The G430 range is something which PING are extremely excited about, with a high uptake in the drivers from their staff players and more importantly, a couple of wins on tour before the products have even gone on public sale.
Ping are being bold and brash about G430. They’re fast, long and of course they’re still forgiving.
There are three different options to choose from in the new G430 Fairways - the Max, LST and SFT. The Max is the standard head, and I will be reviewing this one today.
G430 is all about saving weight due to a new Carbonfly wrap, distributing weight elsewhere to lower the CG. The lightweight composite crown wraps into both the heel and toe of the head, which saves 10g of weight to improve launch and increase ball speed.
It is also said to improve the sound at impact, whilst a tungsten weight at the back of the head improves forgiveness.
The face has had a revamp, the maraging steel is thinner and stronger than ever before and wraps into the sole and crown to increase flexion.
A variable face thickness which is geared towards the toe is said to maximise ball speed on centre strikes.
Once again we see Spinsistency, with the curvature of the face helping to keep spin more stable in various areas when not hitting the ball from the sweet spot. Ping say that you can gain up to 5 yards more carry distance on strikes that are low on the face compared to the G425.
Ping G430 Max Fairway Wood Review
Looks and Feel
The G430 Max has a shallow face and a low profile in the head, it's a very simple matte black colour with none of Ping's trademark turbulators.
There is a small white dot on the crown to help with alignment, but nothing else. It is clean, understated and robust.
The strike feels light and slightly hollow with a bit of a ting sound but don't let this alarm you, it feels light and easy in a good way. Whereas TaylorMade woods seem to sound thick and heavy, this is the opposite, so it really depends on your sound preferences.
One of the key points to mention is when I hit one out of the bottom of the face expecting to lose distance, I did not. That shot actually flew the furthest out of all of my testing. Maybe the Spinsistency technology is helping to save the day?
This is the fastest and longest fairway wood of 2023 so far.
Trackman testing showed that it produced very quick average ball speeds of 128mph combined with spin numbers of 2900rpm which equated to some long yardages - 196 yards in the air and a total of 222 yards.
What I was really impressed with was that even when I caught a shot from the bottom of the face the spin rate was only marginally above 3000rpm, which meant that the ball still travelled up over 200 yards.
Where my testing didn't stack up as well as normal was consistency, I don't know if I was trying too hard to gain the yardage but I had a few too many down the left hand side as well as more front to back dispersion than normal.
The difference between these front and back numbers was higher than I would expect from a Ping fairway, but I still think this was human error rather than anything to do with the clubs.
Ping G430 Max Fairway Wood Verdict
This club is the fastest and furthest in ball speed and distance out of my testing so far this year, and that is not something that I have said in any of my four years of testing with Golfalot or when using Ping clubs as a professional.
Ping stated that I would get four yards in distance gains, and they delivered.
The head is a little harder to line up than most due to the lack of alignment aid, which may have also added to my left shots, but this also makes it lean towards the better player's preferences.
Ping have really moved the needle with the G430 Max, the only thing to put you off is the price tag at £350. This is a new era for Ping, you no longer substitute forgiveness for distance.
Who Is It Aimed At?
The Max head is the workhorse of the Ping family, it is suited to the masses. However if you do need help with lining the face up, this clean head won't do that.
Would I Use It?
100%. I need more distance and forgiveness and this club gives me that. My poor shots are usually short rather than crooked, and this club helped those thin strikes stay in the air.
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Ping G430 Irons Review
Callaway Paradym Fairway Wood Review