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 a little. 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 pick up a full box of everything you needed to play golf for just a couple hundred pounds. Whilst that might still be available, Wilson Staff clubs have been reborn as some of my favourites, especially their irons, unfortunately, their woods hadn’t kept up. Until now.
We hadn’t really seen much from Wilson Staff in terms of woods that we really wanted to hit, in fact many of their tour pros weren’t hitting their woods. Now however, the Wilson Staff FG Tour F5 driver is a different beast and it is finally one of the best.
LOOKS & FEEL
While I applaud companies that try innovative technologies to help golfers improve and play better, sometimes the more traditional looks, feel and designs are 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.
The FG Tour F5 arrived with a little frost on the ground so it was taken inside to hit it indoors for a few rounds, the results were very good. We also stuck it on the FlightScope X2 Launch Monitor to see what kind of numbers this club was producing, once again we were all smiles, it was replicating its indoor performance.
Wilson had really stepped up their game with this driver. It was pretty much left its stock configuration, 7gram weight in the head brought the club in at D3 and the 9.0 loft setting looked very square at address. It produced plenty of launch height from its stock Fubuki Z50 shaft.
When we got it out in the fresh air I did have some troubles at first, going from indoors to outdoors can be like going from the range to the course, things aren’t always the same. My main issue came from the fact that I’ve never gotten along well with any Fubuki shaft. The flex points just don’t fit my swing. However it did work just fine when tested by a few other members of the team. 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 and 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.
DOES IT FLY?
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 sweet spot all the time. So it certainly is forgiving in terms of ball speeds off-centre.
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: 6 yds
- Carry Distance: 2 yds
SUM IT UP
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.