Stuart Goldstein of New Jersey has taken being an AmateurGolf.com “Player Staff” member (a group of 100 golf equipment enthusiasts who help us review and evaluate new products) to the next level. Stuart has been speaking to some of the golf industry’s top executives and we know you’ll find these brief conversations to be fun and insightful.
In this edition Stuart speaks to Sam Bettinardi, of Chicago putter designer and manufacturer Bettinardi Golf.
Q: Give us a little insight on how Bettinardi Golf got started.
A: My father, Robert Bettinardi, first got the idea to start making putters in the early 90’s after walking into a golf store in cold December in Chicago. He saw an ad on the wall for a putter that was milled on an old Bridgeport milling machine and wondered why they were still using this technology, when at the time he owned a machine shop with CNC machines (computer numerical control). He called the person in the ad to talk about his capabilities with new technology and they collaborated to make putters from 1993-1997. We started Bettinardi in 1998 and the rest is history.
Q: How important is it that your products are made in the USA?
A: Very important to us. To be able to sit at my desk and look out a window onto our shop floor is very cool. It continues to remind me of our high quality control standards, and the fact that I can walk 20 feet away and pick up a putter and check out all aspects of manufacturing. Not many golf companies make their products in the USA, and we will continue to be different in that regard.