July 9 2013
The Precurser Shiro and Kuro shafts. (Photo by Jonathan Wall)
By Jonathan Wall, PGATOUR.COM Equipment Insider
SILVIS, Ill. — Fujikura's prototype shafts have an official name: Precurser. The equipment manufacturer debuted two shafts last week at the Greenbrier Classic -- Precurser Shiro and Precurser Kuro -- and confirmed at the John Deere Classic that all prototype models will have the "Precurser" label attached to them during the testing stage.
"We wanted to give our prototypes a name before they make it to retail," said Pat McCoy, Fujikura's Director of Tour Operations. "With the first two shafts, we're looking at all these profiles we've been successful with and we're looking at different swing styles and how those players load the club at TOUR spec speeds, which is somewhere in the 108-120 mph range."
Fujikura used materials from the Motore Speeder shaft line to design Kuro and Shiro -- two prototypes with completely different performance profiles.
Precurser Shiro -- the shaft is neon yellow, but Shiro means "white" in Japanese -- is a tip-stiff shaft that has low-launch and low-spin and closely resembles Fujikura's Motore Speeder Tour Spec, with a slightly higher bend profile. The shaft comes in two weights -- 65 grams and 75 grams.
The second prototype, Precurser Kuro -- Kuro is "black" in Japanese -- is similar to Fujkura's Motore Speeder 5.0, 6.0 and 7.0 shafts that have a mid-to-high launch and mid-to-high spin with mid tip stiffness. Like Shiro, Kuro also comes in 65 grams and 75 grams.
"We'll continue to do prototypes throughout the year, and they'll be under the Precurser name," McCoy said. "Right now we're getting feedback from players on both of these shafts. We're building them up, testing them out and plan to go from there."
As far as shaft colors are concerned, neon yellow and silver won't be the only colors you'll see on TOUR. McCoy confirmed new colors will be introduced with new prototypes in the future.
"If Shiro or Kuro ever make it to retail, they'll likely be rebranded with a new name and different look," McCoy said. "At the moment both shafts are still in the testing phase, but that could always change."