COBRA Golf Get Fast Go Low in 2019 - The Fitting

GM editor Mike Harris is hoping to turn his game around this year with help from the experts at COBRA Golf via his Get Fast Go Low in 2019 campaign

(Image credit: Tom Miles)

GM editor Mike Harris is hoping to turn his game around this year with help from the experts at COBRA Golf via his Get Fast Go Low in 2019 campaign

COBRA Golf Get fast Go Low in 2019 - The Fitting

When your golf game is failing to progress at the desired rate, or worse still, going backwards, there are several ways to turn. You could see if an equipment upgrade or custom-fitting might yield something better suited to your game; you could take lessons to iron out the key flaws in your technique; or you could look at your fitness to see if stamina, strength and/or flexibility might be costing your shots.

Or… you could go the whole hog and address all three at once. After a prolonged spell of disappointing golf and a handicap curve drifting the wrong way, that’s exactly what Golf Monthly editor, Mike Harris, has decided to do in 2019 via our ‘Get Fast, Go Low’ project with popular equipment brand, COBRA Golf.

COBRA Golf’s new range has been making the headlines, with the eye-catching King F9 SPEEDBACK driver the brand’s first to successfully combine an aerodynamic shape with a low centre of gravity to optimise club speed and ball speed for maximum distance across all ability levels thanks to high levels of adjustability.

The King F9 SPEEDBACK fairways and hybrids mirror that speed-enhancing performance while adding in COBRA’s trademark Baffler sole rails that push centre of gravity lower and deeper and improve turf interaction for added playability.

A comprehensive range of irons and wedges, available in standard variable length or COBRA Golf’s revolutionary One-Length concept pioneered by World No. 6 Bryson DeChambeau, complete 2019’s impressive range, with One-Length allowing players to use the same swing however long or short the iron in their hands. The COBRA Connect shot-tracking system then lets golfers monitor and analyse performance throughout the bag.

Mike will enjoy the benefits of the COBRA Connect shot-tracking system as he keeps tabs on his progress throughout the year

A full driver-to-wedge fitting at Silvermere Golf Complex in Surrey with James White, COBRA Golf’s expert fitting and training representative, kicked off Mike’s ‘Get Fast, Go Low’ campaign. James’ mission was to help Mike find the perfect line-up to arrest that worrying handicap decline, which has seen him rise from 6.2 to 8.8 in five years, even hitting double-digits briefly in 2018.

Mike getting started on his COBRA Golf driver-to-wedge fitting at Silvermere

For technique and fitness advice, Mike will be turning to COBRA PUMA Golf’s popular coach, Alex Elliott, who has nearly 30,000 YouTube subscribers and almost 50,000 Instagram followers. Alex’s remit will be to address the main swing flaws holding Mike back, before turning his attention to fitness.

First, though, it was all about the clubs. Here's how Mike’s driver-to-wedge COBRA Golf fitting panned out at Silvermere in March…

Mike Harris Handicap: 9 Home Club: Hartley Wintney

“Like every golfer, I want to play better and cut my handicap. Distance is something I struggle with – I don’t get the ball out there that far off the tee, and that then puts pressure on my iron play, my short game and my putting. I’m looking forward to seeing how COBRA Golf can change up what I’ve got in my bag to give me better performance, and hopefully extra distance.”

Fitted for Driver: COBRA King F9 Yellow, 9˚ (set to +1), 45.5in, Project X HZRDUS Smoke 6.0 60 shaft Fairway wood: COBRA King F9 Yellow 3-4 (set to -1), 43in, Project X HZRDUS Red 6.0 75 shaft Utility irons: COBRA King Black Utility 2-3 and 3-4 set to 18˚ and 21.5, Recoil F4 Smacwrap stiff flex graphite shafts Irons 5-PW: COBRA King Forged Tec Black One-Length, 1˚ flat, -¼in, Recoil F4 Smacwrap stiff flex graphite shafts Wedges: COBRA King Black Versatile Grind 50˚, 54˚ & 58˚, 1˚ flat, variable length KBS C-Taper Lite stiff flex 110 Shafts All clubs: Lamkin Rel Black Connect Grip

James White’s fitting analysis

Driver: Mike’s current driver fitted him pretty well, but the King F9 SPEEDBACK pushed ball speed up by 5mph, which equated to 12 yards more carry and 19 more yards in total. Putting the heavier 14g weight at the front gave Mike a little less backspin, a more penetrating flight and about 250 yards total distance.

