Tuesday, November 8, 2011
We Tried It: Ping G20 Series
G20 Fairway Wood (3-wood, 15-degree loft)
PING TFC 169F Graphite Shaft
Sporting the same looks of the driver, the G20 fairway wood has a handsome, understated appeal. The stainless-steel, 165cc head, which, hard to believe, is bigger than some of the first iterations of metal drivers, has a smooth, convex crown that makes you feel as though the shaft and neck of the clubhead reach the ground. This creates a great feel at address that's also visually easy to look at.
The G20's shallow, low-profile clubface produced high, although not as high as we expected, shots that flew straight as an arrow. Shots hit off the heel and toe didn't fly quite as straight and far, but were still manageable. The most telling characteristic of the G20 fairway wood was, again, the propensity for the club to produce right-to-left ballflights. Maybe it was just us that day, but most of our shots flew with a draw. In the ideal situation, we like to hit fairway woods straight or with a little fade, since fades fly higher and land softer, but for the average golfer or even the chronic slicer, these fairway woods are ideal.
How the G20 fairway woods perform rests heavily in the right shaft selection. Stock options include a high- or low-launch PING TFC 169F graphite shaft, meaning, in our case, we might have been better off using a higher-launch shaft to get the ball higher and land softer. However, with the right shaft, we suspect the G20 fairway wood will perform exceptionally from both the fairway and off the tee.
PING G20 SERIES HYBRID
G20 Hybrid (20-degree loft)
PING TFC 169H Graphite Shaft
This hybrid is clearly designed as a long-iron replacement with an iron face design and a wide, cambered sole. You'll notice immediately the offset hosel (more on that in a minute), and at address, some acute golfers may notice the slightly flatter lie angle.
The G20 Hybrid's stout dimensions and offset hosel took a little getting used to at first. And much to our surprise, the offset hosel did less for slice correcting than it did for helping the ball get airborne in a hurry. Shots hit with this club fly high and with added spin, making it easier than ever to play long-iron—err, hybrid—shots from the dreaded 180- to 210-yard range. We also found the deeper-face iron design to make more sense in the rough—some other hybrids, in our opinion, are too shallow, making it difficult to hit solid shots from the thick stuff.
The G20 Hybrid is a top hybrid performer, as long as you don't mind the iron shape and offset hosel. If you can get past those variables, you'll make a very smart buying decision.
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