Friday, February 16, 2007

In last week's column, I told you that Nike and Callaway are gearing up to launch square-headed drivers next year. Again, the rationale is that weight can be displaced in a square head to extreme heel and toe locations that don't even exist in traditional-shaped drivers. This creates a higher moment of inertia (MOI), which simply means the club won't twist quite so much on off-center hits. A higher MOI (in the vertical axis) serves to straighten out shots struck toward the heel or toe.

Nike SasQuatch Sumo2
Here's the latest on Nike's odd-looking weapon. The SasQuatch Sumo2 (for Super Moment of Inertia) is a multi-material head that blends a titanium body and composite crown. Its footprint is similar to Nike's other new SasQuatch, the all-titanium Sumo. But these two beasts won't play the same. Sumo2 has a higher MOI (and larger sweet spot) than Sumo because more weight is transferred to the extreme heel and toe areas. Expect both clubs at retail by February.
Sumo2: $479 (graphite); Sumo: $359 (graphite)
Callaway Fusion FT-i
It bears repeating that Callaway's Fusion FT-i construction-titanium body with a composite rear-enables the company to move 40-plus grams to the extreme heel and toe. The tall, rectangular face should produce a higher MOI on shots hit high or low on the face. So you get a straighter ball flight (less curve) due to enhanced forgiveness and stability on shots struck high, low, heel or toe. Price: TBD

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