Wilson Triad Golf Balls – Key Takeaways

  • Cast urethane, three-piece ball for golfers who want to “break 80.”
  • High MOI due to balanced density in all three layers
  • 85 compression
  • $39.99 per dozen. Available Feb 15.

The new Wilson Triad might very well be one of the most innovative golf balls of 2022. Whether “innovative” actually means “better” is a different discussion but the tech story behind this ball is fairly compelling as is the go-to-market strategy.

Wilson introduced the Triad in New York City last night, hosting a media event at its new Wilson retail store on Broadway (more on that later). The Triad is aimed at a specific golfer: the aspiring player who’s striving to break 80. And, if we read the marketing tea leaves correctly, that aspiring player also happens to be on the young side, probably under 40.

If that sounds like you or if you like the idea of a cast-urethane, mid-compression ball for less than $40, then you may want to try the Triad.

Wilson Triad Golf Ball

Wilson Golf Balls: Under the Radar?                                                                                                           

MyGolfSpy’s 2021 ball test gave us several surprise performers, two of which were Wilson. Wilson’s Staff Model (and its unpainted brother, the Staff Model R) and the older Wilson DUO Professional should have raised your eyebrows a little. The 99-compression Staff Model finished first in driver ball speed for both low and mid-swing speeds and was in a virtual tie for first in high swing speeds (1/100th of an mph behind Titleist Pro V1x Left Dash).

The Staff Model was also among the top five balls for spin for 115 and 100 mph swing speeds and was in the top five for wedge spin. Perhaps the dark horse performer of the test was the 63-compression DUO Professional. The DUO Professional was one of the lowest-spinning balls throughout the test with the driver which is good if you want distance. It was in the top 10 in driver distance for both 85 and 100 MPH swing speeds. It was also among the lowest spinning balls with irons, which is good if you want distance. It’s not so good, however, if you want to do something crazy like stop the ball on a green.

The Triad is ostensibly replacing the DUO Professional but Wilson says it’s a different animal altogether.

Wilson Triad Golf Ball

Wilson Triad: The Tech Story

According to Wilson, the Triad is a three-piece cast-urethane cover ball designed for “the modern, athletic golfer” who’s trying to break 80.

Which raises the question: How the hell do you design a ball to do that?

Wilson’s answer: Design a ball that will hit more fairways, attack more pins and sink more putts.

Oh.

Well, one thing a ball can do to help the golfer hit more fairways is spin less off the tee. Think of Triad as a three-legged stool. What Wilson has done to minimize driver spin is the first leg of that stool.

The three parts of a three-piece golf ball have their own weights and densities, or weight per measured unit. A typical core might weigh around 36 grams with a density of 1.2 grams per cubic centimeter. The mantle layer is lighter (less than six grams) and less dense (0.98 grams/cc). Then there’s the urethane cover at less than four grams and 1.13 grams/cc.

Wilson Triad Golf Ball

What Wilson has done with Triad is make the core lighter and less dense while making the mantle a little heavier and denser. In fact, the density for each layer is the same: 1.13 grams per cubic centimeter.

That, says Wilson, impacts the ball’s moment of inertia.

“We know when we increase the moment of inertia, it lowers the spin rate,” says Frank Simonutti, Wilson’s Global Director of Golf Ball Innovation. “To do that, we moved material from the core to the mantle. Mantle density increased by 12 percent but it’s volume increased by only three percent.”

Does it reduce spin? On its face, yes. In our 115 mph test, the DUO Professional was the lowest spinning ball at 2,664 rpm. Wilson’s testing shows the firmer Triad at 2,382 rpm at the same swing speed.

RANKED: Best Performing Golf Balls 🏆

Looking for which golf balls performed best?

The Second Triad Leg: Spin

Common sense says, and our Ball Test data suggests, a ball that’s low spin off the driver isn’t going to be high spin off irons. The trick is to get enough spin on approach shots while keeping driver spin under control. To do that, designers need the right combination of a firm mantle layer backing up a soft, thin urethane cover.

How thin? The Triad’s cast-urethane cover is roughly 0.6 millimeters thin. That’s Srixon-level thin and Srixon has some of the thinnest covers in the business.

“Short irons and wedges, that’s all mantle and cover,” says Simonutti. “The thinner you make the cover, the more spin.”

