McIlroy makes big changes to equipment for 2017

It’s official as four-time Major winning Rory McIlroy celebrated the New Year electing to switch to Callaway clubs and irons.

McIlroy will head to his opening event of 2017, the January 12th starting BMW South African Open, also sporting Titleist wedges and ball alongside an Odyssey putter.

Rory McIlroy Rory McIlroy (Credit: Anthony Powter)

Though McIlroy has not agreed to new endorsements, he will use the new Callaway GBB Epic Sub Zero driver and Callaway Apex MB irons. His wedges will be Titleist Vokey wedges and he’ll pack the Titleist Pro V1x.

The switch to Callaway has come about after Nike pulled the plug on their golf equipment business in August last year .

McIlroy had been trialling a TaylorMade driver and woods at last November’s WGC – HSBC Champions event in Shanghai but has elected to go with Callaway.

“I want to play the new ProV1x ball and I know the Callaway driver works the best with it,” said McIlroy.

“I also know my Nike irons don’t work as well with the Titleist ball because of the groove format. Too spinny, and a loss of distance.”

While the move away from Nike woods and irons is no shock, his decision to use a Titleist ball is somewhat intriguing given he was clearly comfortable using a Nike ball.

“No reason to start changing just because I can. I’m comfortable with everything,” he said at last year’s Barclays Championship.

“I’ve got them to save me three years’ worth of golf balls, so at least I’ve got a golf ball that I like and that I know that I can play well with.”

McIlroy turned pro in late 2007 with a full bag of Titleist clubs but switched in a huge multi-million dollar fanfare to Nike in January 2013 just two days before the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship where he proceeded to miss the cut with a pair of 75s.

It was not until December later that year he won his only event of 2013 at the Australian Open in Sydney.

However, the current World No. 2 is quietly-confident ahead of spending time this coming week practicing at the Els Club in Dubai with his new Callaway woods and irons.

“It’s more spending time on the course and gaining trust. You get used to a certain flight and feel. When you can see the improvements it’s easier to gain the confidence and comfort.”

Others using Callaway clubs include Open Champion Henrik Stenson, Troon runner-up Phil Mickelson, Masters winner Danny Willett, Alex Noren, who won four events in a 11-tournament run in 2011, along with Ryder Cup rookie sensation Thomas Pieters.

And it should help McIlroy’s new putting coach, Phil Kenyon is backed by Callaway.