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Presenting – 2013 “Golf’s Most Wanted” Driver Test

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A New Standard (because you deserve better)

It's time for a new Gold Standard in club testing.

For years golfers have looked to a certain list to provide guidance for their new club purchases, but as the game has changed and new technologies have emerged, the List has remained the same.

Rather than show the actual data that proves one club out performs another, they coddle the golf companies (also their advertisers and #1 source of revenue), and award points for style (looks, sound, and feel), the arbitrary notion of innovation (it's only innovative if it actually works), and even throw in a few bonus points for effective advertising (they call it buzz). And when all is said and done, everybody gets a medal.

You deserve better.

That type of thinking that's turning us into a nation of spoiled pansies who expect to be rewarded just for showing up. Sorry Sally, when performance is the only thing that matters, you don't need to run your club test like a 3rd grade Science fair. Not everybody gets a trophy.

At MyGolfSpy our club testing is Datacratic. We don't care about names. We care about performance - and performance only. The best drivers in golf are determined based on the data, and not a damn thing more.

QUICK STATS

:: 13 golf companies
:: 17 Drivers
:: Over 30 hours of testing
:: More than 3000 golf balls hit
:: 41,000 unique data points
:: 100% of the results determined by the data
:: The most thorough club testing in the industry today

Meet the Participants

Price

 

Adjustable

 

Lofts

 

Shaft

 

Flex

 

Length

 
Adams Speedline Super S
$299.95
Yes³
All-in-One (9.5°-11.5°)
Matrix Radix S
A,R,S,X
46"
Adams Speedline Super LS
$399.95
Yes
8.5°, 9.5°, 10.5°
Mitsubishi Kuro Kage
S,R,X
45.0"-45.5"
Callaway RAZR Fit Xtreme
$399.99
Yes
8.5°,9.5°,10.5°, 11.5°,13.5°
Aldila Trinity, Matrix 7m3
A (Lite),R,S,X
45.5"
Callaway XHOT
$299.99
Yes
8.5°¹,9.5°,10.5°, 11.5°, 13.5°
Project X Velocity
A, R, S (5.5, 6.0, 6.5)¹
46", 45.75"¹
Cleveland Classic XL
$329.99 $249.99
Yes
7.5°, 9.0°, 10.5°, 12°²
Miyazaki JDL 6
R,S,X
45"
Cobra AMP Cell
$299.99  $399.99¹
Yes
All-In-One
Fujikura Fuel, Kuro Kage¹
A,R,S S,X¹
45.75" 45.25"¹
Geek No Brainer*
$289.99
No
6°,7.5°,9° 10.5°,12°
H. of Forged Aldila Phenom
Custom A,S,R,X
45"
Mizuno JPX-825
$299.99
No
9.5°, 10.5°
Fujikura Orochi
R,S,X
45.5"
Nike VR_S Covert
$299.99, $399.99¹
Yes
All-In-One 8.5°-12°
Kuro Kage Black, Silver¹
A,R,S R,S,X¹
45.75"
PING Anser
$399.00
Yes
8.5°,9.5° 10.5°,12°
See Below
A,R,S,X
45.25"
PING G25
$349.00
Yes
8.5°,9.5° 10.5°,12°
TFC80D TFC 189D
A,SR,R,S TS,TX
45.75"
PowerBilt Air Force One DF
$299.99
No
8.5°,9.5° 10.5°,12.5°
Fuji Motore F3
A,R,S,X
46"
TaylorMade R1
$399 $499¹
Yes
All-In-One 8.5°-12°
Phenom 55 Phenom 65¹
A,R,S,X R,S,X¹
45.5"
TaylorMade RBZ Stage 2
$299-$399
Yes
9.5°,10.5°,HL13° 9°,10°¹
RocketFuel Matrix 6Q3
A,R,S,X
45.5"
Titleist 913
$399.00
Yes
7.5°, 8.5°, 9.5°, 10.5°, 12°
See Below
A,R,S,X
45"
Wilson D-100
$299.99
No
9°, 10.5°, 12°
Matrix Ozik HD4.1
A,R,S
46"
Wishon 919THI*
$325.00
No
9°, 10.5°, 11°, 13°, 13.5°
Wishon S2S Black 65
R,S,X
44"
¹ Denotes Pro/Tour model Spec ² Cleveland Classic XL Custom not available in 12° so standard model was used * Wishon and Geek are custom/component companies who agreed to provide samples built to common specifications PING Anser Stock Shafts: PING TFC800D, Aldila Phenom, Fujikura Blur, Dianana 'Ahina, PING TFC80D Titleist 913 D Stock Shafts: Aldila RIP Alpha, Aldila RIP Phenom, Diamana D+, Diamana S+, Titliest Bassara W 50, Titleist Bassara W 50

