WASHINGTON – Golfers from around the country are hitting the links for the first time in years, but a golf course in southwest Wisconsin has some special privileges.
The course in Kirkland has golf balls from more than 60 different countries and is only one of several golf courses across the country that has been granted handicap golf balls by the International Golf Association.
Kirkland Golf Association President Steve Johnson said the balls are a unique gift that the organization will use to support golfers who play the game responsibly.
“This is a privilege for a great number of golfers to have access to the best ball in the world,” Johnson said.
“It’s also a gift that I hope to extend to our fellow golfers.”
The Kirkland golf ball is the first in the country to be granted handicaps by the IGA.
The IGA’s golf balls are manufactured by Ballistix.
Johnson said there are more than 2,500 ball factories in the U.S. and around the world, but the Kirkland ball is different.
“Ballistix balls are made from pure carbon steel, which is made of high quality steel and the only way that it can be made is by an all-new process,” Johnson explained.
“The carbon steel is heated, then the carbon steel melts and becomes a solid, which then becomes the ball.”
We are using a process that is very similar to the process that makes golf balls in a golf club, but it is a little bit different.
We are using high-pressure carbon steel instead of conventional carbon steel.
“So it’s a little more expensive than a golf ball.”
The IGA also gives handicapped golfers the opportunity to play with their ball in an online handicap tournament.
Johnson said handicapped ball users can compete with players from all over the world.
“There’s a handicap program that’s being run right now that is being run in Kirkfield, but we don’t have the name of the program yet,” Johnson told ABC News.
“I hope to have a name for it in the next few weeks.”
The first round of the tournament will be played at the Kirklands Country Club on Sunday, May 27.
The winner will be determined by a public vote of the golf community.