Wilson has been making some really good clubs for about 6 years now. Prior to that they had kind of lost their way and their mojo. Many golfers remember the good ol’ days of Wilson, but those fond memories were tarnished by the “department store” brand they were perceived as. You could get a full box of everything you needed to play golf for just a couple hundred dollars. While that might still be available, Wilson Staff clubs have been reborn as some of my favorites you can buy, especially their irons. Unfortunately, their woods hadn’t kept up with the rest of the pack. Until now, I hadn’t really seen much from Wilson Staff in terms of woods that I wanted to hit. Even many of their tour pros weren’t hitting their woods. Now, the Wilson Staff FG Tour F5 driver is a different beast and it is finally their best driver.
While I applaud companies that try innovative technologies to help golfers improve and play better, sometimes more traditional looks, feel and design is what the better players are looking for. Wilson is giving that to us with the FG Tour F5 driver. It looks very good from all angles. The shape is very conventional and the black crown and face paired with the silver and gold accents on the bottom offer a very nice looking combo. It comes with a nice leather style headcover too. The adjustable sole weight near the face gives you some CG manipulation for changing the performance, swingweight and feel of the club. The very lightweight adjustable hosel also lets you fine tune the loft and face angle to your preference.
TheWilson Staff FG Tour F5 Driver arrived with some snow on the ground here in MN so I took it to Inside Edge Golf and hit it indoors for a few rounds. The indoor results were very good. I also used my FlightScope X2 Launch Monitor to see what kind of numbers this club was producing and I was very happy with everything I was seeing indoors. The numbers were actually better than I expected. Wilson had really stepped up their game with this driver. I was pretty much able to leave it in the stock configuration, 7gram weight in the head brought the club in at D3 and the 9.0 loft setting looked very square at address. I was getting plenty of launch height from the Fubuki Z50 shaft.
When I got it on real grass in FL, I had some shaft issues with this club. Going from indoors to outdoors can be like going from the range to the course, things aren’t always the same. My main issue comes from the fact that I’ve never gotten along well with any Fubuki shaft. Their flex points just don’t fit my swing. This one being so lightweight, counter-balanced and 45.75″ long , I would lose feel of the club head during my swing causing some high rights. I was testing a couple drivers while playing so I knew it was the shaft. If I concentrated on my timing I could bomb this thing, but because of the shaft, I missed too many fairways to put it in the “gamer bag.”
While the stock shaft wasn’t a perfect fit (many stock shafts aren’t) I really liked the head. It has great looks. While looks don’t mean yards, it does impact how one views the club. The shape sets up really nice behind the ball. The adjustable weight allows you to change the feel and launch. The lighter goes higher, feels a little softer and spins more, while the heaviest changes the feel to a little harsher, but lower launch and spin occur. I went with the mid weight to get a little of both worlds. It also kept the swing weight near my preferred playing weight. The deep face is really nice and has good pop. It offers a fairly loud metallic crack at impact. It is not overly loud, but louder than many other current drivers.
The Wilson Staff FG Tour F5 Driver is no slouch on the course in terms of distance. Even when I had some directional issues because of the shaft, I was still out there around my normal driving distance. When I kept it straight, it bounded down the fairway nicely to a very solid distance. With the right shaft, there is potential for this club to make the “gamer” rotation. If you look at the face picture, you can see I wasn’t even hitting the sweetspot all the time. So it certainly is forgiving in terms of ball speeds off-center.
Flightscope X2 Launch Monitor
Wilson Staff FG Tour F5 Driver
Spin: 2205 rpms
Launch Angle: 14.8*
Dispersion: 9.8 yds
Club Head Speed: 102.9 mph
Ball Speed: 152.8 mph
Total Distance: 272.6 yds
Carry Distance: 259.2 yds
TheWilson Staff FG Tour F5 Driver is by far their best driver to date. It looks great, feels good and has modern technology to keep up with the others. Like all drivers, it is best to get fit, I think the Fubuki shaft might not be ideal for some golfers like myself, so checking out the other stock options might be wise. Messing around with the sole weight will also impact how this driver works for you. I’m actually impressed with the driver Wilson brought to the market for 2016.
For more information: http://www.wilson.com/en-us/golf