Rory McIlroy says he’d be ‘very surprised’ if anything untoward came out from an equipment test being carried out by The R&A at this week’s Open.
A number of players in the field at Carnoustie have been selected to participate in the test, with chief executive of The R&A, Martin Slumbers, saying that its purpose is to “more actively test players’ drivers straight out of the bag”.
Slumbers added that the test – which is involving a total of 2,000 golfers – had not been driven by distance and was more to make sure each player’s equipment was conforming.
The test had previously been carried out at a Japan Golf Tour event earlier this year and McIlroy revealed that, while he wasn’t one of the players who had been selected, he did notice a particular trend in those who had.
“I did have a look at the board to see who had been selected,” said McIlroy. “I think there was one manufacturer that was singled out a bit more than anyone else.”
McIlroy was referring to TaylorMade, the brand he has been an ambassador for for over a year now following a spell as a free agent after Nike’s exit from the golf equipment industry in August 2016.
“I understand why they’re testing equipment. If there are some drivers out there that have went a little bit over the limit then, obviously, guys shouldn’t be playing them – but I think manufacturers are smart enough not to try and push it too much.
“I’d be very surprised if they found anything this week.”
McIlroy won the Silver Medal at Carnoustie in 2007 and, if he wins this week, will become the first player to win the Silver Medal and Claret Jug at the same venue.
He gets his bid for a second Open title underway at 12.53pm tomorrow alongside Marc Leishman and Thorbjorn Olesen.