What we say...
The Callaway Epic Speed fairway wood is about as hot as they come.
Alongside three new drivers for 2021, Callaway released two new fairway woods, the Callaway Epic Speed and Callaway Epic Max.
Callaway say the two new fairway woods represent a "fundamental shift in the fairway wood category", with fast set to get faster, long going to get longer, and straight going to get a lot straighter.
This is made possible, they say, by a big improvement to the 'Jailbreak' titanium bars that have sat behind the face of every Callaway driver since 2016, connecting the crown to the sole and stiffening the face to improve ball speeds.
For 2021, Callaway have managed to angle the two bars and spread them out, which creates higher ball speeds across more of the face.
Given that Callaway have found ways to boost speeds across the entire Epic 2021 range, and that the Speed driver and fairways are designed to focus on speeds even more than the rest of the range, you should have an idea that the Epic Speed fairway is about as hot as they come.
For golfers who want maximum speed and distance from their fairway woods – we're particularly thinking of those who like to use them off the tee a lot, or golfers who just need a little extra distance on their second shot to reach a par-5 or long par-4 green in two – the Epic Speed could be just what the doctor ordered.
Most golfers will find the head shape of the Epic Speed fairway wood more pleasing to the eye than its sibling, the Epic Max. Whether the Epic Max's oversized head gives you extra confidence, though, is a personal preference.
If you struggle to hit fairway woods consistently or find it hard to get sufficient launch to make them a viable option, you may be better suited to the Epic Max. But if you're a confident striker of fairway woods and want hot, penetrating ball flights with maximum distance and consistent spin, the Epic Speed will be a fantastic option for you.
Verdict: Callaway Epic Speed Fairway Wood
As more golfers realise bigger fairways boost forgiveness, cute little heads are disappearing fast. But if that is your thing you really need to look at the Epic Speed – it’s a cracker.
As much as we liked it though, it’s worth sprinkling a bit of reality into any buying decision. At some stage you’ll face a fairway wood approach over sand or water into a par 5. And our 2021 Fairway Wood Test data shows how a slightly necky Epic Speed fairway is likely to cost you 25 yards (which means a sandy or watery grave for your ball), while the more forgiving Epic Max (with a drop off of just 13 yards) is much more likely to see you over the danger and keep your score going. Just be warned.
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Callaway Epic Speed fairway woods
Lofts: 13.5° (3W+) / 15° (3W) / 16.5° (4W) / 18° (5W) / 21° (7W)
Stock shaft options: Project X Cypher / Project X Hzrdus Smoke IM10 / Mitsubishi MMT
Adjustable hosel: Yes