What really convinced me, though, was watching other golfers try it out.
They gathered on a sparkling day at McCormick Ranch Golf Club in Scottsdale, Arizona.
There wasn’t a ringer among the group of 10, whose handicaps ranged from 8 to 30.
Several named the short game as their biggest weakness. As a group, they exhibited the usual flaws.
Some tried to help the ball into the air with the upper body. Some “flipped” the hands at impact. Inconsistent ball position and uncertainty on where to land the ball were common themes.
For the test, we put them in difficult but not impossible spots, often with the green sloping away.
They’d need a soft touch to get close.
Each golfer started by playing several shots with his own wedge, then switched to the Dune. We told them to try the Dune using an arms-and-shoulders, putting-style motion.
The results followed a remarkably steady pattern. It went something like this:
Golfer with own wedge: Thin and long… fat and short… fat, thin… wide of target... (With a solid shot or two sprinkled in.)
Golfer with Dune Wedge (his first time using it): Solid contact but a little short or long… closer… closer… really close…
Their reactions were consistent, too.
“With my typical club, I have to be cautious of my setup, my balance and so forth and so on,” said 8 handicap Mike Snyder. “With the Dune, I just set up naturally and swing. The club just did all the work.
“I just used a simple putting stroke and the rest was all handled by the Dune.”
Patrick Smith, a 20, agreed wholeheartedly.
“With the Dune, it just slides and glides right across the grass, pops it right up into the air,” he said. “The chunking, that mental aspect of it is not even in my mind anymore.”
Then there was John Petrilli, who once carried a sporty 9 handicap. Now age 72, however, that’s crept up to 30 – due in part to his faltering short game.
Petrilli thinks the Dune Wedge could halt his slide.
“With my wedge I would say I’m under 50% confident,” he said. “I’m gonna chunk it, skull it or do something odd. After I practice with the Dune hybrid, I believe it’ll be 90% effective and I will hit 90% of my shots (well).”
John was pretty excited – but high handicapper Norman Lansden was downright ecstatic.
“I can’t wait to play my partners with the Dune,” he said with a chuckle. “They’ll be surprised and (asking), ‘Where’d he go take a lesson?’ “
If there was one comment that summed up the group’s experience, it came from Dave Alvarado: