The Longest Driver 2012
There are two drivers on the market which demonstrate the amazing technological advances in golf recently. Callaway Golf introduced the Razr Hawk made from a new material. In 2012 Callaway added fitting to their Razr Hawk, which they call the Razr Fit.
TaylorMade introduced the R11 which offers all in one club fitting. New for 2012 TaylorMade continues to pour on the stiff competition by developing the R11s. The “S” model was the result of PGA Tour Player feedback.
Callaway Says Composite Science Creates the Longest Driver for 2012
This new material has been developed in conjunction with some researchers who know a thing or two about speed, Italian Automaker Lamborghini . This very unique process allows for over a half a million micro-fibers per square inch to create a material that is lighter and stronger than the commonly used titanium.
The precision of the technology comes from the ability to forge the scientific material to one thousandth of an inch. This precision milling technique allows Callaway to eliminate all non-essential weight from the club.
The company claims that this material and forging process is the future of golf. The nature of the process allows for maximum forgiveness and maximum club-head speed.
Turbostratic describes the atomic structure of the high strength carbon fibers used in Forged Composite. Sheets of carbon atoms are intertwined and aligned with the length of the fiber to provide much higher strength than typical titanium fibers.
The official definition is: “A type of crystalline structure where the basal planes have slipped sideways relative to each other, causing the spacing between planes to be greater than ideal.” (I think that means there is more “air” in between each micro-fiber?)
Science and Golf Meet to Create Longer Drives
Callaway claims they are able to eliminate as much as 25% of the club’s weight. By taking weight away from the club-head, the company has been able to redistribute weight to other, highly essential components of the club, mainly, the shaft. Adding a longer shaft will add distance. The lighter club-head, slightly longer shaft and incredible aerodynamics is reportedly adding an average of 8 yards to each drive during tests with PGA Touring Professionals.
Callaway Razr Fit – New for 2012
The Callaway Opti-Fit fitting system gives the company an opportunity to fire back at one of the most Popular Drivers ever released the Adjustable R11. The Callaway fitting system details:
Hosel Adjustment – Gives you the ability to adjust the face angle Open, Neutral or Closed.
Weight Adjustment – Gives you the ability to move the clubs center of gravity in order to play with the flight of the ball. The weights come in 2 grams and 12 grams. Switching weights will help you promote either a natural ball flight or a slight draw spin.
You’ll notice two locations for weights on the bottom of the club, one near the heal and one near the toe. You can interchange the 2 gram weight and the 12 gram weight back and forth between the two locations and toggle the spin. Theoretically, the lighter weight out near the toe will create more draw spin and vice-versa.
Callaway has made one of the most aerodynamic drivers in golf even more streamlined for 2012, new face and club head shape reduce drag from wind resistance by nearly 14%.
New milling and forging technology has allowed the engineers to redistribute much of the weight from the sweet spot outwards toward the perimeter of the club. This allows for better weight distribution and a larger sweet spot.
TaylorMade Golf’s Longest Driver
TaylorMade has brought a bunch of new innovations to the driver area in recent years with their very successful R line. First it was the introduction of Moveable Weight Technology (MWT) in the R7, followed by Flight Control Technology (FCT) in the R9.
TaylorMade has made even more advancements with the R11, which features what they call Adjustable Sole Technology (AST). AST allows the player to adjust the face angle of the club from open to neutral to closed, depending on what best fits their game. In addition to this new technology, the R11 sports a matte white paint scheme on its crown (the combination of white crown and black face is supposed to help with alignment). This new, cool look is sure to gain plenty of talk in addition to the new AST when the R11 starts getting out into the market.
New Driver for 2012 from TaylorMade – The R11s
The R Series of drivers from TaylorMade has been in place for a number of years however R11 has allowed TM to really separate themselves from the competition. So, why the S?
The only major change to the R11s from the R11, which was released in 2011 is that for 2012 they altered the center of gravity which causes less spin off the face.
The Tour Players that were using the R11 were reporting that the ball felt a bit “spinny”. The 2012 edition solves this problem by moving the weight more towards the toe.
When it comes to amateur play, don’t concern yourself with running out and getting the new R11s right away. If you have the R11 and you are above a 6-8 handicap you will never notice the difference. The adjustment on the sole does have two extra settings with a total of 5 on the 2012 model, as opposed to the 3 on the 2011 version.
I have the original R11 and I set all the sole settings to completely neutral, I just don’t believe that tweaking these offsets without making fixes to your swing will actually help you. I just simply love the driver, if it was not adjustable, I would still own it.
The adjustment exception would be, the adjustment to the loft and to the weighting system. The 9° is actually a 9° degree and it can be a bit tough getting it in the air. By adjusting the loft up, the problem was completely solved. Also, I was tending toward a uncharacteristic hook and moving the heavier weight out near the toe, this was solved as well.
I’ve taken the chance to swing a whole bunch of the drivers out for 2012 in a simulator and tracked the results. Obviously the best results were with the R11 however, the Razr was pretty close and none of the others were in the same league. The R11 did produce on average 5 +/- yards extra distance, thus, the R11 is the longest driver on the market.
Both Drivers are fantastic. The driver that feels better to you should win. Simple as that.
Before you buy at your local store be sure to check prices online:
The R11S Retails for Approximately $399
The Razr Fit Retails for Approximately $399
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UPDATE 3/31/11: Looks like the Razr has some cracking issues, I had mentioned above that it may make sense to wait for 2.0. Phil Mickelson cracked his 3rd Razr in the last few days, today he cracked one on National TV. Not a good sign for Callaway but they’re a good company I’m sure they’ll replace the club for you.
UPDATE 2/17/12: The Razr has completely addresses any cracking issues with their latest technology.