When players arrived at the Justin TimberlakeShriners Hospitals for Children Open last week, there was a sense of excitement as well as deja vu. That's because Titleist had stuffed several dozen balls in plain, white boxes in their lockers. Inside were the latest iterations of the Pro V1 and Pro V1x balls, the first week tour players could use the balls in competition. "It's like Christmas," said Charley Hoffman, who used the new Pro V1 during the Timberlake event. "It's like, 'What are we going to get?' "
Since Titleist first unveiled the Pro V1 at the Invensys Classic at Las Vegas in 2000, the Vegas stop on the PGA Tour has often been the initial proving ground for new Pro V1 and Pro V1x models over the years. This past week 18 of the 85 players using a Titleist ball in Vegas switched over to the new spheres (four in the Pro V1, 14 in Pro V1x) including Bill Lunde, who finished solo fifth using the V1x prototype.
Another player using one of the new balls was Chris DiMarco (V1 prototype). Interestingly, DiMarco was among the players who first played the original Pro V1, switching to that ball in Vegas in 2000 when he finished T-5. According to the USGA's Conforming List of Golf Balls, as with previous models the Pro V1 is a three-piece multilayer ball (single core, mantle layer and cover) and the Pro V1x is a four-piece multilayer ball (dual core, mantle layer and cover).