Can the HOVR Drive restore this Hacker’s faith in Under Armour Golf?
Over the past couple of years, Under Armour Golf has become an afterthought for this Hacker when it comes to not only apparel, but shoes as well. I felt that UA Golf was going through a lull period after riding the massive success of Jordan Spieth and his Major successes. That was until this year; Under Armor released a golf shoe that was so intriguing that I was willing to give them a chance to redeem themselves in my book; and that shoe is the HOVR Drive. The HOVR Drive offered something which I was not use to seeing with Under Armour products. Subtlety and style which wasn’t over the top, flashy, or too distracting. As soon as I saw these shoes when they released I wanted to put them to the test.
Under Armour’s HOVR Drive shoe comes in two colors: black and white. These neutral colors are very easy to pair with any outfit whether you dress traditionally, or more like Jordan Speith. The HOVR Drive has subtle hints of navy sprinkled throughout the shoe which make them easy on the eyes. The HOVR Drive shoes are accented with two 3M reflective eyelets on each side which are used to hold the blended white and navy laces. The HOVR Drive has a bit of what I’d call “traditional UA styling” with bold red coloring on the inside of the toe box and on the heel. The red offers a nice pop off color and compliments the white and navy perfectly.
The HOVR Drive is a truly athletic looking golf shoe designed to perform at your local Muni as well as the PGA Tour. The HOVR Drive features a few different areas for ventilation to keep your feet cool during the blistering summer heat. The UA branding is subtle with a logo on each side of the shoe and an additional one on the sole.
The HOVR Drive was built to be worn and tested to the limits! During my testing process (as well as my poor golfing skills) I encountered multiple scenarios where I found myself either in tall fescue or ankle deep in a mud just to get keep my ball in play. Each time the HOVR Drive was able to keep me stable and dry no matter where my ball ended up. My swing is beautifully accented (heavy sarcasm) with a deep front toe drag. That toe drag abuse usually wears shoes out faster than normal, and way faster than my wallet would like! That wasn’t the case with the HOVR Drive; toe drag after toe drag these shoes have held up to and have yet to show any signs of wear…which is a HUGE plus for me! I’m less than impressed with the cleaning of these shoes. With previously owned golf shoes I was able to take a damp towel at the end of the round and wipe off any excess turf easily keeping my shoes looking nice and clean. The synthetic leather-esque materials the HOVR Drive is made of has left me with grass stained areas, which is highly disappointing.
Under Armour nailed performance with these shoes, especially when it comes to comfort. The HOVR Drive is equipped with Under Armour’s HOVR Cushioning system which is designed to give your foot stability while putting a little spring back in your step after chucking two shots within 50 yards of the green. Between multiple rounds of walking, and riding, I never found my feet aching or uncomfortable. Stability is another important feature I look at when selecting a golf shoe and having the heinous swing I do, stability is extremely important. The HOVR Drive is equipped with unique “Tornado Spikes” from SoftSpike. These cleats are specifically designed to help maintain stability throughout your swing and they did not disappoint! Another component which is important to me is waterproofing. Being from the Midwest; spring time golf conditions are less than ideal as a good amount of rounds experiencing some sort of rain. UA equipped HOVR Drive’s with their UA Storm Technology, which is just fancy wording for really good waterproofing. These shoes do an excellent job keeping your feet dry and comfortable no matter the conditions you may encounter while out on the course.
This shoe has restored this Hacker’s faith in Under Armour. You’d be hard pressed to find a spiked shoe that offers better comfort, style and performance than the UA HOVR Drive. Now if only I could play like Jordan Spieth while wearing them.
You can grab a pair for yourself at the link below:
Milled Putters – With their sleek designs and finely milled faces are a thing of beauty…and a guilty pleasure to most golfers because that beauty usually comes at a price…typically around $400! Ben Hogan Golf recently released their Precision Milled Forged Putter line; a lineup of 4 different fully milled and forged putters priced competitively at $250.00. I had to ask myself; can the new Hogan putters perform as well as their higher priced competitors?
Hogan’s Precision Milled Forged line comes in 4 classic putter shapes sure to grab the attention of any golfer. With minimal branding and a black oxide finish, the BHB01 offers a clean look that a wide range of golfers would appreciate. The BHB01 mirrors the classic tri-sole Ping Anser putter; a timeless design golfers flock to when looking for anew flat-stick. Each one can be customized with one of three different SuperStroke Grips. Offering a non-SuperStoke option for golfers like myself who use a traditional style rubber grip would be really nice, and the lack of grip options was one of my biggest issues with the Hogan putters! Each putter comes with a gorgeous blue leather head cover that features Ben Hogan’s famous signature branding.
Ben Hogan’s Precision Milled Forged Putters are made from 1020C carbon Steel which involves a multiple step forging process in order to enhance and strengthen the structure of the metal. That very complex process gives golfers like us a more forgiving putter that will perform consistently regardless of where you strike it. Being a putter review, I wanted to give hackers insight of how the BHB01 performs from typical putting distances.
The “I hope I don’t miss / 3 putt” distance 4 Ft – the BHB01 offers confidence from this range, with its soft face I was able to stand over all putts from this easily missable distance and hit putts confidently regardless of how bad the break was. the PGA tour average at the distance is 92%. I somehow made 87% of my putts from 4FT., with the other 13% either lipping out or just missing the mark.
The “1 Putt chance” distance – 10 ft
The BHB01 provides a solid feel trough contact that helps the ball release seamlessly off the face towards your “guestimed” target line. Whether the greens are lighting fast or slow and shaggy, you can rely on the BHB01 to provide you with exceptional feel and confidence giving you the best chance to make that putt. During my testing, I was able to make 24% of my putts, having 72% of the misses end up within 1-2 feet of the hole. Considering the PGA Tour putting average from this distance is 41% I will take these stats any day!
The “I hope I can get it close distance” - Lag Putt - 40FT
The BHB01 provides you with a solid weight to keep your stroke smooth from start to finish to help aid your distance control. All you have to do is pick your line and keep your tempo, the putter will do the rest and roll purely towards the hole. In testing, I was able to make a total of 3 putts at this distance with 85% of my putts ending up within a 4 FT radius of the hole.
Based off results alone, this Hacker feels the Ben Hogan Precision Milled Forged Line can compete with all the high-end milled putters currently available. With quality materials, classic design, and most importantly consistent performance, Hackers need to give Ben Hogan’s putters a chance to lower their chances of 3-putting!