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British Open 2019: What’s with the number written on Lee Westwood’s irons?

July 20, 2019

Launch monitors and rangefinders have taken out nearly all of the guesswork when it comes figuring out carry distances. How a player remembers those numbers once they’ve been dialed in is a completely different story.

Most players in the professional ranks can reel off carry distances from memory in a matter of seconds without much trouble. But for those who need an extra reminder, simply writing them down on the inside cover of a yardage book usually does the trick.

Of course, there are a few pros who prefer to do things a bit differently — like Lee Westwood. The 46-year-old, who’s chasing his first major title at the Open Championship, prefers to write the carry distance on each Ping i210 iron head as a quick reminder before pulling a stick from the bag.

As you’d expect, Westwood is in the minority when it comes to scribbling carry distances on the club head. Ping Tour rep Kenton Oates confirmed Westwood is the only player on staff with this equipment quirk.

As the story goes, Westwood starting writing the number on each head during last year’s French Open when he switched to i210. At the time of the equipment change, Westwood had three different UW wedges — also known as a gap wedge — for different lofts and needed a way to keep them straight, so he started writing down the yardages on each head.

Jonathan Wall

Most weeks, Westwood uses two UW wedges (same i210 head design) with different lofts — as opposed to a traditional Ping sand wedge — and adds in a Glide Forged lob wedge.

He has since expanded it to writing the carry distance on every iron and wedge in the bag in the last year. The process is incredibly simplistic, but it certainly works for one of the best in the game.

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