• Mal­let Put­ters

If your stroke needs more help get­ting the ball in the hole, one of th­ese could be just what you need

Golf Asia - - CONTENTS -

PING VAULT OSLO www.ping.com Head weight: 365g Grip: Ping Pis­tol 62 Toe hang: Face Bal­anced

TECH:

Milled from a solid block of 6061 alu­minium. The Oslo has a stain­less steel sole plate to lower CG and raise sta­bil­ity and MOI. True Roll face tech­nol­ogy sees grooves milled to dif­fer­ent widths.

WE SAY:

The Oslo’s a bit of a brute and def­i­nitely has the big­gest head here. That stretched, wide head means ex­cel­lent off-cen­tre for­give­ness, though, and paid div­i­dends for two of our testers, who holed a stack of putts from dif­fer­ent dis­tances. Some will say the head’s a bit dull and lacks the ex­cite­ment of any change­able sole weights, counter weight­ing or a face in­sert, which is sur­pris­ing at this price. But we can con­firm the Oslo did what its over­sized body is sup­posed to do – help us hole more putts.

VER­DICT:

A very good if pricey blend of sta­bil­ity, sim­ple align­ment and for­give­ness, which is just what many golfers need. Our testers couldn’t agree the huge grip was for ev­ery­one as its softer edges weren’t quite as good for feel­ing when the face is square, but over­all the Oslo is a very solid, sta­ble put­ter.

CLEVE­LAND TFI MEZZO www.cleve­land­golf.com Head weight: 360g Grip: Lamkin Cleve­land TFI Toe hang: Face Bal­anced

TECH:

Cleve­land says 80% of golfers don’t have their eyes di­rectly over the ball when putting. They reckon that by rais­ing the align­ment aid to ex­actly half the size of a golf ball they’ve cre­ated the most ac­cu­rate aid ever.

WE SAY:

Cen­tre-shafted put­ters were on the up and up a few years ago. Yet this year the trend seems to have slowed as there was a dis­tinct lack of models for us to test. Our feel­ing hasn’t changed about them, though, as we think they of­fer a fan­tas­ti­cally sim­ple way to putt, par­tic­u­larly if you like to see your putting stroke work in straight lines. Our pro was the only tester to put up a protest over the Mezzo’s head shape, but then pro­ceeded to hole putt af­ter putt with it!

VER­DICT:

If your putting could benefit from some sim­pli­fi­ca­tion then you won’t find a sim­pler model to set up and aim than the Mezzo. Feel and feed­back off the face is firm, a good match for greens that aren’t at their sum­mer best.

TAY­LORMADE TP MULLEN www.tay­lor­made­golf.com Head weight: 350g Grip: Lamkin or Su­per stroke Toe hang: Mod­er­ate TECH:

Skim milling and a tour satin fin­ish give a re­ally crisp ap­pear­ance at ad­dress while new 45° face grooves and a 6061 alu­minium face in­sert en­sure putts skid less and roll quicker.

WE SAY:

We of­ten talk about how mal­let put­ters can bet­ter suit a straight back and through stroke, but the Mullen’s de­cent amount of toe hang means it’s well suited to those with an arc­ing mo­tion, too. A two-line align­ment set-up is a lit­tle dif­fer­ent to most, as nei­ther stripe points to the po­si­tion of im­pact. But we felt it framed the ball re­ally nicely and gave a good in­di­ca­tion of the put­ter’s takeaway path.

If you’re lucky enough to have a nicely arc­ing putting stroke and have been look­ing for a mal­let put­ter to suit it, the Mullen is right up your street. Some will say it is a lot of money for what ap­pears to be a pretty sim­ple de­sign, but skim milling ratch­ets up costs.

VER­DICT: PIRETTI FIRENZE www.piret­tigolf.com Head weight: 375g Grip: Piretti stan­dard Toe hang: Slight

TECH:

A half-mal­let de­sign cre­ated from soft 11L17 car­bon steel to en­sure ex­cel­lent feed­back. Face bal­anc­ing helps keep the face aimed at your tar­get and a slight off­set en­cour­ages a hands-ahead-of-ball stroke.

