We spent the first part of the week up on the range at Castle Stuart and it was clear a lot of the players were getting ready for Royal Troon and the challenge it will pose this week.
Patrick Reed was the prime example. He was spotted practising at Castle Stuart using his PXG 0311 3-iron, a likely candidate for use off the tee on certain holes at Royal Troon.
What's more, Reed has installed a UST Pro Force 105X shaft - normally a metalled shaft - into his 3 irons to adjust the launch and performance characteristics, as well as getting more distance.
Reed was also spotted using it in the short game area, too. Perhaps he is considering a strategy similar to that of the last champion at Royal Troon. Todd Hamilton famously used a Sonartec Md hybrid from the tee and around the green en-route to victory.
The American wasn’t the only one making preparations for the Open, either, as Justin Thomas posted a picture of his new 1-iron as he heads to Royal Troon.
Think I may use this @Titleist weapon some in Scotland.. Thanks @Vokeywedgerep for the stamp! #1iron pic.twitter.com/RFJwe1P7mL
— Justin Thomas (@JustinThomas34) 7 July 2016
Don’t forget the others, either. Rory McIlroy and Jason Day both used 2-irons at the US Open and both hinted it could be a tactic they employ at the Ayrshire venue.
Phil takes things into his own hands
Another big name making preparations for the Open last week was Phil Mickelson. Before he took part in the Scottish Open, he had to make sure his gear was just right. So, Phil being Phil, he decided to grind his wedges by himself.
"Yeah just a little more off the toe for me, Phil."
Our @EuropeanTour Reps had a little help today @CastleStuart. pic.twitter.com/UtdHGOWl8O
— Callaway Golf (@CallawayGolf) 6 July 2016
European Tour gets 917. Stricker stays old school
Last week’s Scottish Open at Castle Stuart signalled the start of Titleist 917 driver seeding for the brand’s European Tour staff.
Our tour team have been busy dialing in prototype #Titleist917 this week @AAMScottishOpen - https://t.co/CiSqpxqhQQ pic.twitter.com/QCkSbL1KE0
— Titleist Europe (@TitleistEurope) 6 July 2016
All Titleist players got the chance to try out the new driver with a view to putting it in the bag, but Stricker couldn’t quite get it to work how he wanted in his 45 minute testing session on the range.
.@TitleistEurope begins seeding its 917 driver on @EuropeanTour this week. @stevestricker sticks with 913 for now. pic.twitter.com/TNiJ8ue6RC
— Craig Dennett (@Craig_Dennett) 5 July 2016
A very particular person with his gear, the American opted to stick with his 8.5˚ Titleist 913D3 driver for the time being, and even still has the original Titleist AP2 irons (circa 2010) in his bag according to Titleist’s tour reps.
And the award for the quickest bag change ever goes to…
No need to mess about when it's time to change bags! #TeamCallaway #ScottishOpen pic.twitter.com/v8rpXIXB9e
— Callaway Golf Europe (@CallawayGolfEU) 4 July 2016
Justin Rose, meanwhile, was on hand to unveil TaylorMade's world-class effort! We're big fans of both!
@TaylorMadeGolf @TheOpen tour bag... pic.twitter.com/y3KCqO69SS
— Justin Rose (@JustinRose99) July 10, 2016
New Mizuno driver hits conforming list
A few weeks ago we told you how Luke Donald had been testing Mizuno’s new JPX-900 driver. Now, it has officially made it onto the conforming list, suggesting it is on its way.
While we have no further details from Mizuno at the moment, we expect them to arrive soon.
Spieth goes in hard on putting practice
SuperStroke published a throwback of epic proportions on its social media account. It’s the SuperStroke Flatso Ultra grip Jordan Spieth used for an eight-month period that included his first win on the PGA Tour.
#TBT July 14, 2013: Jordan Spieth won his 1st TOUR event at the @JDCLASSIC with this SuperStroke Flatso Ultra pic.twitter.com/xbiMAkt9lE
— SuperStroke (@SuperStrokeGolf) 7 July 2016
Take out the big slice down the middle for it being removed and you still have a massive amount of wear and tear.