Phil's put the new Alpha Driver from Callaway in the bag this week for the HSBC Championship

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Scott Rushing
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Phil's put the new Alpha Driver from Callaway in the bag this week for the HSBC Championship

Saw this on PGATOUR.COM

"Phil Mickelson will have a new Callaway driver in the bag at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship. After spending a good portion of last season employing a driver-less setup — Mickelson used Callaway's taller-faced X Hot 3Deep fairway wood as his "driver" to win the British Open and Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open — Mickelson confirmed he would be carrying a 9.5-degree Big Bertha Alpha for the first time.

"As I look back on 2013 I played some of my best golf and had some huge breakthroughs," Mickelson said. "But I did most of it without a driver."

The low-spin Big Bertha Alpha features a "Gravity Core" in the sole of the club that allows spin and launch angle to be adjusted independently (also known as CG height).

"This year, we have the best driver I've ever hit that lowers my spin rate just like my 3‑wood," Mickelson said. "I drive it longer and straighter with my driver than I did with my 3‑wood. It's a whole different weapon in my arsenal now. And if I drive the ball well, like I have been in practice and I have been this off‑season, heading into this 2014 season, could be the best year of my career for that simple reason."

So not only lower spin rates, but notice 9.5 degrees? How many years ago was it most "pro" drivers for in the 6.5-8 degree range. Now man of them are higher than Phil's.

Scott Rushing
Scott Rushing's picture
Ouch

Well, it's didn't help apparently:

Mickelson said before the event that he was driving better than ever after getting a new driver from Callaway Golf that he said could turn one of his weaknesses into a strength.

However, he only hit five of 14 fairways on the Peter Harradine-designed course.

Mickelson made 17 straight pars in his first round of the year before a bogey on his last hole, joining a number of big names who struggled on the opening day.

"I can't recall the last time I had a round without a birdie," Mickelson said. "But didn't make a bogey there until the last."

"This first round, I was a little tentative, played a little cautious, didn't trust my swing too much," Mickelson said. "I haven't been out in competition for a while but then it was good to get my feet wet."

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