Titleist Pro V1 ball: evolution of a legend

Charting the heritage of Titleist's Pro V1 & V1x

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Submitted by Andy Roberts on

 

Derived from the word "titlist", meaning "title holder", it is fair to say Titleist lives up to its name when it comes to golf balls.

More than eighty years after the first Titleist golf ball was produced, the company now boasts the world's largest ball factory in Massachusetts with a combined workforce across four worldwide plants of more than 1,100.

Following the recent launch of its new Pro V1 and Pro V1x balls for 2017, we scroll the archives to chart Titleist's rise to the top of the golf ball category...
 


Phil Young 

1932 - Phil Young, founder of the Acushnet Company, complains to his playing partner and dentist that all his triple bogeys were the fault of his golf ball. The dentist X-rays the ball and finds the core is "off centre". Young develops a machine that uniformly winds rubber string around a rubber core, making a "dead centre" golf ball. He names the ball Titleist.

1935 - It takes three years to perfect the first Titleist golf ball. The brand becomes the first to X-ray every ball and to freeze liquid centres to ensure balls stay perfectly round during the winding process. Titleist also develops the industry's first mechanical golfer to test ball flight.

1945 - Titleist adopts a numerical approach to golf ball identification and installs the first automatic mold press.

1949 - Titleist is the number one played ball at the US Open for the first time.

1952 - Titleist converts its own nameplate on the golf ball without including Acushnet.

1954 - Hurricane Carol floods the Titleist ball plant. Over 600 associates join together to move equipment and prevent further damage.

1958 - Major paint process improvements are made to significantly enhance golf ball quality and durability.

1964 - Titleist R&D team is formed to better study golf ball aerodynamics.
 

Titleist's wind tunnel testing and computer analysis 

1965 - Titleist conducts wind tunnel testing and computer analysis to evaluate dimple shapes and configurations for the most efficient blend between lift and drag.

1968 - Titleist is the first company in the industry to develop its own dimple molds.

1973 - Titleist makes a breakthrough in aerodynamics by introducing a new "icosahedron" dimple design, which divides the ball into 20 triangular regions.

1975 - Titleist DT is introduced as the longest Surlyn-covered golf ball. Acushnet Golf Centre is created later in the year and regarded as the "ultimate R&D indoor test lab".
 

Titleist Pro Trajectory golf ball

1975 - Titleist Pro Trajectory ball is launched with new aerodynamics designed for high speed, high spin players.

1979 - Titleist Trajectory System for golf balls is introduced and advances Titleist's golf ball fitting capabilities.

1983 - Titleist 384 Tour revolutionises the golf ball design.

1987 - Titleist reaches a manufacturing milestone of 100 million golf balls.

SWIPER: HOW MANY OF THESE 90S GOLF BALLS DID YOU OWN? 

1990 - A second Titleist Ball Plant opens in Massachusetts.

1992 - Titleist HVC ball introduced as the first two-piece golf ball to ever bear the Titleist script.

1993 - Liquid-filled centre wound Titleist Tour Balata ball becomes the most played ball on Tour.
 

Titleit Professional 90 golf ball 
The inside of an old Titleist Professional-90 golf ball

1994 - Titleist Professional ball becomes the first Tour-played urethane covered ball.

2000 - 47 PGA Tour golfers put the new three-piece Titleist Pro V1 in play at the Invensys Classic. Pro V1 user Billy Andrade wins the event. Four months later the Pro V1 becomes the best-selling ball in golf shops across the globe. Titleist add a third Titleist Ball Plant later in the year.

2003 - Following the success of Pro V1, Titleist launches a four-piece Pro V1x, a ball with 60 fewer dimples.

2007 - Titleist Pro V1 ball is played for its 1,000th win across worldwide professional Tours.

2008 - Titleist celebrates its 60th year as the number one played ball at the US Open.

2009 - Titleist NXT Tour and NXT Extreme balls designed to combine maximum yardage and responsiveness from iron and short shots.

2010 - A fourth Titleist Ball Plant opens in Thailand following demand of Pro V1 and Pro V1x.

2012 - Titleist Velocity ball is launched, the fastest solid core of any golf ball.

2015 - Building on 15 years of success, revamped Pro V1 and Pro V1x balls are launched.

2017 - Titleist launches its "most advanced and best performing golf balls ever stamped with the Titleist script" with the 2017 Pro V1 and Pro V1x.

More on the new Titleist Pro V1 and Pro V1 balls