Today was my regular Thursday money game. It is a grudge match which has been going on for years. Some days I’m on the winning end, some days not. Today’s conditions were extremely windy. I’d hoped to get to the course about 30-45 minutes early to test out the new clubs from Bridgestone Golf which I mentioned last night. I had a J40 445 driver, J40 3+ fairway wood and some J40 Dual Pocket Cavity Irons. Unfortunately some heavy traffic ate up my range time and I had to head straight to the first tee with no warmup and a stiff back.
I decided not to put the clubs directly in my bag. If they didn’t fit my swing or I wasn’t used to them, it could be a costly mistake.
First Impressions of the new J40 driver and J40 3+ Fairway Wood
Bridgestone J40 445 driver - Click for more images
J40 445 Driver
I hit a few practice drivers after my regular drives (time permitting). On the first drive I hit the right rough which killed a little of distance before ending up in the fairway with a little draw. So that drive was about 10 yards behind my regular driver, which hit the fairway on the fly. The next drive though, was on the par-5 5th. I absolutely crushed the J40, knocking it about 25 yards longer than my regular driver. But I must mention that the regular driver caught the left rough.
I let my two buddies hit the driver today as well. They both commented on how nice it looks from the top line and how nice it feels when you hit it.
Bridgestone Golf J40 Fairway Wood - Click to zoom
J40 3+ Fairway Wood
Now onto the 3-wood. I always tee off with a 3-wood on the 7th hole at the course we played today. The tree lined hole is tight and calls for a draw, but there’s OB left. I hit my regular 3-wood perfectly down the middle with a little draw, just like I described. So I pulled the J40 3-wood for a comparison shot. I used the same B330-RX ball, though the first was yellow and the 2nd was white. The ball seemed to come off the club at a much faster speed. I hit this one perfect, also with a little draw. The tee mark was dead center on the club bottom, going straight back. When I got up to the two shots in the middle of the fairway I walked the distance between the two. The J40 3+ was 16 yards longer than my regular 3-wood.
Later on the par-5 17th hole I pushed my drive into the right rough. The ball was not sitting terribly high and normally I wouldn’t try to hit a 3-wood. But since the hole was likely a three shot proposition and I could afford a miss-hit, I gave the J40 3+ a shot. I crushed it, with a draw. I looked at my opponent, and he looked at me with a look of bewilderment and awe. I was nearly to the green. I’d made amazingly good contact from the rough.
At that point I knew my old 3-wood would be celebrating an early retirement and spending some relaxing days in the garage from this point on. The J40 3+ fairway is going straight into my starting lineup. My quest for the holy grail of 3-woods may be over.
J40 Dual Pocket Irons
I only hurriedly hit one J40 Dual Pocket Iron test shot, and not well. The group behind us was close and I didn’t want to hold up play. First impressions though, are that the clubs are very solid. My other opponent hit a few test shots today and loved them.
Ohhhhh. Gear head alert. I’ve got my hands on a Bridgestone J40 445 driver, which will be in play at 9:16am tomorrow. A report will follow naturally. This driver has a deep face and looks nice standing over it.
Looks great. Hope hit plays great at 9:16 am tomorrow. Bridgestone J40 45 Driver. Click for more images.
Stay tuned for my first impressions tomorrow (Thursday) afternoon.
The Club Stick in action - click to see more photos
Next time you play in one of those three club tournaments here’s your bag, the Club Stick. The Club Stick is a plastic stick which holds three clubs and can either stand up via a fork which goes into the turf, or a clip which hangs on the side of a golf bag.
The main benefit to the Club Stick I can see is keeping clubs dry which you bring to the green area or away from your bag. Nice to keep the clubs and grips off the wet grass.
Lately my greens in regulation is so bad (50%), that I’m always bringing 2-3 clubs to greens. I put those three in the Club Stick and all I have to do is grab it and head to the green. No digging in the golf bag for my putter, lob wedge and 8-iron (the three clubs I’ll need to get up and down).
The Club Stick web site claims that the product will improve the golfing experience because it lets you “focus less on managing your gear.” That seems a bit of a contradiction, since the unit would be an additional piece of gear to manage, but I get it.
One of the better accessory offerings for keeping club grips dry. Convenient for the range or those who like gadgets on the course. Don’t think serious players would use it, but the casual 18 handicapper might.
Club Stick web site
HOG Club Stick photos
Bridgestone J40 445 driver - Click for more images
As I mentioned in the previous post, Bridgestone is announcing some new gear. Along with the new Bridgestone Golf J40 irons announced yesterday, Bridgestone has two new J40 driver models and a new line of J40 fairway woods.
The new J40 drivers will come in two models, a 430cc model and 445cc model (pictured right).
Interesting lineup for the new J40 fairways with three models, a “3+” wood (below), 4-wood and 5-wood. Normal 3-woods are 15 degrees, but the 3+ is 14 degrees for that little bit of extra distance. The 4-wood is 16 degrees and the 5-wood is 18 degrees.
J40 3+ Fairway - Click for larger image
More images of the new (and old) Bridgestone gear is in the HOG Bridgestone Golf image gallery.
Bridgestone Golf is in the midst of releasing a bunch of new clubs across the board. There are two new sets of irons coming out, the new J40 Forged Dual Pocket Cavity (2nd image below) and the new J40 Forged Cavity Back (1st image below). For the full press release from Bridgestone, click here to go to the new HOGWIRE.BIZ golf news wire site!
Bridgestone Golf J40 Forged Cavity Back Irons - Click for larger image
I’m hoping to get my hands on these babies when they’re available for review. Stay tuned.
New Bridgestone Forged Dual Pocket Cavity Irons - Click for larger image
For more images of new gear, check out the HOG Bridgestone Golf image gallery.