This week, Sam Burns will defend his title at the 2022 Valspar Championship, and it has been fun to watch him rise into the upper echelon of the world stage. Over the past ten months, there have been two wins (Valspar, Sanderson Farms), 2 Runner-Ups, 6 Top-10’s, multiple Top-15’s, and he now sits at #17 in the OWGR.
Needless to say the kid has come into his own.
When it comes to his equipment, I would call Sam a modern player with old-school feels. I mean that Sam, along with his coach Brad Pullin, relies on launch data to inform what lands in the bag, but Sam also has an equipment sensitivity that some of the great players have. YES, the data gets him in the ballpark, but ultimately it’s in his hands where the decision is made.
As you go thru this, please pay attention to what you see in regards to what Sam is always looking for, there is a recurring theme, and it’s an important one for all of us:)
Driver: Rogue ST 💎💎💎 (firstname.lastname@example.org, 14GB, 2GF, 59 lie)
Shaft: Fujikura Ventus Blue 7TX (45 inches, Tipped .5 , D3, 198G)
*Downrange dispersion is the key to this new set-up VS his old Epic Speed. Sam was VERY pleased with what he got out of Epic Speed, but if there was anything he wanted to add, it was a little more stability after the ball reached its apex. With Rogue ST, the ball seems to hold its integrity a lot longer on the way down, which mitigated a floaty right miss that would creep up. The Ventus Blue 7TX was put in last summer and offered Sam a softer feel with the added benefit of a VERY stable tip section. As a rotational swinger of the golf club, Sam likes shafts that have a little play in the midsection with reduced torque at impact.
4-wood: Callaway Mavrik ADJ (email@example.com, 14GF, 10GB)
Shaft: Fujikura Ventus Black 8 X (42.75, Tipped 1.5, D3)
*This set-up is built for two things, gapping and spin. Off the tee, Sam hits this club 265-270 with 3500-3700RPMs of spin and off the ground 260-265 with 4000RPMs.The reason he goes with Ventus Black over Blue in the 3-wood is actually quite interesting. With the black profile and the way it’s tipped (1.5), the strike point is centered lower in the face, which kicks spin UP. This is the result for some players based on the shaft droop and dynamic loft characteristics. Super rabbit hole. So why a 4-wood? On TOUR, players back into lofts and set-ups based on data. Not the other way around
Hybrid: Callaway Apex UW (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Shaft: Fujikura Ventus Blue 8X (40.5, Tipped 1.5, D3)
*Sam was in a 2015 Apex Hybrid (23@20), which he was committed to, but it was limiting in regards to gapping. As he gained speed, the gapping with this club became an issue, and since the club was bent strong (open face), the launch was limited. With the UW, he could now play with a more neutral face that went further and launched higher. According to his Caddy Travis Perkins, this is #teamburns favorite club:)
Irons: Callaway Apex TCB (4-PW)
Shafts: Project X 6.5
Lofts: 4(22.2), 5(26), 6(29), 7(33.7), 8(37.1), 9(41.6), P(46)
Lies: Up 1/2 from Std.
Length: STD (38 inch 5-iron)
*Coming from Apex Pro (double dot) in 2020, Sam noticed that there were some improvements to be made to his overall dispersion. After working in the winter of 2020 with our Tour Team, he transitioned into the TCB, which improved spin, launch, and dispersion across the board. Good luck getting these outta the bag.
Wedges: Apex TCB A (50) Callaway MD5 Jaws Raw (56-10S@55, 60-12X)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100 (50) S400 (56, 60)
*Why an “A” wedge? Simple. It’s more forgiving. As a full shot club, the “A” wedge tightened Sam’s overall dispersion on center strikes and mis-hits. The higher bounce also mitigated the digging he would sometimes get with the “S” grind 50. This is a good tip for all golfers, think about what you want the club to do (specifically) and choose based on that. It’s no different than picking a tool to do a job; they make different types of screwdrivers for a reason.
The 60/12X has been in the bag for some time. Sam prefers playing with more bounce, and the X gives him that (20 degrees of actual bounce) along with toe and heel relief for added versatility. Basically, its high bounce squared up and low bounce when manipulated open, stood up, or tilted heel side. Sam prefers the softer S400 shaft in the SW and LW for added spin and feel.
Putter: Odyssey O-Works 7S (3 Loft, 71 Lie, 35 Inches)
*No big story here; he’s addicted to the shape and makes everything with the 7S. I don’t recall Sam ever looking at another putter. The crisp feel of the O-works face is a feel thing plain and simple.
Ball: CSX ’20
*Sam is in the process of swapping into the ’22 version of the CSX, but when you are on a run like he is, switching balls isn’t as easy as it seems. Why CSX? SPIN, SPIN, SPIN. Sam wants it everywhere he can get it
Grips: Golf Pride Tour Velvet Align MID