By Jonathan Wall, PGATOUR.COM Equipment Insider
Superlight steel iron shafts have historically been a great option for amateurs looking for performance and manageability. But over the course of the last few years, shaft manufacturers have come up with ultralight designs that not only benefit mid- to high-handicappers, but better players as well.
True Temper's new XP shaft series is a prime example of how technological improvements can expand the profile of a shaft. Unveiled on Thursday, the XP features a dual step pattern — longer steps near the butt end of the shaft, and shorter steps closer to the tip — and optimized trajectory for improved distance and forgiveness.
“Traditionally, the superlight weight ranges have largely been reserved for moderate to higher handicap player profiles,” said Greg Cavill, vice president of alloy engineering & R&D for True Temper Sports. “The new XP series enhances iron performance across a much broader profile. Our testing showed that highly skilled players also benefited greatly from the distance and feel that XP delivered.”
Advanced ultralight alloy technology, along with an optimized weight and flex distribution, add stability to the overall profile. Each shaft is also designed with a flex chamber that stores power on the downswing and releases it right before impact.
According to True Temper, the XP shaft showed a 6-8 yard improvement in carry distance during robot and player testing.
“Every golfer, no matter the skill level, seeks greater distance,” said Scott Hennessy, True Temper's president and CEO. “With the XP Series, we set out with one singular focus…deliver greater distance to irons. Over time you’re going to be more accurate hitting an 8-iron as opposed to a 7 or 6-iron. We knew we could get players closer to the pin if we could get them an additional full club of distance or more with their irons and XP delivers on that objective.”
The XP95 and XP105 (95 grams and 105 grams) are currently available in R300 and S300 flexes with a retail price of $400 for 8 shafts (3-PW).
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