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Tour Report: Seeding week for Ping G425

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As we saw just a few weeks with the tour launch of the Titleist TSi, whenever a big OEM teases their new gear out on Tour, it’s a huge deal—especially for the gear heads. Is it better? Longer? More stable? Who is putting it in play, and on and on…

This week in Vegas (Shadow Creek CC) at the CJ Cup, it’s Ping’s turn to throw their hat in the ring with the new G425 woods. It’s just that time of year: All the heavyweights come out swinging with new ideas, and tech which hopefully results in better scores for the rest of us.

From where I sit, the Ping G410 was/is hands down the most stable brick wall of a driver on the market. If you look at the players that lean towards this profile (LST or MAX), they tend to be high-speed players (Finau, Champ, Watson, Woodland). At that speed, extra distance isn’t necessarily a priority—stability is up always front. Not to say those drivers don’t pack a punch, they are plenty long, but as a golf club built for accuracy, it sits as king of the mountain.

The big question is, “What direction did Ping go in with the G425?” My hunch is they found a way to keep the stability and crank up the distance volume even more.

As its too early to get into the tech story, I did want to get a feel for what early testing was looking like, so once again I tapped my old buddy Kenton “K.O” Oates from the Ping tour team to get the inside look.

JW: First reactions across the board…what are players saying?

KO: First, the amount of work and effort that went into this launch from everyone at Ping worldwide was simply incredible. It is hard enough to launch a full line of clubs across multiple tours across the globe under normal circumstances, and I think we can all agree 2020 has been far but normal.

In Phoenix, I think we knew from early testing results with a few of our staff players that this was going to be overall a very well-received launch this week in Vegas and across the pond in Scotland. If we needed any further fuel for the fire for this launch, look no further thann Tyrell Hatton winning at Wentworth with three new G425 metal woods the first week in play.

JW: Max vs. LST. What are guys leaning towards at first testing?

KO: Players right away loved the clean rich look of the G425 Max and LST drivers. The biggest takeaway is how forgiving these drivers are with zero sacrifices to playability or speed. Ping drivers have long been known for their stability, and the G425 takes that baton and keeps running. The coolest thing we noticed was how easy it was to control and optimize the launch and spin of the bigger super stable G425 Max and how straight the smaller, sleeker low spinning G425 flew. We will see more G425 LST in play due to its extreme forgiveness in a lower spinning package—felt like you could give a player G410 Plus forgiveness with G410 LST launch conditions.

JW: How are the reactions to the new Fairway woods?

KO: From a looks standpoint, players were generally shocked to see fairway woods and hybrids without turbulators for the first time since G25/I25 fairway woods and G30 hybrids. Along with a fresh new look, players saw nice performance gains in terms of ball speeds, launch conditions, and distance with both our G425 Max and LST fairways with the same forgiveness, playability, and stability of their G410 fairways. Both players who put G425 hybrids in play this week needed the same adjustment…more loft as it was flying too far in the standard-setting.

JW: Any fun testing stories?

KO: In previous months, both Viktor Hovland and Cameron Champ tested longer driver length options. Both players gamers are short, 44 3/4 for Hovland, to very short 44 1/4 for Champ. In the previous testing, Hovland could not control spin or right miss enough to feel comfortable gaming longer option and Cameron could not find enough stability out of his preferred LST head option at his speeds.

Right away with Hovland, 425 reduced his right miss and lowered his spin at his gamer length, it wasn’t long into the fitting he looked at us and goes, “We need to build the longer one with this head.”  So, we left Viktor both options, and over the last 10 days, it was fun to get screenshots of Trackman from Viktor as he approached and then surpassed 180 mph ball speed.

In Cameron’s case, he has wanted to play a longer shaft but to do so, he felt he needed to switch into our 410 Plus head to give him the extra forgiveness and stability. We started Cameron’s G425 testing with slightly longer options and were able to optimize his launch conditions with a 9-degree LST in the small plus setting. Tuesday, we tested his gamer, shorter length on Trackman, and course. The longer length gave him additional 10 yards of carry, 4 mph of ball speed, and was still more stable than his old gamer.

All said and done Hovland will play a driver an inch longer at 45 3/4 and Cameron will go with a 45-inch shaft.