Wilson’s test data compares Triad with what it considers comparable balls. These include the Titleist AVX and Tour Speed, Callaway Chrome Soft, Bridgestone RX and RXS and the Srixon Q-STAR Tour.

Not surprisingly, Triad outspun all comers in 7-iron testing at just over 7,400 rpm. That bested AVX by nearly 1,000 rpm, nearly 1,200 more than RX and RXS and 300 more than ChromeSoft.

The 56-degree wedge spin results were similar with Triad coming in at 10,280 rpm. That was only 85 more than Chrome Soft, but 600 more than AVX and 700 to 800 more than RX and RXS.

Two things to note here. As mentioned, the comps are balls Wilson considers the competition; urethane balls with compressions below 90 but above marshmallows. Second, the Triad will be selling at least $10 less per dozen than the three balls mentioned. It’s priced the same as the Titleist Tour Speed but more than the Srixon Q-STAR Tour.

The Last Leg

The third leg of the Triad is consistency. Wilson calls it Tri-Balanced construction, a patented technology that is basically an offshoot of the high MOI design. The theory is if all three layers of the ball are density balanced, then the ball should be perfectly balanced. And all three layers should be perfectly concentric.

Wilson is going all-in on the Triad for 2022. It’s being positioned as the ball for the player who’s getting better. They may not be ready for a $50 a dozen Tour ball but they’ve outgrown the two-piece ionomer ball.

“It’s a tweener. It’s for the player who’s on the cusp of breaking through,” says Wilson Golf Marketing VP Tom Gruger. “They’re ready for a better ball. Maybe not a $50 a dozen ball. But they’ve outgrown the two-piece Surlyn ball.”

Wilson views this as a wide demographic but it’s focusing on the under-40 age group. It’s creating a social media army called “Team Triad,” what Wilson is calling a “collective of golfers representing the ideals of the athletes Triad will help the most.”

Wilson Triad Golf Ball

One of the leaders of Team Triad will be Manolo Vega, a Southern California golf influencer and teacher with more than 680,000 Instagram followers. Fair warning: If you take your golf way too seriously, you won’t like him. If, however, you’re serious enough about golf want to get better but still want to have some fun, you’ll find him entertaining.

“He connects with a lot of the type of player we’re trying to reach,” says Tom Gruger, Wilson Golf’s Global Marketing VP. “The age demographic of the player who’s getting good is getting younger.”

And as always, there’s the requisite hashtag: #TrustInTriad.

The Wilson Store

The other star of the show was the new Wilson retail store. It’s in the heart of Manhattan, right on Broadway. And it’s not far from a huge adidas store and is rubbing shoulders with Forever 21, Ralph Lauren, Hugo Boss and Louis Vuitton.

Wilson Sporting Goods’ new ownership group includes Chip Wilson, the founder of Lululemon. His influence has spawned a growing line of sportswear. It’s mostly general sportswear and tennis apparel now but Wilson Golf President Tim Clarke promises golf apparel will be coming out over the next 12 to 16 months.

The flagship store in New York features a wide array of sportswear as well as tennis equipment and golf clubs and balls. In the rear of the store is a full golf simulator, a putting green, basketball hoop and tennis backboard.

The first Wilson store opened in Chicago, Wilson’s home base, earlier this year. A third store is planned for Los Angeles.

Clarke reminded the audience that Wilson was one of the founding partners of the LPGA. And he used the opportunity to introduce the newest member of Wilson’s pro staff, rising LPGA player Sophia Schubert, the 2017 U.S. Women’s Amateur champion.

Wilson has also unveiled its new van for the PGA TOUR. It’s a fully decked-out 18-wheeler, something Clarke says Wilson badly needed.

“If you’ve been out on Tour, you’ve probably seen what I called our horse trailer,” says Clarke. “One year at Augusta, we had the new TaylorMade van next to us on one side and Callaway was on the other side. It was pretty painful to go out there.

“But now we can park (the 18-wheeler) and support our Tour players.”

Wilson Triad Golf Balls: Price and Availability

The new Wilson Triad golf balls will be available in white only. They’ll be priced at $39.99 per dozen and will hit retail Feb. 15.

For more information, visit Wilson’s website.

 

*We may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.