Complementing success for TaylorMade

By Global Golf PostAugust 30, 2011, 1:06 am

It seemed inevitable that the success of its R11 driver would compel TaylorMade to produce an iron line under that same name. And the California equipment maker has done just that. But technicians there insist the move was borne of more than good marketing sense and that these clubs (which are not colored white like the driver) are the best irons the company has ever made.

TaylorMade officials say they utilized several technologies to do that. For starters, they employed the precision weighting port first used with the Tour Preferred MB irons to ensure that the Center of Gravity (CG) in the new R11s was located in exactly the right position in each club as they also made swingweight uniform. Then, they added ultra-thin face construction, which increased the COR in the middle and longer R11s to promote faster ball speed and distance. The new sticks also took on the manufacturer’s Inverted Cone technology, which is fashioned to create a bigger sweetspot in an effort to bolster distance on off-center hits.

At the same time, TaylorMade gave the R11s what it describes as progressive shaping, making the longer irons more forgiving and the shorter ones more compact. And officials say they worked extensively with staff professional Nick Faldo to develop top lines that blended into the hosels for what they feel is the best possible look at address.

In addition, they created a “multi-functional sole” for the R11, with those of the short and mid-irons being moderately thin – and the leading edges moderately sharp – so the R11s could enter and exit turf more quickly and smoothly, and be more playable form a variety of lies. As for the longer irons, the TaylorMade engineers gave them wider soles to pull the CG lower for easier and higher launches as they increased Moment of Inertia (MOI) for enhanced forgiveness and stability.

Finally, the clubmakers incorporated an aluminum badge in the cavity of all R11s to absorb sound and vibration in an effort to improve acoustics and feel at impact.

“We have taken everything we know from both a performance and game improvement standpoint and put them into the R11,” says Bret Wahl, TaylorMade’s senior director of iron development. “Some of those technologies we learned in the development of the R11 driver, and the result with the irons is a high-performance club that has the clean shape and refinement better golfers prefer but is also long and forgiving.”

The irons are available September 1.

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Weather extends Barbasol to Monday finish

By Associated PressJuly 23, 2018, 12:25 am

NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - A thunderstorm has suspended the fourth round of the PGA Tour's Barbasol Championship until Monday morning.

Sunday's third stoppage of play at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came with the four leaders - Hunter Mahan, Robert Streb, Tom Lovelady and Troy Merritt at 18 under par - and four other contenders waiting to begin the round.

The tournament will resume at 7:30 a.m. on Monday. Lightning caused one delay, and play was stopped earlier in the afternoon to clear water that accumulated on the course following a morning of steady and sometimes-heavy rain.

Inclement weather has plagued the tournament throughout the weekend. The second round was completed Saturday morning after being suspended by thunderstorms late Friday afternoon.

The resumption will mark the PGA Tour's second Monday finish this season. Jason Day won the Farmers Insurance Open in January after darkness delayed the sixth playoff hole, and he needed just 13 minutes to claim the victory.

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Watch: Spectator films as Woods' shot hits him

By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 12:07 am

It was a collision watched by millions of fans on television, and one that came at a pivotal juncture as Tiger Woods sought to win The Open. It also gave Colin Hauck the story of a lifetime.

Hauck was among dozens of fans situated along the left side of the 11th hole during the final round at Carnoustie as the pairing of Woods and Francesco Molinari hit their approach shots. After 10 holes of nearly flawless golf, Woods missed the fairway off the tee and then pulled his iron well left of the target.

The ball made square contact with Hauck, who hours later tweeted a video showing the entire sequence - even as he continued to record after Woods' shot sent him tumbling to the ground:

The bounce initially appeared fortuitous for Woods, as his ball bounded away from thicker rough and back toward the green. But an ambitious flop shot came up short, and he eventually made a double bogey to go from leading by a shot to trailing by one. He ultimately shot an even-par 71, tying for sixth two shots behind Molinari.

For his efforts as a human shield, Hauck received a signed glove and a handshake from Woods - not to mention a firsthand video account that will be sure to spark plenty of conversations in the coming years.

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Molinari retirement plan: coffee, books and Twitter

By Will GrayJuly 22, 2018, 9:35 pm

After breaking through for his first career major, Francesco Molinari now has a five-year exemption on the PGA Tour, a 10-year exemption in Europe and has solidified his standing as one of the best players in the world.

But not too long ago, the 35-year-old Italian was apparently thinking about life after golf.

Shortly after Molinari rolled in a final birdie putt to close out a two-shot victory at The Open, fellow Tour player Wesley Bryan tweeted a picture of a note that he wrote after the two played together during the third round of the WGC-HSBC Champions in China in October. In it, Bryan shared Molinari's plans to retire as early as 2020 to hang out at cafes and "become a Twitter troll":

Molinari is active on the social media platform, with more than 5,600 tweets sent out to nearly 150,000 followers since joining in 2010. But after lifting the claret jug at Carnoustie, it appears one of the few downsides of Molinari's victory is that the golf world won't get to see the veteran turn into a caffeinated, well-read troll anytime soon.

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Molinari had previously avoided Carnoustie on purpose

By Rex HoggardJuly 22, 2018, 9:17 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Sometimes a course just fits a player’s eye. They can’t really describe why, but more often than not it leads to solid finishes.

Francesco Molinari’s relationship with Carnoustie isn’t like that.

The Italian played his first major at Carnoustie, widely considered the toughest of all The Open venues, in 2007, and his first impression hasn’t really changed.

“There was nothing comforting about it,” he said on Sunday following a final-round 69 that lifted him to a two-stroke victory.


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Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


In fact, following that first exposure to the Angus coast brute, Molinari has tried to avoid Carnoustie, largely skipping the Dunhill Links Championship, one of the European Tour’s marquee events, throughout his career.

“To be completely honest, it's one of the reasons why I didn't play the Dunhill Links in the last few years, because I got beaten up around here a few times in the past,” he said. “I didn't particularly enjoy that feeling. It's a really tough course. You can try and play smart golf, but some shots, you just have to hit it straight. There's no way around it. You can't really hide.”

Molinari’s relative dislike for the layout makes his performance this week even more impressive considering he played his last 37 holes bogey-free.

“To play the weekend bogey-free, it's unthinkable, to be honest. So very proud of today,” he said.