We have reached the end of our countdown, and coming in at #1 on our list of the top posts of 2014 is a behind-the-scenes look at the Titleist Player Research Team.
We catch up with Product Testing Manager Rich Daprato, Player Research Supervisor Karen Gray and other members of the Player Testing Team to get a better sense of the important role that live player testing plays in the development of Titleist golf balls.
Check out the original post below from October, 7 2014.
How Do You Test a Golf Ball? Meet the Titleist Player Research Team.
“How do you test a golf ball?”
It’s a fairly straightforward question but as you can imagine, when your focus is designing and developing the #1 ball in golf there are countless paths and roads that the journey to finding the answer will take. However, the one constant is that this journey always starts with the golfer.
And our player research team is on the front lines of this mission each and every day. From traveling around the globe to test prototypes with golfers of every skill level to hitting thousands of golf balls to record launch conditions, this team plays a critical role in the golf ball R&D process.
Collecting the launch condition data and working with golfers to understand how they are approaching impact is essential to developing the tests that will help guide product development.
“Whatever launch condition we achieved with the players we want to try and replicate that with a robot,” said Product Testing Manager Rich Daprato.
“Because of the repeatability of the robot we can test large amounts of samples and get real tight data groups.”
Armed with the data, the robots get to work on specific tests but then the journey comes back full circle as product validation is only achieved after extensive player testing.
“We want to know who you are and why you love the game and how we can make products that perform best for you,” said Player Research Supervisor Karen Gray.
So how do you a test a golf ball?
It’s a long process that involves a lot of people and best-in-class technology but most importantly, it begins and ends with the golfer.