Krank Golf F6 1.5-4.0 degrees with House of Forged 72 gram XX or XXX shafts.
Right now my set up is a XXX tipped an inch with a 3.5 degree head. I’ve hit as low of loft as 1.5 with an XX shaft.
Krank Golf, Tour Striker, Tornado Tee, Puma/Cobra
I qualified for the World Long Drive Championships in 2013, 2015 and 2016.
Last year I had the Grid Record at the Rockwell Long Drive event with a drive of 452 yards. In that set I hit three balls over 430 yards! The record was broke this year but winds were around 20 mph downwind!
I have won the Arizona Championship Division series twice in 2014 and 2015.
Longest drive in competition:
I was at around 5000 altitude and there was a slight left to right crosswind only a few miles an hour. I needed to win my last set to get into the finals at the Rockwell and I hit a ball at 437 and knew I won the set so I kept building off that drive and unleashed a freak ball.
Fastest swing speed recorded:
148 on Trackman. When I am competing I am normally in the mid 140’s.
What led you to choose your particular equipment specifications?
There is a lot of trial and error when it comes to a long drive set up. I have gone through phases where I play a very low lofted driver (under 2 degrees) with a softer shaft (XX tipped) or a slightly higher loft with a stiffer shaft. It’s all about finding the right combination to get the dynamic loft and launch. My set up for the World Championships is going to be a 3.5-4 degree head with a 3x shaft tipped an inch. I am hitting more of a mid trajectory compared to last year.
Do you favor a particular shot shape to hit it long?
It depends on the conditions. My 452 ball was a fade. I can hit draws and fades but I would say overall my shot would be a slight draw. It’s all about hitting the middle of the face and getting the right launch. Last year I was launching it too high and found it hard to control under pressure when I was hitting up on the ball 10 degrees. I would also use a 4” tee and tee it as high as possible. Now I’m teeing it a little lower and hitting more of a mid trajectory that will work in any wind condition.
Do you use any training aids to work on your speed and power?
I used some overspeed techniques starting out four years ago and still use them to maintain my speed. Swinging shafts with one arm, swinging lighter driver heads with both arms combined with heavier clubs.
I like hitting drivers with a pool noodle over the shaft as well.
I hurt my thumb last years swinging full speed with a weighted club so I don’t do much Over/Underspeed training anymore.
I have changed my swing a lot over the years and the most important thing is to have an efficient swing. Just improving your timing and greatly increase speed.
Do you use any other types of training to hit it further?
I like to swing ropes attached to the grip to improve my sequencing. I tend to get vertical on the downswing with my inclination and early extend so I my right arm thrusts too soon. It’s a great drill to keep me in my inclination and apply more rotation through the shot compared to standing up and thrusting.
Is there any particular bit of advice you would give the regular amateur for him or her to hit the ball longer?
Hit the middle of the face. I know it sounds like the obvious answer but taking foot spray and hit 10 drives and see where you are hitting it on the face.
For speed, learning how…
Read the rest of what Jim has to say about the Long Drive in the February 2017 Monthly Handicap Improver here: