Stage One - Kekeisen
Hey there-- first of all, a big thank you to MGS for swapping me into the testing group last-minute! I'm a first-time reviewer, so please bear with me as I get my feet wet. By way of introduction, my name is Kyle. I'm a 30 year-old ex-athlete, and I've played the game off and on since the end of high school. I really â€œcaught the bugâ€ when I moved back to the Boston area ~4 years ago, and have managed to drop my handicap from ~20 to ~13 (GHIN 7748534 if you care to look) since I started to take the game more seriously.
Here's a pic of me (2nd from right in the Masters visorâ€¦ I'm 5'11â€ 215, my buddies are tall) playing the Ocean Course earlier this year:
In terms of my game, I'm your standard mid-handicapper. Strengths (and misses) come and go from round to round. I hit the ball fairly high, but have been fighting a push fade/slice as of late. If I keep the ball in play and avoid penalties, I shoot in the mid-to-high 80's, and if I have a wild day off the tee I trend towards the mid-to-low 90's. Swing speed is 95-99 with a mid-iron (6i) and 107-112 for the driver. This season, I've been working on getting un-stuck and extending my trail arm through impact, but that's probably more than you cared to know about my work in progress. Here's a heel-y driver swing for reference:
Got fitted for my first new clubs since ~2005 earlier this spring. I've gone full TM fan-boy and now game:
Driver: 2017 M2 9.5* (set 2 clicks open/lower) w/ Matrix Speed Rulz A-Type 60 S, tipped 1.5", playing 45.5"
3W: 2017 M2 15* w/ Matrix Speed Rulz C-Type 70TX, tipped 1.5", playing 43.5"
3H: 2017 M2 19* w/ Aldila Rogue Black 85 S, not tipped, playing 41"
4-PW: P770, std loft, lie 2* upright, DG S300 +1/2"
AW: Milled Grind 52* loft, 9* bounce
LW: Milled Grind 58* loft, 11* bounce
Putter: Evnroll ER2 @ 1*/69*/35" loft/lie/length
I know that's 13 clubs. I'm trying to decide whether I need an extra club at the top. 3W is 245-265 and 3H is 215-230, so I might slot a 5W or 2H in between...
Posting this on a slow Friday at work and don't have pics of WITB, but will try to edit later (or add to Stage 2).
For balls, I've been gaming the Pro V1x and Tour B330S this season, which segways to my initial thoughts re: Vice's Pro+. The dozen Pro+ have been traveling in my bag for the last two weeks, so please excuse the not quite pristine packaging. First impression out of the box is that Vice has done a great job on the branding side of the equation. From my perspective, I can't think of another ball manufacturer whose packaging comes near to Vice's "cool" factor, but that's an admittedly subjective measure, so your mileage may vary. The balls themselves look and feel very similar to a Pro V1/V1x; from both a visual and tactile perspective, they offer the same "sheen" or "glossiness" as I'm used to seeing from Titleist. The Tour B330S, in contrast, isn't quite as glossy. Think front vs. back of a printed photograph, though to a much lesser extent. The Vice balls also have a bold alignment line opposite the logo, and otherwise have the look and feel you would expect from a premium/tour ball.
Anyways, that's it for an initial reaction. On-course thoughts to come in Stage 2.