Hundreds of PGA Tour professionals use Titleist Pro v1 golf balls, including a large handful of the world’s best. Over the nearly 80 years that the company has been making golf balls and equipment, a countless amount of shots have been played using Titleists all over North America, Europe and beyond. To sort through the hundreds of millions of drives, long irons shots and short iron shots and come up with the three best would be difficult if not impossible. However, our crack staff has combed over the landscape of amazing shots from the 2011 PGA Tour season where Titleist Pro v1 balls were used. Here are our two favorite.
Steve Stricker – 18th Hole – 2011 John Deere Classic
When veteran PGA player Steve Stricker stepped up to the 18th tee at the John Deere Classic in 2011, he knew that he needed a birdie to win. Unfortunately, his tee shot strayed about 15 yards to the left of the fairway and settled two feet from the left edge of a massive fairway bunker nearly 200 yards from the difficult Sunday pin placement. After assessing all of his options, Stricker felt confident enough in his swing and his Titleist Pro v1 ball to line up for the flagstick and give his best effort at attaining birdie.
With his left foot in the white sand and his right foot gripping an edge of fescue grass beneath it, Stricker smoothly reared back and perfectly connected with his Titleist Pro v1, sending it toward the pin, where it landed a few feet short and rolled past the hole onto a very non-threatening layer of fringe. After sticking a 185-yard fairway bunker shot to within 25 feet, Stricker’s look at birdie was clearly better than even he had anticipated he would get in the wake of the wayward tee shot. With ice water in his veins, Stricker curved his putt into the left edge of the hole, securing victory and sending notice to the golfing world that he was ready to assume the throne vacated by Tiger Woods.
Rory McIlroy – 8th Hole – 2011 U.S. Open
Based on his world class skills and his unflappable mental approach, it can be surprising to learn that 2011 U.S. Open winner Rory McIlroy is only 22 years old. Midway through his Friday round at the prestigious American tournament, the young Irishman had already pulled to -8 and was comfortably in the lead. Obviously in the midst of what athletes refer to as “the zone,” McIlroy stood over his Titleist Pro v1 on the 354-yard Par-4 8th hole and put his signature sweet swing on it. Frozen in anticipation, McIlroy watched as the shot sailed about 10 yards past the pin and landed on the back edge of the green.
Benefiting from a substantial back-to-front slant, the ball trickled back toward the pin with the dedication of a loyal soldier, and after seven agonizing seconds fell into the right edge of the cup for an eagle two. The crowd surrounding the green erupted into approval, McIlroy pulled to -10 and the young man became a U.S Open champion a few short days later.