Bryson DeChambeau had a difficult day at Royal St. George’s Golf Course on Thursday and responded by taking his frustrations out on his equipment. 

On Thursday, DeChambeau shot a 1-over 71 in his first round at The Open Championship in Sandwich, England. After the round, DeChambeau chose not to put the onus on himself to improve but instead chose to blame his driver for his inability to hit a fairway. 

“If I can hit it down the middle of the fairway, that’s great, but with the driver right now … the driver sucks,” DeChambeau said. “It’s not a good face for me, and we’re still trying to figure out how to make it good on the mishits. I’m living on the razor’s edge like I’ve told people for a long time. When I did get it outside of the fairway, like in the first cut and whatnot, I catch jumpers out of there and I couldn’t control my wedges.”

DeChambeau was only able to hit 4 of 14 fairways in his first round and bogeyed two of his last four holes to finish the round. 

“It’s quite finicky for me because it’s a golf course that’s pretty short, and so when I hit driver and it doesn’t go in the fairway, it’s first cut or whatever, or it’s in the hay, it’s tough for me to get it out on to the green and control that,” DeChambeau said.  “It’s kind of living on the razor’s edge, and if I can’t figure it out.” 

“It’s literally the physics and the way that they build [club] heads now. It’s not the right design, unfortunately, and we’ve been trying to fix it [with no] results yet.’’

Understandably, his comments touched a nerve with the manufacturer of DeChambeau’s driver — Cobra Golf.

DeChambeau’s driver is made specifically for him, it’s not a club that the casual golfer has access to. According to Golfweek, he’s using a Cobra Radspeed driver, which is 46 inches long with 5 degrees of loft. 

Ben Schomin is Cobra’s tour operations manager and also filled in as DeChambeau’s caddie two weeks ago at the Rocket Mortgage Classic after DeChambeau parted ways with his longtime caddie, Tim Tucker. 

Schomin was not pleased that DeChambeau publicly disparaged the driver. 

“Everybody is bending over backwards. We’ve got multiple guys in R&D who are CAD’ing (computer-aided design) this and CAD-ing that, trying to get this and that into the pipeline faster. (Bryson) knows it,” Schomin told Golfweek. “It’s just really, really painful when he says something that stupid.”

“He has never really been happy, ever. Like, it’s very rare where he’s happy,” Schomin continued. “Now he’s in a place where he’s swinging a 5-degree driver with 200 mph of ball speed. Everybody is looking for a magic bullet. Well, the magic bullet becomes harder and harder to find the faster you swing and the lower your loft gets.”

One of the issues for DeChambeau and Cobra is that DeChambeau is attempting to change the game of golf. He swings faster than anyone on the tour, making it difficult for Cobra to acquire the data necessary to figure out how the driver reacts to his swing.

“So when he’s talking about the razor’s edge, we’re not going to be able to help that,” Schomin said. “At DeChambeau’s speeds, every shortcoming in his swing or mis-hit is exponentially magnified.”

“We’re trying to stay ahead of it, so we’ll place an order for 10 prototype heads and then, literally as soon as that order is placed, usually within a week or two, we might be ordering more of something else,” Schomin said.

To his credit, DeChambeau did apologize for his comments in a post to Instagram. 

The comment I made in my post round interview today was very unprofessional. My frustration and emotions over the way I drove the ball today boiled over. I sucked today, not my equipment. Cobra and I have worked together for over five years and they are some of the hardest working people in golf industry and make an incredible product. Their team is like family to me, especially Ben Schomin who has been there for me every step of the way since I started my career. I deeply regret the words I used earlier. I am relentless in pursuit of improvement and perfection. Part of that causes me to become outwardly frustrated at times. With the new speeds I am obtaining, my game is a constant work in progress and so is controlling my emotions

“It’s like an 8-year-old that gets mad at you,” Schomin said. “They might fly off the handle and say, ‘I hate you.’ But then you go. ‘Whoa, no you don’t.’ We know as adults that they really don’t mean that and I know that if I got him cornered right now and said, ‘What the hell did you say that for,’ he would say that he was mad. He didn’t really mean to say it that harshly. He knows how much everyone bends over backwards for him, but it’s still not cool.”

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