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Tiger welcomes new driver testing rules

Don’t tell Tiger Woods there aren’t players on tour using “hot” drivers. He knows better.

The PGA Tour’s decision to start testing for illegal equipment is a good first step, Woods said Wednesday. But he wishes more could be done.

“The PGA Tour has taken a step in the right direction, and I’m happy about that,” Woods said Wednesday after playing a pro-am at the Western Open. “It’s just a matter of making sure that the game is preserved, it’s policed.
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“It’s the greatest game in the world, and I want to see it stay that way.”
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Tour commissioner Tim Finchem announced Tuesday that beginning in January, a portable device will be available at all tour stops so players can measure the springlike effect of their drivers, letting them know for sure if they’re “hot” or not.
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Thanks to technological advances, golf has seen monstrous leaps in distance in recent years. But some golfers are worried that technology is crossing the legal line.
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At issue is a physics term called the “coefficient of restitution” (COR), which measures how quickly a golf ball springs off the face of a club at impact. When the face is ultra thin, it allows for more of a trampoline effect.
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Golf’s ruling bodies last year set the limit at 0.83 for professional tours.
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“You’ll see a difference in how the ball flies,” Woods said of non-conforming drivers.
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But now the only way to tell for certain if a driver is “hot” is to send it to the USGA Research and Test Center, where it’s analyzed. The new portable test uses a pendulum and a small weight, so players could check their drivers on the range if they wanted.
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“I don’t think any player would willingly use an illegal club, I honestly don’t,” U.S. Open champion Jim Furyk said. “But if they are and that gets found out, their career is done, it’s over, from a respect issue.”
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Woods said he personally knows one player who uses an illegal club. Woods hasn’t reported the player, but he has talked to him about it.
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“(He said) he’s just playing golf. He’s playing the equipment that the manufacturer has given him,” Woods said.

 

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