Golfers have a couple of new iron options from Nike, both of which are geared toward higher handicappers but are also expected to appeal to better players. One is the VR_S, and perhaps its most compelling feature is the company’s NexCOR variable face-thickness technology, which is designed to maximize distance for the widest possible range of players by delivering a higher COR – and in the most optimum places on the clubface.
“In setting out to create the fastest and hottest face, we know that consumers don’t hit the ball in the same spot on the face every time,” says Tom Stites, director of club creation for Nike Golf. “We conducted impact studies and were able to map where consumers hit the ball on the face at impact on every club. Based on those results, we are able to move this NexCOR technology around the face on each club.”
According to Stites, the performance of these super game-improvement irons, which are cast, is also enhanced by utilization of Nike’s PowerBow technology, which repositions weight off the face with a deep pocket construction to produce a faster, higher launch for maximum carry, straighter ball flight and a steeper decent into greens.
The other new iron offering of note is the Nike VR_S Forged. It, too, employs PowerBow technology, but uses a Japanese SAE 8655 alloy steel to create a thinner face that is designed to bolster distance. In addition, a high-frequency, X3X groove pattern puts grooves on the face closer together, to create more spin and also to promote greater control and consistency.
While the target audience for these sticks is the mid-range recreational player, Nike officials have found that it also appeals to the very best in the world. Tiger Woods put a 3-iron from this line into play at last year’s Presidents Cup and Stewart Cink has a VR_S Forged 3- and 4-iron in his bag.