TaylorMade GAPR Fittings: 8 and 16 Handicap Readers

See what happened when two Golf Monthly readers got fitted for TaylorMade GAPR utility clubs

(Image credit: Mike Prior)

Golf Monthly readers Alex Malpass (8) and Andrew Judkins (16) enjoy TaylorMade GAPR fittings with the brand's Matt Byrne at West Hill GC in Surrey

TaylorMade GAPR Fittings: 8 and 16 Handicap Readers

For most of us, the middle part of our 14-club line-up tends to take care of itself via our iron set, with decisions then to be made over our ideal wedge and long-range selections.

With greater choice than ever, and many golfers now carrying more wedges, getting things spot-on at the long end can be tricky. TaylorMade launched its new GAPR range in mid-2018 to address that very problem and make it easier for golfers of all abilities to find their ideal gap-bridging options at the long end of their sets

RELATED: TaylorMade GAPR Range Review

“One of the most difficult problems to solve is the gapping distance between maybe the longest iron and the fairway wood,” Matt Byrne, fitting tour manager for TaylorMade, told us when we went along to West Hill with readers Alex Malpass and Andrew Judkins to help them fine tune the longer end of their bags.

GAPR has been conceived to plug that gap for all ranges of golfers via three models – HI, MID and LO – which both look and launch differently, performing pretty much as you would expect from their names, with varying degrees of playability and forgiveness.”

TaylorMade GAPR Range Review

TaylorMade's GAPR range comprises LO, MID and HI models

Could Matt help Alex and Andrew pinpoint their ideal GAPR? Here’s how they got on…

Alex Malpass Handicap: 8 Club: Hinckley GC Fitted for: TaylorMade GAPR MID 4, 21˚, stiff shaft

Fitter analysis Alex doesn’t carry woods or hybrids and has both a 2- and 3-iron. He has a good swing with good speed but generates quite a low flight. To help him flight it more we looked at a GAPR MID to serve as a 2-iron replacement as he struggles with traditional woods and hybrids as result of his swing.

Matt helped Alex find one TaylorMade GAPR club to replace his 2- and 3-irons

A GAPR MID no.4 with 21˚ of loft generated the same club speed as his 2-iron, but crucially gave him 7-8mph more ball speed and 15 more yards with a better flight. It could replace both his 2- and 3-iron leaving him further options elsewhere.

Alex’s on-course feedback I’m loving my new GAPR MID now. My first round with it was very erratic and I was getting frustrated as I'd been ripping it during the fitting. But I went down to the range to iron a few things out and I'm now hitting it consistently and growing in confidence.

Alex has been extremely happy with the performance so far from his TaylorMade GAPR MID

A local range has Trackman in every bay so it's been great seeing the results. I'm carrying it a solid 205-210 yards and have been able to work a nice soft fade which I've never been able to do with hybrids or woods, so I'm really pleased.

Alex’s key stats Ball speed (mph) Before: 129.4 After: 137.7

Carry distance (yards) Before: 195 After: 210

Both Alex and Andrew were fitted for the TaylorMade GAPR MID model

Andrew Judkins Handicap: 16 Club: Worlebury GC Fitted for: TaylorMade GAPR MID 4, 21˚, regular shaft, standard loft, ½in shorter

Fitter analysis Andrew’s problem was two clubs fulfilling a similar role – a 21˚ hybrid and a 23˚ utility iron. His longest iron was a 5-iron so I wanted to simplify the gap between that and his high-launching 3-wood. First, we tried a GAPR HI no.3, but that didn't suit Andrew’s eye, so again, we ended up with a GAPR MID no.4.

Andrew was looking for one TaylorMade GAPR to plug the gap between his 3-wood and 5-iron

Ball speed was the key. He was creating a bit more ball speed with a higher launch and less spin than with both his current clubs, and that mixture yielded 16 yards more total distance. Making the shaft ½in shorter got the club sitting perfectly too.

Andrew’s on-course feedback When GAPR was released it caught my attention because, as a senior golfer with a deliberate swing speed, I struggle with long irons and can’t seem to hit hybrids consistently. First use at the driving range confirmed Matt’s fitting was spot on.

Andrew has found his new TaylorMade GAPR MID a very versatile club

I found it very easy to hit, with lots of speed off the face and a penetrating ball flight - ideal for short par 4s and the links courses I play. It has become a go-to club, as it’s easy to hit different shots with it and mishits are not severely punished. I’m seriously considering adding a lower-lofted GAPR MID too to replace my fairway wood.

Andrew’s key stats Long-end gap to fill Approx. 8.5˚

Carry distance (yards) Before: 168 After: 178

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. He is an expert on the Rules of Golf having qualified through an R&A course to become a golf referee. 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 1,000 golf courses worldwide in 35 countries, from the humblest of nine-holers in the Scottish Highlands to the very grandest of international golf resorts. He reached the 1,000 mark on his 60th birthday in October 2023 on Vale do Lobo's Ocean course. 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