Tony Finau adds a second driver for 2024 Masters at Augusta National

Phil Mickelson won his second green jacket at the 2006 Masters while carrying two drivers in his bag, and it appears that big-hitting Tony Finau is planning to try to capture his first major this week at Augusta National using the same strategy.

According to Kenton Oates, a PGA Tour rep for Ping, Finau is planning to use two Ping G430 LST drivers during the 2024 Masters because, after developing his course strategy, he realized that unless very unusual conditions arise, he was not going to hit his 3-wood off the ground. Perhaps if the anticipated rain on Thursday significantly softened the turf on the par-5 eighth hole, or if the wind blew into Finau on the second shot on that hole, maybe a 3-wood would be in order, but aside from that, he was not going to need the club.

Ping G430 LST driver

Ping G430 LST driver. (David Dusek/Golfweek)

With that in mind, Ping built Finau a second G430 LST driver, built to his 3-wood specifications. Finau’s standard driver is a 9-degree G430 LST, but it has an actual loft of 7.75 degrees and is fitted with a 45.25-inch Mitsubishi Diamana GT 70TX shaft. The stated loft of the 3-wood-replacement-driver is 10.5 degrees, but with the adjustable hosel set to the small minus position, Kenton Oates, a PGA Tour rep for Ping estimates the head has about 8.9 degrees of loft. Ping gave the short driver to him last week in Texas.  Finau brought the shorter driver to Augusta with the rest of his gear this week.

“It’s probably going to give him a carry distance of about 290 yards and then roll out to about 300,” Oates said. “It’s still going to go really far. Tony was getting ball speeds with his gamer driver in the high 180s and ball speeds with the little one in the low 180s on the range this week.”

According to Oates, the increased loft and shorter shaft allow Finau to shut the face more aggressively and produce the draw-style flight. That shot shape could be very handy on the newly lengthened second hole, as well as the seventh, 10th, 13th, 14th and 17th holes, which all encourage a right-to-left shot.

Past the Masters, Oates explained, Finau and other pros may start to consider carrying two drivers more frequently because if they don’t need to play a 3-wood off the turf to reach par 5s, elite golfers could find having a draw driver and a fade driver to be an advantage worth exploring.

Tony FinauPing G430 LST driver
Optimized by Optimole