Nike VR_S Covert Tour Review
As a 12-handicap whose main objective is to just hit the ball straight and into the fairway, I know very well that the Covert Tour driver is probably not best suited for a player of my skill level. And yes, I have read other reviews that have claimed that golfers will probably gravitate to the Covert Tour over the Covert Performance because of its sleek black face and black accents, and I can admit – it did have an impact on me. But after hitting both, I can confidently say that if you can come close to hitting the ball consistently on the sweet spot then the Covert Tour can work for you. In this review, I’m sharing my experience with the Covert Tour, which was obtained from Global Golf (now on sale for $339.95).
Club: Nike Golf VR_S Covert Tour
Head: 430cc (460cc on the Performance version)
Loft: Set to 10.5 degrees (adjustable between 8.5 and 12.5 in 1 degree increments)
Angle: Set to left (closed)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Rayon Kuro Kage Silver 60 Graphite Stiff
Immediately out of the box, I really felt that the Covert Tour was a big improvement from previous Nike drivers. With its shiny, red paint finish – it’s first return to using color since the CPR hybrids – the Covert Tour made me feel like Nike finally had a product that was unique and innovative, and on the level of some of the more popular drivers in the market.
The color contrast was the most interesting feature of the bat because in comparison to my Nike SQ Dymo, which has a matte black finish, the Covert Tour with its red crown and menacing black face looked like a sports car. Just look at the shine on that crown. Note that I snapped that picture when testing out the Covert Performance, but the crown finish is the exact same on both models.
Then you turn the club over and a giant chunk is missing from it. The first driver ever to use a deep cavity in this manner, the club can actually hold a golf ball in its cavity – that’s how deep it is.
The last feature that really sticks out on the Covert Tour is the head size. A few years ago, Nike set the gearhead world ablaze with its limited edition SQ Dymo 380 that was used by Tiger Woods and Anthony Kim, among other Nike athletes. And now with the Tour version at 430cc, Nike can offer players who prefer a smaller head at address an option that doesn’t max out on the 460cc limits.
To be honest, the Tour head doesn’t look that small until you compare it to the 460cc driver…but then it does actually look like a 3 wood. As you can see, same finish, just slightly smaller with the Tour version – meaning you better bring your “A-game” when using this at the course because you do not want to mishit it on the smaller Tour head.
To make a further comparison, here’s the Covert Tour next to the 420cc TaylorMade R9:
Unlike NGN Damian, I like to hear a classic sound from my driver. And really, I’ve been lacking that from my previous drivers – Nike and otherwise. When I read that the Covert series was going to deliver a more traditional sound, I was really excited. It’s hard to describe the sound it makes, but it is not really a ting, or a thud, but just a response that makes you feel like you’re hitting a performance driver. The Covert Tour sounded extra good when contact was made right on the sweet spot.
By The Numbers
I tested the Covert Tour and the Covert Performance, and I hit most of my drives off line to the right, which caused me to change the set up to closed. I should add that the FlexLoft system is very easy. In fact, with no instruction, I had to show the technician at Golfsmith how to change the lofts and lie – it’s that intuitive.
Now, I am not really a shaper of the golf ball. I traditionally hit a straight or a slight fade and my misses go about 20-30 yards off line to the right. But what I can tell you is that if you really wanted to “turn over” your driver, it appeared much easier to do this with the Covert Tour than the Covert Performance.
What the technician and I noticed was that everything was pretty much the same but I was getting less spin from the Covert Tour and based off of my 5 drives with each, just slightly more distance with the tour. He did recommend that the Performance driver was probably better for me given the forgiveness of the bigger head and how over time it would save me some strokes given my handicap, but admittedly, I just like the way the Tour Driver looks.
When I finally took it on the course I was shocked at how much more distance I’m getting than my Dymo. I’m still working on finding that consistent groove and in my handful of rounds so far I’ve seen misses both left and right, instead of just right, so I will have to work on my swing more. But so far the average total distance I’ve experienced is greater than what Golfsmith’s machine showed me.
As for the other numbers, I don’t know what Azimuth is, or how descent angle affected my swings, but I know that both drivers were pleasant to the eye at address, both provided a sound I think most golfers will appreciate, and both delivered on performance. The only drawback was that I was not coming around in sync and a lot of my drives were pushed right. I’ve worked out some of the kinks on course and most of my playing partners have commented about the distance I’ve gained from last year. A couple of them who tried out my Covert Tour are thinking about converting already.
The Covert Tour is a players driver and will command all your skill for the best results. Based on my experience with a history of Nike drivers, I can confidently say that the Covert line is a dramatic improvement and belongs in the upper echelon of drivers in the marketplace.
The headcover glows in the dark when you have a camera flash on it. Pretty cool little trick!
Editor’s note: The product reviewed above was supplied by Global Golf to the reviewer/author free of charge for reviewing purposes only. The opinions expressed in the review are strictly those of the reviewer/author. This post is sponsored by Global Golf.