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Ping G5 Hybrid Review

Written by: Tony Korologos | Date: Friday, May 26th, 2006
Categories: Golf ClubsGolf EquipmentReviews

Day 5 of 7 straight days of golf equipment reviews!

Hybrids are the rage. Seems like everyone is dumping their long irons and putting these easy to hit clubs in their bag.

I’m a big fan of Ping gear. Looking back there isn’t one piece of Ping gear I’ve owned that didn’t perform very well. I use a Ping G2 driver and it is about the easiest club to hit in my bag and it’s scary long.

I was excited to have a Ping G5 hybrid in the bag. I chose the same shaft that my G2 driver has, the TFC 100. Actually the hybrid version of this shaft is the TFC 100H for those really picky folks.

Looks

The G5 hybrid is a pretty club. The head shape and finish are pleasing to the eye when you’re standing over a shot. From above the club face looks a bit closed to me but I can also see much of the face with makes me “think” the shot will be easier.

Technology

The engineers at Ping have been innovators for years. They’ve been ahead of many golf companies in terms of design and manufacturing ideas.

The crown of the club is sloped which promotes higher launch through a low center of gravity. For distance and consistency the steel face is machined and robotically plasma welded.

The size of the club head isn’t giant. The compact size of the head promotes better shots and less resistance in the rough and from tough lies.

Ping doesn’t employ a movable weighting system.

Options

The G5 hybrid is available in 16°, 19°, 22° and 25° lofts.

Available shafts:
Shaft Material Flex Torque Weight
PING CS Lite steel* Regular 1.8° 94g
PING CS Lite steel* Stiff 1.7° 107g
True Temper DGS steel* Stiff 1.5° 125g
True Temper DGX steel* X-Stiff 1.4° 123g
PING Z-Z65 steel* Stiff 1.6° 109g
PING TFC100H graphite Soft R 3.8° 75g
PING TFC100H graphite Regular 3.2° 76g
TFC 100H graphite Stiff 2.7° 78g
TFC 100H graphite X-Stiff 2.6° 79g
Aldila NV 85 Hybrid graphite Regular 2.5° 84g
Aldila NV 85 Hybrid graphite Stiff 2.5° 84g
Aldila NV 85 Hybrid graphite X-Stiff 2.5° 84g
Grafalloy ProLaunch Hybrid graphite Regular 2.6° 80g
Grafalloy ProLaunch Hybrid graphite Stiff 2.5° 81g
Grafalloy ProLaunch Hybrid graphite X-Stiff 2.4° 82g

Ping has a color coded grip-size chart for players to determine the right grip. They offer 6 different grips from “full cord” to “textured spiral.” I prefer the new textured spiral myself.

On the course

First off, I don’t necessarily have a big reason to hit a hybrid. I’m a fairly decent iron striker. I have a 2 iron which I can crush and it goes very straight. But I know I’m not the norm in this case.

I found the G5 hybrid (as I do many hybrids), not as “easy to hit” as everyone is led to believe. And I also didn’t find it to be as “forgiving” as all the hype about hybrids tells. This may be due to a few different reasons. One reason is that perhaps I may be playing the hybrid like an iron, hitting down on the ball. I also may be placing the ball in the wrong place in my stance. Is it a wood or is it an iron placement? I tried both and one in the middle.

On solid shots I hit a nice towering shot with the 19 degree and they went anywhere from 220-240 yards (about how far my 3-iron goes). I was able to work the ball if I really concentrated but it didn’t come naturally to work it left to right (right handed) as I suspect the face is a bit closed.

Critic’s corner

The major problem for me was that I couldn’t really “feel” the sweet spot with this club. Perhaps I never found it? Shots inside and outside felt the same as in the center.

I didn’t really find that I hit more fairways or could keep the ball in play any better than with my 3-iron. But then again, most people can’t hit a 3-iron.

Though Ping’s engineers make great clubs, their head covers are “so so.” They work, but often fall off easily.

Conclusion

On well struck shots the G5 hybrid flew high and landed on the green softly. Bad shots still had some decent distance but went off line more than you’d think a “forgiving” club would.

If you have trouble with your long irons, perhaps a G5 hybrid would be the answer for you. For me, the trusty long irons in my bag haven’t lost their place.

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