Sony Open winner Johnson Wagner’s “Magnum P.I.” upper-lip fuzz may have been the talk of the tourney, but Matt Every’s unconventional flat stick created quite a stir last week in Honolulu. For once, though, the putter on parade was not one you shove into your gut or under your chin.
That’s not to say that the Black Hawk baton did not engender its own fair share of scrutiny and ridicule after Every put it into play last week for the first time on the PGA Tour. Traditionalists will likely have a field day with the shape of the club head, which resembles a rectangular fireplace shovel. All Every knows is that he’s comfortable standing over the ball when he grips the Black Hawk, a design from Florida engineer David Kargetta.
And, it turns out, the Black Hawk has a curvier sister, the Black Swan. While Kargetta has been frugal with details about his creations, Dave Tomczak, general manager of Duran Golf Club in Viera, Fla., told us Monday that the two sticks, each of which weighs 440 grams, offered the largest areas of forgiveness (or highest moment of inertia, MOI) of any putter on the market. Indeed, the Black Swan — which has a slightly larger back end with an oval-shaped hole in the middle — provided an even bigger sweet spot than the Black Hawk, according to Tomczak, whose pro shop was the first to stock Kargetta’s putters, putting them on display some six months ago.
Kargetta may have a third model on his drawing board as well, said Tomczak, who noted that sales of the Black Hawk had been “moderate” until last weekend. “Now things are starting to ramp up a little bit” after the press Every received at the Sony, said Tomczak.
The Black Hawk was so new to his bag that Every was unsure of the designer’s name.
“The guy who made it, his name is David [Kargetta], I’m not sure if I’m pronouncing his last name right,” Every told reporters after finishing his third round on Saturday tied for the lead. “He’s an engineer.”
“I wouldn’t be doing the putter justice if I explained it to you,” said Every, who began tinkering with the Black Hawk about a month and a half ago, according to Golfweek’s Alex Miceli. “Like I know that it works for me. [Kargetta] knows way more about it than I do. He knows all the numbers behind it and everything.”
While declining to provide specifics, Kargetta conceded to the Florida Times-Union’s Garry Smits that the USGA approved the Black Hawk’s specs last February and that he planned to start selling it in larger volume in March. All the press Every received last week, however, will likely cause Kargetta to push up the release date.
“We knew what we had, and we knew what it could do,” Kargetta told Miceli. “We got a lot more attention than we were hoping for.”
Even after Kargetta (who did not immediately respond to a request for comments) puts his invention on the market, golfers won’t find it on the usual retail golf sites. The inventor planned to sell it only through PGA professionals’ facilities like Duran Golf Club and Magnolia Point Golf and Country Club in Green Cove Springs, Fla.
Randy Harrington, Magnolia Point’s assistant golf pro, said he had been sworn to secrecy about Kargetta’s hush-hush creations, but acknowledged he had been selling them for a few weeks.
“I’ve been told I’m not supposed to give out any information,” Harrington said. He was not even at liberty to say how many putters he had sold but said the Black Hawk had received “quite a bit of interest” since last week’s tournament.
Harrington sells the Black Hawk and Black Swan to his members for $259 and $279, respectively, while the two mallets go for $269 and $299 at Duran Golf Club.