We head to the Titleist National Fitting Centre at St Ives Golf Club

Andy Roberts's picture
Andy Roberts
Fri, 26 Apr 2013

Starting with the scoring shots into the green, Paul offered me a selection of the latest Titleist Vokey wedges and without hesitation I pointed to the Spin Milled Tour Chrome design in 52-, 56- and 60-degree, before quickly putting tongue back in mouth.

Paul then asked me how far I wanted to hit each of the three wedges. I answered. He delivered.

After playing around with several shafts and admiring the pure trajectory and hearty sound of the Vokey at impact, we agreed after consultation that the NS Pro 105T S shaft was providing me with the best results both in terms of clubhead speed, spin rate and carry.

I was consistently averaging a 50-yard carry with the 60-degree (7-degree bounce), just under a 100-yard carry with the 56-degree (8-degree bounce) and exactly on the 110-yard mark with the 52-degree (8-degree bounce). Knowing exactly how far you hit the ball in the scoring zone is priceless. 

Next up, the irons. I make no qualms about it, the long game is where I struggle most and Paul quickly saw why. ‘I assume you like it when the pin’s at the back of the green,’ said the club expert-turned-comedian. 

But I knew I could confide in my custom fitter and that he would have the answer to my problems. While Paul probably would have loved to have informed me on how best to hit a high-towering 6-iron down the 200-yard marker, he resisted temptation and looked to ‘accentuate the positive things’ and ‘offset the chronic mistakes’ in my swing.

That was the beauty of my Titleist experience as Paul had access to every possible shaft and clubhead to help me reach my full potential.

I tested both CB and AP2 irons, using the exact same shaft as the wedges, and after striking six shots with each 6-iron it quickly became apparent the AP2 in NS Pro 105T S was to become my new best friend.

Spin rate with the 6-iron, while not exactly breaking Tour records, had improved dramatically in comparison to my normal bats and I had pleasingly cut the deficit between carry (169-yard average) and distance (192). Launch angle was also much better at 18-degrees. The profile of the club at address was awe-inspiring and workability both for a draw and fade was effortless.

But the key behind my improved performance with the 6-iron was not just because of a new clubhead and shaft combination but because of a change in lie angle.

In order to get the sole perfectly perpendicular to the ground, I was asked to hit several balls off a hard board to see what my ball striking was like - using a carbonated paper sticker on the bottom and face of the club.

From markings on the tape, Paul explained how I was striking the ball flat, with the toe of the club pointing down at impact. As a result of the face pointing slightly right of my target line, Paul was able to set the lie of the AP2 to 0.75-degree upright to improve my overall ball striking and trajectory.

A little tweak made a giant difference.

Article continues...