WE SAY:

Piretti are very much a boutique put­ter brand with big am­bi­tions. Like most qual­ity 100% Cnc-milled put­ters they don’t come cheap, but they do use their own blend of car­bon steel which they reckon im­proves feed­back. There’s no get­ting away from the Firenze’s big size – some will say it’s too big. But if, like our pro who couldn’t stop hol­ing putts with it, you’ll gain con­fi­dence from the ex­cel­lent feel and for­give­ness, we reckon its size will be very bear­able.

VER­DICT:

It doesn’t hap­pen very of­ten, but we had to wres­tle the Firenze put­ter out of our test pro’s hands at the end of the day! That’s how much he liked it. Most golfers will need to be sim­i­larly im­pressed to lay out US$448 for one. The Firenze is very sim­ple, but ev­ery de­tail is ex­e­cuted to perfection to give a proper pre­mium over­all feel.

BETTINARDI QUEEN BEE #7 www.bettinardi.com Head weight: 360g Grip: Queen Bee stan­dard Toe hang: Slight

TECH:

Bettinardi’s put­ters are all Cnc-milled in the USA. A flow-neck gives a re­ally sim­ple look at ad­dress and a spe­cially milled flange back frames the ball per­fectly from above. A soft, mild car­bon steel head de­liv­ers top drawer feel and feed­back.

WE SAY:

Each Bettinardi is milled from a single block of car­bon steel, which means cre­at­ing an ex­pen­sive CAD file for ev­ery di­men­sion and curve on the head. And be­cause the put­ter starts life as a larger block, way more ma­te­rial is wasted than cast­ing. Each head is pro­duced in the USA so labour costs are higher, too. All this goes some way to ex­plain­ing the higher price. If you’re a fan of pre­ci­sion crafted Cnc-milled put­ters with a nod to tra­di­tion, you’ll love the #7’s sleek and slen­der com­pact head.

VER­DICT:

In a world where prod­ucts reg­u­larly fall off the end of a pro­duc­tion line by the gazil­lion, Bettinardi’s cre­ations are a real treat. Yes, the Queen Bee’s com­pact head is pretty small, so it’s likely to only in­spire real con­fi­dence for de­cent players.

‘YOU WON’T FIND A SIM­PLER MODEL TO SET UP AND AIM THAN THE MEZZO’

ODYSSEY O-WORKS R-LINE www.odyssey­golf.com Head­weight: 350g Grip: Su­perstroke Pis­tol GT Tour or Su­perstroke Slim 2.0 (Counter Core) Toe hang: Face Bal­anced

TECH:

Fin­ger-shaped grips on the stain­less steel face plate com­bine with a ther­mo­plas­tic elas­tomer feel layer to grab and in­ter­act with the cover at im­pact, lift­ing the ball into a bet­ter roll.

WE SAY:

On the surface the R-line looks like just an­other Odyssey mal­let. But we think its at­ten­tion to de­tail and over­all tech pack­age war­rants more than just a sec­ond look. Yes, Odyssey has made the R-line’s shape be­fore, but the O-works has so much more to bring to the party than just a new in­sert. The up­dated Versa (black, white, black) cos­met­ics are per­fectly en­hanced with a single red align­ment stripe, which some might think wouldn’t work – but it re­ally does. And like we said in the blade, that in­sert feels fan­tas­tic and rolls putts bet­ter than any Odyssey put­ter be­fore.

VER­DICT:

A sim­ple face­bal­anced mid to large­headed mal­let which is well suited to straight-backand-through strokes. Feel from the face wasn’t the soft­est or firmest, but feed­back is muted.

PING SIGMA G PIPER 3 www.ping.com Head­weight: 360g Grip: Ping Pis­tol PP60 Toe hang: Mod­er­ate

TECH:

Alu­minium face in­serts have vari­able depth and width grooves to de­liver con­sis­tent across-the-face ball speed per­for­mance.

WE SAY:

Ping’s Sigma G range comes in 13 dif­fer­ent shapes, along with a fur­ther two counter-bal­anced models, so it’s fair to say there’s a de­sign to suit ev­ery­one. A mod­er­ate toe hang means the Piper’s well suited to a slightly arc­ing stroke, and the fuss-free ap­pear­ance (just two align­ment stripes a golf ball’s width apart on the top) should at­tract a good deal of at­ten­tion from purists. We can’t say for sure the vari­able width and depth grooves helped us hole more putts, or im­proved con­sis­tency, but we did feel the Piper rolled putts along the surface along­side the very best, and all three testers thought the new grip size and shape was spot on.

