Sun Mountain Sports president Rick Reimers did a hard-hitting Q&A with Golf World about the malfunctioning rain suits the U.S. team used at the Ryder Cup.
Hey, it’s a slow news week — well, at least in the golf world.
The first thing that stood out to me is they still don’t know what was wrong with the waterproofs.
“We still have not heard specifically from them what the actual problem was. … I found one of the extra jackets here, and we opened it up. I thought perhaps it was leaking through the stripes on the sleeve or the large appliqué on the embroidery. But when I looked at how we sealed it, I doubt it. These areas were sealed completely. I don’t see how rain — even heavy rain — could get through those.”
Sun Mountain even took Stephanie’s idea and stood in a shower for two hours — but the results were inconclusive. But Reimers wants you to know that you shouldn’t blame Lisa Pavin for designing the rain suits like frilly basketball warmups.
“That is a totally misplaced affair. We knew there was going to be a challenge with the large appliqués and embroidery, but we dealt with that appropriately. We wouldn’t have let the suits out the door if we didn’t feel we did that.”
So what really happened?
“I have a few theories. When the rain is heavy enough and the wind is blowing the exterior of the fabric gets to a point I call, “wetted out.” That’s where the garment no longer sheds the water. It doesn’t soak through, but it remains on the garment. Then with the wind it becomes somewhat plastered to you. So you feel the cold and you presume you’re wet although it is unlikely the rain went through the fabric. It’s also possible that rain from the players hats dripped down into the back of the jacket or front of the jacket and the players got wet from that. We noticed that the few players who wore bucket hats in the rain said they did not have a problem with the suit so that’s another possibility. But obviously some did have issues, and they didn’t want to wear them.”
In case you were wondering, the European team used ProQuip, which met extensively with Colin Montogomerie before the Ryder Cup.
“Rain was always going to be a factor at this year’s Ryder Cup, and Colin Montgomerie has known this from the outset,” said Richard Head (giggle). “He has been one of the most thorough and well-prepared captains I have worked with and has been clear in what he wanted for the team – the lightest and quietest rain suit possible. And that’s precisely what ProQuip has delivered.”
And that right there says it all.
(AP Photo/Alastair Grant)