After a driver is tested and prototyped, there is an important hurdle it must clear before it can be used in PGA Tour events or during any round played under the official Rules of Golf. It has to be evaluated for conformance by the U.S. Golf Association and the R&A in St. Andrews, Scotland, then added to the Conforming Driver Head list.
The list continuously is updated by the game’s governing bodies, and on Sunday two new Titleist driver heads were added to the list, the TSi2 and the TSi3.
Titleist has not released either club at retail and is not divulging any details about them, but the company stated that beginning this week at the Silverado Resort in Napa, California, and the Dom Pedro Victoria Golf Course in Algarve, Portugal, it will begin the process of fitting staff players and other pros into the new drivers. Those venues are hosting the next PGA Tour and European Tour events.
Here’s what we can tell from the pictures, as well as Ian Poulter’s Instagram account (Poulter is a Titleist staff player):
In Titleist’s current driver lineup, the 460-cubic centimeter TS2 driver is designed for golfers that want distance with high stability and maximum forgiveness.
In the photo on the USGA’s website, the TSi2 appears to be longer from front to back than the TSi3. It clearly has an adjustable hosel mechanism that appears to be either the same, or very similar, to the SureFit hosel system that Titleist has used for several seasons. There is a large weight in the back of the sole that likely pulls the center of gravity down and back. All of that matches closely with the TS2 driver.
The current 460-cubic centimeter Titleist TS3 driver is designed to appeal to players who want more distance and the ability to fine-tune their ball flight. It has a moveable weight cartridge in the sole, which can help create a draw or a fade bias, that the TS2 lacks.
In the image of the TSi3, the club appears to be slightly shorter front to back than the TSi2, but if it has a taller face – they could have identical volumes.
Like the TSi2, the TSi3 has an adjustable hosel mechanism, but its back section is much more interesting.
There is a sliding mechanism in the back of the head with five settings for what appears to be a moveable weight. While it is difficult to see it clearly in the USGA’s photo, Ian Poulter showed it on social media.
The middle setting is labeled “N,” which most likely stands for neutral. To the toe side, there is a setting labeled “T1” and another labeled “T2.” If those settings shift more weight to the toe side, it would create a fade bias. However, with the moveable weight being farther back in the head than the weight in the TS3, the TSi3 might have a higher moment of inertia and more stability in the fade setting than the current TS3.
To the heel side of the “N,” but there is an “H1” and “H2” setting. Moving more weight to the heel would encourage a draw, and again, with the weight all the way back in the head, the draw setting in the TSi3 could be more stable than the draw setting in the TS3.
Poulter also showed off a Titleist TSi2 fairway wood in his Instagram Story. The club has a back weight, like the driver, and also features a slot in the sole with the letters “ARC” positioned directly behind the leading edge. In previously released Titleist woods, ARC stood for Active Recoil Channel, a technology designed to allow the face of the club to flex efficiently at impact, especially on shots hit low in the hitting area.
The fairway wood also has an adjustable hosel mechanism.
Don’t look for TSi hybrids to be coming soon with the drivers and fairway woods. Titleist releases new hybrids in conjunction with the release of irons. If history is a guide, we’re about a year away from new Titleist irons arriving on the PGA Tour or at retail.
As more details about the new Titleist TSi2 and TSi3 woods become available, Golfweek will bring them to you.
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