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A driver with vertical grooves is about to hit the market



Vertical Groove Golf is set to debut a (you guessed it) driver with vertical grooves in December. And the Boston-based company claims the USGA conforming club offers golfers improved distance and accuracy off the tee.

The theory is that the vertical grooves reduce “side spin” at impact. (Yes, we know “side spin” isn’t technically a thing). According to Vertical Groove, the groove pattern leads to a 40 percent straighter ball flight on average.

And another claim from the company: The “array of shorter vertical grooves combined with vertical land areas perpendicular to the club face” contribute to added distance and better forward roll.

In independent testing at Golf Laboratories, Inc., the Vertical Groove driver outperformed market leaders in spin rate and distance, in addition to center, heel, and toe dispersion.

“The performance attributes of the Vertical Groove Driver will benefit all golfers, including low-handicappers and golfers that have a tendency to hook or slice off the tee,” said Rubin Hanan, Managing Partner, Vertical Groove Golf, LLC. “Vertical Groove technology on the club face reduces side spin at impact, while generating more forward spin, resulting in better accuracy and increased distance off the tee.”

Additional specs

  • Available in both right and left-handed models
  • 450 cubic centimeters
  • Offered in 9.5, 10.5 and 12-degree lofts
  • Aldila NV2K series shafts come stock 
  • Flexes include: 45 gram L (Ladies), 50 gram A (Senior), 55 gram R (Regular), 65 gram S (Stiff) and 65 gram X (Extra-stiff)
  • 45.75 inches
  • Suggested retail: $399.99
  • Available in December 2016

Check out the Vertical Groove website for ordering information.

And an interesting side note: An earlier iteration of the Vertical Groove Driver showed up in the forums back in 2015. User JGalls wrote about his experience hitting the club at a demo day and snapped this picture.


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  1. Nonymous A

    Nov 28, 2016 at 9:10 am

    I hit this driver many times, and if you think of the physics in grooves, spin increases perpendicular to the groove. The dispersion on a low torque shaft was dreadful. The vertical grooves produce generally low spin, but biiiiiiiig sidespin. As a longish hitter (270-300) at 13 years old, I’ll keep my D4

  2. Wayne

    Nov 24, 2016 at 11:23 am

    My buddy still games an old Killer Bee B-Sting with vertical groves. He’s almost always right down the middle and fairly long.

  3. The Greatest Game

    Nov 22, 2016 at 11:42 am

    I had the chance to hit the driver this past summer. Just like any other drivers that have a different look on the crown other than the traditional black, it didn’t doesn’t bother me looking down at address. I only focus on the ball with my eyes, everything else gets phased out. The club itself performed exceptionally well compared to my Nike Vapor Pro. I didn’t have a launch monitor at the time, but I could definitely notice an increase in launch angle, and most importantly a much straighter ball flight. I’m looking forward to further testing, and hopefully adding one to the bag.

  4. bradpuma

    Nov 22, 2016 at 10:00 am

    First thing in this thread that is wrong is that the company is Boston based, The company is based in Jupiter Fl. Second this driver was just featured at Ibis Demo day and sold 20 drivers straight from the range anyone who is knocking it before they try it is getting way ahead of themselves almost the entire Ibis staff has put this driver in play already.

  5. Dave

    Nov 20, 2016 at 7:19 pm

    I still have one of those drivers here in the fitting studio. Interesting pattern but unplayable with today’s golf balls. Smiles, Dave

  6. DJ

    Nov 18, 2016 at 5:33 pm

    if it had a TM, Titleist, or Callaway badge on it, you’d all be lining up to hit it. Price in the stores will drop to $249 – $299.

  7. Scooter McGavin

    Nov 18, 2016 at 3:56 pm

    “more forward spin”….?

  8. Jonah Mytro

    Nov 18, 2016 at 11:35 am

    Poor pricing model at $399, thats going to be a tough sell to a golfer who can get a TM, Callaway or Ping driver at the same or lower price…Design of the driver isnt appealing at all. I am getting tired of all of these companies telling us their driver is LONGER, STRAIGHTER and MORE FORGIVING than the other guy. I think most of us are smart enough to know most drivers/irons perform the same, its all about the golfer using the equipment.If you slice a TM driver, your probably going to do the same with all of the other OEM drivers..It comes down to the mechanics of your swing..Id rather spend $399 on lessons to fix my hook or slice on my current driver…

  9. Tider992010

    Nov 18, 2016 at 11:09 am

    I remember several year ago with a drive had no groves. I don’t believe they matter just what the consumer is used too.

  10. John

    Nov 18, 2016 at 10:38 am

    not 460cc …. not interested

  11. Guia

    Nov 18, 2016 at 10:19 am

    I am not convinced that Vertical or Horizontal grooves on a driver have any affect. I have a driver that has no grooves, and it performs the same as those with.

  12. FX

    Nov 18, 2016 at 9:57 am

    Wouldn’t vertical grooves encourage MORE side spin, especially for those who already have issues with that?

    • Yearight

      Nov 20, 2016 at 5:23 pm

      I am confused by the same thing. Unless it has something to do with the curve of the face (roll and bulge)

  13. Wow.....

    Nov 17, 2016 at 10:34 pm

    I’ve obviously never designed a club a before, this is just total speculation.

