When the TaylorMade R9 landed in the Golf Monthly office there were no shortage of possible takers. The simple, classic looks combined with face and weight adjustability meant that just about every member of the GM team (high and low handicappers alike) could see a possible benefit of having it in the bag.

But having travelled to Spain to be there as it was secretly unveiled to Sergio Garcia, written a three page world exclusive feature about the R9 and then attended the official launch in Dubai, I felt it was my right to be the first to take it for a spin. Needless to say, the R9 spent just a few hours in the office before it made its way into my bag!

On Friday the GM team travelled to Remedy Oak in Dorset for our first official office ‘Order of Merit’ event of the year and so I had the chance to see it in action. The first thing I noticed is that the impact noise is ‘duller’ than previous r7 offerings – this gives it an extremely powerful feel. I found it produced good distance (although not noticeably longer then my previous model) and impressive control. As I became more confident with my driving I felt comfortable shaping the ball off the tee with the R9 – a very helpful attribute on a tight tree-lined course.

Overall, the TaylorMade R9 is a very impressive driver that looks as good in the bag as it does behind the ball. Set to a neutral setting on the course, I had previously tinkered with the weights and face angle on the range. This is really good fun to do and will certainly help many golfers find benefits such as straighting up a crooked flight. For anyone looking in the driver market, this is well worth a try!