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Best fairway woods of 2022: By expert club fitters for you!

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Having the right fairway woods is essential for golfers of all skill levels looking to get the most out of their long games — whether it be approach shots into longer par 4’s and par 3’s, going after par 5’s in two, or just trying to hit more fairways off the tee — finding the best fairway wood of 2022 to fit your needs is a must.

Looking at the best fairway wood playing field for 2022, we continue to see more fairway wood options from every manufacturer. What used to be a single model release has been expanded to three—and in some cases even four—models to fit specific player types. These new fairway woods impress us with their ability to utilize new technology and construction methods to go faster, and further, while also offering never-before-seen levels of forgiveness. It’s now easier than ever to find the right one that matches your swing.

That being said, ultimately the best way to find the best fairway woods for you is to work with a professional fitter using a launch monitor. The difficult part is a lot of people don’t have easy access to fitters, launch monitors, and club builders — so at GolfWRX — with the help of our panel of expert fitters — we have done a lot of the work for you to narrow down your shortlist.

Best fairway woods of 2022: Meet the fitters

Nick Sherburne: Founder,Club Champion
Clare Cornelius: 
Fitter, Cool Clubs
Eric Johnson: Fitter, True Spec Golf
Shaun Fagan: Fitter, True Spec Golf
Kirk Oguri: PGA Professional/ Club Specialist, Pete’s Golf
Sue O’Connor: Fitter, Cool Clubs 
Scott Felix: Owner, Felix Club Works
Mark Knapp: Fitter, Carls Golfland
Ryan Johnson: Fitter, Carl’s Golfland
Eric Hensler: 
Manager & Fitter, Miles of Golf
Brad Coffield: Fitter Carl’s Golfland
Nick Waterworth: Fitter,Haggin Oaks Golf Super Shop
Scott Anderson: VP of Sales, Fitter, True Spec Golf
Matthew Sim: Director of Operations, Modern Golf
Shawn Zawodni: Fitter, Miles of Golf
Ben Giunta: Owner,The Tour Van
Matt Decker: Head Fitter and Builder, The Fitting Lab – Baltimore
Jason Bodey: Head Fitter and Builder, The Fitting Lab Pittsburgh
Bradley Harrelson: Fitter, 2nd Swing Golf
Alex Dice: Fitter, Carl’s Golfland
Matt Mora: Director of Club Fitting, Urban Golf Performance
Jordan Patrick: Fitter, True Spec Golf
Gus Alzate: Fitter, True Spec Golf
Carmen Corvino: Fitter, True Spec Golf
Blake Smith: Fitter, True Spec Golf
Marc Roybal: Fitter, True Spec Golf
Shaun Fagan: Fitter, True Spec Golf

Best fairway woods of 2022: The categories

We have broken our 2022 best fairway wood list into two categories.

  1. Best fairway wood for golfers seeking forgiveness 
  2. Best fairway wood for golfers seeking versatility

We selected this format for fairway woods because every golfer fits into one of these two “want” categories regardless of age, handicap, or gender, and for a lot of golfers, forgiveness is the number one factor when selecting a fairway wood.

Before we started building the survey, we reached out to our trusted fitters to discuss how they sort through the fairway wood options available to golfers. Forgiveness and versatility were the highest-ranked choices.

We can’t thank the fitters enough for their time, and we hope that in your search for your best fairway wood for 2022, we can help you find it!

Most forgiving fairway woods 2022

Callaway Rogue ST Max

Billed by Callaway as the brand’s ‘fastest ever fairway wood’, the Rogue ST Max boasts an all-new Tungsten Speed Cartridge, new Jailbreak ST, and an A.I.-designed Flash Face, which are all engineered to provide maximum speed and forgiveness.

For the full technology breakdown, check out our 2022 Callaway Rogue ST Max fairway wood launch piece.

Fitter Notes

  • “The Callaway Rogue ST Max fairway wood offers forgiveness, as well as a higher launch by design. A lot of players tend to struggle getting the ball in the air with a 3-wood if they don’t create a lot of speed.”
  • “The Rogue ST Max has options! From a 3+ to an 11-wood, there are so many options to fit a player into.”