    So thinking about iron and wedge grooves only, and thinking back on the whole groove ban back in 2010 or whatever, and the size of horizontal grooves, and then seeing these grooves…..I don’t know…. In my non-engineer and club designing mind maybe it could work to a bit? I’m talking only about the grooves not the head, aerodynamics, CG, ect. Maybe it’s outside the box thinking….

    AGAIN, it could be,and might be complete BS, this is just my ignorant thought on the vertical grooves only.

  14. D. Jenkins

    Nov 17, 2016 at 7:43 pm

    Pure gold. Well done Mrs. Smizzle.

  15. ACGolfwrx

    Nov 17, 2016 at 6:41 pm

    Ugly as a hat full of “arseholes”

  16. Bert

    Nov 17, 2016 at 5:27 pm

    Big Deal – does nothing!

  17. Double Mocha Man

    Nov 17, 2016 at 12:10 pm

    Where can I get an Otterbox case for the driver head?

  18. Greg Meyers

    Nov 17, 2016 at 11:56 am

    I currently have this driver in my bag. Its a pretty solid driver… what I notice most is:
    1: It goes just as far as my Bridgestone J715 on good swings
    2: Bad swings stay between the trees

  19. Cris

    Nov 17, 2016 at 11:02 am

    So less “side-spin” and puts “top-spin” on the ball. Definitely defies the laws of physics. Powered by Antineutrino technology.

    • skip

      Nov 17, 2016 at 12:50 pm

      “Vertical Groove technology on the club face reduces side spin at impact, while generating more forward spin, resulting in better accuracy and increased distance off the tee.”

      LOL. Forward spin, good luck getting the ball off the ground if that’s the case. Over/Under on how long this new company lasts? haha.

      • blink3665

        Nov 18, 2016 at 10:59 am

        I’m glad someone else saw that. It was the only thing that registered after reading that article. “Forward spin”?

      • creeder

        Dec 8, 2016 at 8:23 am

        could forward spin be speaking towards a gear effect the “reduces back spin”. i am not defending, it is really more of a question if it is bad semantics. depending on construction, there could be a reverse effect on back spin hence more forward spin. i dunno, i could be talking out my butt as much as they are.

  20. Golfbuddy

    Nov 17, 2016 at 10:01 am

    Interesting. Might be fun to hit a few and see what’s up. Could be interesting to see if the vertical grooves help with hitting a draw.

  21. Deacon Blues

    Nov 17, 2016 at 9:56 am

    Nothing new. Golfsmith had a Killer Bee B-Sting driver with vertical grooves in 2006:—past-projects (scroll down a bit)

    • Scott

      Nov 17, 2016 at 3:28 pm

      Nice link. Funny that the comments on the link made no mention of the side spin.

    • Shallowface

      Nov 17, 2016 at 6:57 pm

      I knew I had seen this somewhere before.

  22. Feel the Bern

    Nov 17, 2016 at 9:31 am

    certified showstopper.

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pga tour

Vijay Singh WITB 2018



Equipment is accurate as of the 2018 Arnold Palmer Invitational (3/13/18).

Driver: TaylorMade M2 2016 (9.5 degrees)
Shaft: TPT Golf

3 Wood: TaylorMade Areo Burner (12 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Motore Speeder VC 8.2 Tour Spec X

3 Wood: TaylorMade M2 2016 HL (16.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Motore Speeder VC 8.2 Tour Spec X

3 Wood: Tour Edge Exotics CBX T3 (16.5 degrees)
Shaft: Fujikura Pro 2.0 Tour Spec 7S

Irons: Mizuno MP-4 (3-PW)
Shafts: Nippon N.S. Pro Prototype

Wedges: Wilson Staff FG Tour PMP (54-11, 59-10)
Shafts: Nippon N.S. Pro Modus 3

Putter: Bloodline R1-J
Grip: Bloodline Grip

WITB Notes: We spotted Vijay testing a few different fairway woods at the 2018 Arnold Palmer, and we’ll update this post when we confirm his decisions.


Discussion: See what GolfWRX members are saying about Singh’s clubs. 

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Enjoy my interview with Ko and Nicolette above, and click here to hear more from Nicolette.

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Building on its popular Minimus line, New Balance is adding two new shoes for the fall. Most notably, the Minimus Tour will feature spikes for the first time.

Both models high performance, lightweight shoes feature waterproof uppers and a REVLite midsoles.

Individual details below.

Minimus Tour

  • Low 4mm drop midsole, with a wide forefoot
  • Skeletally engineered FantomFit upper, providing ultralight support and fit
  • Ultra-flexible Ndurance rubber outsole
  • 6 Slim-Lok Zarma Tour cleats.
  • Ortholite insole for cool, dry comfort
  • 2-year waterproof warranty
  • Weight: 11.7 oz.
  • Colors: Dark Grey/Green, White/Black and Black.
  • Sizes: 7 -12, 13, 14; Widths: D, 2E
  • Retail Pricing: $119.95

Minimus SL

  • Breathable waterproof microfiber upper with ultralight FantonFit support
  • REVlite 4mm drop midsole
  • Outsole is a flexible Ndurance spikeless rubber
  • Flex grooves strategically placed to move with the natural motion of the foot
  • Weight: 9.4 oz
  • Color: Grey/Green, Black/Red, Grey/Orange
  • Sizes: 7 -12, 13, 14; Widths: D, 2E
  • Retail Pricing: $99.95
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19th Hole