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TaylorMade Project (a) golf balls

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In most ways, amateurs need their golf balls to perform like the premium balls used by professional golfers.

With the driver, for example, most amateurs prefer the low-spin performance that is typical of a multi-piece tour ball because it allows them to hit longer drives. And on short shots, amateurs will benefit from the high-spin performance that is characteristic of a tour ball’s thin, urethane cover.

TaylorMade’s new Project (a) golf balls are designed specifically for amateurs, and use the company’s “React Core” to create low-spinning drives and “Soft Tech” cast urethane cover to drive higher-spinning short shots. The three-piece Project (a) balls also have a “Spin Mantle” layer in the middle, which helps regulate spin on the shots in between. Where they’re different from TaylorMade’s new Tour Preferred and Tour Preferred X tour balls, however, is where their high spin kicks in.

According to Dean Snell, vice president of golf ball R&D for TaylorMade, amateurs with handicaps in 10-to-24 range miss the green from 150 yards by an average of 35 yards. They certainly don’t need the extra spin a tour ball would provide on those shots, because it would cause them to miss the target by an even greater margin. But where they do need spin is from 80 yards and in, where Snell said they record 80 percent of their shots during a round.

“The tour guys, they average about 10,000 rpm of spin with their wedges,” Snell said. “It takes about 9000 rpm for a ball to spin and come back [on the green]. But amateurs only average about 5000 rpm of spin.”

To close the gap between amateurs and professionals, the Project (a) golf balls are designed to have maximum spin with a golfer’s short clubs, from the 9 iron and in for most golfers. Every extra 1000 rpm amateurs can generate with those clubs will stop the ball 5 feet closer to its landing point, Snell said.

The Project (a) golf balls are available in stores now for $31.99 per dozen.

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Zak is the Editor-in-Chief of GolfWRX.com. He's been a part of the company since 2011, when he was hired to lead GolfWRX's Editorial Department. Zak developed GolfWRX's Featured Writer Program, which supports aspiring writers and golf industry professionals. He played college golf at the University of Richmond (Go Spiders!) and still likes to compete in tournaments. You can follow Zak on Twitter @ZakKoz, where he's happy to discuss his game and all the cool stuff that's part of his job.

29 Comments

29 Comments

  1. Ragin Kagin

    Jul 25, 2014 at 12:34 pm

    Love these, on my 5th dozen. Straight drives great spin on short shots and great durability no scuffs off my rotax wedges ,and excellent feel all around. Ive been searching for a ball to call my own for 2yrs and now ive got one. Was playing bridge rxs before . These are much straighter of the tee.

  2. Gary

    Feb 5, 2014 at 2:24 pm

    Sounds like this ball is very much worth a try, probably a somewhat updated Rocketballz Urethane. Does this ball have a seamless cover?

  3. Joe Golfer

    Feb 5, 2014 at 1:47 am

    If they spin that much, I hope the covers don’t get chewed up on wedge shots, especially with so many of the latest wedges having the extra laser etched grooving on the faces.

  4. jc

    Feb 4, 2014 at 5:02 pm

    talk about spin!!!! I hit a driver and the ball hit the ground and spun all the way back to the tee!!!!

  5. jc

    Feb 4, 2014 at 5:01 pm

    many optic tests have proven that yellow is easier to see…why do you think tennis balls are yellow now? they are also easier to spot in the early morning and dusk…the white ball is easier to see IF it is early morning, there is dew on the grass and the sun is bright..

    I like yellow because I know which ball is mine when we get out in the fairway.

  6. J

    Feb 4, 2014 at 11:41 am

    Any data to back-up the claim it takes 9000 RPM to back a golf ball up on the green? If that is the case, I’m hitting the 9k mark with a 6 iron and just shy of that on my 4 iron.

    • Zak Kozuchowski

      Feb 4, 2014 at 12:11 pm

      A lot of factors at play here, J: angle of descent, firmness of greens, moisture content, etc. But you bring up a good point. This is something I’d like for us to drill into in the future.

  7. Poi

    Feb 4, 2014 at 12:55 am

    How is it off the driver? Does it balloon?

  8. Indy

    Feb 3, 2014 at 6:49 pm

    I got some of these at the PGA Show, the spin rate increase was crazy! I generated 9800 with the NXT Tour, 11000 with Project A. Took it to the course the next day, backed both shots I hit with it back at minimal 20ft. The Rocketballz Urethane, could not do what this ball will do. Saw my dad do their test, went from 5000 to 6500. Same test with NXT Tour. This ball will spin!

    • Adam

      Aug 5, 2014 at 2:50 pm

      That’s because the NXT Tour doesn’t have a completely urethane cover. They advertise it as a “blend”

  9. Jim

    Feb 3, 2014 at 12:03 pm

    Sounds like a rebranding of the the RBZ Urethane from last year – not that that’s a bad thing. Hopefully TM will learn about keeping the name of their golf balls consistent going forward too.

    • Brady Wilson

      Feb 3, 2014 at 5:02 pm

      Those balls surprised me by how good they were. our shop sold out of them because they were so cheap, and good quality combined. hopefully they improved upon that same idea. I’ll have to give these a try.