Ping G425 Max

The Ping G425 Max fairway wood retains its place on the list for 2022, with the fairway wood featuring a neutrally biased head with the highest MOI for a combination offering maximum forgiveness.

For the full technology breakdown, check out our Ping G425 Max fairway wood launch piece.

Fitter Notes

  • “The Ping 425 Max is easily the easiest fairway wood on the market to hit. This fairway wood is a high launching club, with a big sweet spot for those off-center hits. This fairway wood fits a wide range of players regardless of your handicap.”
  • “Incredibly easy to launch out of any condition. Being able to flatten out the club with the shaft sleeve allows it to even fit better players who want to reduce the draw. Ping offers the Max in a lot of lofts so there is something for any player’s yardage.”

TaylorMade Stealth

The Stealth fairway features a larger profile compared to Stealth Plus (190cc vs 175cc) while also containing an all-new 3D carbon crown that allowed engineers to shift weight lower and deeper in the clubhead.

The Stealth features an advanced laser alignment aid that stretches across the top of the face. The laser-etched pattern was designed using optical engineering and player testing to deliver visual cues that influence alignment at address and how the club is delivered at impact.

For the full technology breakdown, check out our 2022 TaylorMade Stealth fairway wood launch piece.

Fitter Notes

  • “The TaylorMade Stealth is a very popular fairway wood. The glued hosel allows for this club to have minimal customization in terms of tuning in the lofts and face angle. Players have always gravitated towards TaylorMade fairway woods due to the distance gains they have seen.”

Titleist TSi2

The Titleist TSi2 fairway wood keeps its spot as one of the most forgiving fairway woods on the market for 2022.

The fairway wood features a deeper and lower CG than its predecessors giving the player even better launch conditions and flatter spin rates for increased distance overall. The face is supported by a lighter Active Recoil Channel (fourth edition) that strengthens the face for added ball speed and playability, especially on the lower face strikes.

For the full technology breakdown, check out our 2022 Titleist TSi2 fairway wood launch piece.

Fitter Notes

  • “The TS2 fairway wood is a higher launching fairway wood, which is helpful for those who struggle with launch. This fairway wood has helped golfers increase speed as well as distance. The TSi2 fairway wood is much more forgiving than TSi3.”
  • “The TSi2 has good, classic shape. It flies well off the tee and is easy to get off the deck. The launch and spin are consistent from wood to wood and the adjustability lets me dial it in for a wide range of players.”
  • “Much easier to launch for most players than the TSi3 and more forgiving. The multiple lofts and great SureFit adapter allow it to fit players of all skill levels. The adjustable cog being able to change both lie and loft makes this fairway very versatile.”

Cobra LTDx Max

The Cobra LTDx is billed as the company’s “most forgiving fairway” . An adjustable weight system features 12g and 3g weights that can be positioned in the back or the heel to fine-tune the amount of draw bias, while WR-COR and H.O.T. Face Technology again bids to deliver the fastest ball speed possible using low and forward weighting and an optimized variable thickness face design.

For the full technology breakdown, check out our 2022 Cobra LTDx Max fairway wood launch piece.

Fitter Notes

  • “A great mix of distance and forgiveness. The updated rails on the bottom help you get it out of just about any lie.”
  • “Much more forgiving than I expected and most players see a big improvement in dispersion. The sound and feel are really good as well. The LTDx has to be one of the best fairways Cobra has ever made.”

Most versatile fairway woods 2022

Titleist TSi2

The Titleist TSi2 also takes its place on the most versatile fairway woods of 2022, with the club featuring a rounded front leading edge that makes getting under the ball from any lie possible, and you can also fine-tune the back weight to match your preferred feel and the hosel to adjust ball flight.

For the full technology breakdown, check out our 2022 Titleist TSi2 fairway wood launch piece.

