TOUR REPORT: 10 takeaways from a WILD week in golf equipment … – GolfWRX

Like most vacationers aboard an outbound plane to Maui, I had mid-flight visions of Mai Tais, white sandy beaches, and achieving inner peace in the tropics. Even in my pre-paradise dreams I couldn’t convince myself that I’d learn how to surf, but getting lei’d didn’t seem out of the question.
As I sit aboard the return flight to reality, however, my brain is spinning. Not from an overabundance of delicious, ice cold, pineapple-laden Mai Tais, unfortunately, but from the chaotic couple days of golf equipment news at the 2023 Sentry Tournament of Champions.
Truth be told, I knew I was heading directly into the eye of the gear storm at the Kapalua Plantation Course this week, but I didn’t realize just how hectic it would be.
Buckle in for my 10 gear takeaways below as I attempt to recap all that went on in the gear world ahead of the 2023 Sentry Tournament of Champions at Kapalua in Maui.
See all of the photos from this week in Hawaii here!
Callaway officially launched its new family of Paradym golf clubs this week and revealed full tech and retail information to the public. Among the early adopters at Kapalua were two of the tournaments favorites: Jon Rahm and Xander Schauffele.
Check out their new additions below:

Jon Rahm’s mini WITB at Kapalua

Since they’re just Sharpie marker lines on the face, this is perfectly legal. Don’t worry, it’s not a Hideki situation here. Xander just prefers to see a bit more of the face.

More Xander photos here
Although TaylorMade hasn’t officially announced tech details, or the retail release of its new Stealth 2 products, that didn’t stop Collin Morikawa and Scottie Scheffler from making a quick switch into the new products.
Check out their additions below:

More Collin photos here

Read about Scottie’s switch here
JT put us all through a spin cycle in 2022 when it came to his custom Scotty Cameron mallet prototype putters. It felt like he was debuting a new 1-of-1 every week there for a while.
Well, it seems 2023 is going to be another year of putter entertainment from Thomas, who switched back into a Scotty Cameron 303 SSS Circle T blade putter that he first starting using in middle school (as first reported by Dylan Dethier from
Justin Thomas is making a fun putter change this week, going back to a Scotty Cameron blade he first gamed in middle school (!) and hasn’t used in competition since college.
“I like putting with it, so why fight it?”
— Dylan Dethier (@dylan_dethier) January 4, 2023

Such a cool throwback addition to the bag and yet another fascinating chapter in JT’s putter saga.
Rumors have been swirling about Patrick Cantlay leaving the PGA Tour to LIV his best life, but he assured the media this week that he’s staying put on the PGA Tour. I have no reason not to believe him, as he seemed very candid in his Tuesday press conference.
“Yeah, I think it’s because I haven’t been too vocal one way or the other,” Cantlay said. “So, I think that’s probably where it is. Guys, for the most part, seem like they’re pretty polarized on this issue, and I view it as it’s been a competition for top talent, like any other business. But I have no plans to do that as of now, which has been my stance for, you know, basically since the whole time.”

Amidst the rumors, Cantlay showed up to Kapalua with a blacked-out Vessel staff bag – rather than his usual Titleist staff bag – and a missing Hugo Boss logo from his hat.

Cantlay remains on a glove/ball/shoe deal with Titleist, but he’s no longer a full-time equipment staffer. He does, however, seem to have the same Titleist gear setup in the bag this week.
I’m just going eat some popcorn and continue to watch the Cantlay show unfold. Actually, when Patrick is in Hawaii, is it Cant-lei?
This week, Wilson finally confirmed one of the worst kept secrets in golf: Kevin Kisner, and Trey Mullinax, have signed equipment deals with Wilson for 2023. Kisner isn’t in the field this week, but Mullinax is in Hawaii giving his new Wilson setup a test run.
Click here for more info on the Wilson signings

We don’t know exactly what’s different about Luke List’s set of PXG “0317 CB” irons, but we do know that List confirmed they are new in the bag for him this week. They are definitely milled, and they’re definitely cavity backs, but I’ll leave the rest up for reader speculation for now.
Second place to only the Masters, Hawaiian colors and themes make for nearly perfect artistic inspiration to make awesome custom headcovers.
Who do you think won the headcover battle this week in Kapalua?



Tom Kim broke out as a budding superstar last year thanks to his two quick PGA Tour wins and electric Presidents Cup performance. This year, it seems that he cashed in on his early success by signing a deal with Nike apparel.

It also appears that he re-upped his equipment deal with Titleist, despite rumors he may have been bolting elsewhere for a bigger check.