      • bootscrilla

        Feb 3, 2014 at 6:33 pm

        Same here, we couldn’t keep them on the shelves..I never did try them but I might have to give these a go

        • Justin

          Feb 3, 2014 at 10:52 pm

          I agree, they were really good balls, and I gamed them for a little bit in my college matches. They may have spun a tad much on the mid irons, but that may be because I still used the old TP/Black balls from forever ago (itself a mid spin design).

  10. Chris

    Feb 3, 2014 at 11:46 am

    The reason most amateurs average around 5,000 RPM’s of spin is not just the golf ball, but the way they strike it. Hard to generate spin when they pick it off the turf or if they are hitting an approach from the rough, too.

    • Poi

      Feb 4, 2014 at 12:55 am

      You mean blade it off the turf. You can still generate a ton of spin by picking it on the grooves.

  11. J

    Feb 3, 2014 at 11:41 am

    Similar to NXT Tours perhaps?

  12. tbowles411

    Feb 3, 2014 at 10:43 am

    But can you get it in yellow?

    • deafninja

      Feb 3, 2014 at 4:58 pm

      Nope not currently in yellow doubt they will produce it in yellow. That’s why I will stick with Srixon since they have practically all of their offerings available in Yellow.

      • Dave

        Feb 3, 2014 at 5:13 pm

        What’s the benefit of yellow? Not trying to down play, just curious.

        • bootscrilla

          Feb 3, 2014 at 6:31 pm

          Visibility for the most part

          • Jeff

            Feb 3, 2014 at 8:19 pm

            They are no easier to see. It’s a gimmick.

          • RadioActive

            Feb 4, 2014 at 11:07 am

            Well if Jeff says they are not easier to see then they must not be easier to see…

          • paul

            Feb 5, 2014 at 12:54 am

            I play early morning golf and its way easier to see when the sun is barely up. And it is easier to spot in the rough I think.

          • fitterray

            Feb 5, 2014 at 7:30 pm

            I’ve lost every yellow ball that I’ve ever had.

          • Ragin Kagin

            Jul 25, 2014 at 12:29 pm

            Lmao @ fitterray is correct ive lost all of mine as well

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Whats in the Bag

Sergio Garcia’s Winning WITB: 2018 SMBC Singapore Open

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Driver: Callaway Rogue Sub Zero (9 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi KuroKage Dual Core 70TX

3 Wood: Callaway Rogue 3+ (13.5 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi KuroKage XT 80TX

5 Wood: Callaway Rogue Sub Zero (18 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi KuroKage XT 80TX

Irons: Callaway Apex Pro 16 (3-4 iron), Callaway Apex MB 18 (5-9 iron)
Shafts: Nippon Modus 130x

Wedges: Callaway Mack Daddy 4 (48-10, 54-10 and 58-08)
Shafts: Nippon Modus 130x

Putter: Odyssey Toulon Azalea

Golf Ball: Callaway Chrome Soft

Related: Sergio Garcia’s 2018 WITB, with commentary from Sergio himself about his golf clubs

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Fujikura launches new Pro 2.0 and Pro 2.0 Tour Spec shafts

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Fujikura has announced the launch of the second generation of its Pro series shafts: the Pro 2.0.

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“This technology and advanced data analytics has allowed us to crack the code on how club performance and ball flight are affected by shaft characteristics and swing type. When we compared to the original Pro, we saw the 2.0 was significantly easier to swing, had tighter shot dispersion, and lower spin to deliver the club head with more power, control and distance. We were thrilled with the result.”

The Pro 2.0 is painted “Destroyer Grey” with a metallic blue design in line with the original Pro shaft. The Tour Spec model is painted “Tour Spec White.”

The shafts will be available in weight ranges from 57 to 87 grams (5, 6, 7, 8) and in flexes starting at R2 up to X. $225 MSRP; $250 for the Tour Spec model. Hybrid option available for $140.

Available at over 600 qualified Fujikura charter dealers beginning February 1. Full specs at Fujikura.com.

See what GolfWRX members are saying about the Pro 2.0 in the forums.

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Fred Couples signs with Bettinardi, will continue to use FCB putter

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Fred Couples has been using his namesake Bettinardi putter, the FCB (Fred Couples Blade), for the past four years. Now, he’s officially joining Bettinardi’s Tour staff.

Couples, who has won 15 times on the PGA Tour and 13 times on the PGA Tour Champions, will putt exclusively with the company’s flatsticks.

(Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)

“I’m really looking forward to representing Bettinardi and its beautiful range of hand-made putters, as they always give me great confidence when I’m standing over putts,” said Fred. “Having won 5 times already with a Bettinardi putter, there’s nothing I’d rather be putting with.

Couples averaged 1.70 putts per hole when playing in 12 events with the Bettinardi wand last year.

“Having Fred Couples join our Tour staff is a massive endorsement for Bettinardi Golf,” said founder Robert Bettinardi. “We’re so proud and excited to welcome him to our growing Tour staff. I’m sure he will prove to be a great ambassador for our brand, as he attracts huge crowds and media attention wherever he plays.”

Here’s a look at Boom Boom’s FCB putter.

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