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 »  Home  »  Equipment  »  Play Testing  »  Hydrids  »  Our Readers Test the Newest 2010 Hybrids
 »  Home  »  Equipment  »  Play Testing  »  Our Readers Test the Newest 2010 Hybrids
Our Readers Test the Newest 2010 Hybrids
By Tom Landers | Published  04/27/2010 | Hydrids , Play Testing | Unrated
Our Readers Test the Newest 2010 Hybrids

Help With Those Troublesome Long Distance Shots

The golf industry got wise to the hybrid long before auto makers tapped into the “Green” craze with their gas/electric cars.
The beauty of hybrid golf clubs is that they work. And not just for the average golfer but for even the most accomplished player. The reason is quite simple, really. Hybrids were intended to be a replacement for long-irons and to be easier to hit from a greater variety of lies. They incorporate many of the design elements found in both fairway woods and irons, with shallow profiles and a low center of gravity to facilitate getting the ball airborne and headed to the target with optimum trajectory.
The launch angle of hybrids, also called utility clubs, is such that it greatly increases the spin rate of the golf ball off the clubface, allowing players to hit more accurate long range shots with less release and roll once the ball hits terra firma.
Here’s another nice attribute: Hybrids are heavier than long-irons and have ruddered soles that are larger than traditional long-irons, which makes it rather uncomplicated to get the clubhead through tall grass off the fairway.
Because of their low centers of gravity, hybrids are also ideal for beefy par-threes, shots into long par-fours and second shots onto par-fives because they allow the player to get the ball higher into the air and afford better ball stopping ability than a two- or three-iron. Indeed, many Tour pros have at least one hybrid in their golf bag for just such occasions.
Phil Mickelson attracted lots of consumer attention when he used a hybrid numerous times during his win back at the 2007 Player’s Championship. It is believed that as much as one-fourth to one-third of wood sales this year will be hybrids. Almost one-third of U.S. golfers now choose to carry a hybrid in their bag compared to only about seven percent six years ago.
Hybrids have become so in vogue that they have replaced long-irons in some full iron sets. It is not uncommon for players to marry two or three hybrids with traditional irons that start from the five- or six-iron.
If you already haven’t, it’s high time to put that three- or four-iron in the closet and try out today’s state-of-the-art hybrids. Your game will surely benefit.

Hybrids


$149
Adams Idea A7 / A7 Os
www.adamsgolf.com

Unique Features: The Adams a7 hybrid is a blend of performance and forgiveness to provide increased carry and accuracy. An improved sole chamber design increases performance from all lies, and rear weighting increases spin and launch angle. The Adams Idea a7OS hybrid has an ultra-thin crown that lowers the center of gravity to improve the ball’s launch angle. A 44-gram heel/toe weighting factor maximizes forgiveness, while a thin face increases ball speed for great distance.


$199
Idea Pro Black 9031
www.adamsgolf.com

Unique Features: The Adams Idea Pro Black is engineered with high performance features that maximize distance and versatility. It has a compact, workable design and a distinct black nickel plating finish. The club is built with a maraging steel face for hotter ball flight. Skilled players will like the maximum distance and premium features the Pro Black offers.


$149 graphite, $139 steel
Cleveland Launcher DST
www.clevelandgolf.com

Unique Features: The Cleveland Launcher DST has a blunter toe and symmetrical shape to provide an extremely appealing look at address. A dual rail sole design creates a recessed section, which reduces turf drag and improves turf interaction for increased playability from the rough and poor lies. The hybrid is available in five lofts, ranging from 15.5 to 26 degrees..


$149
Cobra Baffler Rail H
www.cobragolf.com

Unique Features: The Cobra Baffler Rail H has an innovative sole design that reduces the area of the club that comes into contact with the ground. The result is improved turf interaction and maximum forgiveness, making the club the ideal replacement for the long-iron. A thin, lightweight steel face inset promotes faster ball speed.


$241
Fourteen UT 409
www.fourteengolf.com

Unique Features: The steel body of the Fourteen UT-409 hybrid is designed with a high launch angle and a deep center of gravity for maximum stability through the shot and increased distance. In addition, this combination of design elements provides stability from a variety of lies.


$199
Mizuno MP CLK-FLI-HI
www.mizunousa.com

Unique Features: A compact and workable head shape, low profile design, and Hot Metal™ 1770 stainless steel maraging face combine to create and expanded COR AREA and maximum ball speeds in this new high performance hybrid from Mizuno. A patented “Drop Down Crown” design and internal weight placement creates a low COG for an easy launch. The “Drop Down Crown” allows for lie adjustability, while generous sole relief delivers reduced turf drag for unmatched versatility.


$169
Nike VR
www.nikegolf.com

Unique Features: The Nike VR hybrid was created to meet the specific needs of the best players in the world. The face angle of the hybrid has been adjusted and the center of gravity shifted to optimize workability and distance control. A Split Compression Channel and an ultra-thin face combine to deliver consistent, Tour-level performance from all lies.


