The question every golfer wants to know the answer to with new releases is whether or not the latest and greatest club is going to improve their game or not. Hybrids are no different and with TaylorMade’s latest release, the SLDR Rescue, our 0 handicap reviewer set out to answer that question. Keep reading to see how the TaylorMade SLDR Rescue Hybrid stacked up in our testing.
Golfer: Jeff Bushnell | Handicap: 0 | Age: 36
The TaylorMade SLDR Rescue Set Up
Loft: #3, 19*
Adapter Position: standard loft
Length: 41.25 inches
Shaft: Stock Fujikura speeder 82h (stiff flex)
Swing Weight: D4
Frequency: 290 CPM’s
Golf Ball Used: Titleist Pro V1
The TaylorMade SLDR Rescue Testing
During testing, the TaylorMade SLDR Rescue was hit 20 times on Hurricane Golf’s Vector Ball Launch Monitor and the top 10 results were used for this review. The Titleist Pro V1 was the golf ball used for all results.
The TaylorMade SLDR Rescue Numbers
Average Swing Speed: 96 mph
Average Ball Speed: 140 mph
% Increase of Ball Speed Versus Club Speed: 31.4%
Average Ball Launch Angle: 18.6*
Average Ball Spin: 3012
Average Carry Distance: 208
Average Roll: 13 yards
Average Total Drive: 221 yards
The TaylorMade SLDR Rescue Analysis
Our tester was a little surprised that the new TaylorMade SLDR rescue did not have any kind of SLDR technology that the matching drivers utilize. The SLDR Rescue does have the speed pocket on the sole of the club and also incorporates the TaylorMade loft-sleeve technology offering a +/- 1.5* loft change. He found it refreshing that TaylorMade also went back to the smaller, more industry-standard sized heads because some of the models TaylorMade has released recently more resemble fairway woods than hybrids.
When checking the specs and setting up the SLDR Rescue to his preferences, our tester was impressed that it came out basically exactly how it was supposed to. He has had some issues in the past where the shafts have came out soft or firm (out of tolerance). He put the SLDR Resuce on Hurricane Golf’s Frequency Analyzer and at 41.25 inches it came out to 290 cpm’s (cycles per minute). That level CPM and the length equates to a 100mph driver swing, which is exactly where it should be for a stiff flex shaft.
The SLDR Rescue he tested was a 19* and it allows the golfer to increase or decrease loft up to 1.5* at .5* intervals. The SLDR Rescue set up nice and square at address and had a very traditional look to it that better players tend to gravitate towards. He still has his doubts on the TaylorMade loft-sleeve technology and how much it actually adjusts. Visually, going from the lowest setting to the highest setting, he could not tell the difference and 3* should have been noticeable at address. The Ball Launch Monitor told a very similar story with little launch angle change in the different positions.
Our tester’s biggest complaint about the SLDR Rescue was the feel. There was a night and day difference between the feeling of a dead center hit and a slightly off-center hit. He even felt that the slightly off center hits felt better than the dead center hits. To him, the SLDR Rescue really felt awful on miss-hits and the performance drop was drastic in comparison to some of TaylorMade’s past hybrids. However, this was somewhat expected because the SLDR line is geared for the better players, where the RBZ is more forgiving.
Jeff’s Final Verdict on the TaylorMade SLDR Rescue
I was again impressed at the quality control with the products that TaylorMade is putting out and they continue to be one of the best in the industry. I was a little surprised that the SLDR Rescue didn’t utilize the SLDR technology that the driver does, because I would find that extremely useful. I would prefer that the SLDR Hybrid didn’t have an adjustable hosel because I truly don’t feel it changes the loft and the club would be $50 cheaper without it. However, when it comes to actual performance and results, the SLDR Rescue did very well in its overall test. The % Increase of ball speed versus club speed was extremely good for a hybrid (comparable to many drivers), resulting in long carries and overall distance. This isn’t the best feeling hybrid I have hit, but at the same time, it’s hard to argue with the results. I would recommend the SLDR Rescue, however, it might not be the best choice for higher handicaps as the performance drop off on the mishits is pretty severe.