I try to hit the course at least a couple of times a month during the summer season. Granted, that’s partially due to my Gear Patrol cohort Patrick Tuttle and his tyrannical tee-time scheduling, but also because I enjoy a good round of golf, despite the groggy mornings. Of course, with golf comes glorious gear, and I’ve found myself upgrading my golf gear one damn expensive piece at a time over the past two years (starting when I reignited my love for the links). Recently, though, it came time to update my spikes… my sorely (sorely) over-worn Nike golf spikes.
At any given moment, my old Nike spikes were outfitted with roughly 25%-75% of the actual number of allocated spike-slots. No doubt, due to my generally lax maintenance that usually resulted in spikes that were either covered in so much fairway rough sod and grass that they required a hammer drill to remove, or spikes that knew better and abandoned ship; strewn across the many tri-state golf courses I’ve frequented. Yet, somehow I’ve managed, but the recent decimation of my front sole (due to a hasty water hazard incident) inspired me to upgrade.
Enter, the ECCO Ultra Perforamnce Hydromax Golf Spikes. With a burly name that makes you want to beat your chest a little with your latest golf score, the ECCO’s are the creme de la creme of sport/golf spikes from the Danish brand (granted, not the most expensive). The spikes (new to 2009) come in traditional white, buffed silver (awesome in person and my choice), and a staid black.
The entire Ultra Performance Collection is actually built with your foot in mind (a novel concept, eh). The soles are constructed of three separate components to maximize midsole support. The lighter outsoles have “stability islands” and, in combination, provide more flexibility where you need it and stronger grip and traction where your feet are planted. There’s even a carbon fiber reinforced TPU shank (visible) that cradles the arch and outside of your foot to provide even better torsional stability.
On the range, I found them to be superbly comfortable (straight out of the box), with a grip tighter than my bank’s mortgage department. The ECCOs flexed with my feet properly (my improper swing notwithstanding) and, unlike my old Nike spikes, they didn’t leave my feet uncomfortable or unsupported in the backswing or followthrough. Though, my Happy Gilmore inspired swing could have been partially to blame.
Beyond the sole, the Ultra Perforamnce Hydromaxs use water repellent leather and microfiber lining. There’s just the right amount of detail (with some metal touches) to make for a sharp, modern golf spike. The ECCO Ultra Performance Hydromax Golf Spikes use Stinger 3-cleats with Q-lok, so spikes are widely available at a great price.
Editor’s Note: I’ve worn my fair share of athletic shoes, so I can attest to the ECCO’s extraordinary comfort. A few more rounds will give me ample opportunity to weigh in on their performance, but the drive so far has been aces. Now, about that score…