Quick Look at the Puerto Rico Open

Opportunity knocks in beautiful Puerto Rico this week, as Grand Reserve Country Club once again hosts a bevy of PGA TOUR players looking to push their seasons to greater heights.

Core golf fans know it is weeks like these where players often come of age. Sure they’re not in Mexico City at a World Golf Championship, but some of the 120 players in Puerto Rico certainly will be in the future.

Those with an eye on the FedExCup Playoffs know a few points here in this vibrant Caribbean destination could make all the difference, not to mention the two-year winner's exemption and a spot in the upcoming PLAYERS Championship (if not already exempt) that are both up for grabs as well.

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In The Takeaway, Teryn Gregson recaps the Good, Bad & Unusual from the Genesis Invitational, where Tiger Woods holes out from the bunker after a miss, enlisting actor Chris Pratt’s approach in Monday’s Celebrity Cup, while Rory McIlroy nearly holed out at Tiger’s feet while he tended the pin as a joke.

Top Takeaways from the 2020 PGA Merchandise Show

The 2020 PGA Merchandise Show has come to a close, and what a thrilling week it was. From new products and services on display to educational experiences for all in attendance, the PGA Show set up 2020 to be an incredible year for the game of golf.

As we look back on the week that was, here are a few things you might have missed as you were soaking in all the exciting news coming out of the Orange County Convention Center.

A new chapter at PGA.com

The PGA of America launched a newly reimagined PGA.com to connect consumers with PGA Professionals. The redesigned site, which is now managed in-house by the PGA, focuses on the journey a golfer takes to begin or improve their game, no matter their skill level.

“PGA.com is designed to bring to life the special relationship between PGA Professionals and consumers through coaching and other consumer-focused services, with a vision that ‘your best golf is ahead of you,’” said PGA Interactive General Manager Rob Smith. “There are so many ways in which a journey in golf can positively impact your life. Our job is to identify the best ways to connect with PGA Professionals across all aspects of the game, beginning with coaching.”

Demo Day fun

When you have a driving range area that is the size of about 32 football fields, there is no shortage of fun that can be had testing out the latest and greatest equipment.

And even though the temperatures were a bit brisk, that didn’t stop things from heating up. PGA.com’s social correspondent Hailey Hunter helped us check out all the fun things going on.

How much would you be prepared to spend on a putter? In this video, Michael Harris puts models from both ends of the spectrum up against each other. In this cheap v expensive putter test, he tries the Inesis 100 Mallet and the Scotty Cameron Phantom 12. With the price gap between them being over £350, we wanted to find out what the differences in performance were!

New Date and Venue in 2020 for the Annual Marilynn Smith Scholarship Pro-Am

The 11th Marilynn Smith Scholarship Pro-Am will be played on the Bank of Hope Founders Cup tournament course at Wildfire Golf Club at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort & Spa on Sunday, March 15, 2020 – kicking off the LPGA Tour's Bank of Hope Founders Cup week.

After a decade of being hosted at PebbleCreek's Tuscany Falls Golf Course in Goodyear, Arizona, during the fall, the annual Marilynn Smith Scholarship Pro-Am is switching its location to Phoenix and its date to March for next year's edition.

It will be the first Marilynn Smith LPGA Charity Pro-Am to be held since LPGA Founder and Hall of Fame member Marilynn Smith passed away on April 9 this year, just four days shy of her 90th birthday. 

The annual event benefits The Marilynn Smith Scholarship Fund administered through the LPGA Foundation, and it regularly includes several LPGA professionals who have made a habit of taking part in the fundraiser. Past participating honorees include Kathy Whitworth, Carol Mann, Shirley Spork, JoAnne Carner, Betsy King, Hollis Stacy, Patty Sheehan, Nancy Lopez, Judy Rankin, Donna Caponi and Sandra Palmer. 

"We are thrilled that the 2020 Pro-Am will be an elevated experience, including LPGA Tour players in the field, supporting Marilynn's vision, as well as a Sunday Tea with player interviews by veteran golf writer Ron Sirak," said Scott Wood, Tournament Director of the Bank of Hope Founders Cup.

LPGA Commissioner Mike Whan paid tribute to the massive impact made by Smith through her Charity Pro-Am and her Scholarship Fund. 