Ping G425 woods in play this week at CJ Cup

Staff

Champ                LST Driver           Max 3w               19* Hybrid

Conners                                             LST 3w                19* Hybrid

Hatton                LST Driver           LST 3w                Max 7w

Hovland             LST Driver

Hughes               Max Driver          Max 3w               Max 5w

Munoz                Max Driver

Niemann                                           Max 3w

Oosthuizen                                       Max 3w               Max 7w

Thompson         LST Driver           Max 3w                Max 7w

Watson               LST Driver                                        Max 5w

 

 

 

 

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Johnny Wunder is the Director of Original Content, Instagram Manager and Host of “The Gear Dive” Podcast for GolfWRX.com. He was born in Seattle, Wash., and grew up playing at Rainier G&CC. John is also a partner with The Traveling Picture Show Company having most recently produced JOSIE with Game of Thrones star Sophie Turner. In 1997 Johnny had the rare opportunity of being a clubhouse attendant for the Anaheim Angels. He now resides in Toronto, On with his wife and two sons. @johnny_wunder on IG

7 Comments

7 Comments

  1. Delta1

    Oct 18, 2020 at 12:48 pm

    This website is not secure. Beware!

  2. matt

    Oct 16, 2020 at 6:59 pm

    do we have head size info on these… I assume the LST is less than 460?

  3. Carolyn

    Oct 16, 2020 at 6:39 pm

    Great new drivers that will give the over 110 MPH Swing that benefit of face “COR”…I think it is so funny that guys swinging up to 130 MPH or more are getting added benefits and hitting the ball 350 yards or more while the guy with the 85 MPH or less and paying $500 or more for his/her driver are only gaining a few yards if the club is adjusted right for their swing. You want to stop this horrible distance problem in Pro Golf just change the legal limit of “COR’ and within days those 350 or more drives will come back without changing current ball limits. If the face does not rebound fast enough even Bryson will be swinging out of his shoes to get 320…

    • The dude

      Oct 17, 2020 at 5:53 am

      Someone needs a box of Kleenex….

    • Clay

      Oct 19, 2020 at 1:13 pm

      I don’t really want to see any changes, but if a change was made it’s easier to change the ball because they are cheaper and everyone goes through multiple boxes over the course of a season. Telling everyone to start buying the new, legal ball would go over much better with the golfing public than telling every golfer in the world they need to buy a new $500 driver because their gamer is now illegal.

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Equipment

Golf 101: 5 Tips to building your golf bag with CH3 (+ Charles Howell III WITB)

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I think at this point it’s safe to say that Charles Howell III is the adopted son and patron saint of WRX.

Not only is he a member of the site and visits regularly, but he’s also an avid club nerd and tester. I’ve become friends with CH3 over the past couple of years and have had some fun gear geek sessions with him. Want to know the coolest thing of all? He’s still as passionate and curious about gear as we are and not just Titleist (who he is on staff with) he’s curious about it all.

So who better to ask about how to build a great golf bag than with a man who knows it, does, and plays for his livelihood week in and week out?

These are 5 Charles Howell III golden nuggets that any golfer can learn from—and oh yeah, his take on the future is spot on.

Rule #1: Stability over speed no matter what

“Even for the guys on tour, stabilizing the clubface is paramount to good driving. One of the reasons I love testing shafts so often is to see if there is that magic combo of speed and control. However, the stability of the clubhead and shaft have to be there—I could find a combo that’s 20 yards longer, but if it’s something I can’t control, it doesn’t have a place in my bag. Extra yardage is fun until it isn’t.”

Rule #2: Find wedges that can do it all

“I chose the Vokey SM8 M Grind in the 56 and 60, because as the grind spectrum goes, they fall dead in the middle for me but everyone is different. I discovered that finding a middle ground grind wise solves the “different wedges for different grass problems” some players find themselves in. Even at Augusta, there was more Bermuda sticking out than normal which made shots from behind 15 different for example a little trickier. Not only are you chipping back towards a downslope with water behind, but it’s also now into the grain. Knowing I had wedges to combat either scenario made it that much easier. As a player, you have to put all the grinds through the paces and see what one checks off the most boxes. It might be something you never considered.”

Rule #3 Forgiveness looks different for every player

“Iron set makeups have changed so much in recent years. Pay attention to the soles when choosing your irons, even in the longer irons. It would be easy to think that bigger heads wider soles would be a no-brainer to hit, but to be honest, it’s not that simple. Sometimes finding a sole that will help the club get in and out of the ground easily will get you that center contact you were looking for. Although guys on tour may choose beefier long irons, it’s pretty rare to find one with a really wide sole. Soles that large encourage a player to try and sweep it off the turf which is counter-intuitive with an iron in your hand. When getting fit, pay attention to attack angles and center contact with your longer clubs; you may find that thinner soles help you more than anything else.”

Rule #4 Enjoy the process of learning and testing

“Obviously playing for a living gives me the advantage of testing a ton of stuff, but it’s just as fun doing the research at home (online) and understanding what certain equipment can do and the idea behind it. I still rely on testing as much as I can to see what works but it’s the pursuit of knowledge that keeps it all fresh week in and week out. Technology is so good these days but like anything you have to ask questions, look around try some stuff and then make a decision. Remember it’s your golf bag, take some pride in demanding that every inch of it works for you.