VER­DICT:

There’s five mal­lets to choose from in the range, which opens them up to a very wide au­di­ence. The Piper might not be the most ex­cit­ing de­sign on the mar­ket, but it is ex­cep­tion­ally solid across the board.

SCOTTY CAMERON SE­LECT NEW­PORT M1 www.titleist.com Head­weight: Vari­able on length Grip: Mata­dor Red Mid­size Toe hang: Slight

TECH:

A mid-mal­let that’s pre­ci­sion milled in the USA, with a 303 steel body and soft alu­minium float­ing in­sert and sole to help raise MOI.

WE SAY:

We loved the New­port M1 in last year’s Top Gear test and that bond hasn’t been bro­ken. It’s a first class, ul­tra-sta­ble mal­let which as you’d ex­pect feels fan­tas­tic and even though it doesn’t have any face groove tech like many modern de­signs, it rolls putts just as smoothly as the very best.

VER­DICT:

We couldn’t agree if we all loved the ‘cross-hair’ align­ment setup or not, as it draws at­ten­tion back from the im­pact po­si­tion. But all in the M1’s an ideal face­bal­anced, mid-mal­let de­sign, and thanks to its sta­bil­ity-im­prov­ing tech is still re­ally ef­fec­tive. Scotty Cameron has never come cheap, and the price hike from last year is huge. But while this model now costs as much as some driv­ers, you’ll use it far more of­ten.

TAY­LORMADE TP BER­WICK www.tay­lor­made­golf.com Head­weight: 350g Grip: Lamkin or Su­perstroke Toe hang: Face Bal­anced TECH:

Skim milling and a tour satin fin­ish give a re­ally crisp ap­pear­ance at ad­dress while new 45° face grooves and a 6061 alu­minium face in­sert en­sure putts skid less.

WE SAY:

We ap­plaud Tay­lormade for their en­deav­our with the TP Col­lec­tion, as from the sim­i­lar head shape of the Ber­wick and Mullen they’ve cre­ated both a face bal­anced mal­let and a strong toe hang de­sign, too. It’s no mean feat, but it comes down to the dif­fer­ent hosels and straight/bent shafts. What it means to you is that no mat­ter what your stroke type, there’s a mal­let in the col­lec­tion to suit. We love the sculpted, sharp edges of the Lamkin rub­ber grip, too.

VER­DICT:

You couldn’t wish for a sim­pler look­ing put­ter at ad­dress, and the firmer alu­minium face in­sert pro­duced lovely feed­back and roll, which we reckon will be a hit.

WIL­SON STAFF GRANT PARK www.wil­son.com Head­weight: 356g Grip: Wil­son Staff In­fi­nite Toe hang: Strong

TECH:

A flanged mal­let with ex­tra weight in both the head and grip to cre­ate a coun­ter­bal­anced model. A dou­ble milled face en­sures pre­ci­sion, while par­al­lel and per­pen­dic­u­lar sight lines sim­plify align­ment.

WE SAY:

Wil­son can lay claim to mak­ing the leg­endary TPA put­ter that Nick Faldo used to win a cou­ple of Ma­jors. We can’t say the Grant Park is ex­actly the same shape, but it is very close. A huge amount of toe hang means the Grant Park is much more suited to a putting stroke with ro­ta­tion than a straight-back-and-through mo­tion. We liked the white toe-to-heel align­ment line on the top edge which clearly shows where the blade is point­ing, and we also felt the pos­i­tive crisp feel off the solid milled face was spot on.

VER­DICT:

Wil­son Staff says the Grant Park is coun­ter­bal­anced; af­ter test­ing a stack of put­ters we’d say it’s a more gen­tle in­tro­duc­tion to the con­cept. The over­sized grip fits nicely in the hands and will go some way to help­ing elim­i­nate wrist break from your stroke, too.

‘WHILE THIS MODEL NOW COSTS AS MUCH AS SOME DRIV­ERS, YOU’LL USE IT FAR MORE OF­TEN’

TAY­LORMADE TP MULLEN PING VAULT OSLO CLEVE­LAND TFI MEZZO

BETTINARDI QUEEN BEE #7 PIRETTI FIRENZE

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Hong Kong

© PressReader. All rights reserved.