By Jason Bruno
One of the most respected and talented golf ball creators of the last 25 years,
Dean Snell produced many of the games best tour golf balls for companies like
Titleist and TaylorMade. Among those, the original Pro V1 and TaylorMade's
Penta, Lethal, and their current line of Project A, and Tour Preferred models.
Just recently, Snell has gone out on his own and launched his own brand: Snell
Golf. Dean's concept was to bring his own premium cast-urethane ball straight
to your door at a price far more affordable than the typical tour caliber ball that
retails for $50+ per dozen. As a result of lower overhead and a marketing budget
that does not rival the trillions the industry leaders will spend, Snell has carved
out a business model that he calls "Golf's New Way".
There are a few new balls on the market in 2015 that have figured out this new
concept of tour performance at a great value, but Snell's prior experience as a
master in the field gave us great anticipation of testing his new creation.
Snell's "MY TOUR BALL" is priced at $31.99 shipped direct to your door. The
MTB is a 350 dimple three piece cast urethane tour quality ball. Knowing
Dean's work over the past several years, there were high expectations for
his first release as a solo act. When my test samples arrived, I took them
directly to the course.
Truthfully, most tour caliber urethane golf balls give similar distance #'s off
the driver (although that doesn't stop many companies from boasting about
gigantic yardage gains). Golf ball preference at the highest levels of performance
come down to 3 factors: ability to hold it's line into crosswinds, trajectory and
most importantly, greenside feel and control.
We started testing the MTB in mid February in windy South Florida. It was easy to
see that Snell's new sphere bored through all types of crosswinds, was plenty long
and felt softer around the greens than ANY other new ball we tested. The value &
performance of this ball might have the industry leader hoping that Snell's business
model doesn't gain traction.
Here were my driver test specs using the Snell MTB:
SS: 104 Ball Speed:154 LA: 14.1 Spin: 2461 Carry: 252 Total: 272
Driver specs with Titleist Pro V1X (2014 model)
SS:103 Ball Speed:151 LA:13.5 Spin: 2691 Carry:248 Total: 266
With a compression between 80-85, the Snell MTB feels much softer than most
premium tour golf balls. For comparison, the Titleist Pro V1x (2014 model) has
100 compression and feels much firmer. Although the Driver performance #'s
were very similar with both golf balls, with the Snell MTB we averaged a 6 yard
gain (after 20 shots with each - throwing out the two longest & shortest with
each ball). Everyone likes a few extra yards from the tee, but Shortgame wise,
it's all preference. If you prefer a slightly softer feel around the greens, this is
a ball that might be right up your alley.
If there is any ding in our evaluation of Snell's new creation, it's only cosmetic
-we'd like to see a refined MTB side stamp logo with a more pronounced aim
line . . . but certainly anybody can grab a Sharpie and draw a line if need be,
clearly I'm nit picking.
Some will never try the ball because of the lack of retail availabilty in stores,
but if you order a dozen, you'll likely order again & again based on the value
and performance of the product.
We know it's a big statement, but it wouldn't be far off to say that Dean took
all of his know how over the last 25+ years and somehow came up with his
best work yet. If you like low spin off the big stick, and soft buttery feel off
the wedges & putter, this ball is a MUST try - especially at a cost of nearly
20 bucks less per dozen than the industry standard.
For those higher handicap players seeking a distance ball with a soft feel,
Snell has the two piece "Get Sum" (the name came from Snell & his buddies
talking smack to each other on the course after big drives or a great shot)
which has similar feel and performance of the Wilson Duo, or Callaway's
Supersoft. $20.99 shipped directly to the consumer.
For more info or to purchase Snell Golf Balls: http://snellgolf.com/