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Equipment Insider - September

September 4 2013, Caroline Rankin

Caroline Rankin is our newest contributor to as our Equipment Insider. Caroline travels with the Tour each week and will bring you the latest information on golf equipment.

Both Callaway and TaylorMade launched new drivers at the CN Canadian Women’s Open resulting in wide eyes and great feedback from the players. However, the big push was at the season’s last full field event at Columbia Edgewater Country Club in Portland, Oregon.

TaylorMade had seven players put the new SLDR driver in play. The new design is claimed to be their longest driver ever. This driver goes back to the classic look with a charcoal gray crown, but remains cutting edge with a 20-gram weight that slides based on the ball flight you want. The SLDR’s center of gravity is low and forward due to the sliding weight, which promotes a higher launch angle and a lower spin rate, resulting in a faster ball speed and more distance.

Callaway launched its new FT Optiforce driver. The concept behind this driver: lighter is better, faster, longer. A lightweight clubhead complimented by a lightweight shaft, grip and aerodynamic design that has a larger sweet spot helps increase clubhead and ball speed. This new model driver comes in two different shapes. The bigger head is 460cc promoting a higher trajectory and has more forgiveness while the smaller 440cc head gives off a lower trajectory. The FT Optiforce recently claimed wins by Gary Woodland in Reno and Patrick Reed in Greensboro.

Both companies expect that more players will go with their new driver designs. Once again, the girls get the hard work out of the way ahead of time so that everything is fit and ready to go for their trip to France for our fifth major.

Follow Caroline on Twitter @LPGATourRep.

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