Volvik Announced as Title Sponsor of 10th Annual Founders Cup

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., Feb. 17, 2020 – The Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) announced today that Volvik, the golf ball manufacturer, has signed on to become the official 2020 title sponsor of the newly renamed Volvik Founders Cup. The 10th edition of the Volvik Founders Cup will be played in Phoenix, Ariz. on March 16-22, 2020, at the Wildfire Golf Club.

“We are proud to participate as the title sponsor of this event that honors the founders of the LPGA and does so much to grow the game we all love through the LPGA-USGA Girls Golf Program,” said Don Shin, President of Volvik USA. “Volvik plays a vital role in growing the game by offering high-quality, attractive golf balls for players of every skill level, and by bringing a wide array of colors and a unique matte finish into the golf ball market.” 

With this announcement, Volvik continues a successful partnership with the LPGA Tour. Since 2011, Volvik has been an official marketing partner of the LPGA. The company was the title sponsor of the LPGA Volvik Championship between 2016 and 2018 at the Travis Point Country Club in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Currently, Volvik sponsors the Symetra Tour’s Volvik Race for the Card, with the top-10 players on the Symetra Tour Money List by the end of each season earning LPGA Tour Membership for the following year. The company also has eight LPGA Tour players on staff.

Volvik Announced as Title Sponsor of 10th Annual Founders Cup“Volvik has made a clear, and consistent commitment to our LPGA players, our LGPA events, and to the future of women’s golf worldwide,” said LPGA Commissioner Mike Whan. “Our 13 Founders would be excited to know that companies like Volvik have not only raised the bar for women’s golf, but also support The Founders Cup – an event that pays as much ‘forward’ as it does to the current stars.”

The Volvik Founders Cup was created in 2011 to honor the 13 Founders of the LPGA, celebrate the talented players currently on Tour and invest in future generations through donations to the LPGA*USGA Girls Golf program. The new partnership continues this mission in an event that has raised more than $4 million for the Girls Golf program and boasts a list of champions that includes LPGA Hall of Fame members Karrie Webb and Inbee Park as well as current World No. 1 Jin Young Ko.

In this video, Neil Tappin is joined by PGA Pro and YouTuber Alex Elliott. They discuss how you can hit the ball dead straight, especially from off the tee. These are all the things you can do that will make a big difference out on the course and in practice. Try putting some of Alex's ideas into play and you should notice an improvement in finding more fairways from the tee!

TaylorMade Introduce Truss Putter to Fit Golfers Seeking the Stability and Performance of High MOI Mallets in More Classic Shapes

CARLSBAD, Calif. (February 3, 2020) – TaylorMade Golf, the industry leader in technology and performance, today announced the company’s newest putter innovation in Truss. The uniquely shaped family of putters provides an answer for golfers seeking the performance of a high-MOI mallet in a more traditional shape.

IT LOOKS LIKE NOTHING ELSE, BECAUSE IT PUTTS LIKE NOTHING ELSE

The distinctive look of Truss putters directly relates to the performance of the product.

At address, the topline will look very familiar to golfers. However, the face-on view reveals a compelling hosel structure that’s the defining feature of the entire family.

The design creates multiple contact points on the topline and reduces the amount of unsupported mass, which is intended to improve the stability of the putter face at impact. While traditionally shaped putters with a single contact point on the heel are susceptible to twisting at impact, Truss putters provide exceptional torsional stability and computer modeling shows Truss twisting less on off-center strikes (as compared to our previous generation blade).

SHAPING A HIGH MOI PUTTER

TaylorMade collected data on 40,000 putts hit by golfers of various skill levels and tracked the most common area of the face where strikes occur. Results showed that more than half of the strikes occurred on the toe-side of center, which causes deflection and can lead to offline putts. Armed with this information, TaylorMade engineers set out to create a twist-resistant putter that offered greater torsional stability while maintaining a traditional shape.

The Truss hosel design derives its stability and strength from a geometric shaping that’s widely used across various forms of architecture, from home building to bridges, to create foundational stability. Our engineers used the same design elements with our Truss putters, adding stronger horizontal support across the topline.

Having dual contact points on the topline provides greater integrity on strikes across the face, delivering the performance of a high-MOI putter with the look of a blade or traditional mallet.