$149
Nike SQ Matchspeed
www.nikegolf.com

Unique Features: The Nike SQ Machspeed hybrid is designed to deliver increased ball speed through optimized aerodynamics and reduced turf drag. The stability and forgiveness of the Tour-proven Nike Square Technology, which moves weight out and into the corners of the clubhead, provides consistent ball trajectory, explosive distance, and improved shot making from a variety of lies.


$210 per club graphite, $180 per club steel
Ping i15
www.ping.com

Unique Features: The Ping i15 is for golfers who prefer a traditional hybrid shape and size. A stainless steel head offers a high moment of inertia and a tour-preferred trajectory. Internal weighting positions the center of gravity low and back to produce a penetrating ball flight that gives better players the ability to hit a variety of shots from almost any lie.


$185 per club graphite, $160 per club steel
Ping G15
www.ping.com

Unique Features: The Ping G15 hybrid is designed as a high-launching, forgiving alternative to long- and mid-irons. A large internal toe pad expands the club’s perimeter weighting to make the G15 extremely forgiving and long. A clean look at address inspires confidence for golfers of all abilities.


$199
Srixon Z-TX
www.srixon.com

Unique Features: The Srixon Z-TX hybrids feature heel and toe tungsten sole weights that position the extra weight low and deep in the clubhead for added stability. A maraging steel face with variable face technology helps generate higher ball speeds. Ball speeds boosted by the face material and structure maximize overall distance potential.


$179
TaylorMade Raylor
www.taylormadegolf.com

Unique Features: The TaylorMade Raylor boasts a small, rounded steel head with an extremely low center gravity, and two distinct rails in its side, which were designed to help the head glide smoothly through tall grass, while resisting twisting or stalling. The club is easy to hit from sidehill lies because of its sole radius


$199
TaylorMade Rescue TP
www.taylormadegolf.com

Unique Features: The TaylorMade Rescue TP hybrid features the same Fight Control Technology that is found in the company’s R9 driver and fairway woods. FCT gives the player the ability to change the Rescue TP’s face, loft and life angles, which has never before been possible with a hybrid of any kind.


$199
Titleist 909H
www.titleist.com

Unique Features: The Titleist 909H hybrid is constructed with a precision cast stainless steel body and a carpenter steel face insert for a lively feel and increased ball speed. The size, shape, offset and center of gravity location through various lofts provides proper ball flight, workability and trajectory control.


$199aphite)
Tour Edge XCG3
www.TourEdge.com

Unique Features: The XCG-3 is the first Exotics Hybrid to include a tungsten sole weight with a maraging-steel cup face. The sole of this hybrid is weighted with two internal tungsten weight pads. The end result of this is a very deep center of gravity for high-launching, low-spinning shots. Besides lowering the spin rate, the tungsten sole weights also improved both the sound and feel of the club at impact. The XCG-3 comes equipped with the ultra-smooth and stable Fujikura Motore graphite shaft.




$329
Williams FW32 Hybrid
www.williams-sports.com

Unique Features: The Williams FW32 Hybrid highlights the advancement of Formula One design in aerodynamics and materials. The Trip redirects airflow over the crown of the driver to minimize the surface area of the crown that is affected by airflow contact, which is important in the reduction of drag. Winglets manage and control the air flowing around the heal and toe section of the driver, creating a more consistent and stable path throughout the downswing and impact. The Diffuser is a key component in diffusing and controlling the air the flows across the soleplate of the driver, combining with the effectiveness of the “Trip”, to minimize the wake and density of airflow off the rear of the driver creating a significant reduction in drag.


$149
Wilson FYbrid HS
www.wilsonstaff.com

Unique Features: The HS stands for heavy sole and Wilson says its new fairway utility series combines fairway woods and hybrids into one “loft-based family” to eliminate redundant clubs. The FYbrid family is comprised of seven fairway utility clubs that cover the distance needs between the driver and the 6-iron. Improvements from the original FYbrid design includes a new heavy sole that lowers the center of gravity by seven percent and moves it 11 percent deeper into the clubhead, resulting in higher launch and stronger ball flight.


Player’s Choice Awards

Best Appearance
Adams Idea Pro Black
Srixon Z-TX
TaylorMade Rescue TP
Titleist 909h

Best Forgiveness
Mizuno MP CLK
Ping G15
Wilson Fybrid HS

Best Playability
Cleveland Launcher DST
Ping I15

Best Feel
Adams a7
TaylorMade Rescue TP
Titleist 909h

Best Distance
Cleveland Launcher DST
Ping I15
Ping G15
Tour Edge XCG 3

Best Value
Cobra Baffler Rail
Wilson Fybrid HS

Best Overall
Adams a7
Cleveland Launcher DST
Ping I15
TaylorMade Rescue TP
Tour Edge XCG 3