As the rollout of new products at the 2012 PGA Merchandise Show demonstrated, this is very much the “Year of the Fairway Metal’
At the same time, the release of several new hybrid models at that Orlando, Fla., gathering created a fair amount of buzz of its own. And among those clubs attracting the most attention in both those categories were new offerings from Nike Golf’s VR_S line.
Let’s start with the VR_S fairways. Available in four lofts, from 3W (15 degrees) to 7W (21 degrees) and with a Nike Fubuki K FW stock shaft, they are designed to utilize enhanced aerodynamics, and the company’s NexCOR variable face thickness technology to create greater speed at impact for greater distance.
A face insert made from a lightweight, stainless steel alloy and shaped in an L is geared to enhance length as well, and Nike engineers positioned the weld on the sole of this club to allow for an expanded maximum COR (Coefficient of Restitution) zone from the middle to lower on the face, where the majority of fairway shots are struck. That means the VR_S is supposed to be hotter where players are most apt to hit their golf balls.
As for the VR_S hybrids, they feature that same NexCOR technology and improved aerodynamics as the VR_S fairways, and the weld on the sole is also positioned to produce that expanded COR zone of the clubface, which is made of a high-strength steel alloy. This product is also available in four lofts – 2H (18 degrees), 3H (21 degrees), 4H (24 degrees) and 5H (27 degrees) – and comes with a Nike Fubuki K HY stock shaft.
“By taking a holistic approach to how we’ve designed every club in the VR_S line, we’ve been able to deliver more speed and more distance,” says Tom Stites, director of club creation for Nike Golf. “The new fairways and hybrids are ultra fast, and they are designed to get you to the green more quickly – and in fewer strokes.”