He rolled a few putts with it on Tuesday, I just threw his grip on and it went into play.”
- Said The American Express champ, in his post-victory press conference: “I actually changed putters this week to a heel-shafted putter to help it swing a little bit more and rolled it incredibly well. … Oh, man, I rolled it really good this week.”
- How good? He finished the week second in Strokes Gained: Putting (+6.402), averaging 1.577 putts per green in regulation. He sank his Pro V1 from 8 feet for eagle on the par-5 16th Sunday to take a two-shot lead, then made a 19-footer for birdie on the par-3 17th to go up three shots. His 8-footer for par on 18 clinched the victory.
- The new Phantom X 7, 7.2 and 7.5 models made their TOUR debut just a week earlier at the Sony Open, with five of them in play this week at The American Express.
VOKEY SM9 LAUNCH CONTINUES IN THE DESERT
- The launch of the NEW Vokey Design SM9 wedges continued this week on the PGA TOUR, following Cam Smith's season-opening victory at the Sentry Tournament of Champions with four new SM9’s.
- Fellow Titleist Brand Ambassadors Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas and Max Homa also started off 2022 with four new SM9’s in their bags.
- This week, 38 players put the new wedges in play, with more SM9 pitching, gap, sand and lob wedges used in the desert than any other model.
- That includes Brand Ambassador Wyndham Clark, who earned his best finish of the season with SM9 46.10F, 52.12F, 56.10S and WedgeWorks 60A models in the bag.
- Said Clark: “These are incredible. Vokey’s done a great job in creating a wedge that launches at the launch you want, which is kind of a lower launch, but with a ton of spin. And that’s what all of us out here strive and try to get with our wedges is that lower launch that fights through the wind. But then when it lands, it is really receptive. … These SM9s are I think the best wedges ever made.”
- Also among those putting NEW SM9’s in play this week: Lee Hodges, Lanto Griffin, Cameron Young, the 2018 Masters Champion and 2015 PGA Champion.
TSi IS MOST PLAYED DRIVER AT AMEX
- TSi drivers were once again the most played drivers on the PGA TOUR this week at the American Express, with 45 players (44 of them being TSi models), nine more than the nearest competitor.
- Four of the top five players on the final leaderboard at The American Express gamed TSi2 or TSi3 drivers: Tom Hoge (TSi3 9.0°), Brian Harman (TSi2 9.0°), Lanto Griffin (TSi2 10.0°) and Lee Hodges (TSi2 8.0°).
DP WORLD TOUR | Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship
Titleist Brand Ambassador Thomas Pieters – playing a Pro V1 golf ball, TSi2 driver, four NEW Vokey Design SM9 wedges and Scotty Cameron Special Select Squareback 2 tour prototype putter among his Titleist setup – earned his first Rolex Series title with a one-shot victory in Abu Dhabi.
- Pieters, who closed in even-par 72 at a windy, challenging Yas Links, finished at 10 under, one shot clear of fellow Brand Ambassador Rafa Cabrera Bello and Shubankar Sharma (Pro V1x).
- It was Pieters’ sixth-career victory on the DP World Tour (formerly European Tour) and second in his last three starts (Portugal Masters).
- For the week, he topped the field in Strokes Gained: Tee to Green (+2.64 per round) and scrambling (86.67%) and finished second in Strokes Gained: Off the Tee (+1.23 per round).
PIETERS WINS IN FIRST WEEK WITH NEW VOKEY SM9 WEDGES
- The NEW Vokey Design SM9 wedges made their DP World Tour debut this week in Abu Dhabi, with more players using SM9’s than any other model.
- A total of 41 players had SM9’s in their bags, including winner Thomas Pieters, who put four new SM9 models (46.10F, 52.08F, 56.10S, WW 58L) immediately in play.
- Cabrera Bello, Ian Poulter, Bernd Wiesbeger, and the world’s 43rd-ranked player were also among those making the Week 1 transition to SM9.
