By Alex Gallemore
After last month’s King Cobra F8+ driver test I thought it would be fitting to put its baby brother through its paces. These days a fairway wood is designed to be either hit from the tee when the driver is in trouble, or off the deck when you fancy having a go for the green when the flag is a blur in the distance. Unfortunately my swing speed is dropping off and today I can just about reach an average length par-5 in two and that all hinges on how well I get my driver away. So for this month’s challenge I decided to see if I could reach the par-5 18th at The Els Club in Dubai in two shots using the Cobra F8+.
At 550 yards and playing into a slight head wind, this test was certainly looking to be flawed. It had been a while since I had played the Els Course and I completely forgot the huge bunker on the left which meant I needed to carry just over 245 yards to take the bunker out of play. My first ball pitched just under the lip but my second attempt carried it by four yards and a run around to just over 270 yards. The ball flight was strong which helped penetrate the wind and didn’t spin up like my usual three wood. Standing with the TrackMan, Reg was getting a true impression of what was going on. He commented: “The second ball went way over the bunker and carried 249. Obviously, we aren’t normalising the Trackman, we are just seeing what we are getting and the wind was taking quite a bit off. We’ve got low spin of 3100rpm off the 3-wood set at 13.5 degrees into the wind with 155mph ball speed and 1.46 smash factor, which is very good.”
The approach was tough, as I needed to pretty much hit the same numbers again to get there. I knocked the ball slightly further back in the stance compared to the tee shot, to make sure I got the strike. So hitting down as opposed to hitting up, I expect the ball to spin and stall into the wind. The shock was that it came off hot with a really strong flight. The question in my mind was… did it make it? The answer was YES for distance but I failed to hold the green and ran off the side, but was pin high! Catching up with Reg again the TrackMan data shocked me. He explained: “You played the last shot from a different ball position in your stance. We saw low spin once again. It was around 2900rpm and you carried the ball 249 yards which rolled out to 268, which was close to the distance from your tee shot. You pitched the front edge but the slight draw prevented you from holding the green. All-in-all some great numbers but the stand out numbers on the TrackMan were the ball speed and the spin rates.”
COBRA’s patented E9 Technology is designed to create a SWEET ZONE™ that allows more hot spots farther away from the centre of the face.
Featuring the industry’s only Baffler® Dual Rail system, the KING® F8+ fairway is designed to deliver tour level workability and control while providing more versatility from every lie.
A fixed weight positioned forward results in a lower, penetrating ball flight for maximum workability and control.
Innovative crown and sole aero trips optimize aerodynamic performance for faster clubhead speeds and increased distance.
This year’s King Cobra F8+ range is starting to stand out. Its compact profile and front CG weighting appeals to players seeking lower trajectories with reduced spin for maximum workability and control. 155mph ball speed from a three wood! Say no more.