Legendary though they are, Ping Irons have always been a strong competitor to any club on the market. And since the introduction of two new models earlier in the year, the Ping i3 series have taken off and sold well in the UK.
Keeping their usual cavity back and perimeter weighting, which they alone brought to the golf industry, PING have improved on their very successful Eye2 irons and both of these new offerings are powerful and accurate clubs suitable for anyone who plays the game. .
|The i3 Irons from PING|
If you are looking for a top quality “game Improvement Club, the i3 O-size will suit your game with having been designed for the golfer looking for the forgiveness expected from a PING iron.
Designed with optimum offset and the solid feel of the Blade, the O-Size is larger for increased perimeter weighting. It also features a rounded toe and thin top line to create a classic look.
But new to the PING stable is a Bladed club. While not strictly a forged muscle back club, it sits like a blade, looks like a blade, but has the added benefit of performing like a cavity back for forgiveness.
The “Blade” is designed with less offset, providing better players with a solid feel and the ability to shape and control their shots. A thin top line and an aesthetically pleasing appearance create a classic profile for added confidence over the ball. .
|The Flat top hosel|
Both the i3 Blade and i3 O-Size are available in right and left-handed, men's and womens, with a wide variety of steel and graphite shafts to match all skill levels with a choice of grips to suit hand sizes.
Both clubs feature the all new “Custom Tuning Port” or (CTP) in the back of the clubhead, the Notched Hosel and the Flat Top Hosel.
The walls of the Custom Tuning Port control clubface vibration to improve feel and feedback and the thermoplastic insert enables PING to achieve the precise tolerances required for building custom-fitted golf clubs. It allows us to continue raising the standard of clubhead fine-tuning without grinding or other common club-altering methods which can affect the subtle features designed and cast into the club. .
|The Custom Tuning Port|
The revolutionary Notched Hosel, which is not visible at address, allows for a better connection between the shaft and the club head. The result is an optically pleasing, smooth transition between the hosel and clubhead that can be precisely calibrated for loft and lie.
And the Flat Top Hosel increases the cross-sectional area of the shaft that is in contact with the hosel where the shaft enters the club-head. This design reduces shaft stress for improved feel.
These are perhaps the best PING clubs to date with an all new look and feel while still as forgiving as ever and very powerful in use. The 5-iron flies the same distance as my 3-iron and the wedges, especially in the “Blade” set are excellent to use from all lies around the green and in the bunkers.
One criticism is the feel of the club, it still feels a little hard compared to my forged irons, even when using a soft ball. But for the majority of players who have never used forged clubs, they will notice little difference.
The ball flight is high but with no loss of distance. If you play a windy course regularly, then you may have to go with a stiffer shaft to help keep the ball down.
Overall, they are a fine set of clubs and PING Stockists throughout the country offer an excellent Custom Fitting service.
The RRP for a set of 3-SW is £699 fitted with steel shafts, but at my local store they are considerably cheaper, so do shop around for the best prices.
Value for money: 7/10