Zach Johnson switched to a lower-lofted Titleist 913D2 driver this week. (Halleran/Getty Images)
By Jonathan Wall, PGATOUR.COM Equipment Insider
One of the tightest courses on the PGA TOUR, Colonial Country Club forced a number of players in the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial field to make equipment adjustments for the challenging layout — including one of the TOUR's most accurate players.
Jim Furyk asked Callaway Tour reps to build him a Callaway RAZR Fit Xtreme 5-wood (Fujikura SPD VC 8.1x shaft) with 16.2 degrees of actual loft to replace his 20-degree PING Anser hybrid.
Furyk wanted the club in the bag for a number of key shots and holes at Colonial, such as the 247-yard par-3 fourth. The lengthy par 3 requires a high soft shot, and Furyk felt the 5-wood gave him a chance to hit the green.
Furyk finished the tournament even-par on the hole.
Equipment transition continues for Reed: After starting the 2013 season with Nike, Patrick Reed made a mid-season equipment switch at the HP Byron Nelson Championship when he put Callaway's X Forged irons, Mack Daddy wedges and an Odyssey White Hot Pro #3 putter (with a custom black coated shaft and stamping) in play for the week.
The equipment transition continued at Colonial with Reed adding a Callaway RAZR Fit Xtreme driver that had 7.7 degrees of finished loft with 14 grams of weight in the toe and 6 grams in the heel. Reed also went with Callaway's X Hot 3Deep fairway wood that had 13.8 degrees of actual loft
Long irons making a comeback: One week after Jason Day used a TaylorMade RocketBladez Tour 1-iron at the HP Byron Nelson Championship, a couple players opted to pull hybrids from the bag and go with 2-irons at Colonial.
Wells Fargo Championship winner Derek Ernst had PING Tour reps make him a PING S56 2-iron for the week. Ernst, who typically uses a 17-degree PING Anser hybrid, wanted to have the iron if the wind picked up. Scott Gardiner also went the same route, adding a PING S56 2-iron.
Steve Flesch and Ted Potter Jr. also put three Cleveland 588 MT (3-5) long-irons in play, while Bo Van Pelt (588 MT 2-iron) and Stewart Cink (TaylorMade RocketBladez Tour 3-iron) opted for single irons.
Laird seeing double: Keegan Bradley raised some eyebrows when he shot a course-record 60 at the HP Byron Nelson Championship with two Cleveland 4-irons.
Martin Laird didn't have the same luck as Bradley, but that didn't stop him from using two TaylorMade 3-irons at Colonial — a Tour Preferred 08 model he’s been playing all season, and a new Tour Preferred CB 3-iron that went in play this week.
Wilson's new prototype irons: Wilson Golf gave tour staffers a chance to test out its new prototype adjustable woods over the last few weeks. Next on the testing list appears to be a forged, cavity-back FG Tour M3 iron that has a dark, non-glare finish and rounded toe. Ricky Barnes and Padraig Harrington have tested the irons over the last few weeks.
New iron shafts for Moore: Ryan Moore's bounced back-and-forth between TaylorMade's RocketBladez Tour irons and his old PING S56s this season. The one thing that remained the same in both sets was Aerotech's SteelFiber shafts.
Moore went with a new set of RocketBladez Tour irons at Colonial, but instead of keeping the SteelFiber shafts, he decided to try out Project X's lightweight PXi (6.0). The new shaft is 8 grams lighter than the standard Project X steel shaft and, according to the company, produces greater distance and improved feel through an optimized butt to tip stiffness calibration.
Kirk adds new ball, fairway wood: Chris Kirk made a couple of notable equipment changes at Colonial, adding Callaway's X Hot 3Deep fairway wood (14 degrees) and HEX Chrome+ ball.
Kirk tested 3Deep at home and adjusted the shaft length from 43 inches to 42.5 inches. He felt the shorter shaft helped him turn the ball over, while still allowing him to hit high soft cuts.
Divots: Defending champ Zach Johnson went with a lower-lofted Titleist 913D2 driver (8.5 degrees from 9.5 degrees) after working on his golf swing. ... Searching for a new shaft for his PING G25 3-wood that produced a higher ball flight and more spin, Harris English swapped his Aldila RIP 80x shaft for an Aldila Tour Green 85x. ... Following Y.E. Yang's lead, Robert Garrigus became the latest player to go with multicolored Nowon No1 Ichi grips on his TaylorMade RocketBladez irons (6-PW). ... Sean O'Hair made a number of equipment changes at Colonial, going back to TaylorMade's R1 driver (he was using RBZ Tour) and adding a new set of RocketBladez Tour irons with fresh grooves. ... Luke Guthrie switched to PING's TR ZB S putter for the British Open qualifier at Gleneagles Country Club and qualified for golf's oldest major championship. As expected, Guthrie used the putter at Colonial. ... Troy Matterson tried a set of Aldila's new graphite prototype shafts in his RocketBladez Tour irons (3-PW), and became the latest to use TaylorMade's Daddy Long Legs counterbalanced putter. ... Kevin Chappell added a Nike VR_S Covert 5-wood to the bag.