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Bridgestone J40 drivers built for speed

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Though best known for the golf balls it makes, Bridgestone also gets plenty of props for its clubs. And the company’s newest drivers, the J40 445 and the J40 430, are no exception.

Released last month, the J40 445 (for its 445 cc head) is intended to promote a mid-to-high launch trajectory with low spin, to enhance accuracy and distance. In constructing the 6-4 titanium, four-piece club head, Bridgestone found ways to move discretionary weight to the perimeter for increased MOI (Moment of Inertia) and less twisting at impact, for greater forgiveness. The equipment maker also uses its proprietary Variable Face Thickness design to enlarge the sweet spot by putting increased mass toward the heel and toe to produce higher ball speeds on off-center hits. It also employed a short hosel to maximize control.

As for the J40 430, which has a 430 cc head and is not expected to be available at retail until the first of the year, it is built to produce a low- to mid-launch with a boring trajectory and a bit more backspin that the 445 model, for greater workability. The 430 also employs a longer hosel to enhance that same attribute and utilizes the same Variable Face Thickness technology as the other J40 entry, as well as the four-piece, 6-4 titanium face construction.

According to Corey Consuegra, marketing manager for clubs at Bridgestone Golf, both J40 drivers are geared for better players whose handicaps range from scratch to the low teens and come with Project X graphite shafts stock and Golf Pride grips.

The 445 model is more forgiving and designed for players throughout that handicap spectrum, he says, while the 430 is more for those single-digit golfers who like to work the ball, value control and prefer the more traditional look of its pear-shaped head.

“Another difference is that the Center of Gravity is low and deep in the 445, for that mid-high launch, while it is a little higher in the 430 for that more piercing trajectory,” he adds.