Declined to Participate

The following companies were invited, but declined to participate in the driver test:

Alpha Golf - Current model is nearly end of life. New models are not yet available.
Tour Edge - Company policy is to not participate in head to head testing until the product has been on the market for 6 months.
Hireko/Acer - New model inventory was not available in time for testing.
Krank Golf - New model inventory was not available in time for testing.

Testing Procedures:

:: Testers were given adequate time to warm up.

:: Golfers hit between 5 and 15 shots (5 at a time) with a given club during each session.

:: Clubs for each session as well as the order in which they were hit were selected at random.

:: Each tester hit each club in our test on 3 different occasions (3 different days).

:: While individual numbers varied, each tester hit the same number of qualifying shots (non-misreads, solid contact) with each club in the test.

Scoring:

:: Launch Monitor misreads and gross mishits were dropped prior to scoring

:: Based on Total Driving (Point that results from Distance minus yards offline), proprietary formulas are used to trim outliers. From the remaining shots we determined individual scores for Distance, Accuracy, and Total Driving.

:: Each individual tester's score is relative to his own performance with each club tested. One tester's distance and accuracy is never compared to another's.

:: For example, when we calculate our distance scores, our slowest swing speed tester (~200 yard average), is never directly compared to our highest swing speed player (~290 average). Both scores are relative only to each's individual ability.

:: The same is true of accuracy. For example, an average of 20 yards offline might be very good for for one tester, and yet comparatively poor for another. Our scores always reflect differences in individual ability.

:: Scoring this way prevents any single tester...the guy who might be measurably longer than everyone else, or more accurate than everybody else, from exerting an unfair amount of influence over the final score.

:: The distance, accuracy, and overall (Most Wanted Driver in Golf) are determined based on the average score of the top 5 testers (the lowest score is always dropped to prevent a single poor performance from skewing the results).

Golf's Most Wanted Driver Results (Schedule)

We will begin publishing the results of the 2013 Driver Test next week.

:: Monday 4/15 we'll cover distance. For guys looking for the longest driver in golf, these are the results you must see.
:: Tuesday 4/16 we'll cover accuracy. Want to hit the ball straighter and play from the short grass more often? These are the clubs that can help you do that.
:: Wednesday 4/17 we'll reveal Golf's Most Wanted Driver; the club that our data says is the very best of 2013. And as we always do, we're going to PUBLISH the DATA.

The following week we will be publishing testing notes, behind the scenes info...that sort of thing. The data is the data, and we believe strongly in that....but there are always details that can't be seen with a simple yardage number and score, so we're going so share some of the more interesting insights and notes from our test.

Finally, we're going to provide mailbag links to allow all of you to ask whatever it is you'd like to ask about our test, the testers, the clubs, etc. Depending on volume we may not answer everything, but we are definitely looking forward to the opportunity to fill in any information you feel like we may have missed.

{ 57 comments… read them below or add one }

Neale Bolen April 11, 2013 at 9:16 am

Great Job !!!! Can’t wait for the results

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Jim Popp April 11, 2013 at 9:21 am

As a 2-3 times a month golfer I am looking forward to your results with great anticipation.
Thank you for going through this type of testing and giving us the results!

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Mike G April 11, 2013 at 9:21 am

I have hit most of them and look forward how the results match up

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jpball April 11, 2013 at 9:26 am

Finally! I am really looking forward to these reports.

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Josh April 11, 2013 at 9:38 am

Stop teasing and post the results!!

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Dave S April 11, 2013 at 9:41 am

From the pictures at the end of the article it looks like you tested the Nike Covert Tour… did you also test the regular one?