Im, and the aforementioned Tom Kim, both switched putter grips into SuperStroke’s new Zynergy models, which offer slightly more grip on the lower hand, and a less-pronounced seam on the undercarriage. Im switched into a Zenergy 1.0 PT and Kim switched into a Zenergy Tour 2.0.

Also, a quick reminder that Lee’s Scotty Cameron Tourtype F-5 mallet is a heater.

As I was perusing the Odyssey putter staff bag on the putting green at Kapalua, I started realizing something: ALL of the putters resting up against the golf bag are brand new. This week, Odyssey unveiled new White Hot Versa and Tri-Hot 5K putter models, with a slew of different hosels and sightlines.

While we don’t know just yet exactly what makes the designs different than previous models, we have confirmed one thing for certain: former Odyssey putter rep Joe Toulon has been promoted to Callaway’s PGA Tour Manager. Now that’s some White Hot industry gear news for you.

And with that, we say Aloha to Maui this week for the 2023 Sentry Tournament of Champions. We’ll see you next week at the Sony Open on Oahu for more gear news.
See all of the photos from this week in Hawaii here!
Gary Woodland signs multi-year deal with Cobra
Coolest thing for sale in the GolfWRX Classifieds (1/6/23): Bettinardi Sea Stinger FW head cover
He played on the Hawaii Pacific University Men’s Golf team and earned a Masters degree in Communications. He also played college golf at Rutgers University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.
Erik Ugland
Jan 9, 2023 at 1:22 pm
New Paradigm driver looks fantastic from address. But fairway woods are weirdly round. Like actually circular. SMH.
All the Stealth stuff also looks great from address, but I could do without the red face and the weird metal mechanicals on the back of the Plus fairways.
Jan 9, 2023 at 6:19 am
Saw you in the Bahamas taking pictures for the Hero. Good frequent flier miles you’re racking up here.
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GolfWRX Launch Report: 2023 TaylorMade Stealth 2 drivers
GolfWRX Launch Report: 2023 TaylorMade Stealth 2 fairway woods, hybrids
GolfWRX Launch Report: 2023 Cobra AeroJet drivers, fairway woods, hybrids
Wilson upgrades Duo Soft golf ball for 2023
GolfWRX Launch Report: 2023 Callaway Paradym fairway woods
Callaway unveils all-new Paradym and Paradym X irons
In our forums, our members have been discussing drivers with the loudest sound at impact. WRXer ‘GolferDude54’ is hard of hearing and looking for a driver that makes a big noise at impact, and our members have been sharing their best picks in our forum.
Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.
Entire Thread: “What’s the loudest driver ever? – GolfWRXers discuss”
At GolfWRX, we are a community of like-minded individuals that all experience and express our enjoyment of the game in many ways.
It’s that sense of community that drives day-to-day interactions in the forums on topics that range from best driver to what marker you use to mark your ball. It even allows us to share another thing we all love – buying and selling equipment.
Currently, in our GolfWRX buy/sell/trade (BST) forum, there is a listing for a Titleist T-300 iron set.

From the seller (@tleader): “1 item for sale, no trades.  Price includes shipping to USA and Canada. RH Titleist T300 Irons. 6-W1. Standard length, 1 degree weak, Standard lie. Modus 105 – Regular. Golf Pride Tour Velvet Cord BCT – Standard size. Ordered direct from Titleist, used twice indoors with Pro V1s, no discernible marks on face/sole. $700 USD.   Please PM me.  Thanks!
To check out the full listing in our BST forum, head through the link: Titleist T-300 iron set
This is the most impressive current listing from the GolfWRX BST, and if you are curious about the rules to participate in the BST Forum you can check them out here: GolfWRX BST Rules

We have four extremely lucky members visiting TaylorMade’s Global Headquarters in Carlsbad, CA to experience their new Carbonwoods and irons for 2023 before they launch to the world. These members will be the first to experience TaylorMade’s new 2023 products. Follow along in the GolfWRX forums!

TaylorMade 2023 product testing and fitting experience live at The Kingdom!

The four lucky WRXers — @Olde Maroon, @Kylekoz17, @gticlay, and @MFBach — got the full Kingdom experience as well as fittings for TaylorMade’s new Stealth 2 woods and irons.
Read more about the Stealth 2 family, below.
And check out some product introductions straight from The Kingdom.
TaylorMade Stealth 2 drivers
TaylorMade x GolfWRX: Advice from The Kingdom - TaylorMade Stealth 2 drivers

TaylorMade Stealth 2 fairway woods
TaylorMade x GolfWRX: Advice from The Kingdom - TaylorMade Stealth 2 fairway woods

TaylorMade Stealth 2 Rescues
TaylorMade x GolfWRX: Advice from The Kingdom - TaylorMade Stealth 2 Rescues

And here are a few of the members’ comments.

