The biggest gear stories of the 2023 PGA Tour season | Fully Equipped podcast

Going all the way back to the first tournament of the PGA Tour season — it has been an eventful year in the world of equipment. From putter changes by the world’s number 1 player to the golf ball distance debate that continues to rage on, this week they were all discussed on the Fully Equipped podcast.

Gene Parente from Golf Laboratories opened the discussion by pointing out that the golf ball debate has been a hot topic for years and the USGA’s focus on the issue has been more intense than ever.

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“For me, it is a no-brainer because we’re still talking about it,” Parente said. “It’s the golf ball and the seismic consequences of the proposal by the USGA and how it has taken up a lot of the oxygen in the discussion around equipment (for tour players and amateur golfers).”

Jonathan Wall went another route and brought up a specific category of gear — putters, and how from the Masters all the way to the most recent FedEx Cup playoffs, some of the top players in the world have had a hard time on the greens this season.

“I was going to talk about the resurgence of counterweight and long putters, but you still don’t see long putters out in the wild that often.” Wall continued, “I think you have to go to counterbalance putters and specifically the Odyssey Jailbird and how almost a decade after its release it has this massive effect on so many players on Tour.”

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“But how could we not talk about Scottie Scheffler? I was looking at some stats and he’s gonna have one of the best seasons ever from a financial standpoint and he’s had an incredible year from a strokes-gained perspective even when struggling with the putter. It continues to have us asking — what putter will Scottie use next?”

Last but not least Ryan Barath brought up how equipment companies are pushing the boundaries of iron design and set organization and how the idea of players using a single iron type is slowly becoming extinct.

“The evolution of blades in iron sets, because it used to be that you would always buy an iron set (that was the same from top to bottom) but fitting has proven to golfers at all levels that you don’t need to play a single iron through the bag.”

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Ryan cited the most recent Titleist irons as an example of an equipment manufacturer building a series of irons that can be mixed and matched through the set, and other Tour players too. “Lucas Glover is another example of a player that uses a forged cavity back (Srixon ZX7 MKII) set but switches to a larger ZX5 with a faster faster design in his longest iron to offer more height and forgiveness.”

So whether you’re looking to take inspiration from players at the highest level or just want to stay on top of the latest gear news, be sure to subscribe to GOLF’s Fully Equipped podcast for all the latest in equipment trends.

Want to overhaul your bag for 2023? Find a fitting location near you at True Spec Golf.

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