OnCore Golf – ELIXR

It’s an exciting time about 25 minutes from my house for Buffalo, NY based golf ball brand OnCore Golf. They are about 36 hours away from the release of their first Tour-level golf ball called the ELIXR. A golf ball with an interesting name seeing that the definition of the word elixir is “a magical potion”. Bearing this is mind the moniker just might be very appropriate.

I finally met the guys (Bret Blakely and Steve Coulton) this year while down in Orlando for the PGA Merchandise Show. While having a couple of cocktails in the lobby area of the Hyatt Regency we started to talk a little about the ELIXR. This is a golf ball that was crowd-sourced… meaning they reached out to the golfing public to see what they wanted in a golf ball. Personally speaking, I spent a fair amount of time on the phone with Steve Coulton one particular day and I gave him my opinion on what a golf ball should be.

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New from OnCore Golf… the ELIXR

Recently, OnCore Golf sent out a press release which I will share with you and then I will talk about my findings in my brief time spent playing the ELIXR.

We’re undoubtedly excited about the ELIXR™ release on Wednesday, March 1, and we want you to be just as excited as we are about our new tour ball.

Preorders have closed for ELIXR™, but you can pick up your boxes from our online store or your local pro shop. See who carries OnCore products with our pro shop locater.

Why are we so pumped about this new ball? It goes without saying, but ELIXR™ is our best ball to date, so we’re thrilled to see outperform the competition.

So, what makes ELIXR™ so special?

·       Perimeter weighting from high density particles in the mantle layer increases the moment of inertia and reduces spin.

·       ELIXR’s spin decay has been reduced to allow for more backspin that carries the ball further. This is one of the reasons ELIXR™ outperforms competition in overall performance and stability in flight.

·       The thickness and softness of the urethane cover contributes to the control and feel into and around green in conjunction with the ball’s perimeter weighting.

·       ELIXR™ continues to impress every player that touches our new ball. Most players have said ELIXR™ is as good or better than any ball they’ve played.

We know you’ll love playing the course with ELIXR™ when the ball debuts Wednesday and we’re excited to hear your feedback on our newest ball.

Thank you for being part of the OnCore family,
The Team at OnCore

While discussing golf and specifically OnCore I was handed one of the new magic bullets. If there was one thing that I would do before leaving Florida it would be to put the ELIXR in play and get an early insight as to what it was like. After all, the above quoted text from OnCore Golf makes the ELIXR sound very appealing. Especially the perimeter weighting which of course is something that we have seen done to make golf clubs (irons) more forgiving.

I would test the ELIXR on a course that had good conditions and greens that were firm and typical of a design from the 1920’s. I was immediately impressed with the feel and flight of the ELIXR. On my old blog I did a review on their Avant golf ball and I was not shy about saying that while I really, really liked the Avant I hated everything about their MA – 1.0 golf ball. The ELIXR has a 85 compression rating and if there was such a thing as a soft feeling 85 compression golf ball than the ELIXR is it. The ball carried, and held it’s line very well with no variance. More to the point, I felt like I just had hit a golf ball with a 60 compression. I didn’t see any signs of spin as there was no ballooning and the ballflight was piercing. Every tee shot was identical in terms of flight and feel. Regarding distance, I would suggest that at the very least it was equal to or a bit longer than my “gamer” (Pro V1).

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A look at the alignment aid.

When it came to swings with irons again I found myself very impressed with the feel emitted by the ELIXR at impact. I would say that it fell in between what I’ve come to find with say the Avant and the Titleist Pro V1. Coming off of my Titleist 710 AP2 irons it was like butter. Of course, some of that is the irons right? I found that the flight very desirable as the ELIXR went out, carried but the descent angle is when the magic started to happen. Where other balls being tested were inconsistent at holding the greens the ELIXR’s exit trajectory was such that it came in sort of steep and stopped after one hop. I was really impressed with it’s drop and stop characteristics.

I had a very high GIR percentage so I wasn’t able to test the ELIXR’s  greenside capabilities when it truly mattered. But what I did do was drop an ELIXR around a couple of greens to see what it did. This part of the testing was inconclusive due to daylight constraints. But it does seem promising. When it came to rolling putts with the ELIXR I loved the alignment aid and the ball does feel great off of the putter face. There was no “wobble” as indicated by watching the roll/alignment aid. So I would conclude that the ELIXR rolls true.

