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Do You Have The Balls For 2014?

By: James A. Frank

While last year was big for drivers, 2014 is shaping up as the year of the golf ball. New orbs, reworked spheres, even innovative ways of marketing and selling the dimpled pellets have recently been introduced, meaning that in the new year, the good times are going to roll—and carry.

A few months ago, Jack Nicklaus introduced Golden Bear balls (made by Bridgestone), with black, blue, and white logos to indicate which tees each should be played from (black-back; blue-middle; white-forward). Callaway Golf is making a similar match-play statement with its three new Speed Regime balls. The SR1 is for swing speeds 90 mph and lower; SR2 is for speeds between 90 and 105mph; and SR3 is for 105mph and above. The construction and aerodynamics of each ball are designed to make the most of those speed limits, with the company saying that regardless of which ball is chosen, they all “flat-out fly farther.”

Colors also help differentiate a new quartet of balls from Nike, each with proprietary Speedlock RZN Core technology: The surface of the inner core—which looks like a waffle iron—is more tightly bonded to the inner layers to harness more energy and produce longer distance and more stability. The four balls are the RZN Platinum (Tour control, moderate spin), RZN Black (Tour distance, less spin), RZN Red (distance performance, longer carry), and RZN White (distance performance, softer feel, for swing speeds 95-100 mph).

Hopkins Golf, started by the former head of Cleveland Golf, is pushing boundaries both with its products and how they’re sold. The new VL Pro ball is, in the company’s own words, “a 3-piece golf ball along the lines of the Titleist NXT Tour, Taylor Made RocketBallz and Callaway HEX Chrome. It has an aerodynamic dimple design, USGA approval, is white, round, and performs as good or better than these other balls. What it doesn’t have is expensive packaging or a retail mark-up so a dozen is about ten bucks cheaper. And, as always, we’ll ship it to you free.”

Happy new sphere, everyone!

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Feedback

  1. MANUFACTURES IN ORDER TO INCREASE SALES OF GOLE EQUIPMENT ARE MAKING THE GAME TO COMPLEX. WE HAVE ADJUSTABLE HEADS, BALLS BY COLOR OF THE TEES ONE PLAYS,GRIPS THAT ADJUST TO ONES CONDITION,A RULE BOOK THICKER THAN A BIBLE & SHOES THAT PROVIDE STABILITY.
    THESE ARE JUST SOME OF THE ASSISTS IN GOLF TODAY. WHAT HAPPENED TO A SET OF CLUBS,GO PLAY,HIT THE BALL FIND IT AND HIT IT AGAIN.

    — CLIFF VALLIANT · Friday January 3, 2014 ·

  2. I am a Callaway fan all the way. I will try your new SR 1-2-3 to see what speed I am and which ball I like the most. Thanks for the info.

    — Robert Brisebois · Friday January 3, 2014 ·

  3. WOW new golf balls…what will I do with my aging supply “super new” balls aging on a shelf. I like the idea Jack Nicklaus is bringing to the market, play the right tee’s. Now if more courses would establish senior tees, we’d see more play.

    — Bill Weeks · Friday January 3, 2014 ·

  4. I’m pleased that low compression balls are making a comeback, as I and my playing partners continue to age and need that extra
    height and carry distance.
    And, I agree with Mr. Weeks about more courses creating additional teeing grounds for seniors, super seniors and senior ladies.
    Just returned from a mini vacation in Hilton Head and very few courses have increased or moved up tees for senior players. I just don’t get it. Why is it so hard to get through to the PGA Pros that it’s no fun for seniors to be hitting driver and three or five metals all day. We need to see more par fours in the 250 to 300 range so seniors can hit 8,9 & PW to some greens on their second shots. Let’s give seniors a chance to make some birdies and have fun.

    — Bob Lerch · Saturday January 25, 2014 ·

  5. TOTALY AGREE WITH BOB .GIVE US SENIOR A CHANCE

    — james thomson · Thursday March 27, 2014 ·



 


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