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TaylorMade goes back to black with R1

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Since TaylorMade launched its R11 driver in 2011, golf fans have associated its drivers with white-painted crowns. But the company’s decision to release a black-painted version of its R1 driver reveals that TaylorMade may be moving away from the color in the future.

According to Tom Kroll, TaylorMade’s global product manager, the company has decided to release a limited amount of black R1 drivers in an attempt to connect with whom he called “authentic golfers.”

“The [TaylorMade] brand has always spoken to the zero-to-four handicap,” Kroll said. “Some of those guys screamed loud and clear that they wanted a black driver, so we decided to give it to them.”

Click here to read out Editor Review of TaylorMade’s R1 Driver.

The black version of the R1 is identical to the white version in nearly every way — it’s still 460 cubic centimeters, with the same center of gravity, adjustable loft sleeve and face angle adjuster. It also has the same stock shaft — an Aldila RIP Phenom — and the same grip. But the driver’s crown, which was originally released in a matte white color with an orange-and-gray racing stripe, has been painted black. Underneath the glossy black paint is a black-and-gray racing stripe that has the same design. But because of the color change, the racing stripe is much less noticeable at address.

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The black paint also makes the driver appear smaller at address, about 10 percent according to Kroll.

“Some of the guys on tour liked the white head because it looked bigger, so they felt like they could swing it harder,” Kroll said. “But there will be guys switching into the black head because they’ll like the way it looks.”

The driver will make its debut on the PGA Tour next week in Memphis at the PGA Tour’s FedEx St. Jude Classic at TPC South Wind. It will be available for purchase on June 10 for the same price as the white R1 driver, $399.

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Kroll would not comment on how many limited-edition drivers would be released, or what percentage of R1 heads will be painted black. But he did say that it will be a “small percentage,” and that “it’s going to be an interesting launch for us in terms of watching the numbers.”

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Click here to read what members are saying about the black R1 in the forums.

 

Click here to read what members are saying about the black R1 in the forums.

 

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33 Comments

33 Comments

  1. Barry

    Nov 30, 2013 at 4:27 pm

    Just purchased the R1 Black……love the look but love the added distance (12 to 15 yds. more than my old Cleveland. Just hope I consistently hit it as straight.

  2. mississaugua monster

    Aug 14, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    will wait for 400cc black R1
    460 too big and white………….ru kidding me

  3. mark

    Jul 2, 2013 at 3:37 am

    I have just purchased this club “wow” is all a can say. Go out now and buy this u won’t regret it.

  4. Ben

    Jun 16, 2013 at 9:55 pm

    And in a couple years they will bust out the white again. It’s all marketing.

  5. Shad

    Jun 4, 2013 at 11:44 am

    The funny thing is that some people think TaylorMade is contradicting their initial claim that white “instills confidence and is easier to align”. Releasing a black version is just a desperate misguided attempt to increase lagging sales that are 100% due to the fact that they decided to put those stupid graphics on the crown of the R1! TaylorMade and all other club manufactures let me set you straight once and for all – Put all the graphics you want on the bottom of the club and the head cover, but THE TOP OF THE CLUB, WHETHER IT BE WHITE, BLACK, GREY, PINK, ETC. SHOULD BE CLEAN AND FREE OF GRAPHICS OTHER THAN A SINGLE MIDDLE ALIGNMENT AID, PERIOD! TaylorMade should have just released a white version without the graphics. The white heads are a much better club. That said, I know there are some mental cases that “just can’t get used to the white club head” so a black version should have probably always have been an option. Don’t get too excited folks, the new black R1 is just a temporary stop-gap fix to spur some better retail numbers this year. The next completely new version will be white.

  6. KCCO

    May 31, 2013 at 9:56 pm

    Should have done reverse…..crown flat, lettering gloss…..but beggars can’t be..ya know

    • G

      Jun 1, 2013 at 12:01 am

      No, it’s good that it’s shiny. Shiny makes you focus more. Matt does not. Flat or matt is just blah.

      • Curt

        Jun 1, 2013 at 9:26 am

        Agreed, flat black is boring. TM got it right, going stealth black!!

  7. IceDave

    May 31, 2013 at 9:17 am

    I think I’ve just won a bet! Great looking driver.

  8. Matt

    May 31, 2013 at 5:53 am

    Two years ago Sean Toulon said that TMAG would make the black driver obsolete, and they would not consider making a driver in any color other than white until 2016. Taylor Made marketing at its best.

  9. Roger

    May 31, 2013 at 3:18 am

    Brad B……..thats what i was thinking…….Ozzy Ozzy Ozzy
    But hopefully with Gals in School Uniforms….