Fitter Notes

  • “Great fairway wood and easily the best Titleist has ever had. It allows us to dial in the shots in a more profound way with all the lofts and adjustability offered in the TSi2”
  • “The TSi2 is our best seller and the amount of adjustability it offers lets me dial it in for any shot shape. For having such a traditional shape, the forgiveness is really high.”

Ping G425 Max

The Max model is the one that is going to fit the widest amount of golfers on the launch conditions bell curve.

For the full technology breakdown, check out our Ping G425 Max fairway wood launch piece.

Fitter Notes

  • “Continuing on with the forgiveness of the drivers the fairways also have great MOI and forgiveness to them as well.”
  • “The G425 Max is just easy to hit. In my book, it is the most forgiving fairway we have in the store. From a fitting standpoint, you can really dial it in with the adjustability.”

Callaway Rogue ST Max

The new addition this year is a mid-launch offering with slight draw bias and features models from a 3W through 11W.

For the full technology breakdown, check out our 2022 Callaway Rogue ST Max fairway wood launch piece.

Fitter Notes

  • “The addition of the speed cartridge and the AI face makes this one of the most forgiving fairways of the year.”
  • “Very forgiving, but still offers a ton of ball speed and distance in a fairway wood. The shallow face makes this easy to launch and land soft.”

TaylorMade Stealth Plus

The new Stealth Plus fairway is constructed of Zatech titanium, which is made in small batches using a process that allows engineers to improve the strength of the face while still maintaining a high level of ductility. The ultra-thin construction is designed to promote fast ball speeds while allowing for greater face flexibility.

For the full technology breakdown, check out our 2022 TaylorMade Stealth Plus fairway wood launch piece.

Fitter Notes

  • “The Stealth is one of the best for getting the ball up and adding height to players who need it. The face is also hot and offers a ton of distance.”
  • “Another fairway with a great combination of distance and forgiveness. The Stealth allows players of all talents to get the ball in the air and help with the mishits.”

Callaway Apex UW

The Apex UW utility wood features a design aiming to combine the best features of higher-lofted fairway woods, hybrids, and a more neutral ball flight. The new utility wood contains the brand’s Jailbreak A.I. Velocity Blades, which are designed to increase vertical stiffness near the club’s sole in a bid to create more speed low on the face where players often mishit their hybrids.

For the full technology breakdown, check out our 2022 Callaway Apex UW launch piece.

Fitter Notes

  • “The Callaway Apex UW is designed for players who struggle hitting fairway woods, but like the look of hybrids and need some extra distance. The utility wood allows players to hit shots out of the rough easier compared to a fairway wood. The utility wood offers players the chance to hit shots out of some buried lies that you wouldn’t be able to hit with a fairway wood. The utility wood sits a little open at address, which players like over the look of hybrids which tend to sit closed.”
  • “Kind of in-between a fairway and a hybrid, it gives you the best of both. Definitely long and the sole design lets you hit good shots from any lie.”
  • “While it might not be the most forgiving option, the better players love the look and versatility the UW provides. The launch is a little lower and it tends to be low spin, but for the players who need that it has been a big success.”

 

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Scottie Scheffler signs first endorsement following Masters win

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Today, the 2022 Master champion Scottie Scheffler has been announced as a new brand ambassador of GolfForever.

The 25-year-old has won four times on the PGA Tour since he began using GofForever’s training system that pairs the first-ever multi-use golf fitness and warmup tool with video-streaming routines in design to provide flexibility, speed, power and injury recovery in the GolfForever app.

Scheffler will represent the brand by appearing in GolfForever video content and advertisements, using the GolfForever Training System in a similar capacity to how he uses it in his own daily routines.

Speaking on the new partnership, Scheffler said

“It’s been an unbelievable ride these past few months and part of my success is no doubt due to the hard work I’ve put in with GolfForever. It’s a tool and approach that is critical to my preparation for the PGA Tour, and I respect GolfForever’s mission of helping all golfers improve their bodies and play their best with the same scientific approach as mine. I’m proud to be their ambassador and excited for the relationship ahead.”

