With the recent success of Titleist’s latest TS drivers on both the European and PGA Tours, we thought it would be a good time to give you little bit more of an insight into how they were created.
The TS2 and TS3 are fast becoming two of the most popular drivers on tour and have also proved incredibly popular with amateurs since they were released at the tail end of 2018.
This popularity is largely down to the incredible speed and performance gains on offer with both of these booming big sticks. We spoke with Stephanie Luttrell, Titleist Metalwood Development Director, to find out how the TS drivers are able to deliver such excellent speed and all-round performance for every type of golfer.
Why were these drivers named TS instead of the anticipated 919?
TS stands for Titleist Speed – it came from our team when we created the Titleist Speed Project, which explored every attribute of driver design in order to be faster, longer, and better in every way.
TS Drivers incorporated more technical advances than over our last 10 years combined. Ultimately, two drivers emerged from our pursuit of speed – TS2 & TS3. They are completely new drivers, so it was the right time to have a new name.
How did the R&D process differ to previous driver releases?
The biggest difference in our approach with TS was that we no longer looked at the separate elements of the driver and fairway individually. In the past, we would focus on the head and the shaft as independent elements that can be joined together through the fitting process.
With TS, we directly focused on all aspects of the built club and how to deliver more speed through head design, technologies, construction and configuration.
What was the initial feedback like from the pros?
Initial feedback from the pros was outstanding starting from week one where we had 17 drivers in play at last year’s U.S. Open. Early in our development, we were able to conduct prototype testing with many of our Titleist professionals.
During the testing, they experienced speed, distance and control improvements that were ultimately replicated when we fit them for their TS driver last summer. The performance diversity of TS2 and TS3 gave us great options to meet the broad spectrum of performance goals our players have for their drivers.
Whether it be Justin Thomas, who was seeking more control, or Rafa Cabarera Bello, who was seeking total distance gains – TS drivers help them reach their goals.
What are the key technologies that deliver the increase in speed?
The Speed Chassis of the TS drivers delivers enhanced aerodynamic shaping, an ultra-thin lightweight titanium crown and thinner variable face thickness allowing for a lower, deeper centre of gravity with higher inertia.
How did you manage to reduce the thickness of both the crown and face?
With our ultra-thin titanium crown, we worked side by side with our manufacturing partners to create new casting and finishing techniques that enabled us to produce the thinnest constant titanium cast crown in the industry.
For the variable face, we are constantly assessing how we can expand the sweet spot size and deliver more ball speed across the face.
We discovered that thinning the perimeter of the face in specific regions and eliminating engraved scorelines would allow us to deliver more speed while maintaining a high quality performance head design.
Why did you take the decision to not include SureFit CG technology in the TS2?
We know from our player testing that there are two key ways to drive speed and ultimately distance performance for the majority of players. We like to think of TS2 as our “default bomber”.
Using our SureFit flatweight technology (which does allow for headweight customization) enabled our engineers to design a driver that had our lowest and deepest centre of gravity and highest inertia.
For players that require speed and distance consistency across the entire face – TS2 delivers. However, we also know that many players will unlock speed and distance via centre of gravity fitting with our Surefit CG.
TS3 leverages that technology to better align the centre of gravity with a players sweet spot which increases their ball speed or promoting a more consistent shot shape which frees players up to swing more aggressively and they gain club and ball speed.
What can golfers expect to see when testing the new TS2 & TS3?
Golfers can expect to see faster ball speeds, higher launch, lower spin, and increased distance. In addition, they will experience exceptional sound and feel in a classic jet black finish.