Tune Up Your Game: Golf Pride grips
March 01, 2015
By Jonathan Wall , PGATOUR.COM
- Golf Pride offers a wide variety of grip sizes and colors for golfers of all types. (Courtesy of Golf Pride)
If you were to take a peek inside the equipment vans at a PGA TOUR event, you'd likely find at least one rep replacing the grips on a set of irons. New grips are usually not at the top of anyone's list when it comes to making a purchase at the local golf store, but when it comes to the best players on TOUR, having a new set of grips ranks right up there with fresh wedge grooves.
"(The grip) is the only part of the club that you touch," said Lissa Bertalot, Golf Pride's marketing and communications manager. You really want that contact between you and the club to be strong."
On average, most TOUR players replace their grips every six weeks to two months. However, when it comes to the average consumer, some go years without replacing their grips. Others choose to stick with the same grips as long the club(s) stay in the bag, assuming that they will last forever.
What few probably realize is that heat, dirt, and oils from your hands age your grips and cause the natural degradation of the grip. According to a Golf Pride study, a set of well-worn, two-year-old grips can be a detriment to your game, costing you 3-4 shots per round.
"The unfortunate thing about regripping is that it's a gradual wear, to the point where players probably don't realize their grips are breaking down," said Bertalot. "If there's any kind of shine or buildup of oil, the cord in the grip is actually starting to break away, which can lead to a loss in performance."
The frequency with which a golfer should regrip their clubs is ultimately determined by how often they play or practice. The average usage for a set of grips is 40-60 rounds (one practice session counts as one round), which means active golfers should be doing a yearly replacement.
The average cost to replace a set of grips ranges is fairly inexpensive and ranges from $70-$130 depending on the model you choose.
While there are plenty of grip options available, 80 percent of TOUR players currently use a Golf Pride grip (according to Darrell Survey), making it the most-used brand. With more than 10 different versions to choose from, golfers have the ability to pick a grip based on their moisture management, feedback and surface texture preferences.
"I think one thing golfers need to understand is that there are a lot of grips options out there," Bertalot said. "It's a bit like finding a new club. You wouldn't pick the first one off the rack, so make sure you find a grip that fits your game and the conditions you typically play in."
Here's a look at some of the most popular grips in the Golf Pride lineup.
The most popular version on TOUR is Golf Pride's Tour Velvet, which combines a rubber-blend compound with a computer-designed, non-slip surface pattern to maximize playability and comfort. It's also known as the grip model upon which many club manufacturers base their designs.
"It has a nice, soft feel but it's computer engineered to help pull away moisture from your hands," said Bertalot. "This is definitely a grip that's good in all weather conditions and has a consistent feel."
Along with coming in a rubber blend, the Tour Velvet is also available in a 360-degree version that allows for a consistent appearance regardless of shaft orientation on adjustable metalwoods.
The Tour Velvet BTC Cord comes standard with Brushed Cotton Technology (BCT) for all-weather performance, while the Tour Velvet Super Tack features and advanced new material formulation that delivers significant tack and increases surface coverage by 33 percent.
New Decade MultiCompound
New Decade MultiCompound, Golf Pride's second most popular grip, is currently used by Rory McIlroy and is designed with Golf Pride’s exclusive BCT cord for all-weather control in the top half; the bottom half features a high-performance rubber that offers feel and responsiveness.
Along with the hybrid design, a "sand bar" texture was added to the top and bottom portion of the grip. While the texture pattern blends in with the rest of the design, it serves a purpose, tuning in the firmness of the rubber.
"[MultiCompound] is your ultimate performance grip," Bertalot said. "You get the best of both worlds with a firm, all-weather velvet cord in the upper hand and a softer feeling in the lower hand for control. As you can see, we've had a number of TOUR players switch to this grip and have success with it."
Unveiled at the 2015 PGA Merchandise Show, the MCC Plus4 builds on the success of the popular MutiCompoud that's been around since 2004 and has remained virtually unchanged during that time.
The MultiCompound look and feel remain a staple of the new MCC Plus4 grip, but some noticeable changes were made for the first time in a decade — especially in the lower hand.
"The main technology difference in this grip is the taper profile around the lower hand," said Bruce Miller, Golf Pride's vice president of marketing. "It's a larger lower hand and we did that because we started to look at what we were sending to TOUR and what technicians were doing with it and noticed a lot of tape was being used to build it up in certain areas that were centered around the lower hand."
The data helped Golf Pride make one significant change, increasing the size of the lower portion of the grip. It's now 4.6 percent larger in diameter to give golfers the same feel they would typically get with extra grip tape.
The grip still has two different durometers in the upper and lower portion, but the sandbar texture in the lower portion was replaced with a softer marble texture that's less aggressive than the previous version.
CP2 Pro and CP2 wrap
For players that prefer a softer grip with minimal feedback, the all rubber CP2 Pro has a tacky feel with built-in control thanks to Golf Pride's Control Core Technology that reduces torque through a 2.5" inner core stabilizer.
"We're actually able to reduce the amount of torque in the grip by 41 percent with this Control Core," said Bertalot. "That gives us the ability to produce a grip that's soft but still has the control and performance of a traditional grip."
Launched in 2014, the CP2 was the fastest Golf Pride grip to ever win a major championship when Kenny Perry captured the Champions Tour's Region Traditions with the wrap model.
Designed through TOUR and consumer feedback, Golf Pride's full cord Z-Grip is the company's firmest cord grip available, combining two layers of texturing for feedback and control.
"This is 100 percent geared towards moisture management due to that really firm feedback," said Bertalot. "Any time you have cord in the grip it's going to add another level of firmness that you otherwise wouldn't get in a standard rubber grip."
The "Z" shaped texture pattern winds around the grip for control, while the cord offers the highest level of moisture management in lineup.