    • WoodButcher

      Feb 5, 2014 at 11:07 am

      Ozzy is Black Sabbath, not AC/DC. You ment Angus Young I’m sure.

  10. Curt

    May 30, 2013 at 10:41 pm

    Thank you TM, please stay black and end that white crap!!!

    The black looks so goooood!!!!!!!

  11. Brad B

    May 30, 2013 at 9:08 pm

    So they use AC/DC “Back in Black” for the 30 second commercial???? It’d work.

  12. bob

    May 30, 2013 at 8:34 pm

    doesn’t anyone else think this is hypocritical? i mean TM was talking crap about how black drives affect your aim and all that and know they release a black driver? stupid imo

    • Weavs

      May 31, 2013 at 8:51 am

      It’s called marketing to a broader market… Alot of people didn’t like the white version, so they made a black version. Alot of drivers come in different colors these days. I guess if they didn’t like making more money it would be stupid.

    • Jeff

      May 31, 2013 at 12:03 pm

      the benefits of having a white driver–particularly, lining it up correctly–still exist. there are just some people (*achem* members of this board *achem*) who, no matter how beneficial it is, they will never buy a white driver head. many of these players begged TM to come out with a black driver head that included the same technological advances as the white one (moveable weights, loft sleeve, sole plate–well, maybe not so much the sole plate, but still). Kudos to TM for listening.

      • Josh

        Jul 13, 2013 at 10:01 am

        If you can’t line up a driver correctly you should probably be spending your money on some lessons and not a new driver.

  13. John F

    May 30, 2013 at 4:12 pm

    I also saw this here and was able to pre-order. Can’t wait for this puppy to arrive!

  14. JChoj

    May 30, 2013 at 3:00 pm

    The golf community is funny. Why does it matter what color it is? If a driver hit dead straight 350 yards on every drive it could be Neon Pink and Purple. I’d still use it.

    • John

      May 30, 2013 at 3:59 pm

      Because when you pay $400+ it’s nice to get what you want.

  15. Steve

    May 30, 2013 at 1:40 pm

    Wow. Their sales must not be anywhere near what they were expecting thus far… The black looks great though! I can see this flying off the shelf

  16. BC

    May 30, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    Not sure how this is a Fail. Black finish, subtle graphics, adjustability…Yes, I will be back on the TM wagon with this. Give me some woods in the same make-up and my bag will be set!!

  17. Matt

    May 30, 2013 at 12:23 pm

    Now you’re talking. Looks great!

  18. Big5Hole

    May 30, 2013 at 11:32 am

    Must…. Resist…..

    Who am I kidding; I’m going to put a deposit on one this afternoon if I can.

  19. Nike Loyalist

    May 30, 2013 at 11:10 am

    FAIL.

    • John

      May 30, 2013 at 1:02 pm

      Seriously? I don’t care for taylormade even and that thing looks sexy!

  20. oban wan-kanobi

    May 30, 2013 at 11:09 am

    About time this happens.!! I really hope they go matte black for retail; the shiny black is so 10 years ago.

    • Don

      May 30, 2013 at 7:23 pm

      Only problem with matte is that any marks show more in my opinion. Traditional finish is easier to touchup or keep looking good with a light wax or Scratch X or such if needed.

      • paul

        May 31, 2013 at 12:51 am

        I really like my shiny black driver head 🙁 Should i buy a new one in matte… Maybe ping I20…? Catch up with the times 🙂 Oh wait, that will be replaced with an I25 in 7 months. I will never catch up :'(

      • KCCO

        May 31, 2013 at 9:59 pm

        Not matte….

      • Jeff

        Jun 1, 2013 at 5:00 am

        If you sky your driver, you shouldn’t be buying a $300+ golf club yet.

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Equipment

Puma unveil new Ignite NXT Crafted footwear

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Puma Ignite NXT Crafted footwear

Puma Golf has launched its new Ignite NXT Crafted footwear – a new version of the NXT with premium leather accents.

The upper of the shoe features a premium leather saddle wrapped around Pwrframe reinforcement. The Pwrframe TPU is an ultra-thin frame that is placed in high-stress areas of the upper for lightweight in a bid to offer added support and increased stability.

Puma Ignite NXT Crafted footwear

The new additions feature Puma’s Pro-Form TPU outsole with an organically-altered traction pattern, containing over 100 strategically placed directional hexagon lugs in proper zones, designed to provide maximum stability and traction.

