By Mike Stachura
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: Focused on the needs of average women golfers looking for a way to launch the ball higher more easily, Callaway’s Reva golf ball is made with a slightly larger diameter. That raises the ball’s center compared to a standard ball, providing greater opportunity for the center of gravity of the golf club to be lower than the ball’s midline. The ball complements the latest Big Bertha Reva line of clubs, also focused on average women golfers.
THE DEEP DIVE: With recent data from Foresight Sports suggesting that on the low end, the average female-recreational player drives the ball as short as 140 yards and carries a 7-iron as little as 65 yards, any product that’s directed toward injecting more distance for this segment will have an immediate audience.
But the new Callaway Reva ball isn’t going about the task of getting more distance for women through some sort of flubber-based magic compound that exponentially injects ball speed beyond the possibilities of physics. Rather, the Reva’s design simply wants to make what slower swings do at impact with the ball more effective, good strikes and bad. In short, the Reva is trying to make distance easier with what you’re bringing to the table already.
The Reva uses an oversize design that pushes the ball’s diameter to 1.73 inches. In terms of volume, that makes the ball nine percent larger, but more practically, it raises the ball’s midpoint by three percent. That change facilitates distance in two ways. First, it helps the center of gravity of the club stay below the center of the ball for higher launch. That relationship also can help shots launch with lower spin. High launch and low spin are big keys for distance, and not just for the most solid strikes. It also mitigates the negative effects of some high-spinning off-center strikes, too.
The Reva ball’s design goals were very much in line with Callaway’s recently developed line of women’s clubs, said Alan Hocknell, the company’s senior vice president of research and development.
“Consistent with the Big Bertha Reva golf clubs, there’s an intent here to give women golfers a lot of help, particularly in launching the ball more consistently, having the ball spend more time in the air, more carry, so it’s great for distance, great for getting over hazards and landing shots on the green,” he said. “One of the main things we wanted to do here is make this ball the easiest to launch of any of the balls in our line. That slight change in the diameter of the ball has a tremendous positive impact in people being able to launch the ball more consistently when they don’t make perfect contact.”
The Reva also is a lower compression offering to provide slower swingers with the feel they prefer, while the ionomer cover lessens spin on tee shots and helps with higher launch, as well.
The Reva comes in sparkling white and pink and will be in stores April 21