BEN HOGAN VKTR HYBRID
CATEGORY: Game Improvement Hybrids
WE TESTED: 20° with UST iRoD 75 graphite shaft
KEY TECHNOLOGIES: Four movable weights (2, 2, 2, and 18 grams) tweak shot shape.
PLAYABILITY: The small head gets through all but the thickest rough and can pick the ball off hardpan with ease; better ballstrikers enjoy working the ball; relatively straight, with a boring, medium-low trajectory; four movable weight screws help to dial in different shot shapes.
ACCURACY/FORGIVENESS: The compact head is more forgiving than it looks, but the VKTR demands a repeatable swing; misses won't curve too much.
DISTANCE: Hit pure, it creates exhilarating length and a penetrating flight that fares well in windy conditions; low trajectory and lots of roll on mis-hits help retain distance.
FEEL: There's a firm, crushing sensation -- on great swings, the club almost sings, producing a soft whistle at impact; off-center hits with the VKTR have enough feedback to tell you how you did; excellent weighting and balance -- easy to track the clubhead throughout the swing.
LOOK: Smallest head in the category; compact size looks ready and able to get the ball out of difficult lies; a deep face with a high toe, lower heel and a flattish sole agrees with most testers.
Others in the category hit it higher and land it softer on the green; not for players looking for tons of forgiveness; misses can feel harsh, and toe shots sometimes twist.
BOTTOM LINE: This one plays more like a Better Player hybrid than a Game Improvement model. Best for stronger players who want a lower-flying club with classic looks and a sweet feel.