Thursday, March 2, 2017

2017 PGA Merchandise Show - Day 3 Recap (Part 1): Callaway Golf, Odyssey Golf, Edel Golf, FootJoy, and Carnoustie Sport

Things definitely are more mellow on the final day of the Show, but for me the whirlwind was only getting stronger.  I still had a lot to cover, and in some instances even circle back to. 


In this section we take a look at a smorgasbord of new gems from Callaway Golf, Odyssey Golf, Edel Golf, Carnoustie Sportswear, and FootJoy. 

Start strong.  Finish stronger. 

Callaway Golf 
We've all experienced it, just not nearly enough.  Pick up a new club for the first time and hit the absolute hell out of it.  Does what we want, goes where we want.  Absolutely magic to hit.  And Callaway's actually made "two" of these clubs this year. 

Both the Epic and Epic Sub Zero drivers are bombers that gave me confidence to swing for the fences.  Explosive, crisp, and addictive is the best way to describe the feel at impact.  They're freakishly long. 

A lot of fundamental changes in these drivers, including carbon fiber and titanium rods.  But what I found most surprising was how much more forgiving "both" models were than previous Callaway drivers. 

The Epic's sliding weight track gives you a wide range of draw and fade options, while the Sub Zero is more about adjusting CG and spin rate.  These are the best drivers I've ever hit from Callaway, and honestly I liked them so much I might pull a Phil this year and keep both of them in my bag. 

Odyssey Golf 
When I first heard about Odyssey's O-Series putters with microhinge inserts I'll admit, it sounded bizarre, even gimmicky.  Tiny face hinges that bend back and spring forward when the ball is struck to impart immediate topspin?  But after spending some time hitting these putters I can tell you they might be the holy grail of forward roll. 

First of all don't let anyone tell you any putter's going to completely eliminate skid, that's not possible except on the most delicate of strokes.  But the O-Works putters do actually reduce skidding and hopping, and that's obviously going help with accuracy, and even distance control on longer putts. 

I couldn't see if the hinges actually flexed at impact of course, so I hit a series of 10-foot putts with both ascending strokes and descending strokes.  Good ascending strokes produced deliciously pure rolls.  And even with undesirable descending strokes, there was an element of self-correction where my putts were better than I deserved. 

I don't know what's in the water over at Callaway and Odyssey, but there's a healthy dose of awesomeness coming out of the 2180 Rutherford Road bat cave these days.  From tee to green they're doing undeniably great things to help you improve your game

Edel Golf 
The big story from the Edel Golf camp was their new single length irons.  You can read all about them in my PGA Show Spotlight Feature: Edel Single Length Irons.  But we're talking Edel here, so that means all kinds of sexy was on display, including snappy putters, dazzling wedges, and the actual Edel clubs Bryson DeChambeau used to win the 2015 U.S. Amateur. 

Two years ago the FootJoy HyperFlex was the most comfortable, stable golf shoe I ever wore from FootJoy.  And now I'm actually retiring them because the HyperFlex II are even better. 

HyperFlex II feature a newer, softer cushioning system, an improved flexgrid upper for greater stability, and a new outsole with even greater traction.  Just when I think FootJoy can't possibly make a shoe any better, they pull me right back in.  Take my money.  Seriously.  Simple as that

Carnoustie Sportswear 
When you see a Carnoustie Sportswear piece, there's no mistaking it for any other brand.  Modern performance and classic design fuse together in a treasure trove of luxurious cotton suedes, mercerized cotton knits, and cutting edge performance pieces. 

Carnoustie is a line that certainly speaks to luxury, their designs are intelligent and personable.  Every button, every trim, every detail is stitched perfectly. 

But Carnoustie also elevates the idea of what performance-wear can and should be by only using the most technical yarns, never deviating from the purpose of creating designs specifically for the golfer.  The fact that their clothes look just as great for post-round drinks as they do on the course is just icing on the cake.  You can read more in my PGA Show Spotlight Feature: Carnoustie Sportswear

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