Marc Leishman knew Callaway’s Mavrik driver was an upgrade after just three balls

January 29, 2020
Marc Leishman became the first to win with Callaway's Mavrik driver on the PGA Tour.

By the time most golfers reach the summit of professional golf, it doesn’t take long to tell if a test club is better than what’s currently in the bag. Launch monitors can help cut through the static to determine a clear-cut winner. But what happens when you don’t like digging into the numbers?

In Marc Leishman’s case, he’d prefer to lean on an old-school process during testing, relying on how the club looks, sounds and feels at impact to figure out if a new product is worth bagging.

“I’d probably prefer to not know what the numbers are, to be honest,” Leishman told GOLF’s Fully Equipped podcast. “If it looks good, feels good, is flying straight — whether it’s a yard or two longer, the ball is going to run out anyway on the fairway anyway.”

 

It’s a tried-and-true blueprint that’s served him well over his career. Even without numbers providing insights into what’s going on, Leishman can still tell fairly quickly if a club is worth pursuing — as in three balls quickly.

Leishman revealed on the podcast that it only took three shots to determine Callaway’s Mavrik driver was better than his current gamer. Leishman received his first look at the driver during the Presidents Cup and put it in play at the Sony Open. One start later, he found the winner’s circle at the Farmers Insurance Open.

“Pretty much in three balls, I knew that it was going to be better,” Leishman said. “I proved that last week. I drove it probably as well as I ever have the first three days [at Torrey Pines]. It wasn’t quite what I was after on Sunday, but it certainly wasn’t the driver’s fault. It was the bloke hanging onto it.”

Leishman highlighted a number of key improvements he saw with Mavrik, including an increase in forgiveness and sound.

“It was a little more forgiving, my misses weren’t quite as big,” he said. “It was more of a one-way miss, and this one didn’t go left for me, so that’s a good thing. I love taking one side of the golf course out of play and this certainly did that. The sound was great, look was great. I really, really like it.

“I guess it’s easier when you feel like the driver is better to get it in the bag. There’s little changes, but it’s noticeably better. That always makes it better. If you feel like you’re improving, whether it’s swing changes or the golf ball or a new driver, it always easier to get it in the bag.”

So what can we learn from Leishman’s recent driver change? Quick, successful club transitions are nice, especially when they yield Tour hardware and multi-million dollar checks.

To hear the rest of Leishman’s interview and more gear insights from Jonathan Wall and True Spec’s Tim Briand, subscribe and listen each week to GOLF’s Fully Equipped podcast: iTunes | SoundCloud | Spotify | Stitcher