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Spotted: Ping G400 Driver

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Update: We captured in-hand photos of the Ping G400 driver at the U.S. Open at Erin Hills. We also captured photos of Ping’s new G400 Fairway Woods, Hybrids and Crossover, as well as Bubba’s custom G400 driver (see end of the story). 

A new driver from Ping, the G400, has landed on the USGA’s Conforming Club List and is on the range at the U.S. Open. As in previous Ping driver releases, the driver is listed on the USGA Conforming Club List in three different models:

  • G400: 9 and 10.5 degrees (RH and LH)
  • G400 LST: 8.5 and 10 degrees (RH and LH)
  • G400 SFT: 10 and 12 degrees (RH and LH)

In previous Ping launches, LST stood for “Low Spin Technology,” while SFT stood for “Straight Flight Technology.” Those two specialty driver models from Ping have served to meet the needs of a minority golfers who need to reduce spin (LST) or add additional draw bias (SFT) to their tee shots, while the standard model (G400) meets the needs of the majority.

USGA Photo: Ping G400 Driver

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USGA Photo: Ping G400 LST Driver

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USGA Photo: Ping G400 SFT Driver

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Ping isn’t commenting on the new drivers at this time, but it’s clear that the company has made several important changes compared to its current driver line, the Ping G.

Each of the three G400 drivers appear to have a tungsten weight on their soles, a design that was last seen in a Ping driver in its i25 driver. The addition of the weights to the back of the driver’s sole in previous models helped push weight lower and deeper in the club head, improving moment of inertia (MOI), a measure of forgiveness that’s predictive of a driver’s ability to retain ball speed on mishits.

It’s also clear from that photos that Ping will carry on its “Vortec” aerodynamics package on the back of the driver, which in the G drivers worked synergistically with the company’s Turbulators, or “speed humps,” on the driver crown that helped reduce drag to improve swing speed.

The G400 drivers also appear to use dimples on the back portion of their crowns, which are equipped with ribbed structures known in the G drivers as “Dragonfly Technology.” Ping says Dragonfly improves structural stability and enhances weighting properties for more distance. As in golf balls, dimples on golf clubs can be used to improve aerodynamics.

We also captured photos of a G400 driver that could be used by Bubba Watson this week at Erin Hills.

Related: See more photos of Ping’s G400 Drivers, Fairway Woods, Hybrids and Crossover in our forum. 

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34 Comments

34 Comments

  1. Jose Pro Se

    Jun 22, 2017 at 12:19 am

    Ok Zak, Bubba is playing a practical joke on you.

    That’s pan dulce. Good one Bubba.

    I’m not buying the pink jaw breaker trick either.

  2. SoonerSlim

    Jun 20, 2017 at 2:23 pm

    I’ve always liked Ping clubs, but won’t be buying any new metal woods anytime soon. Clubhead is way too busy for me. I like an clean looking driver head. I seriously doubt that all that fancy technology makes that much difference in distance if you hit the middle of the clubface. Sorry Ping. If I buy one of your drivers, it will be a previous version with a clean looking clubhead.

  3. Orvill

    Jun 14, 2017 at 10:36 pm

    Pinky Pingy Pimpy

  4. Ill take the other

    Jun 13, 2017 at 9:36 pm

    PingXG 0811X!!!!!

  5. KCCO

    Jun 13, 2017 at 9:28 pm

    busy……i like the head cover;)

  6. BigBoy

    Jun 13, 2017 at 2:00 am

    If it comes with a blow off valve, I’ll buy it.

  7. CrashTestDummy

    Jun 12, 2017 at 7:08 pm

    It is really ugly but if it hits quality golf shots over and over again, then it doesn’t matter. Function over fashion.

  8. Anthony

    Jun 12, 2017 at 6:14 pm

    If you made that in your garage, you would be a very wealthy person….

  9. Deegee

    Jun 12, 2017 at 5:40 pm

    It will be 1/2 % faster, have better dragon flies, turbulence turbulators…and mugs will spend spend spend on a product that’s no friggin different to last year. These manufacturers are B.S.