PIETERS’ SWITCH TO TITLEIST
- After several years playing a competitive brand, Thomas Pieters began playing a Titleist Pro V1 golf ball and TSi2 driver at the end of 2020, without an agreement.
He saw immediate gains with the new combination, which led him to sign as Titleist Brand Ambassador in 2021.
- “Thomas is an extremely hard worker who takes performance seriously,” said Liam McDougall, Titleist Tour Representative on the DP World Tour. “He has worked extensively with our team with all the equipment through his bag and on all aspects of his game, but especially around the statistical areas that he felt he needed to improve upon. He has been a regular visitor to the Titleist Performance Centre at Woburn since joining our team and it is great to see all his hard work pay off.”
- Sunday’s victory moved Pieters back into the top 50 of the Official World Golf Ranking for the first time since April 2018.
- Said Peters: “When you’re in control of your ball flight and the golf ball, it’s fun. You know, you can be creative and that’s how I felt out there today. I feel like I’ve turned the corner and playing really good golf. Like I said, I’m really in control of my ball flight and it’s nice to feel like that and make putts as well. My putting has improved massively and I felt like that’s the thing that really kept me going on the weekend."
WITB | Thomas Pieters
Golf Ball: Titleist Pro V1
Driver: TSi2 10.0°
Irons: 620 CB (3-4) & 620 MB (5-9)
Wedges: Vokey Design SM9 46.10F, 52.08F, 56.10S, 58.04L
Putter: Scotty Cameron Special Select Squareback 2 Dual Balance tour prototype
PIETERS ON HIS PRO V1
- “The ball was, it was a big, big deal and I think matching it with the Titleist driver and irons and wedges has really narrowed the gaps, and the consistency in the wedges and the ball flight have been noticeable.”
PIETERS ON HIS TSi2 DRIVER
- “To me this was the first driver that I put down on the ground and I said, ‘Oh, that looks nice.’ I'm a very visual player. So if I try a club, one or two shots in and I’ll have enough feedback, but this one really, from the start, even when I put it down, it just matched straight away. Numbers were better. Really the first driver – Liam, he was watching me hit some with the old driver and I think the first one he built was the correct one straight away. We tried some other ones later, but the first one was dead on, so I love it.”
PIETERS ON HIS SCOTTY CAMERON PUTTER
- Following his win Sunday, Pieters was asked what has been the difference for him in winning two of his last three events on the DP World Tour. Said Pieters: “My putter for sure. I worked with the guys from Titleist. They just kind of analysed that my putting was not so good. Been working hard with my coach and wasn't getting the results. They gave me this putter (Scotty Cameron Special Select Squareback 2 Dual Balance tour prototype) I’ve been using now everything and has been flowing and I've been making a lot of putts.”
ASIAN TOUR | Singapore International
Titleist Brand Ambassador Sadom Kaewkanjana of Thailand earned his second Asian Tour title, closing in 2-under 69 for a three-shot victory to close out the Asian Tour’s pandemic-disrupted 2020-21 season.
- With the win, the 23-year-old also qualified for this summer’s Open Championship at St. Andrews, one of four spots up for grabs in the event.
- Also heading to the Old Course: Last week’s winner, Titleist Brand Ambassador Joohyung Kim, who finished second, and fellow Brand Ambassdor Sihan Kim, who finished fourth.
- Joohyung Kim topped the final Order of Merit with over $500,000 in winnings, while Kaewkanjana finished second.
- Brand Ambassador Wade Ormsby claimed third, as Titleist players swept the top three positions.
WITB | Sadom Kaewkanjana
Golf Ball: Titleist Pro V1x
Driver: TSi3 8.0°
Fairway Metal: TS3 19.0°
Irons: NEW T100
Wedges: Vokey Design SM8 50°, 54°, 58°
WITB | Joohyung Kim
Golf Ball: Titleist Pro V1x
Driver: TSi3 9.0°
Fairway Metal: TSi2 15.0° & TS3 19.0°
Irons: NEW T100
Wedges: Vokey Design SM8 52°, 56°, 58°
Putter: Scotty Cameron Newport 2 GSS tour prototype