You may have always considered yourself either a Pro V1 or a Pro V1x player, but things have changed with golf’s best selling line of golf balls. Regardless of what Titleist golf ball you’ve been playing, the company wants you to test both of its new premium golf balls in 2017.
“As we’ve told the pros, while you may consider yourself a ‘V’ or an ‘X’ player, we think this is a great time for you to reevaluate both Pro V1 and Pro V1x to see which 2017 model is the best fit for your game,” said Bill Morgan, Senior Vice President, Titleist Golf Ball R&D.
The 2017 Pro V1 is the most changed of the company’s new premium balls. It’s designed to fly “significantly longer” than previous Pro V1 models, and “as long as the Pro V1x,” says Michael Mahoney, Vice President of Titleist’s Golf Ball marketing.
“Historically, the perception has been that the Pro V1 is [higher-spinning than the Pro V1x] from tee to green,” Mahoney said. “Now it’s the opposite of that.”
Titleist attributes the change in performance to the Pro V1’s Next Generation ZG Process Core, which offers longer distance through lower long-game spin and faster ball speeds.
“We’ve taken the distance question off the table for golfers when deciding between [the Pro V1 and Pro V1x],” Mahoney said. “We want golfers to decide based on feel and flight characteristics.”
The benefits of the 2017 Pro V1 were obvious to PGA Tour player Jason Kokrak, who ranked No. 6 in driving distance on the PGA Tour in 2016 using the company’s Pro V1x golf ball. He’s also a highly effective driver of the golf ball, ranking No. 8 in the Tour’s Strokes Gained: Off-the-Tee statistic.
In testing the 2017 golf balls, Kokrak found that he could hit the new Pro V1 as far the Pro V1x, Mahoney said. He preferred the Pro V1’s softer feel around the greens, however, because he thought it could help him improve his short-game touch. So he ended up making the switch to Pro V1.
Like Kokrak, most golfers should experience a softer feel from the Pro V1, as its compression is about 10 points lower than the Pro V1x (90 vs. 100 on Titleist’s compression-measuring machines). They should also expect the 2017 Pro V1 to fly on a slightly lower trajectory than the Pro V1x.
The design of the 2017 Pro V1x, the most played golf ball on the PGA Tour in 2016, is unchanged on the inside. On the outside, the new ball offers an improved placement of its 328 dimples that now cover a larger portion of the surface (the Pro V1, with 352 dimples, also has an improved dimple design). The benefit is a more stable and consistent flight, Mahoney said.
Long-time Pro V1x player Jordan Spieth said he quickly noticed the benefit the new model.
“I put new Pro V1x in play in Australia and in the first week we won,” Spieth said. “What I noticed immediately was the improved flight. It held its line in the crosswinds better.”
With the new Pro V1x, golfers can expect a higher trajectory. The ball will also feel slightly firmer and produce more iron spin.
In total, more than 100 players worldwide are now using the new golf balls: Adam Scott (Pro V1), Jimmy Walker (Pro V1x), Kevin Kisner (Pro V1), Webb Simpson (Pro V1), Charley Hoffmann (Pro V1) Ian Poulter (Pro V1x), Thongchai Jaidee (Pro V1x) and of course, Rory McIlroy (Pro V1x).