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Golfers clamouring for belly putters

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Some of the allure of golf comes from the ability for weekend hackers to play the same courses and equipment as professionals. Like with other past equipment evolutions, the recent professional trend toward belly and long putters appears to have resonated with amateurs.

TaylorMade announced Wednesday it was tripling its expectations for sales of belly and long putters in the fourth quarter of 2011. The equipment maker also anticipates a five-fold increase in the volume of the putters sold to consumers compared to last year.

In response, the company will be bringing long and belly putter editions of its Corza Ghost and Ghost Spider models to market faster than originally anticipated.

“We can’t make these putters fast enough” said Michael Fox, TaylorMade’s global product category manager for putters and wedges. “The feedback has been the same from our global tour reps as more and more professionals clamor for these hot new products.”

Last month, Callaway announced an expansion of its Odyssey line of belly and long putters. The company doubled its offering to include a longer model of the D.A.R.T. putter.