Distance is what Titleist engineers were looking to create with the new TSi drivers, no matter where a golfer makes contact on the clubface.
To do that, they turned to an alloy called ATI 425 aerospace titanium. Manufactured in a Pittsburgh foundry, the material originally was developed for ballistic armor and later used in different aerospace and industrial applications, including NASA’s Phoenix Mars Lander. But according to Titleist officials, it had not been used in golf until now.
The company was attracted to the alloy for a number of reasons. “It is incredibly strong and maintains elongation under high stress,” said Dan Stone, senior vice president for golf club research and development at Titleist. “It lets us optimize the thickness of the entire face and generate our highest ball speeds ever at points all over the clubface.”
Distance also has been enhanced, he added, both through the shaping of clubheads that reduced drag and improved aerodynamics.
Titleist associates started seeding TSi drivers on tour the week of Sept. 7 at the Safeway Open in California and the Portugal Masters in Europe. Fifty-seven players switched to TSi at the time, and the following week it was the most played driver model at the U.S. Open at Winged Foot.
Justin Thomas is among those Titleist staff professionals who are impressed. “TSi just looks fast, and it sounds like a missile coming off the face,” he said. “When I first tested it, I hit one drive off the toe, and it carried almost 20 yards further than I would have thought.
“That is what we want, for the bad ones to perform better those weeks when I’m not hitting it consistently in the middle of the face.”
Both models boast 460cc clubheads, with the shape of the TSi2 described by company officials as “modern” and the TSi3 as “traditional.” They each employ SureFit hosels, to adjust loft and lie, with the TSi3 also featuring new SureFit CG track technology so players also can adjust center of gravity and fine-tune ball flight.