Time to buy a new driver
What should you consider when buying a new driver?
It has been almost a decade since buying a new driver. In that 10-year period, much has changed in the technology of golf club design. Drivers have become lighter, the grips thicker, heads bigger and adjustable. My Cobra driver, over the years, has had several shafts, been re-gripped numerous time and had the head refinished. It is now time to join the present decade of drivers with the most recent Taylor Made driver.
Taylor Made golf clubs are very popular, so why not buy one of the best clubs? The 2016 Taylor Made M1 driver features Inverted Cone Technology [ICT] with titanium in the club face, allowing the ball to come off the club face with greater speed. The club head is a large 460-cc, producing a larger sweet spot for straighter and longer drives. There are five shafts featuring Fijikura Pro 70 graphite material.
The major feature, however, is the Taylor Made Launch Control [TLC]. TLC refers to the T-Track System on the bottom of the club. The front track with15 grams of weight sets the angle of the club face for draw, neutral or fade shots by moving the weight from heel to toe.
The back track with 10 grams of weight adjusts the club head for high, medium or low launch by moving the weight front to back. In addition, the loft sleeve on the hosel can also be adjusted by four degrees to change the face angle or loft. The head is made of a carbon composite to reduce the weight, thereby providing a low centre of gravity. The price for all this technology is C$599.99. For golfers with a single handicap or a professional, the M1 could be a very good upgrade
Not exactly! Although I enjoyed hitting the M1, this club is not senior friendly or made for the average golfer. If an average recreational golfer plays 12 to 24 rounds a year, has an average swing speed of 93.4 miles per hour and only drives the ball 214 yards off the tee, the M1 will not improve his swing enough to break 80, despite its superior technology. Good technology will not correct a bad swing.
What most average recreational golfers and seniors need is a set of clubs that suits their age and ability. In selecting a new driver, there are a number of guidelines that should be followed.
- The club head size of 460 cc may be too large and without a long back swing, the club face will not square to the ball. Go with a smaller club head size if available.
- The loft of the club face must be between 10.5 degrees and 12 degrees. The general rule is that if your swing speed is less than 90 miles per hour, use a loft more than 10.5 degrees.
- The shaft must be a regular or senior and not a stiff shaft. A light shaft will increase swing speed and combined with shaft flexibility, will produce greater distance.
- Avoid the multiple adjustable drivers. Since 80 per cent of golfers slice the ball, adjusting the weight slide to neutral or fade will only compound the problem. Golfers seldom adjust the weight off draw, needing an offset to correct their slice.
- If there are some white or bright colours on the club head, the head will appear larger when contrasted with the green grass and will seem easier to hit.
- Consider two wraps or more on the grip to give the driver a softer feel.
With these general guidelines and money in the bank, enjoy the shopping.