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Hit a 5 iron into this 202 yard Par 3. Stopped 4 feet from the hole. Ball mark was 15 inches from ball. Control.

(I never finished the round with the ELIXR. Unfortunately, after piping a drive down the fairway and hitting a real nice second shot on a Par 5 I watched two guys drive over to my golf ball and unceremoniously pick it up. I never said a word as I felt like the Easter Bunny who dropped an egg and a happy child found it. Maybe it was good marketing for OnCore too.)

About a week and a half ago I visited their HQ located at The Innovation Center on Ellicott Street in Buffalo. I was in the area and wanted to follow up with Steve. Incidentally, I also ended up talking to Director of Business and Player Development Brian McGahey (formerly of Nike Golf) about the ELIXR and I saw a television spot that will be airing on The Golf Channel. I will say this. Guys, you have come a long way since the MA – 1.0 and the ELIXR just may be magical. It was suggested that maybe I could trade in the Titleist hat that I was wearing for an OnCore Golf hat and maybe the time has come. #BeMoreWithOnCore #OnCoreFamily

Until The Next Tee!

Retractions, Apologies and Rickie

Seeing that I haven’t written an editorial lately I thought that for a change I would partake in such an endeavor. In fact, it has been some time and there has been a few “stirs” in the world of golf lately. So where does one begin?

I suppose that we could start with Tiger Woods. There is no doubt that Tiger is a shell of his former self but more to the point his age and the years of hardcore torque on his body has taken its toll. When it came time for Tiger to tee it up in Dubai at the Dubai Desert Classic he did. But as soon as he teed it up the stories started to emerge through his agent that Woods had back spasms Thursday night. The next day after posting a 77 he would withdraw. With an injury like back spasms it’s difficult to sit in a chair let alone play golf. So it’s no doubt that he would be in tough to score. I mean I played all 18 holes in a Mini-Tour event (Moonlight Tour in Orlando) with gout and that was no picnic. It was sheer misery, so I can’t imagine being Tiger the golfer he is (or was) and trying to compete at that level. That level that all of his adoring fans and Tiger himself have come to expect. Of course there was his “Missed Cut” at The Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in lovely San Diego prior to Dubai and his withdrawal from the field at The Genesis Open at Riviera Country Club. It came out real recently through news outlets that even legend Jack Nicklaus is “puzzled” about Woods’ status. Is he what he once was?

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Tiger’s… back? (Photo Credit: Golf Digest)

Well American golfer Pat Perez caused a stir when he made the statement on a show on SiriusXM PGA Tour radio show that Tiger “can’t beat anybody”. “The guy shot 77 (in Dubai). That guy can’t shoot 77,” Perez said. “What does he do the next day? Ah, my back’s gone. He knows he can’t beat anybody! I told you! He’s not going to come out and play, and play poorly.” If the casual golf fan were to read that exchange one might contend that he was calling Tiger a “faker”. Maybe Tiger is injured that bad, maybe Tiger has lost his game or maybe he is faking. All that I know is Perez would later retract the statement and say that he’s a “Tiger Fan” and wanted nothing more than to see Tiger start winning again on Tour. Perez would get lambasted and later make reference to knowing how it must have felt to be Fuzzy Zoeller. Remember the infamous “Zoeller Backlash of 1997″? In case you forgot, Fuzzy Zoeller suggested that for the Champions Dinner maybe Tiger would order “fried chicken”. A statement that would cost Zoeller endorsement deals. I guess my point is if you’re going to speak your mind on something think before you say it. If it happens to be inflammatory then be prepared to “stick to your guns” and don’t fumble around trying to retract what you said.

