was the man behind the Callaway Golf Company
, famous for their "Big Bertha
" range of drivers
. His revolutionary clubs
are said, by some, to have changed the face of golf
forever, giving weaker players
the ability to hit balls
further and more accurately than ever before. His ERC
range of clubs (Ely Reeve Callaway
) sparked huge debate withing the golfing industry: the clubs violated US regulations as to the maximum speed at which the ball is allowed to leave the club face
His even more controversial range of clubs, aptly named ERC II, were not approved for competition play, despite great efforts by Callaway, including endorsment by golfing legend Arnold Palmer.
Palmer is quoted as saying that Ely Callaway was "one of the most important things that ever happened in the game."
His company, Callaway Golf, began on his purchase of the speciality club manufacturer "Hickory Stick" in 1984. Hickory Stick, at the time, specialised in customised sets of clubs that had steel shafts coated with hickory wood.
Through his passion for the game, technical prowess, and desire to see the average Joe Schmoe play and enjoy golf, Callaway turned Hickory Stick into Callaway Golf and within 4 years the company was grossing $5m per annum. Ten years down the line, with Callaway now a household name, sales were well up within the $800m region. The company in now worth billions.
Ely Callaway passed away on July the 5th, 2001 due to pancreatic cancer at the age of 82.
There are 34 rules in the game of golf.
Callaway invented the 35th: