It was roughly a year ago when Word #11 Xander Schauffele put his Mavrik SZ 7-wood into play. The switch was prompted by the gains in strength and ball speed that Xander had achieved over the winter of 2020. I penned an article last week that explained the importance of this part of the bag and how players like Xander sought to nail it in:
Most of Xanders club work is done by Callaway Performance Rep Kellen Watson and this is what he had say last spring on Xanders 7-wood:
Kellen Watson: The switch into the seven wood came for the same reason as the 3-Wood; we saw distance gains in the previous 5-Wood that was just too far for that part of the bag. The 5-Wood was touching 170 ball speed, so with the loft increase in the 7 Wood combined with a heavier (and shorter) shaft, we could dial back yardages to a previous yardage and launch profile he felt comfortable with. That’s a part of Xander’s bag that must be extremely versatile, and proper yardage gapping is ESSENTIAL.
So why did he switch into the UW?
The simple answer is spin consistency on all shots, which has been the secret sauce to the UW. The only trick with his 7-wood was his draws COULD under spin a bit and then fades COULD over spin. The other trick is hitting a low shot with enough spin to control. The 7-wood git him close, but this is Xander, and close is just that…..close. He wants perfect. According to Kellen, the UW (which Xander has had since last winter) finally got its day in court, and the results were exactly what Xander wanted.
This is what he had to say:
“The 7-wood has been a great club for Xander for a good while, but he wanted a club that lived in a really tight spin window on all of his shots. He now has a club that holds spin on draws and low bullets and keeps it tight on shots he cuts. This is key going into the U.S Open because as his primary par-5 club, it’s nice to know he has a club he can go full tilt on and get it to chase when he needs OR hit something soft and get it to stop. The specs are basically the same as his 7-wood except for tipping (the UW is only tipped an inch). It also helped that Sam Burns caddy Travis Perkins told Xanders’s caddy, Austin Kaiser, that the UW was hands down the best club in the bag; caddies do talk LOL.”
7-Wood VS UW by the numbers:
Launch: 9.5-10 degrees
Spin Window: 3800-5000RPMs
Ball Speed: 164MPH
Launch: 12 degrees
Spin Window: 4000-4500RPMs
Ball Speed: 163MPH
To wrap it up:
Spin, Spin, Spin. The best players in the world are more or less in the spin management business, and stories like this further hammer it home. The more I started paying attention to spin and not ball speed in my own game, the better my game got. Simple.