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Pro Shop: 2004 Preview

WEDGES

WILSON PH
The most recent addition to Wilson's Dyna-Powered line of wedges is the PH ($130), created by staff pro and compulsive club-tinkerer Padraig Harrington (that's the "PH"). A precise replica of his primary short-game weapon, the PH has fifty-eight degrees of loft, eleven degrees of bounce (which is a lot) and a beveled sole that tapers away at the toe, making it easy to lay the clubface open for hitting flop shots and performing other creative tricks. We loved its hefty, well-balanced feel. Call 800-622-0444 or visit wilsongolf.com.

TAYLORMADE RAC BLACK
No matter how much science goes into producing a better wedge, the purchase decision is at least as much about feel and personal taste—thus, the TaylorMade RAC Black ($142). Its handsome dark color, which reduces glare, comes from a three-step oxidation process. The Black joins TaylorMade's other RAC wedges: the rusty FE203 and the standard chrome-finish version. All deliver a soft yet solid feel and are available in six lofts from fifty-two to sixty degrees. Call 800-888-2582 or visit taylormadegolf.com.

PUTTERS

CALLAWAY TOUR BLUE TT1
Callaway Golf usually lets its Odyssey division do the talking where putters are concerned, but it's using its own brand name on the Tour Blue TT1 ($375), the company's first ever titanium putter. Because titanium is lighter and stronger than steel, designers could position two heavy-tungsten weights low in the soleplate while maintaining the size and shape of a classic heel-toe-weighted clubhead. The resulting low center of gravity produces less backspin and gets the ball rolling sooner. The milled grooves in the clubface, combined with titanium's naturally softer-than-steel feel, produce a surprisingly gentle sound at impact. Tour Blue comes in two other models as well, a less-offset blade and a face-balanced mallet. Call 800-588-9836 or visit callawaygolf.com.

NEVER COMPROMISE VOODOO
The Voodoo ($190) is the first putter by Never Compromise since it was acquired by Cleveland Golf last summer. Milled from lightweight aircraft aluminum, the Voodoo looks like an early prototype of the starship Enterprise, with a heavy knob of tungsten at the rear of the fuselage and more tungsten on the wing tips. All that weight on the perimeter delivers an impeccable feeling of stability at impact. The black stripe across the top of this face-balanced mallet serves as a bold alignment aid. Call 800-999-6263 or visit nevercompromise.com.

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