Product Testing Has Begun

With the PGA Show now in the books, the time has come for me to switch gears for the duration of this trip. From walking and running the show floor finding the latest and greatest golf products to what I perceive to be the fun part of this “job”. The time has now come for testing on-course and in the case of golf balls performance around the green.

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While at the 2020 PGA Show, I received a ton of terrific product samples to test for review. Today (well technically it’s now yesterday) I made my way to the YMCA Par 3 Course in Lakeland, Florida to test an array of golf products. The products that commenced testing were…

  • Wilson Golf DUO Soft+ Golf Balls
  • Bridgestone Golf TOUR B Golf Balls.
  • Volvik S3 Golf Balls (I only have one)
  • Hempcy Active CBD Oil
  • Zero Friction Ultra Feel and Oh Canada! Golf Gloves
  • AXIS 1 Golf Tour-S putter

While testing with these products commenced today some time has already been spent with the following where I have had an opportunity to form opinions on the 699 Pro irons from SUB 70 Golf and products from Boomer Naturals.

Please view the introduction video below.

Until The Next Tee!!

#TeeBoxChatter – 2020 PGA Show (Day One)

Hey Everyone!!

 

Today was the first day of the PGA Show in sunny Orlando, Florida. The day was full of great finds and for the most part I focused on health and wellness products. Honestly, it wasn’t the plan.

My day started off with a visit to ARGOLF. Last year, their Mordred putter won the Teezy Award for the “Top Putter”. While they are not offering new putters in 2020 they are offering new irons and wedges and they are sexy. Pictured below are their AR-F15 irons.IMG_20200122_090325065

Following that appointment I had the privilege of meeting Jason Hiland who is the owner of SUB 70 Golf. It’s always nice to put a face to the name. The passion that Mr. Hiland has for the game and his brand is infectious. There are some pretty cool things in the works.

While I managed to visit booths like Rapsodo, Lynx Golf (I had a fantastic talk with Stephanie Zinser), ONOFF/PRGR/Fourteen, and Bridgestone Golf where I had a nice chat with Adam Rehberg and Elliot Mellow about the new technology packed into the new TOUR B golf balls. These golf balls are definitely worth the hype. I’ll be putting them into play before I head home. Fun fact. Fred Couples is playing the TOUR B RXS.

I uncovered great new products. MNML golf bags are going to change the game and the way that we look at golf bags. USA Grass Golf could potentially bring golfers to golf that wouldn’t play otherwise. Using one ball and on club you can seemingly turn any vacant field into a golf course. Kaddi is a clip designed to carry your glove, tees, glove,and divot tool in one place by virtue of a belt clip. Athalonz golf shoes. Who ever thought that a pair of shoes could be considered golf equipment?

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And then there is Fred Smith of Disruptive Drinkware. His story and his products are worth an article entirely on its own.

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But the focus was on health and wellness. I uncovered products from Parform which offers golfers CBD gum, tinctures, energy bars and more. X2 makes a variety of refreshing, great tasting beverages. Playmakar (I shared a press release not long ago) has a wide variety of products designed to make you feel better. Boomer Naturals and their CB5 topical pain relief won the day and saved my bacon. It’s a product that I simply believe in after my  “live-fire” testing experience on the show floor.

That’s enough writing. Now it’s time for #TeeBoxChatter

Until The Next Tee!!

#TeeBoxChatter – 2020 PGA Show Demo Day Recap

January 21st was Golfmas for golf fans, aficionados, and gear junkies alike. The reason?  That’s because it marked the opening of the PGA Show for 2020. Demo Day took place at a cold, wind-swept Orange County National Golf Resort and Lodge and even though the conditions were very attendee-friendly the weather didn’t dampen the spirits of those in attendance.

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Demo Day from the perspective of the Cleveland/Srixon/XXIO booth.

I would be remiss if I failed to mention that I felt really bad for the manufacturers and in particular their reps. Seeing equipment company representatives bundled up in long coats, gloves, scarves, and beanies (or as we call them in Canada… toques) was hard to witness but not one of the representatives that I talked to let it hamper their excitement. After all, Demo Day at the PGA Show is the perfect time to showcase your wares.

