PGA TOUR | PGA Championship
The 104th PGA Championship concluded with an all-Titleist playoff between Titleist Brand Ambassadors Justin Thomas and Will Zalatoris – each playing a Titleist golf ball and 14 Titleist clubs — with Thomas emerging from the three-hole aggregate playoff to hoist the Wannamaker Trophy for the second time.
- Starting the day seven shots back of the lead, Thomas, 29, closed with his third 3-under 67 of the week to force the extra session.
- He played the three playoff holes – Southern Hills’ par-5 13th, par-4 17th and par-4 18th – in 2 under (birdie-birdie-par) to complete the largest comeback in PGA Championship history, and the third largest comeback in a major.
- Including the playoff, JT played his final 13 holes Sunday in 6 under par.
- For the week, Thomas finished T2 in Greens in Regulation (69.44%) while ranking 4th in proximity to the hole.
- He averaged 14’0” on approaches from 125-150 yards – second best in the field and 11’9” better than the field average.
- Thomas was also second in Strokes Gained: Putting (+6.313).
- With the win, JT moved to No. 5 in the World Ranking.
- Zalatoris, 25, earned his second runner-up finish in major championship while becoming the first player in 28 years to finish in the top-10 in 5 of his first 8 career majors.
- The performance moved Zalatoris to No. 14 in the World Ranking.
JT LEADS FIVE-WIN WEEK FOR TITLEIST GOLF BALL PLAYERS
- Justin Thomas' PGA Championship victory was one of five wins Sunday for Titleist golf ball players across the worldwide professional tours – marking the fourth-consecutive week of five or more wins for Pro V1 and Pro V1x players.
- It also marked win No. 20 for Titleist golf ball players on the 2021-22 PGA TOUR, including Scottie Scheffler's victory last month at the Masters playing Pro V1.
TITLEIST PLAYERS FINISH STRONG AT SOUTHERN HILLS
- Of the seven players who finished T5 or better at the PGA Championship:
- Six played a Titleist Pro V1 or Pro V1x golf ball model: Thomas (Pro V1x), Zalatoris (Pro V1), Cameron Young (Pro V1 Left dot), Mito Pereira (Pro V1), Chris Kirk (Pro V1x), and Matt Fitzpatrick (Pro V1x);
- Four played a Titleist TSi driver (all of them TSi3 models): Thomas, Zalatoris, Young and the 15th-ranked player in the world.
- Four carried full Titleist iron sets – Thomas (T100 & 621.JT), Zalatoris (T100), Cameron Young (620 CB & MB) – while three carried a T200 utility iron (Zalatoris, Young and the 67th-ranked player in the world);
- Six had at least one NEW Vokey Design SM9 wedge in the bag, with 19 total wedges among them: Thomas, Zalatoris, Young and the 15th-, 41st and 67th-ranked players in the world;
- Four played a Scotty Cameron putter: Thomas (Phantom X 5 Knuckle Neck), Zalatoris (Phantom X 11 Long), Young (Phantom X 5) and the 67th-ranked player in the world (Select GoLo).
WHAT'S IN JUSTIN THOMAS' TITLEIST GOLF BAG?
Golf Ball: Pro V1x
Driver: TSi3 10.0° | Mitsubishi Chemical Diamana ZF 60 TX-Flex
Fairway Metals: TS3 15.0° and 915 Fd 18.0°
Irons: NEW T100 4 and 621JT 5-9
Wedges: New Vokey Design SM9 46.10F (@ 47.5°), 52.12F (@ 52.5°), 56.14F (@ 57.0°) and WedgeWorks 60T (@ 60.5°)
Putter: Scotty Cameron X5.5 prototype
WHAT’S IN WILL ZALATORIS’ TITLEIST GOLF BAG?