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Pat Perez (Photo Credit: Golf Digest)

Which reminds me. When did so many professional golfers (men) get so damn “catty”? You hear it now… guys calling out other players about faking, or guys calling out other players after they withdraw when they receive sponsors exemptions. Like Grayson Murray did about Bryson DeChambeau when the latter withdrew after 28 holes at Riviera. The “Tweet” on Twitter was passive-aggressive and if Grayson is going to call out Bryson then call him out by name because the suggestion “Hey @PGATOUR there should be a rule if you get a sponsor invite and withdraw after 28 holes you’re not allowed any other invites rest of year” was pretty specific. Grayson, with all due respect worry about yourself and focus on making cuts (he missed it at Riviera). I’ll give Grayson credit where it’s due and he never retracted the statement. I respect that. Without looking at the fact that a ton of players withdrew from that tournament (the weather was abysmal), that Grayson talked crap about Bryson the bigger news was that Dustin Johnson won The Genesis Open and with it the #1 ranking in the OGWR. DJ has spent a ton of time putting and with his ability to just overpower a golf course I think we are only seeing the beginning. What DJ could do is just scary to think about and I said on my old blog that when he won his first Major… it would open the floodgates. Consider them opened. But getting back to DeChambeau. I have seen this guy get “trolled” on Instagram by teenagers wanting “money matches” stating that he “sucks”. But recently he did a little trolling of the USGA himself. As most know DeChambeau uses (or used) a side-saddle style of putting. However, a tournament a month ago the USGA informed him that his putter wasn’t conforming. So Bryson switched to a conforming model of putter. Ultimately though the USGA didn’t like the method. He stated that the USGA was “not a good organization” and that he could be quoted as saying such. After a myriad of USGA debacles (the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open) who wouldn’t be inclined to agree with him? Regardless of putting method there is no doubt  that the kid is struggling on the greens. The question is this. Legitimate gripe or blame-shifting?

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Hey USGA… what’s the deal with side-saddle? DeChambeau (Photo Credit: USGA)

So Rickie Fowler can’t “close” eh?! This week was the first stop of the “Florida Swing” and PGA National Resort and Spa is home to “The Bear Trap” and The Honda Classic. I love the Florida Swing because that means that we are that much closer to driving down Magnolia Lane and The Masters. This weekend saw Rickie Fowler win and end a lengthy drought of not winning on the PGA Tour (last one in 2015). Apparently, there was or is a knock on Fowler that he cannot close out tournaments. Today, he closed out a victory by four shots to best the field. There were some struggles for Fowler today but his putter bailed him out. What is the lesson here kids? At any rate Fowler winning is such a great thing. Yes it ends a drought and yes he closed out a tournament but I think Rickie what’s more important is that Rickie is just so good for the game. He’s a good young man and he apologized over social media to his fans for not signing autographs after his Saturday round. This would not happen after the victory signing autographs for his fans after dark. The apology was classy and the signing today was pure class. Well done Rickie and congratulations on today’s win.

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OMG… I closed it out. (Photo Credit: Golf Channel)

I guess there is one thing to take from this. Yes the game has its share of “blowhards” and it’s share of “entitled trash talkers” but for every one of them you have a Rickie Fowler, a Justin Thomas, a Jordan Spieth or a Christina Kim. Good people who are great for the game.

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Christina Kim and me at Orange Tree (I know the grammar is bad but… it rhymed)

Until The Next Tee!

 

 

Video – 2017 Callaway Golf

Earlier this week, I took the time to write a review on the Callaway Golf Epic (Epic Sub Zero) driver. This past January I made sure to take a swing by the Callaway Golf booth at Demo Day to see what all of the hype was about. If you read my review Epic was everything that I thought it would be and more… fully living up to its moniker. I only wish I could have gotten onto a launch monitor while there for some hard data.

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Epic was… epic!

While I was at it, I made sure to put some swings in with the new Steelhead XR irons. In 2016, I was not crazy about the XR irons as “hot” as they were. The improvement on the Steelhead irons over the prior year was unreal. I wish I would have seen and made swings with the Steelhead XR Pro irons. Truth be told, I never saw them until after I interviewed  David Neville Senior Director of Brand Management for Callaway Golf. Hopefully the opportunity to swing the Steelhead XR Pro irons will arise.

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An upgrade over 2016?

Below is a video (click the link) that I recorded right after I made swings at Demo Day.

First impressions of 2017 Callaway Golf from PGA Show Demo Day