PING i200 IRONS & GLIDE WEDGES
There’s always buzz when Ping Golf introduces a new iron. The company is known for its consistency and commitment to technology.
The Ping i200, debuting here at the PGA Merchandise Show, is no exception. “Major advancements’’ in the i200, according to Ping, make the face and cavity structure more dynamic to achieve faster ball speeds, a soft, powerful feel and “unprecedented’’ forgiveness for an iron of its size.
“Bringing all these benefits into one iron required our teams to re-think how the face and cavity structure can work together to improve overall performance,’’ said Ping CEO John A. Solheim.
Solheim said Ping engineers created a head design that provides precision distances with horizontal and vertical trajectory control while substantially increasing forgiveness. A muscle-stabilizing bar and deeper, longer tuning port, according to Solheim said, harmonize with a thinner, faster face to create a powerful feel and sound.
Solheim said this results from the soft elastomer insert activating at impact to enhance face flexing for faster ball speeds while damping vibrations. The insert nearly doubled in volume, allowing for more than three times the amount of face contact.
The i200 carries a suggested retail price of $135 per club (steel) and $150 per club (graphite).
There’s also no equipment company better at doing “precision’’ than Ping. It’s been in the Solheim family’s DNA from the day patriarch Karsten Solheim made his first Anser putter more than 50 years ago.
Now comes Ping’s Glide 2.0 wedges with precision-milled faces and sharper groove edges than any previous Ping wedge model. The Glide 2.0 wedges (suggested retail price $150 each) are making their debut here at the PGA Merchandise Show.
“The new Glide 2.0 wedges represent a major breakthrough in performance for a number of reasons, but it’s the new grooves that are most exciting,” said Ping Chairman John A. Solheim. “As many golfers are aware, we have a lot of knowledge and experience when it comes to evaluating and designing grooves. We worked closely with our tour staff to improve every aspect of the wedges.’’
The grooves in the lower-lofted wedges (46°, 50° & 52°) are milled with a 20° sidewall and a .005” edge radius, Solheim said, for optimal full-shot performance. The higher-lofted versions (54°, 56°, 58° & 60°) are milled to a .004” edge radius and a 28° sidewall to impart more spin, especially around the greens.
By spacing the precision-milled grooves closer together, Solheim said Ping designed the lower- lofted options with one additional groove (compared to the original Glide wedge) to increase spin and control on full shots. The higher-lofted versions feature two more grooves for more spin on chip and pitch shots.
CALLAWAY CHROME SOFT BALLS
Callaway Golf’ has move up to No. 2 in ball market share largely on the success of its Chrome Soft ball it launched in 2015.
The company is debuting the newest member of the Chrome family – Chrome Soft X – here at the PGA Merchandise Show.
Callaway says the Chrome Soft X has a firmer core and cover combination, which promotes more ball speed off the tee, more spin through-the-bag, and a piercing and workable ball flight.
"Chrome Soft is designed to promote a high, straight, distance-enhancing trajectory," said Dave Bartels, Callaway's senior director of golf ball R&D. "In Chrome Soft X we wanted to create a ball that does everything Chrome Soft does, but with a piercing trajectory and more workable ball flight desired by many Tour professionals and elite amateurs."
Chrome Soft X will be available Feb. 3 and will carry a suggested retail price of $39.99 per dozen.