July 03, 2019.
The final day before the tournament begins is full of activity. Volunteers are gearing up for the real thing, multiple pro-ams are running simultaneously and the tour vans are providing the players with last minute refinements to their gear based of the first two days of learning the course.
Since the 3M Open is so close to the British Open, a multitude of low lofted hybrids and driving irons were being tested on the range and during the practise rounds. I noticed that several players specifically had their current DI/HY shafts swapped for something lower launching. A big emphasis was on getting the spin to roll out and not “stick” like a standard PGA Tour event. It was neat watching Adam Hadwin smoke a low missile with a tight draw, perfect for the Open.
I’m not going to name names, but I observed several players having their driving irons replaces due to cracking the face welds. With the extremely hot faces modern long irons have these days, it’s actually surprising we don’t hear more of it. The way several of the players detected the anomaly was via TrackMan and the variations that it showed while hitting the club. Interesting stuff.
It was very interesting to see how a tour player goes about putting a new driver in play. Satoshi Kodaira had several manufacturers bring him drivers to test as he desperately needed to bring his spin down. At one point he had several different OEM reps bump into each other as they were bringing him the new drivers. Curious to see what he actually goes with as it seemed it was either going to be an M6 or TS3…
Both Kodaira and Matsuyama have complete entourages with them. I’m not going to guess what they all do, but it appears each one had their own club “concierge” at their disposal.
I’ll be posting about the different tour vans that were on site as well as a few miscellaneous equipment tidbits thrown in .