How to spot a counterfeit golf club in a sport inundated with fakes | 3 On Your Side


TEMPE, AZ (3Television set/CBS 5) — At Arizona Golf Works in Tempe, there are two fitting bays for golfing clubs. “We’re heading to make you hit a whole lot of golf balls, measure a whole lot of items with your swing,” proprietor Bryce Browning explained. It can be how you get fitted for golf golf equipment, and it truly is how you know you’re finding the real deal in a activity inundated with fakes.

Counterfeit clubs versus real ones

The visual differences between counterfeit clubs like these a short while ago seized in China and genuine kinds are usually refined.

According to the U.S. Golf Makers Anti-Counterfeiting Functioning Team, also known as the Golfing Team, there are an believed 10 million bogus or counterfeit golf club listings on the net at any given time. The Golf Group, which signifies various of the major golf suppliers, was developed to fight counterfeiting in the sport and raise awareness about the situation.

“We’ve confiscated 2 million counterfeit clubs,” explained Andrew Masterson, a spokesperson for the Golfing Team. “We’re earning a dent, but sadly, every 12 months, they’re earning new counterfeits. They’re coming out with new web-sites to provide counterfeits. It’s an ongoing difficulty.”

In current raids in China, investigators seized extra than 21,000 counterfeit golf equipment and parts of apparel, and virtually 52,000 fake trademark labels for providers like Titleist, TaylorMade, PXG, and Ping. “Lots of of them are very rudimentary. They look like they are functioning out of a garage,” Masterson instructed 3 On Your Side. “Regretably, each individual calendar year, we discover that individuals devote hundreds of hundreds of thousands of bucks on fake, counterfeit solutions. That doesn’t just incorporate golf equipment. Which is balls, gloves, sneakers, polos, pants, belts, almost everything — even down to the grip of the club. These counterfeiters will make a fake of just about anything.”

With counterfeit golf equipment appear problems about functionality and basic safety. “These clubs are not likely to complete anyplace in close proximity to the exact level as you would with real golf clubs that are produced by skilled golfing brands,” Masterson said. “Additional importantly, there are safety problems. We’ve observed incidents exactly where shafts will crack in people’s hands and where by the golf club heads will fly ideal off.”

To stay away from counterfeit golf equipment, the Golfing Team recommends acquiring golf equipment only from approved sellers. Individuals must also view out for web sites that mimic genuine manufacturers’ internet sites and stay away from clubs that are noticeably much less expensive than envisioned. “Practically all of the golfing club suppliers that you recognize would ship from the U.S., and if something ships from China, or if they say it’s going to acquire months or months to go as a result of customs, which is a telltale sign that it could be a pretend,” Masterson cautioned.

In excess of the years, Browning has spotted other telltale symptoms. Some are delicate, while other individuals are additional clear. “Some of the counterfeits are genuinely very good and extremely challenging to decipher,” he explained. “The font is off a little bit off. I have noticed words spelled improper. The colours are just off a minor little bit.” Browning reported he has had clients show up at Arizona Golf Operates to get a club fixed, and he has to split the news that it is a fake. “You can’t fix it,” he said.

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