The Truth About Golf Equipment

PGA Tour player Bubba Watson at the Orlando Country Club for Volvik (Photo courtesy Volvik)

Orlando, Fla.

“Hey, I’m Mr. Pink.”

Volvik has turned the golf world upside down with its distinctive variety of colored golf balls. It seemed inevitable that one of the top golf ball manufacturers would offer a rainbow of colors in various models, and Volvik stepped forward.

How serious is Volvik? The company signed Bubba Watson as its primary spokesperson — that’s how serious. So what if the U.S. Golf Association has introduced a minor obstacle? Volvik appears ready for any challenge.

PGA Tour player Bubba Watson at the Orlando Country Club for Volvik (Photo courtesy Volvik) ?016 Scott A. Miller
PGA Tour player Bubba Watson at the Orlando Country Club for Volvik (Photo courtesy Volvik)
?016 Scott A. Miller

Believe it or not, Watson (or any other tour player, male or female) cannot play different colors of the same golf ball during a single competitive round of golf. If Watson starts with a pink ball, he must play with pink all the way.

Why? Because the USGA views different colors as different models. Under the One Ball Rule, a golfer must use the same model throughout a round of golf.

After Watson signed a contract to play Volvik balls in 2017, he selected the four-piece S4 model, and he even mused about switching colors during a round — say pink on par 5s, green on par 3s and white on par 3s.

Sorry, Bubba, but such multi-color mania has not yet been approved. Informed sources say this may change in the future, but not now.

The S4 is a high performance ball aimed primarily at golfers with higher swing speeds. For you and me and most ordinary golfers, the three-piece Vivid is probably the best choice.

The Vivid has a unique matte finish. For golfers with swing speeds less than 90 to 95 miles an hour, it goes surprisingly far and yet maintains an impressive amount of spin. The Vivid is available in pink, red, green, orange, orange sherbet, yellow and white with a retail price of $29.99 per dozen.

Volvik is the king of colored balls and is widely recognized as such. Amateur golfers are paying attention to the brand. Even before it was officially announced that Watson would switch from the Titleist Pro V1x to the Volvik S4 in 2017, the word was out — avid consumers started buying the S4 as if it were gold.

“It’s absolutely true,” said Jon Claffey, national director of sales and marketing at Volvik USA. “We’ve seen a huge uptick in the S4. Bubba really moves the needle. We’ve had the best October, the best November and the best December in the history of our company.”

Volvik, headquartered in South Korea, produced its first balls in 1989.

PGA Tour player Bubba Watson at the Orlando Country Club for Volvik (Photo courtesy Volvik
PGA Tour player Bubba Watson at the Orlando Country Club for Volvik (Photo courtesy Volvik)

Watson was watching the 2016 World Long Drive Championship on television when he saw pink Volvik balls being pounded by golf’s longest hitters. Joe Miller of London, England, won the title with a 423-yard blast.

The response from Watson, internationally known for his pink driver head with pink shaft: “Wait a minute. I’m Mr. Pink.”

So Watson called his agent, who contacted Volvik, and the rest was history. Watson tested several of the Volvik models with a variety of colors.

Although Watson was drawn to the pink and green S4 balls, he also liked the white one. His white S4 (available to consumers) says White Color on it. It is pure white with a slight blue tint.

For additional firepower, Volvik also signed two-time World Long Drive champ Tim Burke, a former baseball pitcher for the University of Miami.

Mr. Pink likes to hang around with other long drivers. “It’s fun to hit the ball a long way,” he said, smiling at the simplicity of his statement.

—Jim Achenbach, Senior Golf Insider          achenslice@aol.com