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Titleist to premier four new golf balls

The choice we make for the ball we play is confusing — play the ball you like.

HAL LENOBEL
Contributing Columnist
golf@lbknews.com

Titleist is about to come out with four new balls, as though we don’t have enough choices now. Two of the new models are the NXT Tour and the NXT Tour S with non-urethane Fusablend covers. The NXT Tour is the firmer ball, while the NXT Tour S is softer and spins more. The average handicap golfer may find this difficult to comprehend.

Two other balls, the new Velocity and updated DT SoLo, round out the four-ball introduction. Velocity is a distance ball, and the popular DT SoLo is a combination of feel and distance that for years has attracted a loyal following.

Two golf balls, the NXT Tour S and DT SoLo, will be available in yellow, although the yellows are different. On the basis of extensive testing, Titleist is using a brighter yellow on the NXT Tour S and a more subdued yellow/green on the DT SoLo.

NXT Tour is a three-piece ball with a thin Fusablend cover and new spherically tiled octahedral design. Translation: 302 dimples in five sizes.

NXT Tour S has a softer compression feel than the NXT Tour but still is designed to deliver low driver spin combined with enhanced short game spin and control.

Velocity features LSX core technology for the fastest solid core of any Titleist ball. It is marked with double numbers: 00, 11, 22 and 23, as Titleist engages in an edgier ball presentation. DT Solo, with a blend of two soft Surlyn ionomers in the cover, is intended to continue its reputation as a ball that is long and soft. Prices per dozen are $31.99 for the two NXT balls, $26.99 for Velocity and $19.99 for DT SoLo. All four balls were scheduled to ship before the end of February.

If I haven’t confused you enough, I’ll be surprised. The choice we make for the ball we play is confusing enough. However, this only adds to the confusion. Play the ball you like.

• • •

Most golfers know there is a difference between a water hazard (marked with yellow stakes or lines) and a lateral water hazard (marked with red stakes or lines). But knowing how to proceed when your ball finds one can be confusion. Here are your options. And, remember, if any part of your ball is touching a hazard boundary, it is considered in the hazard.

Water hazard: 1. Play the ball as it lies (no penalty) but do not ground your club. 2. Play from the previous spot (one-stroke penalty). 3. Drop a ball behind the water hazard, keeping the point at which the original ball last crossed the hazard’s boundary between the hole and the spot where you’re dropping. There is no limit to how far behind the hazard the ball can be dropped (one-stroke penalty).

Lateral water hazard: 1. Same as above. 2. Same as above. 3. Drop a ball behind the hazard, keeping the point at which the original ball last crossed the hazard’s boundary between the hole and the spot where you’re dropping. There is no limit to how far behind the hazard the ball can be dropped (one-stroke penalty). 4. Drop a ball within two club-lengths of the point where the original ball last crossed the hazard’s boundary, so long as the spot is not closer to the hole (one-stroke penalty). 5. Drop a ball within two club-lengths of the point on the opposite side of the lateral water hazard that is equidistant to the hole from where the ball last encountered the hazard on your previous shot (one-stroke penalty).

• • •

Here is a summary of golfers who posted at least one round of golf in 2010:

Men
• Handicap index improved: 47 percent
• Handicap index worsened by less than a stroke: 29 percent
• Handicap worsened by a stroke or more: 24 percent

 

Women
• Handicap index improved: 48 percent
• Handicap index worsened by less than a stroke: 26 percent
• Handicap worsened by a stroke or more: 26 percent

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