Rory McIlroy will play exclusively with TaylorMade equipment for the next 10 years. The four-time major winner announced his new relationship with TaylorMade on Tuesday at the Players Championship.
The 10-year, $100 million deal has McIlroy excited and budding with expectations.
“I’ve been on Tour 10 years,” McIlroy said. “It’s very rare that you get really excited about your equipment, but I am. I feel like it’s a new chapter in my life with a lot of stuff going on, but I really feel with the new equipment, as well, it’s hopefully going to take me to that next level.”
The “lot of stuff going on” McIlroy spoke of was perhaps a reference to his recent marriage to Erica Stoll, his longtime girlfriend.
“It was awesome; it was obviously the best weekend of my life — and hopefully the best weekend of Erica’s, as well,” he joked. “We obviously tried to keep it as private as possible. It was between our friends and families, and we didn’t really want anything else.
As far as golf is concerned, a change in equipment was necessary after his Masters performance.
“I wasn’t really happy with the golf ball I was playing and I needed to do something,” McIlroy said. “So I sort of went back to the drawing board and tested for about 10 days pretty extensively after Augusta, worked with a lot of different things. … I tested quite a few balls, and the one that I landed on, that was really it.
“The ball was what led me to this point, because it was like, this is the best ball I’ve hit in, well, ever. I feel like it’s really the best ball for me going forward, and then it was just trying to match everything up to that, and that’s why I feel like this is the best way forward.”
McIlroy’s results at the Masters certainly left a lot to be desired. Whether it’s fair or not, success breeds expectations, and he has carried the pressure of being one of golf’s superstars to take the mantle from Tiger Woods.
However, it’s been three years since McIlroy has hoisted a major trophy.
The good thing is that McIlroy is still young at 27 years old and has a lot of time to add to his stellar career. The Players Championship gives the No. 2 player in the world another chance to put some pressure on Dustin Johnson. Funny enough, McIlroy and Johnson will tee off in the same group on Thursday at TPC Sawgrass.
Either way, the Players Championship will be McIlroy’s first tournament since the Masters, and his first chance to put his TaylorMade equipment to the test.
h/t: espn.com, pgatour.com, nypost.com