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Home Daily Golf Briefs Daily Pulse for September 12, 2017

 

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Web Street Golf Daily Pulse
VOLUME 7, NUMBER 178                                                       
Tuesday, September 12, 2017

ANY IDEA WHO SAID THIS? “Golf should be a pleasure, not a penance.”

BRAIN TEASER: Matt Fitzpatrick earned his fourth career European Tour victory at the Omega European Masters on Sunday. He is only 23 years old. There are just five players to reach four victories who were younger than Fitzpatrick in European Tour history. How many can you name? 

LOST IN TRANSLATION? Interesting strategy play coming from Callaway Golf. It’s taking its #1 selling driver in Japan to the US and hoping that less will mean more, as I’ll explain. The company has enjoyed success in Japan in 2017 as well as around the world. The company, through six months of calendar 2017, reported second quarter Japanese sales were up 18% and 15.6% on a constant currency basis for six months. “Through Q2, our year-to-date hard goods dollar share was 20.5%, up 510 basis points year-over-year, and we were both the number one hard goods and the number one driver brand in this market,” reported Chip Brewer, Callaway’s President and CEO.

The GBB Epic Star driver has been the #1 selling model in Japan through 2017, according to the company. Now it’s bringing it to the United States. The cornerstone of the product is still Callaway’s proprietary Jailbreak technology along with its ultra-light Exo-cage head construction, which consists of 46% lightweight triaxial carbon and a 9.7-gram crown. A point of difference with the GBB Epic Star is its shaft, a premium, ultra-light 39-gram Grand Bassara driver shaft, made in Japan by Mitsubishi (first sub-40 gram shaft in a Callaway driver) and uses a proprietary MR70 carbon fiber material to promote distance and control, according to the company. It also is equipped with a 41-gram Golf Pride J200 grip, said to be 25% lighter than the typical grip Golf Pride produces.

The GBB Epic Star driver has a fixed hosel, which allowed Callaway to save another 7 grams versus its adjustable OptiFit hosel. The sum of the parts represents a lighter driver, weighing just 286 grams versus the typical 305 to 315 gram driver. The premise is the lighter the club, the faster the swing speed and the Epic Star driver is Callaway’s lightest driver to date. That covers the less part, now for the more.

The GBB Epic Star driver will be available at retail on September 29th with a minimum advertised price of $699.99. Japan has been known throughout the years for its expensive drivers, however it remains to be seen whether American buyers will embrace the premium being requested.

For those inspired by the GBB Epic Star, Callaway is always coming with a matching fairway metal wood. It’s a similar story as the driver under the premise of lightweight. The fairway metals will also have a Bassara shaft, 10 grams heavier than the driver version. It will be available in 15, 18 and 21-degrees and has a minimum advertised price of $399.99. The GBB Epic Star driver and fairway metals will begin pre-sale on September 22nd and available at retail starting on September 29th.

BUCKET LIST: The final chance to play in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship is being auctioned by the Alfred Dunhill Links Foundation, which raises funds for many charitable causes including assisting young amateur golfers in Scotland and South Africa and supporting the town and University of St Andrews.

The last remaining amateur playing place in the Championship will be up for auction through eBay until 15.00hrs GMT on MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 18. Bids can be made by visiting here.

Amateur golfers have one final chance to play alongside many of the world’s leading professionals in the prestigious invitation-only Alfred Dunhill Links Championship held over the Old Course St Andrews, Carnoustie and Kingsbarns from October 5-8.

England cricket star Kevin Pietersen, who will be playing this year, said, “There really isn’t anything better for an amateur golfer than to play in the Alfred Dunhill Links. It’s a dream come true. And they will also be raising money for a great cause as well.”

The winning bidder will be treated to the very best of Alfred Dunhill’s world famous hospitality. The package includes one amateur place in the 2017 Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, five nights accommodation for two at an official tournament hotel (breakfast included), airport transfers from Edinburgh and invitations to the Championship's exclusive social events.

With a prize fund of US$5 million, the Championship incorporates two separate competitions - an individual professional tournament for the world's leading golfers and a team event in which the professionals are paired with some of the most celebrated amateur golfers, creating a unique atmosphere.

The winning bidder will be playing alongside star golfers such as Luke Donald, Ernie Els, Tommy Fleetwood, Branden Grace, Martin Kaymer and Lee Westwood. Among the amateurs who have played regularly are entertainment stars Jamie Dornan, Ronan Keating, Greg Kinnear, Huey Lewis and Tico Torres. They have shared the fairways with sporting greats like Sir Steve Redgrave, Sir Ian Botham, Shane Warne, Brian O’Driscoll, Luis Figo and Jamie Redknapp.

The proceeds from the auction of this amateur playing spot will benefit the St Andrews-based Pilgrim Foundation (Charity Number SC029297), a charity committed to the restoration of historic monuments and buildings in the Home of Golf. The Pilgrim Foundation’s patrons include Sir Sean Connery, Colin Montgomerie, Jack Nicklaus, Sam Torrance, Tony Jacklin and TV commentator Peter Alliss.

WEB GEMS:

FAMILY FIRST: Ernie Els has pulled out of the KLM Open golf tournament so he can stay with family and friends in Florida to deal with the fallout from Hurricane Irma. Els said in a statement Monday that his, "first concern at the moment and the coming days is to support my family and our friends and staff at Els for Autism. We must be ready for the consequences of this terrible storm." READ MORE>>>

TIME FOR CHANGE? The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews is to consider extending the Walker Cup from two days to three, to bring it in line with other major team trophy events. The United States beat Great Britain and Ireland 19-7 in Los Angeles on Sunday, the biggest victory in 24 years in the biennial amateur match. It was sweet revenge, in particular, for Spider Miller, the US captain, who had overseen America’s record loss at Royal Lytham in 2015. Miller has been one of most vocal supporters of a change in format. The Ryder Cup, Solheim Cup and Curtis Cup are all contested over three days, but so far the R&A has remained resistant to arguments of the USGA – its fellow governing body – that the oldest match of the four should follow suit. READ MORE>>>

ANSWERS: “Golf should be a pleasure, not a penance.”--Donald Ross

The only players in tour history younger than Matt Fitzpatrick with a quartet of trophies go by the names of Seve Ballesteros, Jose-Maria Olazabal, Sandy Lyle, Sergio Garcia and Matteo Manassero.

THE INFORMATION CONTAINED IS BELIEVED TO BE RELIABLE, BUT IT IS NOT GUARANTEED. THE OPINION EXPRESSED IS THAT OF TERRY MCANDREW AND SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED A SOLICITATION TO BUY OR SELL SECURITIES IN ANY OF THE COMPANIES DISCUSSED WITHIN THIS NEWSLETTER. CONTENTS OF THIS NEWSLETTER MAY NOT BE REPRINTED OR REBROADCAST WITHOUT THE EXPRESSED WRITTEN CONSENT OF TMAC GOLF