With the rest of the country experiencing the freeze, the PGA Tour descended on LaQuinta, CA, for 72-degree (dome-like) weather and the first 2024 event on the mainland.
Ai-Smoke drivers were the main focus of our performance team. This time of year continues the hard work put in during the winter break, with the goal being to slowly but surely learn, adjust, and convert staff and non-staff into the Ai-Smoke. As I’ve reported in the past, it’s a slow process traditionally, so to see roughly three-quarters of our staff already in Ai-Smoke, I can say conversion has been VERY strong so far…keep in mind Paradym was a killer, so anything taking that one down must be something special.
On-site, for the Callaway Performance Team, we had Sports Marketing lead Jacob Davidson, Tour Manager Joe Toulon, Performance Reps Kellen Watson, Johnny Thompson, Dean Teykl, and equipment techs Simon Wood, Greg Shaw, and Anthony Taranto. Cody Hale was on site for Odyssey.
Here are some quick stats on Ai-Smoke Driver conversion this week…
28 Total Callaway Drivers in Play
23 Total Callaway Staffers in the field
16 Staff in Ai-Smoke (70% conversion)
7 Staff in Paradym: Burns, Bez, Akshay, K.H Lee, Valmiki, Kirk, Detry
5 Non-staff playing Callaway (3 in Ai-Smoke), 1 Paradym, 1 Rogue ST
2 Ai-Smoke Max D heads in play (Alex Noren, Badds, who is non-staff)
Let’s start with some of the new AI-smoke setups; with some players still in the testing phase FYI
There are no Specs in this report; there is still some tweaking going on, so I’ll start adding once we get to RIV, along with any specific feedback. It’s still early days, so the testing and learning will continue.
Eric Van Rooyen
Min Woo Lee
Si Woo Kim
Non-Staffer Set Ups
Badds (In Play)
Tour Heads (full write-up coming week of WM)
Ai-Smoke Triple Diamond (450CC, slightly fade biased, low spin profile w/ ability to raise MOI substantially with 12-14G in back)
Ai-Smoke Triple Diamond MAX (slightly larger footprint VS TD, highest MOI of all TD heads, neutral CG, mid spin)
Ai-Smoke TD + (same body as TD with no front weight, mid spin, easier to turn over)
Ai-Smoke TD-S (Mid Spin, mid-launch, higher CG, 420CC)
More cool toys…
New 2024 TCB: A carbon copy of the 21′ edition with the exception of badging and slightly more bounce (1 to .5 degrees, depending on the iron)
Ai-Smoke TD U: Low lofted UW footprint with ADJ Cog to serve as a 3-wood replacement for players looking for something else. Mid Launch, Mid Spin typically built between 42 and 42.5 inches in length.
Cool Ai-One Set Ups
Hayden Buckley’s new Ai-One 2-Ball
Min Woo Lee
Ai-Smoke Fairway Woods
Ai-Smoke TD HL
Ai-Smoke Max HL
Ai-Smoke TD-T HL
So much more info/content coming, but I thought a good old-fashioned photo gallery was the best way to kick this off.