For Luke Donald, 2011 was almost a perfect year. Not only did he become the first golfer ever to win both the European PGA and USPGA Tour money titles in the same year, he cemented his position as world number one with a season of unerring consistency that has seen him rightfully acclaimed as currently the world’s best golfer.
Indeed, the only way Donald could have improved on this momentous year would have been to have added a major title to his collection of victories. With the 2012 season just gearing up and professional golfers starting to get their swing into shape for the first major of the year this April at Augusta, Donald will no doubt be itching to finally put that right.
The Driver: TaylorMade R11 9 deg
Donald has never been the longest player on tour from the tee, so the extra yardage he receives when switching to the popular R11 will no doubt have been a bonus. However Luke himself reckons that the control afforded by the club allows him to launch the ball high and impart a slight right to left ball flight, without spin, giving him great control over the shot and a little added distance.
Fairway Woods/Hybrids: TaylorMade R9 Fairway 13 deg 3-Wood
Mizuno CLK Fli-Hi 17.5 deg Hybrid
Donald carries his 3-wood around 250 yards and is happy to use his 3-wood from the fairway or tee, however to aid his shot-making, he does have the club ‘bent’ slightly to give it 14-degrees of loft, even though it says 13 degrees on the sole. The world number one also views his hybrid as an important part of his bag now and admitted it is “hard to get that one out of my bag” as it is a “great utility club that works well around the course.”
Irons 3 to PW: Mizuno MP 62
Given that Donald’s iron play is such a dominating feature of his game, it is perhaps surprising to note that Donald uses a standard lie and loft set of Mizuno MP 62 irons that he has kept in his bag a couple of years. Donald claimed in an interview with Golf Monthly Interactive that they are “pretty stock irons” and revealed “I’m a traditional player, not a bomber, I like to work the ball left to right, right to left. I like to be able to hit shots low and high and these irons really allow me to do that.”
Wedges: Mizuno MP T-11 54 and 60 deg Wedges
Donald revealed that he is happy to use his lob wedge (60 degrees) for full shots, as well as using it for shorter bunker shots and also when around the green. He also revealed that he uses the 54 degree wedge for longer bunker shots and longer approaches for distances between that of his pitching wedge and the lob wedge.
Putter: Odyssey White Hot XG 2.0 #7
Donald picked up his Odyssey XG 2.0#7 at the 2007 Honda Classic, and claimed “I haven’t looked back, it’s treated me pretty well.”
Golf ball: Titleist Pro V1x (2005 version)
Interestingly, Donald is one of a few tour pros who have opted to use the 2005 version of the Pro V1x. Donald claimed that “I’ve just got so used to the spin, the feel around the green. You know, I’ve tried various different models but haven’t found one that’s better than it and that’s always my rule. I’ll change as long as it’s better.”
With 2012 promising to be another year of success for the English born golfer and world number 1, Donald will be hoping his clubs can keep him at the top of the golf rankings throughout 2012 and perhaps add that elusive major title to his already impressive and record-breaking CV.
Images by Keith Allison