Being a wedge freak, one of the first places I headed at this year’s PGA Merchandise Show, which began today in Orlando, was to TaylorMade-adidas Golf to check out the new ATV (All-Terrain Versatility) wedge. TMaG calls the ATV wedge “the most versatile” wedge in golf. Brian Bazzel, product creation manager for irons, putters and wedges at TMaG, explains:
“Prior to the introduction of the ATV, the wedge is a piece of equipment that traditionally forces a player to sacrifice a certain shot type,” Bazzel said. “The ATV wedge is engineered to perform beautifully on a multitude of different types of shots, including chips, pitches, sand shots, full shots from fairway, out of the rough, off hardpan, flop shots and bump-and-runs.”
Basically the ATV wedge takes the guess work out of the bump and grind equation of wedges. The ATV wedges were designed by Clay Long – who designed many clubs for Jack Nicklaus – and the TMaG research and design team. Long worked on the address shape of the wedges and the R and D team worked on the soles.
“The amount of people who understand bounce and grind is next to none,” Bazzel said. “Talk to retailers and they’re being SKU’d to death. If someone is telling you need 150 different wedges to cover all the situations on the golf course, there’s an issue with the product.
Most amateur golfers, Bazzel said, simply choose medium bounce wedges. PGA Tour players, however, tend to go for two types of wedges – one with a high bounce and one with a low bounce.
“It’s really not about one bounce anymore, but having the right shape and bounce for the shot trying to hit or swing trying to make,” Bazzel said. “You won’t find a bounce number etched anywhere into the ATV club head because the sole takes on different bounces depending on how you position the club for the type of shot you’re hitting, including where your hands are positioned in relation to the club head and depending on whether the face is square or to what degree it’s open.”