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March 24 2013

6:58 PM

Equipment Roundup: Arnold Palmer Inv.

Justin Rose switched to a TaylorMade R1 driver for the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by MasterCard.
(Greenwood/Getty Images)

By Jonathan Wall, PGATOUR.COM Equipment Insider

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Justin Rose became the latest TaylorMade staffer to add an R1 driver to the bag at the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by MasterCard. Rose spent Monday and Tuesday before the tournament working with the new driver at Lake Nona in an effort to find the correct setup.

Rose had been testing R1 for a couple weeks but finally settled on a driver with a Matrix 6m3 Black Tie Shaft. Rose's first round with the driver in the bag produced a 7-under 65 on Thursday.

In addition to the driver, Rose also added a TaylorMade RocketBladez Tour 6-iron, to go along with the four RocketBladez Tour irons he already had in play. Unlike most players who overhaul their entire bag at once, Rose has slowly worked his way into RocketBladez Tour irons over the last few weeks, adding a 3-4 iron at The Honda Classic, and a 5-iron at the WGC-Cadillac Championship.

Mickelson going back to Odyssey Black Series Tour Design #9: All of the time Phil Mickelson spent adjusting his Odyssey Versa #9 WBW (white-black-white) putter the week prior to the Arnold Palmer Invitational appears to have been for naught.

Mickelson opened the tournament with the new Versa putter, which included a custom sight line, black putter shaft and SuperStroke "Slim 55" grip, but struggled with his consistency on the greens — recording 61 putts over two rounds, including a four-putt during the second round, before missing the cut at 8 over.

With the Masters only a couple weeks away, Mickelson told PGATOUR.COM’s Brian Wacker he was benching the putter and going back to his Odyssey Black Series Tour Design #9 at the Shell Houston Open.

Mickelson recorded his only win of the season at the Waste Management Phoenix Open with the Black Series Tour Design in the bag.

Olesen makes adjustments to Nike clubs: Following a position testing session early in the week, Thorbjorn Olesen made a number of changes to his Nike equipment, adding a 15-degree VR_S Covert 3-wood and 18-degree VR_S Covert Tour hybrid to replace last year's VR_S products. Olesen noted that he was able to launch the ball higher with less spin with the new woods.

Olesen also made a slight tweak to his VR_S Covert Tour driver, moving it from 10.5-degrees to 9.5-degrees, right position in an effort to lower his ball flight.

In preparation for the Masters, he also put new VR Pro wedges with fresh grooves in the bag.

Furyk buys Odyssey Versa #1W from Orlando-based golf store: Jim Furyk has been known to spend his own hard-earned money on a putter. In the weeks leading up to the 2010 TOUR Championship presented by Coca-Cola, Furyk went into a golf shop in Massachusetts during the Deutsche Bank Championship and bought a used Yes! Sophia model for $39. The putter ended up helping Furyk win the Tour Championship and FedExCup.

Considering Furyk's affinity for making mid-tournament putter changes, it shouldn't come as a surprise that he showed up at an Edwin Watts in Orlando on Saturday looking for a new putter.

Furyk spent time looking at a couple models but left the store with an Odyssey Versa #1 Wide, which he put in play during the final round.

Cabrera goes back to PING S56 irons: With the Masters right around the corner, Angel Cabrera shelved his PING Anser irons for PING's S56 model. Cabrera played the S56 last year and wanted an iron he could work in both directions with a lower ball flight.

Divots: In an attempt to get his 21-degree Cobra AMP Cell hybrid to go left, Rickie Fowler made a slight adjustment using the company's MyFly technology, turning it from the 4+ position to 3 to get the desired shot shape. ... Seung-yul Noh added loft to his Nike Method Midnight putter, changing it to 3-degrees to improve roll. ... After struggling with his putting over the first three months of the season, Bo Van Pelt switched back to a TaylorMade Ghost Tour Corza putter. He was ranked 127th in strokes gained-putting (-.302) prior to the Arnold Palmer. ... Looking for additional distance off the tee, Patrick Reed went from 43" to 44.75" in his VR_S Covert Tour driver. Reed also switched out of his VR_S Forged 2-iron for a VR Pro Combo 2-iron. ... Boo Weekley switched to TaylorMade's Lethal golf ball.

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