What we say...
TaylorMade’s second-generation of their hit club golfer Tour Response ball, includes a new dimple pattern, revolutionary alignment aid and a cast urethane cover.
For years, amateur golfers were starved of credible golf ball options designed specifically for them. Now, average swing speed club golfers now have an abundance of ball choices with all of the big brands spotting the gap in the market and producing tour ball quality models that are right for everyday players.
For us, TaylorMade’s Tour Response has been the best in this category since its first generation launched back in January 2020… and now there’s a new and improved version.
If you’re not familiar with the Tour Response, don’t be thinking that it is just a cheaper, lower-performance alternative to TaylorMade’s tour-level TP5. It’s most definitely not.
The 2022 Tour Response comes with the same Tour Flight dimple pattern, the same cast urethane cover and the same mantle material (HFM) as the TP5. The only real difference is that, rather than having the five-layer construction and 87 compression, which allows TaylorMade to dial in the specific spin characteristics that some higher speed players need, the Tour Response has three layers and 70 compression. In layman’s terms, this is a tour quality ball for non-tour players.
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The shift towards more club golfer optimised balls has also seen a rise in models that help with alignment. TaylorMade joined that party with great success when they created the TP5 Pix in 2019, a ball that provides better feedback on alignment and roll. Now they’re bringing alignment tech into the Tour Response with the addition of ‘Stripe’.
Let’s take a closer look at the new Tour Response.
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TaylorMade Tour Response Golf Ball (2022)
Who is the Tour Response for?
While it has been designed for all club golfers, it’s likely to be adopted with enthusiasm by any golfer who can honestly say, “I’m not good enough to play a tour ball”, “I don’t swing fast enough for a tour ball” or “tour balls are just too expensive for me to play”. From our experience testing the original Tour Response, the model is a very credible alternative to Titleist’s Pro V1 for average speed golfers (that’s 92mph with a driver).
It’s all about the cover
TaylorMade say urethane covered balls are flat-out better performers than ionomer models, and that thinking comes down to how urethane engages more with the grooves of a wedge or iron at impact. Urethane bites into the grooves, especially around the green, which gives additional spin and control.
Not all urethane covers are equal, though. TaylorMade say the Tour Response is the only sub-£40 ball on the market to have a 100% cast urethane cover, which they argue improves production and performance consistency.
Tour Flight dimples and soft feel
TaylorMade’s TP5 and TP5x balls have Tour Flight dimples and now, so does the Tour Response. By reducing dimple depth but making the bottom area wider, TaylorMade say golfers get reduced drag from launch to peak height, but also more air flowing into each dimple as the ball falls from the sky, which keep shots in the air for longer.
With lots of club golfers loving soft-feeling golf balls, the Tour Response has a 70 compression. TaylorMade say a firmer mantle layer stiffens up performance, so there’s great energy transfer at impact, which prevents the ball losing power through behaving like a marshmallow, which can come from just chasing low compression.
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360º Clearpath Alignment
Some 40% of the golf balls sold by TaylorMade are now within the “visual space” – that’s anything other than plain white – and it’s a fast-growing area. By 2023 TaylorMade say the figure will be over 50%, which is why their engineers have focused on helping golfers with alignment, feedback, visibility and awareness with the striking new Tour Response Stripe. A 360º stripe around the ball helps visualise the path of putts more easily, and highlights your aim.
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Tested: TaylorMade Tour Response golf ball
Equipment Editor Simon Daddow and Digital Editor Rob Jerram have both been huge fans of the Tour Response since the 2020 original, and it is their ball of choice.
We love how it feels like a ball designed specifically for us. Our data has it down as a cracking across-the-board performer. It was fast with a driver and iron (second in both categories in our club golfer’s ball test), which translates to being our longest 7-iron and third-longest driver ball, so there’s no giving up distance to get wedge spin (which came in just 6% less than a Pro V1 at average swing speeds).
The big decision now is whether or not to try the new Stripe model. We were sceptical about the chunky alignment stripe, but on-course testing highlighted just what the idea brings to the party.
As well as aligning the ball on the green (and seeing its roll), we loved setting it up squarely at the flag on par 3s or the centre cut of the fairway from the tee. Some golfers will love the extra confidence the stripe fosters; for those that don’t the standard Tour Response is a proven performer.
TaylorMade know the Stripe won’t float every golfer’s boat, even though they say it can improve putt alignment consistency by 20%, so there will also be plain white and yellow options.
What TaylorMade say about the Tour Response
“Tour Response already separated itself from the competition with overall materials and performance, but now with Tour Response Stripe it will also give golfers the feedback needed to boost their performance on the greens.
“We have seen many professional and recreational golfers take advantage of Clear Path Alignment in our pix golf balls, and now with the 360° design of Tour Response Stripe, alignment aid gets even easier for the everyday golfer.”
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