Really looking forward to this… I have a $300 gift card to Golfsmith burning a hole in my pocket!

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GolfSpy T April 11, 2013 at 10:50 am

With the Covert, and everything else for which a Pro/Tour model was available, guys who would normally purchase that model (generally our high swing speed guys) tested with that version of the head.

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Sparnar April 11, 2013 at 9:42 am

Can’t wait!!!

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kg4ever April 11, 2013 at 9:55 am

I been waiting for this report like forever, pumped 2 see em next week !!!!!

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Desertdog April 11, 2013 at 10:13 am

I wish you used more testers. Your statistics, objectivity, analysis, etc. is great but using 5 or 6 testers is not enough. Narrowing them down to the few who’s club head speed is similar to mine means I am analyzing the results of only one or two guys. Maybe you could find another 10 players to create a better sample.

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Mike B April 11, 2013 at 10:13 am

I loved your comparison to the “List”. I am looking forward to see the results.

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Matt April 11, 2013 at 10:14 am

I’m not going to buy a driver this year. Absolutely no interest. But I’m still looking forward to reading everything next week. That’s how much I appreciate all the work on this site. Thanks for everything.

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blstrong (SeeRed) April 11, 2013 at 11:56 am

+1

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Golfer Burnz April 11, 2013 at 10:18 am

This is great stuff.

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Drew April 11, 2013 at 10:24 am

Kick ass!

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Bobtrumpet April 11, 2013 at 10:27 am

What lofts and shafts were used for the models that had multiple options?

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GolfSpy T April 11, 2013 at 10:51 am

Manufacturers provided a variety of configurations from their available ‘stock’ offerings. We used the combination that worked best for the individual tester.

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Rev Kev April 13, 2013 at 9:00 am

I think this is a particularly great idea given that most golfers purchase ‘stock.’ I’m certainly not in the market for a driver this year and yet I’m as caught up in this as anyone. It would be cool to test this year’s winners vs. some highest grade earners from past year’s driver tests to see if there is anything to be gained by technological advances over the past several years.

Thanks MGS.

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Ice April 11, 2013 at 11:05 am

It’s well knows that I totally disagree with the way this is done, but I do look forward to it nonetheless.

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Paul April 11, 2013 at 11:34 am

Can’t wait to see the test results.

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Gil B. April 11, 2013 at 11:36 am

I love it. Now, maybe we’ll get the straight scoop after all the hype and facts distortions. Like Joe Friday of yesteryear used to say, “just the facts maam’, just the facts”.

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Steve April 11, 2013 at 11:38 am

Congratulations on your courage and determination to provide factual comparisons. Keep up the good work!

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Stephen Smith April 11, 2013 at 11:49 am

Guys – fantastic- I have been conducting my own tests using the PSYkit methodology to look at the osychological confidence and edge a club can give a player. I wanted to partner with some of the top european golf mags but……and I would never say it was because I refused to award high scores to some of the big brands….they did not want to know I am publishing my tets results in 6-8 weeks cant wait to see how your align with mine
The Secret Psych

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JBones April 11, 2013 at 11:51 am

If it wasn’t done with a robot, I’m not interested. LOL

Can’t wait for the results.

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RAT April 11, 2013 at 12:44 pm

Let’s get it on!

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arthur leblanc April 11, 2013 at 1:06 pm

Would love an email when you get the results. Thanks

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Mike Heggie April 11, 2013 at 1:07 pm

Awesome, can’t wait! I’m very excited to see Tom Wishon equipment in the testing. I do have one wish though, I would really like to see the drivers that previously scored the highest, Adams 9064ls, Bridestone J40 and Ping i20 to be added. Basically to upgrade or keep what’s in the bag, put out or get out, talking performance here! Interested to see how Geek performs. My hat’s off to you guys. You’re the best, forget the rest!

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Robert Keteltas April 11, 2013 at 1:15 pm

Cant wait for results !!! Just bought the Titleist D2 . Hope I didnt buy too soon LOL !!!!

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Bryan April 11, 2013 at 1:27 pm

I game a 910D2 and it is by far the most accurate driver I have ever owned. I hit the Adams Speedline further but I was not as accurate with it. So I am really interested in this.

