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Golf Australia Express : February 2013
PUTTING IS never far from a golfer’s mind. Drivers boast with bling, but the humble putter brings the game together. Last year was pivotal for those in putter design, with a clear line drawn in the sand to stymie anchored putters out of existence by 2016. Callaway—through its offshoot, Odyssey— has been extremely quick to respond. The Odyssey Golf Metal X Arm Lock putter (released January) is designed to lock the putter against the top arm, making the putter an extension of the body. This is the first step in a new direction and it will be interesting to see how it takes on. Its new Versa range of putters [pictured right] could well end up the most popular for 2013. Developments in insert technology mean that the solid brass Old Master in my bag is looking increasingly like a fossil from another age. Ping’s Scottsdale TR [pictured left] brings new innovation to the green, with variable groove depth providing a more consistent and forgiving face that is less likely to skid the ball across the green. After reading releases on golf balls it would be easy to believe that switching to an expensive pill will bring your score down even if you went around with a teaspoon stuck to a stick with gaffer tape. Ball design is broken down into three basic sections—the core, mantle and cover. This year, TaylorMade releases its new take on the popular Penta—its 5-layered Lethal ball. Golf ball design is a complicated business, but basically it comes down to the ratio between different densities—a hard ball will travel a long way, but will lack control around the green. A soft ball will spin and stick to the dance floor, but will act like jelly on the tee. Five layers of differentiated and extremely technological materials aim to offer the best of both worlds. They don’t come cheap, but the new covers are extremely durable—the reason you’d say goodbye to one of these bad boys is by putting it down a snake hole. By the time the big releases are through there is sure to be something to dream of for the next birthday, to hint at for Father’s Day or put down on Santa’s list (if you’re really organised). In the end though, a spoon on a stick will do if only to provide an excuse to head out for a quick round in summer’s last month. I’ll probably see you there. OTG GEAR the GEAR the PUTTERS & BALLS