Introducing Lamkin’s new UTX Wrap and Wrap-Tech
When did golfers start noticing the grips on the end of their clubs? I mean, we knew they were there, but when did we begin really looking at them?
When did we start discriminating between brands, colors, textures, etc? When was it we first used phrases like “vibration damping,” “moisture management,” and “shock absorption” when talking about golf grips instead of home audio, clothing, or car parts?
The very best golfers may have been doing it for decades, taking great care when building the tools with which they made their living. Average golfers, meanwhile, were content with the black, rubbery thing on the end of their club, as long as it wasn’t slippery.
Arnold Palmer certainly paid attention to his grips, using traditional leather wraps made by Lamkin throughout his career. Founded in 1925 by Elver B. Lamkin, the company was the first to make leather grips, which quickly became universally popular. Lamkin introduced rubber and synthetic materials in the 1960s to offer a more affordable option, and it revolutionized the industry, proving a major innovation.
Significant though the development was, it would however be another 40 years before a golfer could choose something besides black leather or black rubber.
Sometime in the early 2000s, the odd colored grip began appearing on Tour. And when tour pros do something, the rest of the world needs to follow. Before you knew it, grip manufacturers like Lamkin, which recently signed Miguel Angel Jimenez as a brand ambassador, were coming out not only with colored grips but grips molded using complex materials conceived by leading chemists.
Today’s grips, made from elastomers that are both viscous and elastic, have hi-tech-sounding names like Lamkin’s new UTX Wrap and Wrap-Tech which the company introduced last week.
The Wrap-Tech features Lamkin’s exclusive Double Helix surface texture, and is basically a leather wrap with two different textures – smooth areas separated by rougher strips to provide both feel and traction. The grip is made with Lamkin’s patented ACE (Advanced Cohesive Elastomer) material which is certainly very tacky and has great feel. The Wrap-Tech retails at $4.99, is available in standard, midsize or oversize options, and is black with white, red or blue detailing.
“The Wrap-Tech takes the popular style of the classic wrap and infuses it with a variety of modern technologies and textures,” says Kerri Kauffman, Lamkin’s Vice-President of Marketing. “They give it amazing feel and performance benefits not typically associated with a wrap grip, like enhanced traction and slip-resistance.”
Similar to the original UTX, the new UTX Wrap model (from $6.99) features Tri-Layer Technology. This proprietary combination of materials, says Kauffman, optimizes feel and all-weather playability. The foundation layer is made of ACE material, the middle layer a moisture-wicking fabric for traction and control in wet weather, and the tacky surface layer is firm for torsion control. The UTX Wrap is available in standard or midsize options, and black or royal blue.
And yes, you’ll notice the difference.