Golf Ball: Pro V1
Driver: TSi3 9.0° with a Fujikura Speeder 757 TR X shaft
Fairway Metal: TSi3 16.5° with a Fujikura Atmos 8 Red shaft
Utility iron: T200 3-iron
Irons: T100 4-PW with Dynamic Gold X100 Tour Issue shafts
Wedges: New Vokey Design SM9 50.08F, 54.10S at 55, 60T with Dynamic Gold X100 Tour Issue shafts
Putter: Scotty Cameron Phantom X 11 Tour Prototype
JUSTIN THOMAS ON HIS PRO V1x GOLF BALL
- Justin Thomas made the move to his current golf ball – the 2021 Pro V1x – in December of 2020 at the Mayakoba Golf Classic, following a testing session with Fordie Pitts of Titleist Golf Ball R&D.
- “A key focus for Justin heading into [last season] was to flight the ball higher with his long irons and improve his landing angle into those very firm greens they find most weeks on tour,” Pitts said. “As we started testing Pro V1x, the ball was consistently launching in that slightly higher window and giving him all the distance he needs. It was also a very windy day, and he really liked seeing how stable the ball was flying through all those gusts.”
- Said Thomas: “I feel like [the Pro V1x] is able to kind of pick up on some of the areas that I was trying to improve in terms of I was trying to get a little bit more height on the ball, trying to be able to hold greens a little bit better when they get firm or with long irons, and I feel like this ball has been able to do that for me."
“I need [the ball] to do what it feels like I’m making it do. When I hit a shot, when I make the swing, when I look up and my eyes meet the ball, I want it to be in the window. I want it to be in and expect it to be in and perform the way I want and expect it to perform on the green. When you say it like that, it’s expecting a lot, but they (R&D) somehow seem to do it.”
THOMAS WINS WITH TSi3 DRIVER
- Justin Thomas' comeback victory included several critical drives down the stretch Sunday at Southern Hills with his Titleist TSi3 driver — the most played driver at the PGA Championship and on the PGA TOUR.
- After playing last season with a TSi2 model, JT moved into his current driver – a TSi3 10.0° with Mitsubishi Diamana ZF 60 TX shaft – to start 2022 at the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Hawaii.
- “As JT and his dad (Titleist staff member Mike Thomas) continue to refine his swing, we are regularly checking in on his driver to make sure he’s dialed in with all the shots he needs to hit,” said J.J. Van Wezenbeeck, Titleist’s Director of Player Promotions. “What we found in testing TSi3 was that we were able to go up in loft to the 10-degree head by utilizing the SureFit hosel in the D•1 setting (-0.75 degrees loft, standard lie), which allows him to hit those flighted shots we saw down the stretch Sunday at the PGA, while still being able control the spin when he hits the big ones.”
- For the week, Thomas finished 17th in Strokes Gained: Off the Tee (+2.629), while ranking seventh in that category for Sunday’s final round, his best performance of the week off the tee.
THOMAS’ T100 4-IRON, CUSTOM 621 JT BLADES
- Justin Thomas' iron set consists of a T100 4-iron and set of custom prototype blade irons (621.JT).
- “The T100 4-iron just checks a lot of boxes that he needs at that part of the bag in terms of launch and speed performance,” Van Wezenbeeck said. “The higher launch lets him stretch it when he needs to stretch it, but when he has to take something off he still feels like he can hold a green.”
- The 621.JT models were developed by the Titleist Golf Club R&D team in collaboration with Thomas to better understand some key design variables – such as shaping, sole design and CG placement – that ultimately may find their way into future Titleist iron development.
- The 5-9 irons went into play for the first time last October at the PGA TOUR’s CJ CUP @ SUMMIT.
- “Yeah, obviously I love them. I love the look of them, the feel of them, the way they go through the ground,” JT said earlier this season. “And most importantly, too, they do what I feel like they should be doing when I hit them. In terms of specifics, I like very, very little offset. But when you get to a lot of the other stuff, I don’t know how they do it. I give the feedback to the team, like ‘I want to go through the ground a little bit differently here, or I want the weighting this way, or I want it to go through whatever window’ and then they design it. It’s really cool.”
