As soon as I heard about the Pro model in Callaway's new Mavrik iron range, I was excited to get my hands on the set.
You get all of the benefits of Callaway's Artifical Intelligence, and the technologies that combine with it, but in a more compact head which promotes a better feel.
Sounds like the perfect blend, doesn't it? Let's take a closer look...
What It's All About?
The Mavrik Pro is aimed at the 'better player', but don't let the Pro name put you off. You don't have to have your own caddy and be practicing four hours a day to be worthy of these irons.
Having said that, they will appeal to the golfers who are still looking for a little more forgiveness and distance, but do not want to have to jump up to a chunky, offset head shape.
There's a slightly flatter lie angle and thinner topline in comparison to the Mavrik and Mavrik Max irons, helping to encourage a little easier workability and control.
Ok, you probably won't get the huge distance increases with the ball flying off the face every time you strike it, but there's still a bit of help for you.
This comes in the form of the Flash Face architecture, developed by Callaway's AI super-computer to generate a precise face design for every single loft of every single iron in the Mavrik range.
It combines with the brand's existing Cup Face technology to create a Flash Face Cup. This is said to significantly boost your ball speed and increase the consistency of your spin rates - helping to avoid those flyers that carry 20 yards over the green which occasionally can occur with strong-lofted, game-improvement irons.
Another area the AI has worked on is the sound. Callaway have introduced Urethane Microspheres to absorb vibrations and create a sound more familiar with a forged iron than a game-improvement one.
We've consciously adopted a maverick's rebellious and disruptive spirit to aid in our pursuit of better-performing equipment. Using AI is a great example of that approach. Since we started using AI to help us design better golf equipment, we've increased our understanding of its capabilities and power.
That's helped us to create innovative new features and technologies, like those in Mavrik equipment, that defy convention and promote performance beyond the golfer's expectation. As we embark on a new decade, we're confident in our ability to use AI to continue pushing boundaries through innovation.
Dr. Alan Hocknell, Callaway Senior Vice-President of R&D
As always, I like to test outdoors on the course to get an idea of how the irons really perform in a true game environment, before using a launch monitor to substantiate what I've seen and check that the numbers match up to the brand's claim.
So I headed to Prestbury Golf Club to play a few holes with the irons, hitting from the tee, fairway and rough, before venturing over to Trafford Golf Centre in order to collect data on the Flightscope launch monitor.
Callaway Mavrik Pro Irons Review
As Callaway suggest, the looks of the Pro were quite different to the other two. It was instantly visible that the topline was thinner with less offset. In my opinion it looked a lot more like a forged iron and so suited my eye because it was closer to what I usually use.
Basically, it was exactly how I'd want an iron to look with soft chrome features, and a great appearance at address.
The Pro felt great during my testing, I found myself falling in love quite quickly with these irons. The noise was like that of a forged iron, quiet and solid.
My first strike out on the course was ever so slightly thin and I could feel it in my fingers, but it still flew pretty nicely in the cold air all things considered.
The Pro irons are definitely not quite as forgiving as you get from the Mavrik and Mavrik Max, but you get better workability, better looks and more feel.
The shafts lengths are also ½ inch shorter than the Mavrik and Max, with the same Golf Pride Tour Velvet grip that I used on tour. Oh, the memories are coming flooding back of striking irons in the warmth of Dubai. Take me back...
During a longer session hitting balls on the range, I could clearly feel the ball coming off the face with more instant feedback.
With the chunkier irons it sometimes feels like the ball just springs off the face, whereas with the Mavrik Pro it felt like the ball actually spent some time on the face before it left.
Even though they are slightly smaller I was actually getting a lot of confidence when looking down at them. They weren’t too thin that I was worried about strike, but not too thick that they were off-putting. I was just thinking about scoring.
I tried the Pro from a typical winter lie in the rough – soft ground, thick grass, plenty of leaves. I was satisfied to see that I was able to get to the bottom of the ball quite nicely despite the lie- it came out a little low but that’s more that I was trying to flatten the flight down.
At the range I hit 5 shots out of 10 that you could throw a tablecloth over. The other 5 were all similar in direction and just a few yards shorter as my strike was a tad off. This type of consistency is exactly what I was hoping for from these irons. I want to know exactly how far a good shot will go and what the ball flight tendencies are, and how much distance I'll lose on a mishit.
I caught a couple of shots off the bottom of the club and I did lose a little bit of ball speed as it dipped down below 100mph – something that wasn’t as evident with the standard and the Max – and I suppose that this is the trade-off with this sleeker model.
My average carry of 153 yards and longest carry of 157 yards were 4 yards apart, which is excellent. Proves that you aren't going to get any of those scary fliers that I mentioned earlier!
These irons do still give you a little bit more speed and distance compared to a forged iron, for example, and yardage-wise I was consistently half a club longer than my current set. My 7 iron ball speed, averaging 102, was only 2mph short of LPGA average - something I am not usually close to!
The spin rates I generated were also good with the 7 iron averaging 6200rpm. Hopefully this settles any worries that you may have about irons like these, which do have relatively strong lofts, not spinning enough to hold a green.
I don't see this being a problem with the Mavrik Pro.
Callaway Mavrik Pro Irons Verdict
I’d put the Pro irons in my bag tomorrow. What a great looking and performing iron. It's very rare for me to find an iron which goes further than my current ones without dropping the spin rate, whilst also feeling great at the same time.
The one word that kept springing to mind whilst hitting these clubs was 'pure'. They were pure feeling, pure sounding and pure looking.
Out on the golf course, they were a little less forgiving than the Mavrik and Mavrik Max irons.
But that actually helped me to focus a little harder on the strike, which resulted in me hitting the Pro better than the other two. I loved these irons!
- Looks are fantastic
- Feels and sounds almost like a forged iron
- Plenty of distance whilst also producing plenty of spin
- Not as forgiving as other Mavrik models
- Chrome head marked up a little too easily