  10. Old Putter

    Jun 12, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    I know this will never happen but….
    How bout a lie a lil flatter than 58*

  11. ooffa

    Jun 12, 2017 at 5:06 pm

    No, you are taking it the wrong way. I think you are great. I love your posts. It’s very rare to get to watch someone spiral downward so quickly. I wish i could help you get past this obvious tragic portion of your life. Unfortunately I cannot, so I am just observing your decline into delusion.

  12. Prut

    Jun 12, 2017 at 4:48 pm

    Are the turbulators bigger?

  13. The Dude

    Jun 12, 2017 at 4:48 pm

    let’s get some numbers…….with the Volvik please..

  14. Egor

    Jun 12, 2017 at 2:55 pm

    My TaylorMade rep and I spent the day sipping mimosas and laughing at how hard Ping is trying to play catch up to the best club manufacturer in the world. Wild clubhead graphics are so 2014. If Ping would just get with the times, they might have a small chance of getting close to the greatness that is TaylorMade.

    • Alec

      Jun 12, 2017 at 3:55 pm

      Ummmmmmmmmmm ok

    • Barry

      Jun 12, 2017 at 8:57 pm

      Yea so that’s a complete lie. Taylormade is not a great company… they screwed themselves by having such a short product release cycle and ruined their reputation with green grass facilities. I know many courses that don’t carry Taylormade because it is a waste of money on inventory when they know they will have to discount it to sell it. They make decent clubs but throw money at the tour pros to play it. That’s the only reason that they are so “popular”

    • Desmond

      Jun 12, 2017 at 11:16 pm

      I think you drank a few too many…

    • LC

      Jun 13, 2017 at 9:27 am

      Egor, for one you were “sipping” mimosas (lose credibility there)… I am not against TM but Ping is up TM’s you know what as far as technology goes.

    • Count Dracula

      Jun 13, 2017 at 11:11 am

      Well said, my humble servant

      • SlapMyForehead

        Jun 13, 2017 at 9:21 pm

        ….. LC, Desmond, Barry have drunk too many… of each other’s Koolaids. You guys would be a hoot at a party not.

    • Boyo

      Jul 14, 2017 at 12:44 pm

      TM hahahaahahhaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa
      How long till they go under?
      The biggest bunch of bullshirt artists out of all of them….

  15. SH

    Jun 12, 2017 at 2:29 pm

    Pretty soon somebody will bring out a driver with a cover that has the dimples from a golf ball. After all, we all know the ball is the most aerodynamically efficient design there is. Why tease us like this, Ping?

  16. xjohnx

    Jun 12, 2017 at 1:49 pm

    MOI is a measurement of the ability to resist twisting. Does it also have an effect on ball speeds or is that a mistake? Not calling you out, just asking.

    • Zak Kozuchowski

      Jun 12, 2017 at 2:30 pm

      Thanks for the question, xjohnx. Yes, there is a direct correlation between the amount of twisting and ball speed retention. The less twisting, generally, the more ball speed.

  17. Tom1

    Jun 12, 2017 at 1:20 pm

    awww the co0lor pink, it brings out the best in all of us……

  18. Phil

    Jun 12, 2017 at 1:06 pm

    Sweet Nike Vapor Flex 2017!

  19. LOLyoucantbereal

    Jun 12, 2017 at 12:33 pm

    I would like to think you are kidding, but there are people in life that do not get it, that is why others succeed.

  20. ND Hickman

    Jun 12, 2017 at 12:20 pm

    Now if they could sell the Bubba version at a reasonable price I’ll upgrade from my G30. Stick to pricing it higher than Callaway charge for the already ridiculous priced Epic’s then you’ve lost a sale.

  21. KC

    Jun 12, 2017 at 11:20 am

    That pink driver will look great in Bubba’s den as he watches the 3rd and 4th rounds of the US Open from home.

