January 23, 2020

Bridgestone and Tiger Woods Reinvent the Tour Ball With Ground-Breaking REACTIV Cover Technology in New Tour B Family

COVINGTON, GA – Bridgestone Golf, the #1 Ball-Fitter in Golf, unveiled today its ground-breaking 2020 TOUR B family of golf balls, reinventing the Tour ball as golfers know it.  The TOUR B family delivers a game-changing combination of driver distance and greenside control unlike anything ever before, thanks to Bridgestone’s new REACTIV Urethane® cover.  The 2020 TOUR B balls are offered in 4 distinct models, each designed to appeal to a wide array of swing speeds and feel preferences – TOUR B X, TOUR B XS, TOUR B RX and TOUR B RXS.

Since modern golf balls were created in the early 20th century, golf ball engineers have been trying to combat the inverse relationship between driver distance and greenside spin.  Even with the advancement of urethane covered balls in the early 2000’s, a step change pioneered by Bridgestone engineers with Tiger Woods, the fact remained that when designers wanted to give a ball more distance, they needed to sacrifice some level of greenside control and vice versa.  In 2020, Tiger has once again teamed up with Bridgestone’s 900 rubber and polymer engineers worldwide for a transformational golf ball innovation, this time solving the riddle of spin separation with the new REACTIV cover.  

REACTIV is the golf world’s first SMART Urethane – using an “impact modifier” to deliver a shock absorbing soft cover on slow impact shots for more spin and control – and high resilience on high impact shots for more power and distance. The material reacts differently depending on the force of the impact. In essence, on the violent impact of a driver, REACTIV rebounds quicker than other urethane covers, generating more ball speed and longer distance. On the softer touch and feel of wedge shots, REACTIV keeps the ball on the face longer, allowing golfers to impart more spin and have better control in the short game.

The 2020 TOUR B family includes two high swing speed models – TOUR B X and TOUR B XS – that are specifically designed for players with driver swing speeds of 105 mph and above.  They both are three-piece constructions with REACTIV cover that feature Bridgestone’s patented Gradational Compression Core technology and Active Acceleration Mantle to ensure Tour level distance in the long game.  The TOUR B XS offers a softer feel and maximum greenside spin, allowing golfers to stop approaches and pitches on a dime.  The TOUR B X delivers “hit and sit” performance on approach shots and greenside chips.  Tiger Woods will put the new TOUR B XS in play this week at Torrey Pines, while Matt Kuchar and Bryson DeChambeau have been trusting the TOUR B X since the fall season.

For more moderate swing speed players (below 105 mph), Bridgestone offers the 2020 TOUR B RX and TOUR B RXS.  Like their high-swing speed brethren, the RXS is designed with a slightly softer cover to generate maximum greenside spin, while the RX delivers solid feel and consistent hit-and-sit performance.  Each ball also utilizes a 3-piece REACTIV cover construction that is powered by a Gradational Compression Core and Active Acceleration Mantle layer.  2020 marks the first time ever that Bridgestone’s RX family will be regularly played on the PGA TOUR CHAMPIONS, with both Fred Couples and Rocco Mediate using the TOUR B RXS in competition.

For help selecting which TOUR B model is the right ball for them, consumers should try Bridgestone’s new VFIT service for a free video ball-fitting consultation.

Visit Bridgestone Golf here:

Honma Announces New Tour Release Product Line

CARLSBAD, CA / SAKATA, JAPAN – Honma Golf officially announced the release of its all-new Tour Release product line. The new TR20 line includes two different drivers and two sets of irons, with new fairways, hybrids and additional iron models to come later in 2020. TR20 provides fast, tour-level performance with uncompromising Honma craftsmanship to a wide range of golfers who seek premium performance.

The new TR20 drivers are Honma’s most technologically advanced product to date, featuring a nearly-total carbon body and a fast titanium frame. The TiCarbon Fast Frame combines ultra-lightweight ET40 carbon crown from Toray Composites with a carbon sole on a highly optimized titanium frame that is both weight and speed efficient. A unique vertical groove face works with the Ti frame and carbon body to deliver speed.

TR20 drivers come in two beautiful profiles. TR20 460 is a full-profile driver deeper front-to-back with a swept crown for confidence and playability. The TR20 440 is a compact profile that sits higher in the back for a traditional appearance.

Both drivers feature three strategically-located and adjustable sole weights to provide flight and playability preference for increased MOI, reduced spin, or more draw bias.  Honma’s Non-Rotating Hosel allows the clubhead to be adjusted +/- 1.5 degrees in face angle, +/- 1 degree in loft, and +/- 1 degree in lie angle without changing the orientation of the perfectly-spined Honma VIZARD shaft for more consistent performance and impact delivery.

