Jonathan Wall / Golf
SAN DIEGO – Xander Schauffele is fully aware of Hideki Matsuyama’s fate suffered in the past year Memorial Tournament. Halfway through his round, Matsuyama was notified by the tour officials that he had been disqualified due to having a “foreign substance” on his 3-wood face, right near the striking area.
Matsuyama was not circumventing the system, but having paint material over the face and outside the grooves is grounds for disqualification.
“My driver’s face was scanned 10 times,” Schavelli told GOLF.com, laughing. “You want to make sure that anything that gets added to the club is going to be okay.”
In the last two seasons, the Schauffele driver has shown nine custom white stripes on his face. To be clear, they’re drawn with a mustache marker—not a paint pen—to maintain facial alignment. for him Callaway Paradym Triple Diamond driver No different.
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With custom drivers around the PGA Tour, it’s only natural to wonder why Schauffele is the only pro to make himself on the face of his own Paradym. According to the seven-time Tour winner, there’s a simple explanation for the thick facial lines.
“With a dark face, it’s hard to see those gray lines that you print on the face,” Schavelli said. “For me, it’s a little pastel. I know it’s kind of a mixed bag with guys if they want to see the face or not, so we thought it would be easier to just make one that’s hard to see. And if someone like me wants to see the stripes, we can just add them.”
At the highest level of professional golf, visuals are everything. If a driver appears visually locked in the title, he may not receive a single cut from a tour pro. The same can be said for how much the face is exposed when tuning the club.
In Schauffele’s case, the original silver scoring stripes on last year’s Rogue ST and current Paradym made it seem as if there wasn’t enough loft when he pulled off the driver. Too little loft—or even not enough looks—can make some golfers change their swing to get the ball in the air, even if that’s not really the case.
Rather than order a completely custom driver’s face from Callaway, Schauffele’s camper, Austin Kaiser, paints sharp, white lines across the face to mimic the pattern of scoring stripes found on Callaway’s Mavrik.
“I’m not precise or boring enough to paint those on my face myself,” said Schavelli. “Austin is the only person who has enough patience to make it happen.”
In Schauffele’s eyes, the scoring streaks on Mavrik remain the gold standard for visuals. Of course, there’s a performance trade-off that makes Paradem Triple Diamond superior to Maverick, which is why he’s content to keep getting face-painted.
“[Paradym Triple Diamond] “It was amazing from the moment I played the game,” said Schavelli. “I’m seeing tighter spin rates all over the face, and that’s the kind that keeps the scattering tight. It’s easily the sturdiest driver I’ve used during my time with Callaway. If we have to draw lines on the face of a better driver, I’m good to go.”
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