    • BMF

      Jun 13, 2017 at 8:08 am

      Belive it or not, i had a dream of bubba sending missiles all over the place after i read your comment. Even duffed afew shots. Lmao!

  22. drkviol801

    Jun 12, 2017 at 10:37 am

    Those turbulators are sick though

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Equipment

WRX Spotted: New TaylorMade P790 UDI

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It’s Open Championship week and that means course conditions are the talk of the town. Firm, fast, and windy conditions are expected on the links of Portrush, so we will be seeing a lot of players using driving irons that they might not otherwise play with week to week on the PGA Tour.

Not only are driving irons a hot item for players, but for OEMs launching new and prototype versions including TaylorMade, which has a new P790 UDI in some bags including Mr. Tiger Woods (credit to Rob Brooks on Instagram for the spot).

Like with many clubs just being seeded to tour, we don’t have official comment from the team at TaylorMade…but, like many times before, we have a couple of ideas based off the cosmetics of what might be in store if and when this thing comes to retail.

Some history: It’s been a while since TaylorMade introduced a new UDI (Ultimate Driving Iron) to its lineup.  There was the GAPR Low, which was very UDI “like” but the UDI as a whole never had an adjustable hosel. (There were Tour Issue versions of the GAPR Lo that had a fixed hosel and no adjustability)

The original (2017) P790 UDI

The “just-spotted 2020 (?)” version

The most recent UDI was the original P-790, but this new version has some distinct differences

  • Thinner sole. Based off the pictures, this new P-790 UDI has a thinner sole with more camber to help improve turf interaction. More camber and well-utilized bounce make any club more playable in varying conditions.
  • Shorter blade length. There is no such thing as computer screen calipers but from what we can tell when comparing side by side the new version is shorter. A shorter blade length means a CG closer to the hosel and more workability.
  • Higher toe. Just like the shorter blade length, a higher toe is often more appealing to more players (better players are generally the target for these types of clubs) and what that also “potentially” does is raise the CG. A higher CG will produce lower launching shots BUT with more spin (workability). To counter act the potential extra spin loft adjustments can be made pretty easily, since loft is one of the biggest factors in creating spin.

The one thing that is harder to compared is whats going on inside of this UDI (obviously). There is a screw in the toe, so it can be assumed that there is some sort of foam or material that helps support the face and improve the acoustics of this face thin-faced iron.

Just like we wait for the first group off early Thursday morning at Portrush, we’re just going to have to wait to see what’s really going on this new UDI too.

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Forum Thread of the Day: “Tiger Woods with a new Scotty Cameron at The Open”

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Today’s Forum Thread of the Day comes from No Gimmes who was quick to spot Tiger Woods preparing for this week’s Open Championship with a new Scotty putter. Woods has also been seen warming up for this week’s event at Royal Portrush with his old faithful on the greens, but our members have been discussing the thinking behind the 15-time-major champion’s potential change, as well as the putter itself.

*Photos from Golf Central’s ‘Live From The Open’ coverage

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.

  • TheMoneyShot: “I’m really surprised he is making the switch. Let’s see if it’s in the bag come Thursday.”
  • Hedgehog: “That topline and the alignment aid and all the smooth lines, gorgeous!”
  • MuniPukeLife: “Makes sense as his trusty NP2 is super light by today’s putter standards.”

Entire Thread: “Tiger Woods with a new Scotty Cameron at The Open”

 

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Mizuno T20 wedges: Let’s get spinning

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Spin.

We’re always trying to reduce it with our driver and increase it with our wedges for maximum control, but with the rules of golf being so strict, how do actually achieve a performance gain? Simple engineering…

This is the Mizuno T20 wedge.

It’s been a few years since we have seen a T (teardrop) wedge from our friends at Mizuno, and there is good reason.

Let’ get into a quick history lesson: before the JPX900 series was introduced, Mizuno had quietly been realigning the product cycles of the MP and JPX lines. You might remember back a few years ago now before the MP18s hit the scene that there was a bit of a lull in the MP line—so much, in fact, there was even a thread here on GolfWRX asking “Is Mizuno not making MP irons anymore?”

