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Golf Equipment

Costliest Equipment Switches

A new year means new golf equipment for some of today's top pros like Harris English. And while the jury is still out Roy McIlroy's move to Nike in 2013, we look back at five previous high-profile equipment changes that didn't pay off

Payne Stewart

1. Payne Stewart

Stewart had won the PGA and U.S. Open when he left Wilson to sign a $7 million dollar deal with Spalding in 1994. Forced to use game-improvement perimeter weighted irons for the first time -- as well as as the two-piece Top Flite ball -- Stewart lost much of his distance control and ability to shape shots. He went from sixth on the money list in 1993 to 123rd in 1994. In 1995, Spalding allowed him to switch to a forged blade, and played better. But when he won the 1999 U.S. Open, Stewart didn't have a club contract and was playing a mixed bag that included Mizuno MP-14 irons.

Stephen Szurlej
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