CLEVELAND BRINGS NEW WOMENS CLUBS: The same technology used in its TA7 irons will be available in new Cleveland Golf TA7 W line for women, the company says. The means oval-shaped holes (Cleveland calls them Micro-Cavities) along the top edge, to strategically place weight where it needs to be.
Cleveland will also offer Launcher W drivers and fairway woods, based on its popular Launcher 400 driver. The womens version will have a slightly lower swingweight and a bit more loft, as well as a shorter shaft in the standard models.
The clubs will ship March 1. Suggested retail price for the irons will be $800 per set. SRP on the driver will be $390, and fairway woods will be $247 each.
LOVE THE MAC OR TAKE IT BACK: The folks at MacGregor Golf are so confident people will like its V-FOIL driver that the company is offering what amounts to a test drive. For V-FOIL purchases between Feb. 1 and June 30, buyers will be able to bring back the club for a full refund within 30 days if not completely satisfied.
The clubs design promotes powerful, straight shots, says MacGregor CEO and owner Barry Schneider. It wants to be square at impact, Schneider claims.
The beta titanium heads come in two sizes ' 410 cc (at 9, 10 and 11 degree lofts) and 350 cc (8.5, 9.6 and 10.5 degrees) ' and suggested retail is $400 for either size.
MacGregors V-FOIL fairway woods are also part of the test drive campaign.
GRIPS FOR TENDER UNGLOVED HANDS: In response to complaints from golfers who find that corded grips rip up the ungloved hand, Lamkin Corp. is bringing out the new G3 QuarterCord grip. The cord material is only on the back quarter of the grip, under the gloved hand. The rest of the grip is made of a proprietary blend of cork-enhanced rubber. Lamkin expects to have quite a few of the new grips on tour this year. SRP per grip will be $6; theyll be available in standard and midsize.
By the way, Lamkin has been making grips since 1925, and is in its third generation of family ownership and management.
WASNT IT FORTY-SOMETHING IN MINNEAPOLIS THE OTHER DAY?: Just in time for goofy weather anomalies that have you thinking about sneaking in a winter round of golf, FootJoy is releasing a new line of outerwear. The Performance Outerwear line for 2003 is built around a new waterproofing system designed to get the job done quietly, FootJoy says. Bright red rain/wind shirts and wind shirts, in long and short sleeve models, use the new system. The rain/wind models suggested retail price is $130; the wind shirts are $54 for short sleeves, $56 for long.
The Dual Climate jacket, long a staple of the outerwear line, will now have zip-off sleeves. It has an SRP of $130. It can be worn fleece-side out for moderate weather or fleece-in for colder days.
INKS A-FLYIN: Holiday season endorsement signings characteristically spill over into the new year. Srixon Sports will try to broaden its foothold on tour with the new endorsements of pros Robert Allenby and Karrie Webb. Allenby will play a Srixon ball and irons, and will wear a Srixon glove and carry the companys bag. Webb will play the golf ball and wear a Srixon glove. Other Srixon endorsers include Tom Lehman, Thomas Bjorn, Fuzzy Zoeller, Alex Cjeka, Laura Davies, and Miguel Angel Jimenez.
Srixon is a subsidiary of Japanese industrial giant Sumitomo Rubber Industries, which among other things is the No. 1 manufacturer of golf balls in Japan.
On the shaft side, graphite power Aldila has signed PGA Championship winner Rich Beem to its advisory staff. Beem had Aldila graphite shafts in all his woods and irons for the PGA.
HOW DOES BILLY LIKE HIS CHILI?: Five-way, we bet. Billy Casper Golf will manage the City of Cincinnati Recreation Commissions seven municipal golf courses under a new, multi-year agreement. BCG will handle everything from agronomy to food and beverage at the Avon Field, California, Dunham, Glenview, Neumann, Reeves and Woodland courses. Glenview is a Top 50 Public Courses award winner, and all seven are southern Ohio stalwarts.
Billy Casper Golf, based outside Washington, D.C. in Vienna, Va., was founded by the Masters and two-time U.S. Open winner in 1989.
CLOSING THOUGHT FOR THE SNOWBOUND, INDOOR PRACTICE SWINGER: Watch that lamp.