It was a naturally curious question to a company that always had very standardized release cycles, but it was a long-term play that has paid off tremendously. We now get “T” wedges with MP irons (MP20s to be exact), and we should (from everything I know) continue to see “S” Silhouette (more rounded profile) wedges with future JPX lines.

Before we get to what’s new, how about we first talk about what will be staying the same

  • Grain Flow Forged HD – like all new Mizuno irons, the T20s are made using the same forging process to increase the density of the material in the clubhead for an improved solid feel.
  • Boron – this little element when added to the 1025e mild carbon steel used in the wedges (we’re talking trace amounts equating to 3ppm – parts per million) increases the strength of the material by 30 percent—how crazy is that for chemistry? This improves groove life and has ZERO effect on club feel.
  • Variable Width & Depth Quad Cut Grooves – Like previous T and S wedges, the T20s will have quad cut grooves that will vary in shape based on the loft of the club. Lower lofted wedges are more narrow and deeper, while higher lofted wedges are wider and more shallow since impact happens at lower speeds this increases spin consistency.
  • Same beautiful Teardrop profile from address

So what’s new?

Flow. Just like the MP20s, engineers are bringing more a more extreme CG (center of gravity) shifting philosophy, or as Mizuno explains it, increased vertical moment of inertia to the wedges. As much as you (well maybe not “you,” depending on who you are) might think “a wedge is just a wedge” and loft is the only deciding factor for spin, you couldn’t be further from the truth. By relocating the CG throughout the set and changing the sweet spot height, engineers can further alter the launch and spin precisely for each loft.

It’s about gear effect—the higher you hit above the CG the less spin the ball with have, and the closer to or lower you make impact compared to the CG the more spin you will create. Either way these are wedges, so a 50 degree, for example, is still going to spin, but it is now more controllable (think less likely to ballon or get too high on full shots). On the other side of the equation, a 60-degree wedge will allow for even MORE trajectory and spin control for the low flying quick checkers with zip.

Now about that spin.

By the Rules of Golf, you can’t make grooves sharper, you can’t increase their volume, and you can only have so much surface roughness (sorry but that old Spin Doctor wedge is HIGHLY NON-conforming). So what do you do? You change the way you think about that surface roughness…

Hydroflow Micro Grooves

Instead of traditional laser etching parallel to the grooves, Mizuno engineers took a concept from the high-performance tire world and went perpendicular to the grooves and parallel to the direction the ball moves up the face to channel moisture away. This directional tread has proven to increase spin on shots especially in conditions with moisture up to 1,200 RPM (on a 60-yard shot), that’s a very tangible number. It’s not just about spin either: the more the friction that can be created also means more control on launch angle and less of a “floating” ball flight. That’s how those low zippers keep zippin’!

Don’t think for a second that Mizuno just changed the etching and was done with it. The process went through multiple iterations to figure out how they could improve its life (beyond the boron) and the solution was to etch before the chroming process to elongate the lifespan. The other groovy take for the T20s is the actual reconfiguration of the grooves. To get the bottom groove closer to the leading edge without having it disorient the overall look of the club and making it appear that the heel or toe is thinner on one side. The lowest groove has been shortened and centered.

All of these refinements; CG, micro-grooves, and reconfigured scoring lines add up to one thing: more control and improved shotmaking with your wedges.

Finishes, specs, and grinds

The wishes of many have been answered when it comes to the T20s, there will be a RAW finish (happy dance time) along with traditional chrome and the signature blue ion. Leftys will only be able to get chrome, but all the same options will be available as far as lofts and grinds.

Coming in lofts from 46-60 degrees, the grind options progress depending on the loft and bounce. Going from full-soled in the lower lofts to more aggressive back edge, and heel-toe relief in the 60 degree. These sole shapes came directly from Mizuno’s craftsman that worked with players and prototypes to determine exactly how the bounce and sole shapes should work in harmony.

All of this has come together to create Mizuno’s finest wedge to date.

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