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Club Love
Henrik Stenson bids farewell to his trusty 3-wood
  Jim Gorant // 10.10.2019

The equipment people so often get it wrong. When they review new clubs, they linger over stats and science: lie angles, lofts, shaft flexes, kick points. Moment of inertia meet center of gravity, etc. Golfers, though, look at their clubs differently.

Sure, they want to know how it works, and they want the best technology on their side, but once the club’s in their bag, it becomes personal. Your rescue club is the infelicitous bastard that always wants to snap left, as if it’s looking for a better golfer somewhere deep in the woods or at the bottom of a pond. That pitching wedge is like a security blanket; just holding it makes you feel safe and warm even when you’re buried in wet rough and staring into a cold wind. And the putter—oh, the putter—how many times has it bailed you out? Sure, there have been lip outs, yippy pulls, and lazy pushes, but those are on us, putter, not you. You’re constant and faithful, and we look forward to many joyous moments together in the future.

All this came to the fore this week when Henrik Stenson showed up at the Houston Open and revealed that he’d retired the 3-wood he’d been playing since 2011. Wear and tear had forced him to replace the original Callaway Diablo Octane Tour fairway wood in 2016 and again in 2017, but each was the same model, identical triplets. However, when the most recent member of that trio broke in August, Stenson knew it was time to move on.

It wasn’t easy, since player and club have become something of an item. Stenson often, and quite famously, shunned his driver in favor of the 3-wood because he hit the latter better and just as far. He used it to win the 2016 British Open (hitting it off the tee on the 72nd hole in particular), earn a silver medal at the 2016 Olympic Summer Games, and rise as high as No. 3 in the world rankings.

Traveling the world together for eight years makes it hard to say goodbye. “It’s always sad when one of the trusties has to retire,” Stenson told on Tuesday.

Thoughts and prayers, Henrik. 

Photo credit: Getty Images