Nike VR V-Rev Wedges
By Paul Higham - on Twitter @SkySportsPaulH. Last Updated: 27/04/11 6:06pm
The Nike V-Rev wedge
Sometimes a forgotten club in the bag of many an aspiring golfer, the wedge, along with the putter the two 'scoring clubs' in your armoury should be the ones you pay most attention too - that is what Nike are hoping anyway as they let skysports.com hacker Paul Higham loose with their V-Rev.
Nike Golf's VR V-Rev Wedges launched in the summer of 2010 but are still cutting edge products to get involved with for this year.
Us hackers will be used to merely getting by with the sand wedge supplied with the set of irons purchased, and although I've got no real complaints I've soon discovered that a specialist wedge is needed if there is to be any improvement in my woeful scoring.
The Victory V-Rev wedges come in eight different loft/bounce configurations, so your first task is to plough your way through all that information and find out which one (or two) you'll be wanting to take onto the course.
Aesthetically the club has a great look, we used the 'sating chrome' model but many professionals apparently prefer the 'black satin' look because of a lack of glare - testing this out during the winter in Leeds however and the sun's glare becomes less of a problem.
While I have no idea what the 'feel-enhancing 8620 carbon steel' is that Nike say the club is made out of, the club does feel nice in the hands, while the 'patented dual sole grind' is aimed at making it easier to open up the face and play different shots from different lies.
The Nike literature also says that I could now play these chip shots "without fear of thinning it or digging in", but no amount of technology will ever erase that fear when lining up a difficult chip!
On the first hole of rigorous testing the new wedge came up trumps, with a dastardly difficult downhill lie at the back of a huge greenside bunker, I was forced to angle the blade and cut right across the ball onto the putting surface.
Watching the face of playing partner Dave from Golf365 drop I could only imagine what had gone on on the raised green, but walking up to find the ball a mere few feet away from the flag led to a huge grin after 'one of the best shots I've ever seen' according to Dave - his words, not mine.
This club is not a miracle worker though - I still managed to duff the odd chip, and being used to a normal sand wedge it's important to commit to hitting an approach shot hard even from close range.
The ball did seem to stop a bit quicker than usual on the green from a full shot - that'll be the new V-Rev groove design finally allowing me to get the spin I always new I had in my swing, or maybe I was just not thinning as many shots, either way it's an improvement.
Nike's wedges will be an upgrade on most amateur's current weapons, they won't instantly solve your chipping woes and you'll need to work to find the right combination for you, but they will certainly help.