PORTRUSH, Northern Ireland – Xander Schauffele became the first player to publicly have his driver deemed non-conforming since the R&A began testing individual player’s drivers at last year’s Open Championship.
Following a second-round 65 that left him tied for 18th place, Schauffele said that his Callaway driver was tested on Tuesday and that he spent the next two days scrambling to find a replacement.
Although he said he has no issue with his driver being tested, he did object to how the R&A only tests the characteristic time of random samples.
“I had a little bit of a run-in with them because they only test 30 players. I thought it was a little bit unfair,” he said. “I would gladly give up my driver if it's not conforming. But there's still 130 other players in the field that potentially have a nonconforming driver, as well.”
Schauffele struggled with his replacement driver on Thursday hitting just 6 of 14 fairways on his way to an opening 74 but said more testing late Thursday led to a better version he was able to use on Day 2.
“Yesterday it wasn't really matching my bag, which was a bummer. I was getting a little upset on the golf course,” Schauffele said. “Today I was testing a little bit on the range again with two different heads. But moved a few weights around and sort of found a good setting.”
The R&A began randomly testing individual player’s drivers at last year’s championship but none of the 30 that were tested exceeded the CT standards. An R&A spokesperson stated on Friday that "all drivers were conforming for the start of [this] championship" but did not say if any others had failed its test prior to the beginning of competition.
“We offer the testing as a service to players so that they can ensure that their drivers conform,” the R&A said in a statement. “We believe that 30 is a reasonable sample and a practical option for conducting this process in the week of a major championship.”
Editor's note: Updated July 20 at 5:04 a.m.ET