Monday, 12 April 2010
Mizuno Tour Truck ()
Mizuno Tour Truck ()

The current workshop saw its last event for Mizuno this week in Malaga at the Open de Andalucia.

We’ll be taking delivery of our new workshop in 3 weeks time.

It’s going to be a busy next couple of weeks as we have to destock this one and restock the new one – 7,000 grips, 2,000 shafts and nearly about 750 heads (plus all the other bits and pieces we normally carry) have to be moved. We have some new machines for the new truck and some of our old favourites will be coming with us too. We’ll get a few photos together of the new one nearer the time so you can have a look inside!

Back to this week – a great finish for another of our staff players Peter Whiteford. As you’ll see from the pic Peter used his MP Fli-Hi (new version) along with his MP-62’s for a season best 2nd place on 14 under. It was a shame for Ignacio Garrido (MX-200’s) that his second round 73 took him out of contention in his home tournament. He always shows well in Spain and a 7 under finish shows he’s on the right track. Maybe playing at home can create some additional pressure which would explain that 2nd round blip.

The first event with the workshop is always manic – grip changes and loft and lie checks take up a lot of time but this year, with the groove rule change, we’ve been extra busy with a lot of the players still tinkering with their short irons. What has become noticeable is that the players who have a good short game (particularly pitching) have adapted to the new grooves a lot quicker. Before most of the players would hit it in low and check it up. Now they have to use a little more height to stop the ball so a different technique is needed. It’s been interesting, though, talking to different players about the new groove. Most of the courses they’ve played so far this year have had softer greens and some were even saying that it’s almost helped scoring as they’re not so worried about spinning it back off the front of the green. The real test will be at the US Open and The Open –ironically the 2 venues and course conditions set up by the USGA and R&A – when the greens are a lot firmer and the rough is a lot taller.

Our new Swing DNA / Shaft Optimizer was put to great use this week with a couple of players wanting to assess the impact of swing changes they’d made through the off season. It was amazing how many times the recommendations it came out with were exactly what they were using. We obviously have a lot of experience in fitting players but to get the confirmation from the Shaft Optimizer was very encouraging. For the fitters with maybe less experience at retail level it’s a fantastic tool. We’re planning to put the players’ numbers in their profile in the next few weeks on the website so you can see how their swings compare.

Another fitting tool at our disposal is FastTrack - incorporated into the MP-630 driver - it simplistic and very easy to work with. Having the ability to fine tune the spin rate for these guys can have a dramatic effect on their distance. Vancsik has had it in the bag all season so far and loves it. Markus Brier, David Dixon and Benjamin Herbert (all newly contracted to us this year) have all put one in the bag having discovered it offered them all another 7-10 yards over their gamer. Getting drivers in play on tour is a really tough thing to do unless you attach $25,000 cheques to each one so having so many in play really shows how good it is.

Another thing that talks volume for the quality and reputation of our equipment is the number of non-contracted players now using our irons. There are a few more players without contracts this year and therefore have a choice of what they can use. A lot of them head for the Mizuno workshop to try out our irons and that’s led to a few more sets going into play for us. It’s great to hear the positive comments about the feel – guys that haven’t hit our irons before and those that haven’t used them for a number of years.

For more pics from the behind the scenes in Madrid see http://mizunoforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=905

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