Honma TR20 drivers are holistically engineered with Honma VIZARD shafts, designed to provide a better whole club in 50, 60 and 70 gram options with different EI profiles to meet the distance needs of golfers with different swing speeds and shaft loading tendencies. Honma VIZARD shafts are premium made in the Honma Japan Sakata factory and use only the finest materials from Toray Composites in their manufacturing.  They are a premium upgrade that comes standard versus typically cost-engineered stock shafts from other manufacturers.

When Honma ambassador Justin Rose saw TR20 for the first time, the first word out of his mouth was “badass.” He immediately put TR20 460 into play at the Hero World Challenge in December and at the Singapore Open last week. In his first two starts with the driver, he has finished tied for fifth and solo second.

Honma announces two new sets of Honma irons called TR20V and TR20P.

TR20V is a true player’s iron that delivers players distance. Forged from soft S20C carbon steel with a modern cavity back design, TR20V provides easy-to-launch performance with shot control. It is built with a better player-preferred blade length and topline, and a recessed, electroform Honma mole logo in the cavity as a nod to the great forged irons of Honma’s past.

TR20P is a player’s distance iron with game-improvement playability.  TR20P features a forged S35C steel body with an L-cup face for ball speed and a tungsten-weighted pocket cavity to create speed-enhancing forgiveness and a low center of gravity for higher launch and longer carry distance.  The common design language allows golfers to blend TR20V and P irons into an ideal set.

Honma TR20P and TR20V will be offered with VIZARD TR20-85 graphite and Nippon Modus 105 shafts as a standard option. VIZARD TR20 shafts are designed with a stiffer tip section for trajectory control and are built with ascending weight to increase speed with longer irons and increase control with shorter irons.

Visit Honma Golf here:

Garmin GPS Golf Watch Goes Beyond the Course With Larger Full-Color Display and Critical Information

OLATHE, KS – Garmin International, Inc., today announced the premium Approach S62, a sleek GPS golf watch that integrates critical course information and full-color mapping, right on the wrist. With its sunlight readable 1.3-inch color touchscreen – 17 percent larger than the previous model – and scratch resistant ceramic bezel, the Approach S62 delivers an easier-to-read, larger display while upholding an elegant design that transcends the clubhouse. Boasting an array of features to help enhance a golfer’s game, the Approach S62 offers options such as PlaysLike Distance, Hazard View and introduces a Virtual Caddie to analyze critical factors such as wind speed, course layout, and a golfer’s past swings to select the best suited club for each shot. The Approach S62 is being showcased in the Garmin booth (#1813) at this year’s PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando, Jan. 22-24.

The Approach S62 shines in its precise ability to help strategize and fine tune a golfer’s game. When golfers are stranded with a blind shot and unable to see the pin, the Approach S62’s PinPointer option shows players the exact direction to the pin. The watch uses the PlaysLike Distance option to adjust yardages to compensate for uphill and downhill shots, and with Hazard View golfers can quickly scroll through each hazard on the map to acquire critical distance information and know exactly what to avoid during play. Thanks to the Green View feature, no matter where the player is on the course, the watch will display each green’s true shape and allow golfers to drag-and-drop the pin for better yardage accuracy. Additionally, the Approach S62 utilizes an Autoshot round analyzer to measure and record detected shot distances. This efficient game tracking feature can also be paired with optional Approach® CT10 club tracking sensors to boost game tracking details.

Avid players can gain even more insight into their game after pairing the Approach S62 with the Garmin Golf™ app for access to the new golf performance widget. Stats are calculated in the app and then sent to the watch so users can review handicap index, fairway and approach shot hit/miss percentage, and green in regulation percentage. The app even provides analysis for strokes gained and allows users to participate in leaderboards and tournaments with other players around the world.

Offering a deep feature set that goes beyond the golf course, the Approach S62 boasts enhanced wrist-based heart rate monitoring to display the intensity of a user’s fitness activities. To better gauge an individual’s overall health and fitness levels, a Pulse Ox sensor has been implemented into the watch to estimate blood oxygen saturation levels.

The watch also includes smart notifications to receive e-mails, texts, and alerts right on the display of the watch, activity tracking features and preloaded activity profiles for running, cycling, and even swimming. What’s more, the introduction of Garmin Pay™ provides a contactless payment solution to easily make payments with the Approach S62 and spend less time on the checkout lines and more time on the golf course.

Golfers can also take advantage of the Approach S62’s longer battery life that can last up to 20 hours in GPS mode and up to 14 days in smartwatch mode. Thanks to Garmin’s Quickfit® bands, the look of the watch can easily be altered and remain colorful in style with leather, silicone, nylon, or titanium options. The Connect IQ™ Store is also available for golfers to download custom watch faces, apps, and widgets.

Visit Garmin Golf watches here:

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Michael Feland

Born in Houston, TX, raised in New Orleans, LA, Mike and his family currently live in Orlando, FL. Mike is a First Tee Level 1 Certified instructor and enjoys sharing his love for the game with the Orlando area youth that participate in The First Tee of Central Florida program.

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