June 24, 2020
By GolfWRX, PGATOUR.COM
- Callaway’s Triple Track Technology relies on Vernier Hyper Acuity. (Courtesy of Callaway)
What does landing a fighter jet on an aircraft carrier have to do with putting a golf ball?
Plenty, when that golf ball features Callaway’s Triple Track Technology. Triple Track relies on Vernier Hyper Acuity, which aims to improve alignment compared to a regular side stamp alignment aid. It’s a similar technology to that used in landing strips in aircraft carriers, which is dependent on the ability of the brain to process small differences in alignment detected in the eyes. Also used in gun sights, Vernier Hyper Acuity exceeds the limits of the naked eye, with multiple reference points allowing golfers to align their ball more accurately.
Callaway's Triple Track Technology first appeared in the company's ERC Soft golf ball and has extended through to the brand's popular TOUR-level Chrome Soft X golf ball, which is currently the ball of choice for Phil Mickelson.
The Triple Track Technology features three high-resolution parallel lines -- a thick red line down the center of the ball flanked by two thinner blue lines -- with two of the technology’s primary functions being alignment aid and improved feedback.
The technology enhances alignment by allowing golfers to frame their ball more effectively on the greens, while players also can easily see whether they have hit each putt properly by instantly seeing whether or not their ball is rolling end-over-end after impact.
However, that's far from all, as now Callaway has brought Triple Track to its Odyssey Putters, with its new Stroke Lab Triple Track line for 2020. Bringing Triple Track from the ball to the top of the putter, the new series of flatsticks implements all of the technologies mentioned above so that golfers can ensure better putter alignment.
We spoke with Callaway’s, Global Golf Ball Director, Jason Finley, about all things Triple Track and the impressive adoption rate of the disruptive technology on TOUR.
GOLFWRX: There’s the story of any new technology, obviously, but I’m always interested in the story behind the story, as it were, too. Can you tell me a little bit about the development of Triple Track?
JASON FINLEY: “Triple Track is based on the science of Vernier Acuity. The way that works has to do with how your eyes focus on multiple lines. Other examples of that are the scope of a rifle or when you look at an aircraft carrier: they have flanking lines and internal lines. But to put it in perspective, if you try to hang a sword on your wall ... it’s pretty hard to do get it straight. But when you hang a picture, it’s much easier as you have two edges.
“You’re actually training your eyes over time, so the more you use it, the better you get, which I think is an important angle to why people are seeing improved performance.”
GOLFWRX: Callaway makes a bold claim regarding how Triple Track Technology can help your game.
FINLEY: “Our claim is 88 percent of golfers have better alignment. We define better alignment as one of two things. The first one is physically aiming the ball at your target better or aligning toward the target more consistently. What that means, for example, is I know I tend to come through with the face open ... so I know I need to aim a little bit left, and now I can aim left more consistently. So, that’s why it works for me.”
GOLFWRX: Is there anything about PGA TOUR pros using Triple Track that has surprised you?
FINLEY: “I think the most interesting angle from the TOUR perspective is, Phil Mickelson, doesn’t always use Triple Track when he putts. He uses it more for a short putt with little-to-medium break. So, if Phil has a 50-foot bender, he’s not using Triple Track.”
GOLFWRX: Alignment is big for all golfers, obviously, but it seems to be a particular focus among pros.
FINLEY: “Yep. If you walk out to the putting green at any competitive event, you see every tool under the sun ... and it’s always players focusing on alignment. So really, what this is, is another way to add to that trend among better players in general.”
GOLFWRX: When half of your Tour staff is using a technology that didn’t exist a couple of years ago and is markedly different than what these players grew up playing, that’s a significant statement.
FINLEY: “Players are finding they’re not only able to aim better, but they’re able to aim more consistently...those are the general areas we hear the most about. And obviously there are some little things here and there, like players not having to mark their balls [with lines] because they come that way straight from the factory. But they don’t switch anything unless they see improvement, and the fact that half are using it makes a strong case for the technology.”
GOLFWRX: Phil Mickelson won at Pebble Beach last year with a Chrome Soft X with Triple Track in, like, his second start with the ball. What was his involvement with the development of Triple Track been like?
FINLEY: “Phil was the first TOUR pro we showed it to because we knew he used a line on his ball anyway. The very first samples had the Triple Track on one side and then the traditional side stamp on the other. His feedback was, ‘I love it...but there are putts where I don’t use the line, and when I don’t use the line, I don’t anything there.’ So, that side being blank is a direct result of feedback from Phil.
GOLFWRX: Interesting. Triple Track just debuted on putters at the beginning of the year. Is the technology going to continue to spread?
FINLEY: “We’re kind of in the infancy stages still. With the putter being out there now...we’re learning a lot. For some [TOUR pros] it’s too much to have both. Some only like it on the ball, some only like it on the putter, some like it on both. Like anything, it takes time, but to get 50 percent of our balls [on TOUR] utilizing this is a pretty strong endorsement for how good it is and how beneficial these guys think it can be for their games.”