A contrite Bryson DeChambeau offered a profuse apology for an Open Championship outburst that triggered a furious and unprecedented rebuke from his equipment manufacturer. DeChambeau’s insistence, after his first round at Royal St George’s, that his driver “sucked” led to Cobra’s tour operations manager to call the comments “stupid” and say the former US Open champion was behaving “like an eight-year-old”. Cobra and DeChambeau have been seeking driver solutions, based on the golfer’s ferocious swing speed.
After a second round of 70, which was sufficient for DeChambeau to make the Open cut by a shot, the Californian was remorseful. “I made a mistake and as time goes on I’ll look back on this as a growing moment for me personally,” DeChambeau said. “Hopefully I can make the right things go on from here on out. I didn’t mean it, it was in a heated situation and I feel really bad about it.
“They work incredibly hard and I know that. For me, I misspoke and I feel really bad about it. I hope we can move on in the right direction. I know we will, I will say and do all the right things for Cobra-Puma because they mean the world to me, they have done a lot for me. I’ll say it again; I’m very, very sorry. I misspoke in a heated moment. That got the best of me. We are working hard to do the best we possibly can.”
This incident had been picked up by Brooks Koepka, who is engaged in a very public spat with DeChambeau. After a 66 moved Koepka into Open contention, the four-times major winner said: “I love my driver” when unprompted during a television interview.
DeChambeau said the affair was “for sure” a distraction before and during his own second round but that relations with Cobra remain intact.
“They are fine,” he added. “It’s one of those things in the moment. We have been working for a long time, for four years, on the driver and still haven’t had the exact one that has it work for me at 195mph ball speed. We are still working on it and I know we will get there, it’s just going to take some time. Yesterday I wasn’t driving it particularly well and it got the best of me unfortunately.”
In seeking to emphasise his own shortcomings, DeChambeau said: “My wedging is not good at all either. It’s tough when you have a wedge into a green and that’s not my strong suit. There is absolutely a part of this being me, I don’t say anything else apart from that. It was just frustration, not thinking the right way or saying the right thing. I have messed up a lot in my career and every time I mess up, I learn. This is another learning moment.”
What would DeChambeau give for a quiet professional life? “I would love that to be the case,” he said. “There are three or four things going on right now that everybody latches on to and says out there on the golf course and it is what it is. I am 27, I am human, I make mistakes. Yesterday was one of those. I continue to keep making mistakes unfortunately.”