Bryson DeChambeau’s life, already wrought with too many off-the-course distractions, got a bit more complicated Thursday.
The 27-year-old DeChambeau, frustrated by his 1-over 71 in the British Open first round at Royal St. George’s in Sandwich, England, lashed out at Cobra, his club manufacturer, saying his driver “sucks’’ and adding that he has been working with them for years to find the right driver for him with no good results.
“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.”
“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. It’s kind of living on the razor’s edge, and if I can’t figure it out.
“It’s forever. I’ve realized this for years now. This has happened since 2016-17 when players stopped drawing it. There’s not very many golfers that draw it anymore. It’s not because of spin rate. Everybody thinks it’s — we’re at 2,000, 1,800 spin or whatever. It’s not. It’s literally the physics and the way that they build heads now. It’s not the right design, unfortunately, and we’ve been trying to fix it [with no] results yet.’’
DeChambeau’s comments were followed by an explosive retort from his Cobra tour operations manager, Ben Schomin.
“Everybody is bending over backwards,’’ Schomin told Golfweek. “We’ve got multiple guys in R&D … trying to get this and that into the pipeline faster. [Bryson] knows it. It’s just really, really painful when he says something that stupid.”
DeChambeau did apologize in an Instagram post, writing: “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 [the] 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.”
Schomin is the man whom DeChambeau asked, with no notice, to caddie for him the last time he played, at the Rocket Mortgage Classic, after he and regular caddie, Tim Tucker, parted ways on the eve of the opening round.
Schomin lashed out at DeChambeau, who is paid a lot of money to promote Cobra equipment.
“He has never really been happy, ever,’’ Schomin said. “Like, it’s very rare where he’s happy. Now he’s in a place where he’s swinging a 5-degree driver with 200 rpm 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.”
According to Schomin, Cobra has tried to appease DeChambeau with seven different drivers designed for him this year. DeChambeau has been using a Cobra Radspeed driver that’s 46 inches long, with 5 degrees of loft, and is exclusively crafted for him.
“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.”
Suddenly, the ongoing beef between Bryson and Brooks Koepka doesn’t seem like such a big deal anymore.