The golf-ball change Jon Rahm made that delivered immediate benefits
Jon Rahm had a good week with a new golf ball—so good, in fact, he found the winner's circle for the first time , Chase Koepka showed he has a different approach from brother, Brooks, when it comes to golf equipment and J.B. Holmes and Lucas Glover made big changes to the long end of their respective bags. All of which proves that while the Zurich Classic of New Orleans might be a different kind of event with its team format, the equipment scene is pretty much like any other week on the PGA Tour.
Jon Rahm not only won the Zurich Classic of New Orleans with new partner Ryan Palmer, but with a new golf ball as well. Rahm had been a big fan of TaylorMade’s TP5x, telling Golf Digest last year that the lower-spinning ball helped keep his mis-hits from straying too far off line and that he didn’t have to worry about approach shots ripping back too much. However after trying the new version of the TP5 (which was released earlier this year), Rahm felt some additional spin in his mid and short irons would prove beneficial and made the change to the TP5 at TPC Louisiana.
One of the big equipment stories of the last couple years has been the success of equipment free agents and perhaps none has enjoyed as much success as Brooks Koepka, who has grabbed three major championships since Nike exited the golf equipment arena in 2016. Koepka’s brother, Chase, however, is clearly a company man for Callaway. Partnering with Brooks at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans, Chase had a bagful of the company’s equipment, including the Chrome Soft ball; Epic Flash Sub Zero driver and 3-wood; Rogue hybrid; Apex Pro irons; Mack Daddy 4 wedges and Odyssey Toulon Memphis putter.
Maybe it was the fact that he was playing with longtime Ping staffer Bubba Watson, but J.B. Holmes made a couple of changes to his wood lineup at the Zurich, switching to Ping’s G410 Plus driver and G410 3-wood. The driver is the first Ping driver to offer movable weights to alter ball flight, and Holmes took advantage of that technology by moving the weight to the toe setting, thus promoting a fade-biased flight. Bubba and J.B. were in the mix heading into Sunday, but they fired a final-round 3-over in alternate shot.
After a shaky 2017-'18 season that saw him rank 131st in earnings, Lucas Glover has bounced back in 2018-19, currently sitting at 33rd on the money list. Given the resurgence, it’s interesting that the 2009 U.S. Open champion decided to makeover his entire wood lineup at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans as Glover put Titleist’s TS3 model in play for his driver, 3-wood and 5-wood.