It didn’t take me long to find the first terrific product of the day. The new CBX Full Face wedge from Cleveland Golf was very fun to swing. Using a 64* wedge I was able to hit accurate bunker shots and pitches and the best part. The CBX Full Face is a forgiving wedge. If you need help with your short-game… This might be the wedge for you. Staying with the Srixon/Cleveland Golf/XXIO family the new range of XXIO products was exactly as advertised. The more forgiving Eleven range (geared towards the moderate swing-speed golfer) was among the easiest to swing golf clubs that I have made wings this. That said, Eleven’s brethren the XXIO X (geared towards faster swingers) performed as advertised. If you’ve never made swings with XXIO… Do so. I really liked the “Weight Plus” technology in the grips. More on that at a later time.

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Just released on January 21st. The CBX Full Face wedge from Cleveland Golf.

There were certain brands with products that were on my immediate radar. COBRA Golf and their SPEEDZONE range of products coupled with the Forged Tec irons were everything that I thought that they would be. I had a terrific interview with Tom Olsavsky. Mr. Olsavky is the VP of Research and Development. The interview will be posted here at a later time.

 

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COBRA Golf KING Forged Tec ONE Length. Just… WOW!

Just to finish off the writing of this article (it is #TeeBoxChatter) I just wanted to touch on a couple of surprises. Pictures didn’t wow me in the leading up to the PGA Show of the LaunchPad metalwoods from Wilson Golf. They impressed! High Heat 257+ metalwoods with TGS (Turf Glide Sole) were a pleasant surprise. Hitting the hybrid out of a literal hole (massive divot) was easy. It might be the most forgiving golf club in the industry. Drivers from Yonex and ONOFF late in the day could factor in on Teezy Awards nominations. Speaking of which, the Prowler VT driver from Lynx Golf featuring “SwitchFace Technology” was a Demo Day “sleeper”. And then there was Honma Golf. I have no words other than to say “look out”!. That is one seriously impressive range of products. I didn’t even know that they were attending. Tour Edge Golf released a new putter (The Wingman) and the Exotics EXS 220 product range was improved “big time” over 2019’s uber-impressive Exotics EXS range. Mizuno Golf added a whole bunch of new technology with their new ST200 metalwoods. The range has three different heads (ST200, ST200G, and ST200X).

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There were a couple of golf clubs that I was lukewarm towards and among them was the MAVRIK from Callaway Golf. I really was perplexed with it until I mistakenly put a 70-gram X-flex shaft into my hands. Overall, it didn’t give me “awe factor” like the Epic Flash did in 2019.

Well, I think that’s enough reading. So how about some “chatter”?

Until The Next Tee!

Gainbridge LPGA at Boca Rio

This week marks the first full-field event for the LPGA. Being played in Boca Raton, Florida at the Robert Von Hagge-designed Boca Rio Golf Club. The member-owned golf club is all set to host the inaugural playing of this LPGA event. A new event to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the LPGA.

 

I visited the venue on Monday to get a feel for the golf course and to take in some of the practice rounds being played. The course itself is being set up to play as a Par 72 golf course (36-36–72) that’s going to measure approximately 6,701 yards (par and yardage are subject to change through the start of the tournament).

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Some of the stars playing in this event are the likes of Charley Hull, Lexi Thompson, Gaby Lopez, Nasa Hataoka, Inbee Park, Mi Jung Hur, Brooke Henderson, Annie Park, Sei Young Kim, Celine Boutier, and Nelly Korda to name a few. The field is playing for a total purse of $2M USD.

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The driving range was packed first thing Monday and there was some noticeable excitement in the air. The superintendent of Boca Rio Golf Club and the greenskeeping team has done a terrific job in prepping the golf course for the event. The greens are rolling nicely and the fairways are meticulous. The golf course is going to be ripe for the proverbial picking as there is no serious rough to contend with. For those that are unfamiliar with the golf course, the fairways are relatively wide and misses won’t be severely punished. I really liked the bunker complexes around the golf course and the lovely mix of water hazards will give the player’s something to think about as they navigate their way around Boca Rio.

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I anticipate the ladies to go low because of the fantastic conditions of the golf course. Quite honestly, I see a -23 winning the event. My pick to win the inaugural Gainbridge LPGA is Florida native Lexi Thompson. She looked great Monday and out of the groups that I took in she was the only one to hit the Par 5 first hole in two. Charley Hull, Brooke Henderson, and Nelly Korda will be in contention.

Until The Next Tee!!