Fitter James quickly found the right COBRA King F9 Speedback driver for Mike's swing

Fairway wood: Again, Mike hit his current 3-wood pretty well, but the trajectory was a little flat. Mike preferred the feel of a slightly heavier shaft, and switching to a slightly shorter shaft improved his strike too. It gapped perfectly with his driver, rolling out to 230 yards.

Mike enjoyed tangible performance gains with his new COBRA King F9 Speedback driver and fairway wood

Utility irons: This was a good test for us as Mike loves his current utility irons. Our King Utility irons feature interchangeable shafts and adjustable heads so we were able to really fine tune performance. Mike ended up with Recoil F4 graphite shafts, which gave him the ball flight he was looking for and a little more ball speed.

The adjustable King Black Utility irons were able to outperform Mike's existing 'old faithfuls'

Irons: Our King Tech Black was similar to Mike’s existing forged iron with a slightly bigger cavity, and Mike was open to trying the same graphite shaft as in his new utility irons. It worked really well, and the overall package delivered the same peak height, a little more forgiveness and nine more yards. Mike was also open to trying One-Length, and the greater consistency he achieved, together with ideal gapping, persuaded him to take the plunge

Wedges: Mike found One-Length wedges went a little high for his liking and was more comfortable reverting to variable length. We tested all three of our current grinds in the King Black - Versatile, Classic and Widelow – and Versatile worked best. We went for 50˚, 54˚ and 58˚, which gave him perfect gapping from his set pitching wedge.

Three King Black wedges in the Versatile grind gave Mike his ideal short-game line-up

Mike’s feedback I really enjoyed this fitting session and will be excited to see how my 2019 season unfolds. The driver gains in terms of ball speed and distance were very encouraging, and it’s a great-looking club too. I was also delighted to find utility irons that performed well as those are my real ‘go to’ clubs.

Fitter James talks Mike through his 3-wood data

Then, of course, I have two major departures on the iron front – One-Length and graphite shafts. I really would have been up for anything this year, but the consistency, feel and performance I got from that combination was a revelation. I will certainly be studying the COBRA Connect data carefully to see how things are progressing!

Be sure to check back in a couple of months to find out not only how I’ve been scoring with my new clubs, but also how my lessons and fitness sessions with Alex Elliott are shaping up.

Jeremy Ellwood
Contributing Editor

Jeremy Ellwood has worked in the golf industry since 1993 and for Golf Monthly since 2002 when he started out as equipment editor. He is now a freelance journalist writing mainly for Golf Monthly across the whole spectrum from courses and Rules to equipment and instruction. He also edits The Golf Club Secretary Newsletter, a highly regarded trade publication for golf club secretaries and managers, and has authored or co-authored three books and written for a number of national papers including The Telegraph and The Independent. He is a senior panelist for Golf Monthly's Top 100 UK & Ireland Course Rankings and has played all of the Top 100 plus 91 of the Next 100, making him well-qualified when it comes to assessing and comparing our premier golf courses. He has now played well over 950 golf courses worldwide in 35 countries, right across the spectrum from the humblest of nine-holers in the Scottish Highlands to the very grandest of international golf resorts, but put him on a links course anywhere and he will be blissfully content.

Jezz can be contacted via Twitter - @JezzEllwoodGolf

Jeremy is currently playing...

Driver: Ping G425 LST 10.5˚ (draw setting), Mitsubishi Tensei AV Orange 55 S shaft

3 wood: Ping G425 Max 15˚ (set to flat +1), Mitsubishi Tensei AV Orange 65 S shaft

Hybrid: Ping G425 17˚, Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro Orange 80 S shaft

Irons 3-PW: Ping i525, True Temper Dynamic Gold 105 R300 shafts

Wedges: Ping Glide 4.0 50˚ and 54˚, 12˚ bounce, True Temper Dynamic Gold 105 R300 shafts

Putter: Ping Fetch 2021 model, 33in shaft (set flat 2)

Ball: Varies but mostly now TaylorMade Tour Response