Comparing B1 and B3 shots with different clubs

By • Category: Home Edition

I always knew that B1 and B3 shots came back towards center, but I was never completely sure how much.  I also thought that lower-lofted clubs should cut back to center more than higher-lofted clubs, but how much — what would it really look like?

These experiments were conducted with the Flares and Hurtles as I started up a 4-player game.  Player 1 shot a B2, player 2 shot a B1, and player 3 shot a B3, and I recorded all the distances.  Then I took a picture of the relative lies of each shot from player 4’s perspective on the tee.

Driver – Right off the bat, I was surprised to see that B1 and B3 shots with the driver do NOT come back to center!  You can see the results below, and how much distance is lost:
B2 – 341 (center)
B1 – 304 (left)
B3 – 311 (right)

5-wood – similar results were seen:
B2 – 271 (center)
B1 – 245 (left)
B3 – 258 (right)

2-hybrid – this also surprised me a bit, as these B1 and B3 shots did not quite find their way back to center either:
B2 – 257 (center)
B1 – 245 (left)
B3 – 249 (right)

By this point I’m wondering if any shots will actually angle back to center.  Then I got to the irons and found what I was looking for…

2-iron – both the B1 and B3 cross over center:
B2 – 241 (center)
B1 – 229 (right)
B3 – 230 (left)

5-iron – this one surprised me, as even with a medium-lofted club, the B1 and B3 shots still crossed over center:
B2 – 168 (center)
B1 – 161 (right)
B3 – 162 (left)

6-iron – these shots all ended up bunched together in the middle:
B2 – 159
B1 – 154
B3 – 157

7-iron – I’m surprised again here, as these shots still end up bunched together as well:
B2 – 148
B1 – 139
B3 – 143

8-iron – finally, the loft is enough that the B1 and B3 shots don’t make their way back to center:
B2 – 137 (center)
B1 – 128 (left)
B3 – 128 (right)

B2 – 121 (center)
B1 – 114 (left)
B3 – 115 (right)

9-wood – about what I expected:
B2 – 208 (center)
B1 – 188 (left)
B3 – 197 (right)

LW – forms a nice triangle:
B2 – 44 (center)
B1 – 40 (left)
B3 – 40 (right)

CONCLUSIONS: When determining final relation to center with your B1 and B3 shots, loft isn’t everything — whether or not you’re hitting an iron matters more!  Drivers and hybrids don’t cut back to center, while low/medium-lofted irons will cross over center, and lofts up to a 7-iron still end up back in the middle.

Also, B1 shots tend to sweep out farther and end up shorter, while B3 shots don’t angle out as much and travel a bit farther.  This is likely due to the nature of the trackball and its rollers, and it’s also why left-breaking putts seem to break more.

Finally, don’t forget to consider the distance lost when playing these shots as compared to straight B2 shots!

is a Golden Tee addict from Chicago, IL, thirsty for tips and tricks!
Email this author | All posts by

3 Responses »

  1. […] you can review this article on B1 and B3 shots with different clubs.  The biggest takeaway here is that low-lofted irons will cut across center, […]

  2. no mention of how hard you hit whipping it out further? i assume this useful experiment was done at a medium stroke. (no spinning the ball either, or use of tees?)

  3. Yeah it was a firm stroke. I hit it hard but not as hard as I could. Tried to use a nice, consistent firm shot as the baseline.

Leave a Reply