- This week at Southern Hills, Thomas finished T2 in Greens in Regulation (69.44%) while ranking 4th in proximity to the hole.
THOMAS WINS WITH VOKEY SM9, BEATS BUNKERS WITH K GRIND
- Justin Thomas played four Vokey Design SM9 wedges in winning the PGA Championship – 46.10F (@ 47.5), 52.12F (@ 52.5), 56.14F (@ 57.0), and a WedgeWorks 60.06K grind that helped him go 5-for-5 in sand saves Sunday at Southern Hills.
- For the week, He averaged 14’0” on approaches from 125-150 yards – second best in the field and 11’9” better than the field average.
- “When I was testing SM9, it was nice to see the low controlled flight,” said Thomas, who put the new SM9 models in play to start 2022 at the Sentry Tournament of Champions. “For me, for someone who likes to flight my wedges and control my spin a lot, I need to be able to see that ball hit the windows. And I’m looking both low and high, but especially low. Because for me, it’s nice to be able to feel like I hit it and I don't look up and it’s coming high and floaty. It’s hitting the flight that I want, the spin that I want and reacting how I want.”
- When it comes to his lob wedge, Thomas goes back-and-forth between his WedgeWorks 60.06K and WedgeWorks 60T models, depending on course conditions.
- Said Vokey Tour Rep Aaron Dill: “The T comes out when it’s pretty firm and the bunkers don’t have a lot of sand. This week was unique because we knew that the Bermuda grass would require a little more bounce and then the bunkers – they were just tough with very unique and coarse sand. I sat in a cart with him on Tuesday and he goes, ‘This sand, it’s really tricky, it’s very inconsistent and sometimes you don’t know what you’re going to get. Between the two models that I brought, the T and the K, the K is feeling the best and seems to be the most consistent out of this style of sand.’
“The K Grind is a wide flange sole, it’s a little wider than you’d see in a lot of other models, and it acts like a skid plate. It really is great for firmer conditions when you’re pitching and chipping off grass, because it sits really close to the ground. But where it really is strong is when you’re in the bunkers, because that added width of the sole allows you to open the face and increase some natural bounce. It’s a very forgiving style of sole and it just wants to pop the ball out of there easily and with spin.”
A MAJOR FOR PHANTOM X
- Justin Thomas captured his second major championship in his second week playing a new Scotty Cameron Phantom X tour prototype.
- JT, who put the Phantom X 5 Knuckle Neck in play for the first time at last week’s AT&T Byron Nelson, finished the week second in Strokes Gained: Putting, gaining more than six strokes on the field (+6.313) with his new mallet.
- The Phantom X 5 Knuckle Neck offers less toe flow versus the 2.5 slant neck of his previous gamer (Futura X 5.5).
- Said Scotty Cameron Rep Drew Page: “He just likes what it does in his stroke. He has a little bit better face awareness and face stability. Growing up, he was always a Newport 2 user, and this kind of brings back that same look, but in the stability of a mallet.”
“Thomas played a similar putter at last year’s Open Championship, and provided feedback to the Scotty Cameron team to make it sound and feel more like his Futura X 5.5. They added an aluminum plate to the back cavity that results in more of a higher-pitched sound versus a hollow-sounding hit, according to Page. “He likes that feedback. He likes hearing the sound.”
MAJOR SWITCHES FOR WEBB SIMPSON – 2021 PRO V1 & T100 IRONS
- Traditionally a blade iron player, Titleist Brand Ambassador Webb Simpson stepped to the first tee Thursday at Southern Hills with a set of new T100 irons in his bag, having practiced with them at home leading up to the year’s second major.
- “I’ve had a couple of short stints with non-blades in my career but not many,” said Simpson, who had been playing 620 MB models. “Approach to the green is typically a strength for me; this year it’s been a weakness, and I’ve struggled out of the rough. I keep getting told that these the irons I’m playing are better out of the rough, better with distance control, better with mis-hits, and so I guess I was being stubborn but finally listened and I really like them.”
