Press Release
TOKYO, JAPAN, January 11, 2005
Defending Champ Says Aloha to New Bridgestone Equipment with Mercedes Repeat

PGA Tour star Stuart Appleby, in his FIRST official PGA Tour event using new Bridgestone equipment, overcame a slow start in Hawaii becoming the FIRST person in history to repeat at the Mercedes Championships on the Plantation Course at Kapalua, all while awaiting the birth of he and his wife’s FIRST child . Appleby’s down-to-the-wire win (the FIRST ever at Kapalua after an over par opening round) gives him his FIRST title of the 2005 PGA Tour season and the Bridgestone brand’s FIRST ever PGA Tour victory.

Appleby relied on the new Bridgestone Tour B330 ball, Bridgestone J33P driver, J33B Blade irons and J33 AirMuscle utility clubs on his way to rounds of 74-64-66-68, in his season opening one-shot victory in Hawaii. The Bridgestone Tour B330 features a Speed Elasticity Core for increased initial velocity at impact and as a result increased distance off the tee. This was never more evident than on the hole which started Appleby’s final round charge, the Par 4, 6th. Appleby boomed an almost inhuman 389-yard drive to reach the green and leave himself with a 12-footer for eagle. Appleby made good on the eagle attempt and continued to roll from there.

“The new ball is just awesome,” said Appleby. “I’ve picked up an additional 15 yards off the tee, and when you see this thing perform in the wind, you really know it’s something special.”

Appleby finished 5th in the field in driving distance for the week with an average of 287.1 yards per drive. Appleby also counted on the new Bridgestone gear to gain a top 5 finish in six other statistical categories, including such telling statistics as, birdies, eagles, putts per green and greens in regulation.

“We knew Stuart was going to have a great season when we first witnessed the way he performed with the new clubs and balls during testing sessions,” said Dan Murphy, Director of Marketing, Bridgestone Golf. “What a great way to begin the new season, the stars are really beginning to align for us and for Stuart.”