@oldemaroon: “I’m sure you are all inundated with Stealth 2 content given the embargo date being today. I know personally I woke to about ten review video notifications up on YouTube, so I’m guessing you have all watched at least one of those (probably more). What can I offer you that those pros can’t? Well, for better or for worse, I can share the entire TM launch experience and the fitting experience from the perspective of a middling golfer.”
“So, a bit about me. I’m 41 with a couple kids and a busy job (like many of you), so golf has fallen to the back burner for me in the last five years or so. I currently sit at a 16 handicap (up from a low around 10) and I play about 15 rounds per year lately. I’m pretty sure I buy more clubs/shafts here on BST each year than rounds I play… As you might expect, I struggle with consistency. I’ve been a member of the GolfWRX forums for a bit over a decade, learning a ton, spending a ton, and enjoying the enthusiast environment.”
“Coming into this trip, I had never been fit before. My bag prior to the fitting was as follows:
“As you can see, it’s a real mix of what I guessed would be correct for my skill level (limited).
“I’ll skip to the punch line and let you know where I ended up after my fitting with Chandler (who was incredible – more on that later):”
“Spider putter that shall remain a secret…but I can say that I went with a slight toe hang, which helped prevent a slightly closed face at impact.”
“I know I’m going to be jumping around, but I want to get straight into the fitting experience with Chandler (who also gave us the launch presentation for the new line of SGI irons). Chandler has worked in several roles around Taylormade and is a hell of a golfer himself, so he offers great perspectives on everything we covered. Most importantly for me, he was great at working me through my initial nerves and getting me comfortable quickly (except when the drone would buzz over my shoulder mid-swing).
“We dove straight into the big stick, which was my preference. I hoped to swing hard and punch through those nerves. Chandler had me hit my current driver (again, SIM Max 9* with Tensei 1K 65x). Historically, my preferred shot is a slight draw, and my miss is when I’m trying to control it and I get tight – then it’s a duck hook and I’m OB left. I swing around 105, a bit higher if I warm up and/or have a beer. Today, I had a bit of a block right, but the contact was okay. Launch was low at around 9* (pretty common for me). My launch angle was around neutral or even slightly negative, which isn’t typical for me but that’s the challenge with an inconsistent player.
“Chandler put me straight into a Stealth 9* lofted up one setting with a Tensei Orange 65s (because I have historically played counterbalanced shafts to help my AOA). This felt smooth and helped increase my AOA a bit, but it was a bit too loose for me and my dispersion suffered. It also spun up to above 3000 which killed my distance.
“Next up was a Graphite Design AD-XC 6s. This shaft felt great to swing and helped a bit with the dispersion, but launch was too low and spin remained too high. The result was low risers, which combined with the headwind at The Kingdom, meant loss of distance. We could do better.
“Chandler stuck a Ventus TR Blue 6s into the Stealth+ 2 head, and we saw some immediate results. The spin dropped a few hundred revs and the flight was more penetrating. Launch also went up a bit to just about 11*. The shaft felt great. I’ve previously tried the original Ventus Blue and it was a bit too spinny and loose for me. The Black was too manly for me. The Ventus Blue TR really hit that Goldilocks zone. Still, my flight started just a bit too right. Chandler said he had another tweak to make.
“He then switched it up completely, giving me a Hulk shaft. I’m pretty sure he just needed a quick pick-me-up so he wanted to watch me struggle to keep the ball on the planet. We had some fun laughing at block after block, and he casually handed me his real plan.
“Stealth+ 2 with the Ventus Blue TR 6x. When he gave me the club back, I didn’t notice that he had gone up a flex (I tried to never look at any changes he made). I immediately started belting drive after drive straight down the middle (which I cannot stress enough is not something I am usually capable of doing). Flight was noticeably higher and more penetrating. Turns out he had set it upright one degree, put the weight towards the heel, and dropped the loft a touch. With those changes, we had found the winner.
“Coming into this, I would never have guessed I would have ended up in the plus model. The tweaks Chandler made improved my strike so much, and the club has so much inherent forgiveness, that I had better dispersion than I’ve ever had.
“Chandler was an absolute genius throughout, spotting flaws and making tweaks to address my needs. He was full of surprises, too, but more on that in a bit (typing on my phone is so slow that this report is going to take about as long as the fitting itself).”

@kylekoz17: “As for the driver, I hit a few shots with my 9* TSi3 to establish a baseline. Was hovering around 165 ball speed and ~2500 spin, something I am pretty happy with for my January swing in the north east. One thing we wanted to do was improve my descent angle which was around 40. The goal was sub 35. We tried the 8,9, and 10.5* heads. The 10.5 wasn’t a fit right away, so we spent our time finding the right combination of head and shaft between the 8 and 9 heads. For my swing yesterday, the 8* was probably the right fit, but we were also talking about a mid season swing and taking that into account when ultimately deciding on which one we would go with. In the end we went with the 9* head with Tensei Orange 65x as it was a good combination of spin, ball speed, and descent angle that we think will also be a good fit in the summer. The 8 was awesome and the 30* descent angle would run forever, but I think spin was was just a touch too low.”
“Two things about the driver that really impressed me:
“1. the efficiency of ball speed as I started slowing down after hitting a lot of balls. A couple mph swing speed less as I got tired and the ball was still jumping off the face and distance really hadn’t changed
“2. forgiveness. If I remember correctly, I was as high as 167 ball speed with the Stealth 2 Plus at the same swing speed as my TSi at the same loft, so the couple MPH gain was nice, but my misses were so good. My miss is a high spinny right shot, so when I caught shots low on the face or heel, I would always go back and check to see what spin and distance were doing. It was shocking to see the ball speeds at 162-164 with spin staying below 3k. That is unheard of for me and frankly had my fitter questioning where I actually caught the ball on the face when I said I missed it, but we confirmed my strikes with trackman. Carry distances were about 10-15 yards shorter than solid strikes.”

@gticlay: “I was most excited about hitting the Stealth2+ fairway offerings. They threw us a curveball by introducing a new model – the Stealth2HD model. It’s a new large head, mid height faced 3w that will get the ball up fast. This was almost immediately after I thanked the presenter for keeping their fairways with a deeper face, so foot in mouth on that except for it’s built for someone that is newer to golf, or that has always struggled with getting the ball up with a fairway wood.”
“I hit both the 3w and 5w’s. For the fairways, we started with the 3w and based on my irons and driver fitting, my guy already had a shaft picked out for me – the Graphite Design Tour AD DI 7X shaft. At 75g, it’s only slightly lighter than the Ozik Black Tie 80M-X that I am playing in my TI R9 “paint break” 3w now. We started with the weight in neutral but ended up with it all the way forward to help the head work for my swing. I also hit the IZ-6 shaft but it just didn’t have that feel I like in a shaft (I hadn’t known I had such a strong preference for a certain type of shaft before this). In order to see the ball flight he wanted, my fitter put the weight all the way forward saying that he didn’t think I’d have a problem losing the forgiveness the rear position offers. The sun was in my eyes so it was difficult to see my shots when they started off but by the end of the 3w fitting I was hitting it at a white aiming pole as well as my swing allows with very good numbers.”
“When we hit the 5w, I was starting to get a little tired but he came out, gave me the club and said “I think you are going to love this setup”. I hit two perfect shots and one that leaked a little right – the club was maybe the most solid feeling fairway I’ve ever hit…. well ever. I allowed myself to look at what shaft it is and it was the Blue Ventus 9-X. I hit another shaft just to be sure but no, that 9-X was love at first flight. I’ve never even hit a Ventus shaft before, so that was a nice hello nice to meet you moment.”
“Although I hit it first, the Driver was my first wood fitting. He set something up similar to my current gamer – an Epic Max LS. I hit a few different shafts but the last one was the one and it was actually something that I gamed last part of 2021 and first 2/3rds of 2022 – the Tensei Orange 65-X. Due to the very obvious graphics, I knew exactly what it was (I tried not to look at the shafts when I hit them) and it instantly felt familiar and comfortable. With a 10.5* head turned down a notch we ended up where my fitter wants me to “live” and that’s 12* launch and high 1700, low 1800 RPM. The one time I looked at the numbers it said 12.1*, 1776rpm. I have to say it felt good when the fitter next to us watched, commented how the flight looked really good and asked “how many yards did THAT one go!”. It’s not like my SS is so high but the ball was really out there on a few nutted shots. Compared to the empty aluminum can feel/sound of my previous driver the Stealth driver sounds so very nice and solid.
“So if I were to describe the Stealth2 Carbonwoods in one word – I would say SOLID. Solid feel, solid flight, solid sound. I can’t wait to game them.
*one last note – the gen1 fairway woods did NOT have the inverted cone technology “donut” in the face but they have added that to the gen2 fairways so they should be more forgiving on more of the face.
*ok one more last note – I’m not sure if they changed the white line on the top of the face, but I can’t even remember seeing it during the fitting. I never hit gen1 Stealth fairways so I can’t speak to those, but I think you have to look for the line if you want to use it vs. it being “in your face” at setup.
Follow along in the GolfWRX forums for more!
Read more about the Stealth 2 family, below.
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