- On Saturday at Southern Hills, Simpson shot one of the best rounds of the tournament – a 5-under 65 in cold, windy conditions – while recording a season-high Strokes Gained: Approach in any round (+4.541).
- As a result of the iron change, Simpson also moved into the 2021 Pro V1 golf ball from a prior generation model. Webb’s initial testing of the T100's, according to Fordie Pitts of Titleist Golf Ball R&D, showed that his spin was reducing a little bit. “By moving to ‘21 Pro V1, he was able to regain that spin and control.” Pitts said.
KORN FERRY TOUR | AdventHealth Championship
Titleist Brand Ambassador Trevor Cone rolled his Pro V1x golf ball in from 19 feet for birdie Sunday on Blue Hills CC’s 18th green to win by one shot,
- It marked the second KFT victory for Cone, who finished the week first in putts per green in regulation (+1.648) using his Scotty Cameron Select Fastback 1.5 Teryllium tour prototype putter.
- Titleist golf ball players have now won 10 of the first 13 events played this season on the KFT.
What’s in Trevor Cone’s Titleist Golf Bag?
Golf Ball: Titleist Pro V1x
Driver: TSi2 10.0°
Fairway Metal: TSi3 15.0°
Hybrid: TSi3 20.0°
Irons: T100 4-PW
Wedges: NEW Vokey Design SM9 52°, 56°, 60°
Putter: Scotty Cameron Select Fastback 1.5 Teryllium tour prototype
JAPAN TOUR | Golf Partner Pro-Am Tournament 2022
Shugo Imahira (Pro V1x) won for the second-consecutive week, making birdie on the second hole of a three-person playoff.
- Imahira, who followed up a third-round 9-under 61 with a Sunday 65, now has seven career wins on the JGTO.
KOREAN TOUR | The 12th Descente Korea Munsingwear Match Play
What’s in EunShin Park’s Titleist Golf Bag?
Golf Ball: Titleist Pro V1
Driver: TSi3 8.0°
Fairway Metal: TSi2 15.0°
Utility Iron: T200 (2)
Irons: T100 (4) and 620 MB (5-PW)
Wedges: Vokey Design SM8 50.12F, 54.14F, NEW SM9 58.08M
SUNSHINE TOUR | FBC Zimbabwe Open
Albert Venter (Pro V1x Left Dash) claimed his maiden Sunshine Tour title, outlasting Stefan Wears-Taylor (Pro V1) and Titleist Brand Ambassador Louis Albertse (Pro V1x) in a playoff at the Royal Harare Golf Club.
AMATEUR | NCAA Men’s Regionals
Titleist swept every major equipment category at the NCAA Men’s Regional championships, with more players across the six regional sites combined putting their trust in Titleist golf balls, drivers, fairway metals, hybrids, utility irons, irons, wedges and putters than any other brand:
- 86% (385) of the 450 players competing in NCAA Regionals played a Titleist golf ball – including 97% of the field at the NCAA Men’s South Central Regional – 11 times the nearest competitor (35).
- Titleist was the most played driver with 189 players (42%), compared to 110 (24%) for the nearest competitor.
- More players also chose Titleist fairways (207/43%) and hybrids (41/45%).
- There were more than two times as many Titleist iron sets (196/44%) in play than any other brand, while players gamed a total of 163 Titleist utilities (62%), more than four times the nearest competitor (35).
- The most popular putter brand among teams at the NCAA Men’s Regionals? Scotty Cameron (122/27%).
AMATEUR | NCAA Women’s Championship
Titleist is the overwhelmingly most played golf ball at the NCAA Women’s Championship, with 97 percent of the field playing a Pro V1 or Pro V1x golf ball.
- Of the 132 players competing this week in Scottsdale, Ariz., 125 are teeing up a Titleist.
- In addition to golf balls, Titleist is also the most played utility iron (4/36%), wedge (176/44%) and putter (36/27%) this week at Grayhawk GC.