For more information on the GolfForever training system, check out GolfForever.com.

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Coolest thing for sale in the GolfWRX Classifieds (5/12/22): FootJoy Icons

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At GolfWRX, we are a community of like-minded individuals that all experience and express our enjoyment of 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 we all love – buying and selling equipment.

Currently, in our GolfWRX buy/sell/trade (BST) forum, there is a listing for a pair of FootJoy Icons.

From the seller (@jjgsgolf): “FootJoy ICON 52339.10.5M Brand New. $100.”

To check out the full listing in our BST forum, head through the link: FootJoy Icons

This is the most impressive current listing 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

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INSIDER EXCLUSIVE: Maverick McNealy on custom 1-of-1 Callaway Apex MB irons

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Maverick McNealy was once the No. 1 amateur in the world playing for Stanford University, and he signed with Callaway Golf upon turning professional in 2017.

Since then, McNealy has been switching back-and-forth between Callaway Apex MB prototype irons and Nike VR Pro irons. He played Nike irons in college, and he hasn’t yet been able to make a permanent switch into Callaway irons.

Throughout 2022, McNealy has been opting for the Nike irons, and he uses lead tape to get the weighting and CG (center of gravity) right for his swing. McNealy prefers a long heel-to-toe length and a CG that’s farther away from the hosel.

When he showed up to the 2022 Byron Nelson, however, he had a completely new version of Callaway Apex MB prototype irons that he’s never used before, in addition to his old Nike irons.

On Tuesday, we caught up with McNealy to get his take on the new Callaway irons and how they came about.

GolfWRX: So we noticed that you have a new set of Callaway blades in the bag, in addition to the Nike irons. What’s the story behind the new irons, and can you tell me a bit about the process of getting them in the bag?

McNealy: So, this process started just over a year ago. I’ve been working really closely with Tim Reed (Senior Vice President, Global Sports Marketing at Callaway) on this. It’s really trying to fill a gap in the performance blade market. There really isn’t anything with that much length heel-to-toe and a center of gravity far enough from the hosel.

For me, getting that center of gravity out towards the toe, or should I say, getting that center of gravity further away from the hosel, gives me more club head awareness on the way down. It slows down the closure rate and keeps the club face square longer. I found out with other blades, because they’re so short heel to toe, and the center of gravity is so close to the heel, that I was shutting them down too fast for me. So these help keep the club face square on the way back and give me that awareness on the way through.

So, Tim and I are taking a deep dive. We’re hitting them and really trying to dial them in in every way possible so that they’re consistent from iron to iron all the way through.

We’re measuring offsets, impact height, location, lead groove height, there’s just so many little details that change the way you deliver the club, the way you feel it. The next thing we’re looking at is making sure every iron is spinning exactly the way we want through the bag especially with the new golf ball, the prototype golf ball (Chrome Soft X) that I’ve been playing from Callaway, which is awesome.

It’s pretty cool to get to match an iron and a golf ball to hit exactly the flight I want to through the bag.

Are you trying to match up the look with the Nike irons? From address, they look very similar in terms of grooves, offset and topline.

The Nike’s trained me. When I became a one sport athlete, those were the irons I was using. That’s what my eye sees, so there’s a few things that really help me line up the club, especially the PAR area. The lead groove height matters a lot for delivering the club consistently and getting the contact.

Then the 10 and 11 iron is a fun project for us because I almost never chip with a pitching wedge or gap wedge, and if I do it’s a bump and run, so I just want something that’s going to flow straight through from my short irons to my approach irons, or however you want to call them. I’ve seen them launch lower with a little bit more spin, which is great for distance control, and they feel just like my irons, which is a pretty exciting project.

Which of the Callaway irons will you put in play this week? The whole set?

4-7. The 8 iron is a maybe. Honestly, I just want to get some reps under competition and see how they perform. As you can see, I’m slow to change, so it’s a big deal for me to throw a couple of them in, and we’re going to keep iterating until they’re exactly right.

See more photos and join the discussion about McNealy’s new irons here.

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