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jderomana April 11, 2013 at 2:25 pm

It was time we have results based on tesging ,….nothing else maters

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Russ T April 11, 2013 at 2:59 pm

I’m going out on a limb and predicting the Wilson D-100 as the #1 overall performer.

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Florent barral April 11, 2013 at 3:38 pm

Excellent!! That s What i was looking for! Is this the start of a Golfclubleaks scandal? :)

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SkipAllAds April 11, 2013 at 6:11 pm

Excellent !! I can’t wait for the test !! I have a question, the clubs to be tested did you guys bought them or companies donated them ? If the club companies donated them, I’ll be on a look out for juiced up drivers.
Another test I would like to see with drivers is, to take all companies drivers , like you guys are about to do, and hit each driver with a few Pro v1 , callaway ,nike ball etc. In other words, take a swing robot at 100 mph swing speed and hit a titleist driver 9.5 stiff shaft ( off the shelf)with a pro v1 ball, and hit 10 shots. Then hit a callaway tour ball, then a nike tour ball 10 times also.Then take a TM driver ,same specs ( off the shelf) and hit a prov1, then callaway tour etc etc. It would be interesting to see which 2013 driver hit the longest with which tour ball. :)

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Warwick Weedon April 12, 2013 at 12:14 am

A great idea!

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Chuck Smith April 11, 2013 at 6:25 pm

This should be quite interesting! I’ve recently discovered your site and have used your research in identifying equipment that I wanted to purchase (and more importantly) has worked well for me!

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P.J. April 11, 2013 at 7:29 pm

Now that’s what I’m talking about! “Just the facts, ma’am”!!

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Tom Crisan April 11, 2013 at 8:38 pm

Tuesday I sent email asking when their driver testing data would be available? Wednesday I received the answer – starts this weekend – data roll-out starts Monday – What a great bunch of guys – thanx for the quick reply

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Eric Larson April 11, 2013 at 8:43 pm

This is the most realistic testing being done. Real data, real testers. Robots don’t care about feel, don’t have trouble squaring up a long light shaft. Irons next?

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Nano-Power April 11, 2013 at 11:48 pm

Is it kind of pity and insufficient that your test program with no golf clubs from Asia ? no Asian spec golf clubs ? Asian golf clubs are finely crafted and with materials of higher grade than other area , Asian golf clubs present the specs , function and price in different way to American phase , without trying some of the Asian , itis not so meaningful to clare who is BEST ! if time allows , let me know to send you a couple driver in Asian spec to run data ! Thanks , Best Regards / William Wu

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Stephen Smith April 12, 2013 at 2:12 am

In the UK we have a Car TV show called Top Gear which has car manufacturers quaking in their boots because they call it as it really is. no punches are pulled in their reviews…………….is this the first time we will see the same in golf I hope so!
Would love to see how some of the independent manufacturers who don’t add cost to the clubs through the sponsorship of Tour Professionals compare to the BIG BRAND names

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Mike Aiello April 12, 2013 at 3:25 am

I was going to go shopping for a new driver this coming Monday the 15th. I guess I will be putting that off for a few more day’s. Great work and can’t wait for your result’s.

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Facundo Gonzalez April 12, 2013 at 5:23 am

this site is the best in golf!!!! great job!!! please i need the result´s!!!!!!

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frank April 12, 2013 at 5:43 am

LOVE THE US VS. THEM THEME AND MENTALITY. We all know the leading Unbiased no BS reviewers around and they are right here…..I can’t wait for the results unfortuantely I don’t get paid for each day leading up to wednesday to ensure I can save enough money for another new driver but thankfully I feel I have the beast I have been searching for. and we always have credit cards too;P

anxious to see how it stands out with the rest…as always great job MGS

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foster April 12, 2013 at 8:28 am

There is no better group for club testing than the team at MGS!

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John Barry April 12, 2013 at 9:47 am

Can’t wait for the results!!!

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SPY ZINGER April 12, 2013 at 8:04 pm

Looking forward to this one. I have no knowledge of the testing results whatsoever. So, I am going out on a limb and predict: #xtreme

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Bart Csiello April 13, 2013 at 4:55 am

This is going to be freakin’ awesome! Thank you!