Eyes on the future…

“I think as we go down this Bryson/distance chase, the ultimate result on tour will be a lot of two driver bags. Look at it this way, having a 47-inch driver for long bombs, and a 44.5 inch for tighter drives, and a 4-wood isn’t all that hard to imagine. Players can tweak lofts in the irons and wedges easily to adjust to gapping. It’s not rocket science, and I don’t think we are that far from seeing multiple players on tour doing it that way.”

Charles Howell III WITB

Driver: Titleist TSI3 (10.5 degrees, A1 SureFit setting)

Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD XC 6 TX

3-wood: Ping G425 LST (14.5 degrees)

Shaft: Fujikura Atmos Black Tour Spec 8 X

7-wood: Ping G425 Max (20.5 degrees @20)

Shaft: Fujikura Atmos Black Tour Spec 9 X

Irons: Titleist T100 (4-6) 620 MB (7-9)

Shafts: Project X LZ 6.5 (hard stepped)

Wedges: Titleist Vokey Design SM8 (48-10F @47, 52-12F, 56-08M, 60-08M)

Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Scotty Cameron 009M

Ball: Titleist Pro V1

Grips: Golf Pride Tour Velvet Align

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GolfWRX Classifieds (12/3/20): Mavrik SubZero, rare Scotty Cameron, Wilson Staff

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At GolfWRX, we love golf equipment plain and simple

We are a community of like-minded individuals that all experience and express our enjoyment for the game in many ways. It’s that sense of community that drives day-to-day interactions in the forums on topics that range from best driver to what marker you use to mark your ball, it even allows us to share another thing – the equipment itself.

One of the best ways to enjoy equipment is to experiment and whether you are looking to buy-sell-or trade (as the name suggests) you can find almost anything in the GolfWRX BST Forum. From one-off custom Scotty Cameron Circle T putters, to iron sets, wedges, and barely hit drivers, you can find it all in our constantly updated marketplace.

These are some of the latest cool finds from the GolfWRX BST, and if you are curious about the rules to participate in the BST Forum you can check them out here: GolfWRX BST Rules

Member CLRMTgolfer – Wilson Staff forged combo set

This is one extremely nice custom combo set of irons from Wilson golf – from blades, all the way to the Staff utility, this set has everything you need for shotmaking.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Wilson staff iron set

Member EHSgolf1 – Callaway Mavrik SubZero driver

Your chance to get an almost new Callaway Mavrik SubZero for less than new price!

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Callaway SubZero

Member Champ 2430 – Scotty Cameron Timeless longneck prototype

As they say “if you know you know” and this rare Scotty Cameron Prototype longneck is a thing of beauty – the only thing is I really hope you have a big golfing budget.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Rare longneck Cameron

Remember that you can always browse the GolfWRX Classifieds any time here in our forums: GolfWRX Classifieds

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Adidas X Vice Golf launch The Vice Golf Shoe by Adidas

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Adidas has teamed up with Vice Golf to launch the new Vice Golf Shoe inspired from off the course which includes a dozen Vice Pro Drip Lime x Adidas golf balls.

The Vice Golf Shoe from Adidas contains ultraboost and a signature lime-green colorway to accent the designs for life both on and off the golf course. The shoe features a camouflage pattern in gray and white on the top of the shoe, while a brand-new drip pattern decorates the boost material at the bottom.

The shoe features branding “discoverables”, such as a subtle Vice logo on the tongue of the shoe while a collab logo is celebrated within. The company’s motto “Embrace Your Vice” runs down the spine of the heel, while another Vice logo lives underneath the 3-stripe caging on the inside of the foot.

If golfers want a brighter color pop, the alternate neon lime laces give that option.

“Based in Bavaria like Adidas, we have always looked up to this global ambassador and brand that has made big moves in both the golf and footwear in recent years. It is a great honor to finally present the result of 22 months of work with tears of happiness when the final pair of shoes arrived” – Vice Golf founder and CEO Ingo Duellmann

In addition to the shoe, the packaging of the Vice Golf Shoe by Adidas is made to look, feel and act exactly like their signature golf ball packages. 

The bottom of the box is wrapped in a neon lime camouflage pattern, and the top cover features the exact, embossed Vice logo colored in neon lime drip pattern as seen and felt on the brand’s golf ball packaging. The connection continues after lifting the lid and discovering an actual box of Vice Pro Drip Lime golf balls, with Adidas logos, sitting in its own compartment.

The Vice Golf Shoe from Adidas (plus one dozen Vice Pro Drip Lime X Adidas golf balls) costs $219.95 and is available to purchase from December 7, 2020, 11 AM EST at ViceGolf.com.

 

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