Puma Ignite NXT Crafted footwear

The Ignite NXT Crafted footwear contain a full-length IGNITE Foam midsole, wrapped in Soleshield in design to offer maximum durability, comfort and energy return. Soleshield is a micro-thin TPU film that is vacuum-formed around the midsole designed to make cleaning off dirt and debris effortless.

Puma Ignite NXT Crafted footwear

Speaking on the new Ignite NXT Crafted footwear, Andrew Lawson, PLM Footwear, Puma Golf said

“The Ignite NXT Crafted perfectly fuse the beauty of handcrafted shoemaking with modern development techniques to deliver optimum elegance and peak performance. With the combination of style and performance these shoes will appeal to a wide variety of golfers – those who appreciate the classic look of a leather saddle shoe and those who value modern comfort and stability technologies being a part of their game.”

Puma Ignite NXT Crafted footwear

The Ignite NXT Crafted shoes are available in 4 colorways: White-Leather Brown-Team Gold, Black-Leather Brown-Team Gold, Peacoat-Leather Brown-Team Gold and White-Hi-Rise-Team Gold) and come in sizes 7-15.

Puma Ignite NXT Crafted footwear

The shoes cost $140 per pair and are available online and at retail beginning today, June 5, 2020.

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What GolfWRXers are saying about the best Nike driver ever

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@ukgolfclubsales

In our forums, our members have been discussing Nike drivers. WRXer ‘DixieD’ is currently building up a Nike bag and has reached out to fellow members for driver advice, and WRXers have been sharing what they feel is the best Nike driver ever made.

Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.

  • Ger21: “VR Pro LE? I have two I was still playing last year.”
  • mahonie: “The STR8-Fit Tour was one of the best drivers I’ve played. Still have it the garage and take it to the range occasionally…it would possibly still be in the bag if it hadn’t developed a ‘click’ in the head which I cannot fix. Long, straight(ish) and nice sound.”
  • jackr189: “The VR_S is one of the best.”
  • Finaus_Umbrella: “I played the Vapor Fly Pro, and still do on occasion for nostalgia sake. Sound and feel are great, but it demands a good strike.”
  • PowderedToastMan: “I enjoyed the SQ Tour back in the day, the one Tiger used forever. Do I miss it? Not at all, but it was a pretty good club for its time.”

Entire Thread: “Best Nike driver?”

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What GolfWRXers are saying about driving irons for mid-handicappers

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In our forums, our members have been discussing whether mid-handicappers can benefit from a driving iron. WRXer ‘jomatty’ says:

“I average about 230 off the tee on good drives. I can get a little more sometimes, but 230 is probably the average. I’m 42 years old and shoot in the mid to low 80’s. I do not get along with fairway woods very well, especially off the tee, and really don’t get enough extra length over my hybrid to consider using it aside from very rare situations on par 5’s (I’ve considered just going from driver to 19-degree hybrid and getting an extra wedge or something).”…

…and wants to know if he would be better served by a driving iron. Our members have been sharing their thoughts and suggestions.

Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.

  • MtlJeff: “If you can shoot mid 80’s, you probably hit it well enough to hit a bunch of different clubs. Personally, I think hybrids are easier to hit….but some driving irons are quite forgiving. I use a G400 crossover that is very easy to hit and looks more iron-like. Something like that you might like. Be careful with some of them though because they aren’t always super forgiving, so you’d have to hit them first.”
  • HackerD: “G410 crossover is my version of a driving iron, feel like I hit it straighter than a hybrid. Just as easy to hit as a hybrid.”
  • hanginnwangin: “I shoot in the low 80s normally and in the 70s on my really good days. I have probably around the same or similar swing speed as you. I have been hitting my 4 iron off the tee on tight holes, and it’s been working pretty well so far. I hit it about 190-220. I have a 4 hybrid but just can’t hit it as consistently as the 4 iron, and it doesn’t even go much farther. I have a 5 wood which I only use for 220+ yard par 3s or wide-open fairways. Basically, it’s all personal preference and what you do best with. Everyone is going to be different. Try new stuff out and see what works. But if irons are the strongest part of your game (they are for me as well), I would give the 4 iron a shot. You can get a lot of roll out on the tee shots with it,”
  • Hellstrom: “Don’t laugh, but I bought a 17* hybrid with a senior flex shaft at a garage sale for $5, and I can hit it nice and easy and keep it in play without losing any distance. My driver SS is between 105 and 110 usually and swinging this thing feels like swinging a spaghetti noodle, but it works. I don’t have it in the bag all the time, but I do use it for certain courses. I take my 6 iron out and throw that in, so if I struggle with getting the ball off the tee, I just go to that.”

Entire Thread: “Driving iron for a mid-handicapper”

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