When I started playing golf 2 years ago I got the bug real bad. I searched high and low for information on everything related to golf. I started with golf indigestion’s hot list because I thought they were the source of all information. Boy was I wrong. I started at their website and saw what I thought was snippets of information on their hot list winners. I figured they had the details in the print version. Nope. There are no details, no real information to influence a buying decision at all.

Thankfully I found MGS. I read all your reviews, all the forums, I couldn’t get enough. I learned more from your website in one day then from any other source. You have influenced my buying decisions from my latest purchase the align shoe inserts, swing box, hitting matt, to my very first purchase the shotmaker. You introduced me to so many products I never would have looked at even if I saw them in a store. Thank you! thank you! thank you!

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Brad Wood April 13, 2013 at 12:32 pm

Looking forward to seeing the results!

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Eidolon April 13, 2013 at 2:23 pm

Kranks new “element” driver is available as I have one. Maybe not as good as they want so no test.The fools did not send the instructions or the tool for the adjustability and they refuse to acknowledge or answer my request for same????????????????

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Michael Garrard April 13, 2013 at 4:02 pm

Thanks to MGS for the hard work, and thanks to the club companies for providing the test material.

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jason April 13, 2013 at 7:31 pm

looking forward to the results. thanks for all the hard work.

also, hope you guys provide some insight into how much the adjustable drivers changed ball flight with the adjustments. thanks

jm

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Craig Forth April 14, 2013 at 6:49 am

To Jason,
Answer is

They don’t change a thing.

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Craig Forth April 14, 2013 at 6:46 am

Tests have just come in.
The four worst drivers you could buy at the moment are:
1] Taylor Made R1
2] Nike covert
3] Ping Anser
4] Titleist 913D2

Sorry if you want to hear this but testing was done by Tom Wishon
He checked every possible combination there was to check

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GolfSpy T April 14, 2013 at 12:13 pm

What you’ve stated is inaccurate. What Mr. Wishon has stated is that adjustable drivers don’t adjust loft as claimed. It’s important to point out that his is just one of many opinions on the the subject. Furthermore, Mr. Wishon’s research was done entirely based on static measurement. At no point does he provide any opinion on how any of the clubs he mentions perform with respect to what happens when they’re used to hit a golf ball, which incidentally, is what people do with drivers.

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bullwinkle April 14, 2013 at 3:33 pm

I have gone through my own testing process and I’ll be interested in which shafts get tested in each driver. Just my opinion, but the Kuro Kage shaft in both the Nike Covert and the Adams Speedline Super LS are pure crap. I can tell you that there was a clear winner in my driver testing, both in terms of distance and control. I’ve never owned a club made by the company whose driver tested best for me, but I ordered it, have it in hand and look forward to hitting it this week. I’ll also share that I’ve hit nothing but Adams Drivers, Fairway Woods and Hybrids prior to this year. Not a single Adams club left in my bag, but big brother Rocketballzier Tour got both the Fairway and Hybrid (rescue club), Not so in the driver, at an average of 12 more yards it was the Callaway Razr Fit Extreme 9.0 R Aldila Trinity. It was the hardest purchase I’ve ever made in golf equipment, but it would have been stupid to swing that many times and ignore the results. I’m not endorsing Callaway, mind you, but if you ignore it because of your previous experience, you are missing out on the best Callaway I’ve ever seen or swung.
62 years old, handicap index 6.8

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Joe Golfer April 14, 2013 at 8:47 pm

I look forward to seeing the results, just like everybody else.
I was surprised to see that Wishon made their driver 44″ in length. It may work to their advantage based on consistency and average distance, since those lengthier drivers probably give more distance on a perfect hit, but one gets less perfect hits with them overall.

Would be nice to see one additional tester added. Iron Byron. Set it up to hit the ball on the sweet spot, slightly towards toe, slightly towards heel, etc… Also set it up to swing at various speeds, like 85 mph, 97 mph, 110 mph, to give a different perspective of how a club reacts at different swing speeds.

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BonStrosity May 6, 2013 at 11:53 am

When are the results expected to be released? Thank you.

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