They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
It sets you up, gives you energy and confidence, and lets you tackle whatever else is coming your way, certain you can take it on and win.
The drive is the breakfast of golfers – it can give you that same sense of confidence, announce your presence, and set you up for the rest of the hole.
But if you have a high handicap, the drive can also be a high dive into uncertainty. Will you slice? Will your hole involve endless chipping out of the rough?
It all depends on that moment. The backswing, the breathing, the focus, the impact – and the moments of the follow-through when your ball sails off to who knows where.
If you have a high handicap, getting the best driver for your game is crucial.
You need something that feels right to you, that can give you speed, give you distance, and above all can give you forgiveness, so your shots are regularly on target.
But which is the best driver for high handicap golfers?
In a hurry? Here’s our top pick.
Top 5 Best Driver for High Handicap
OUR TOP PICK
The 2020 Rogue brings together a lot of previously proven development and a handful of new elements to create a driver that will not only be of enormous use to high handicappers, but will probably help them throughout their golfing life.
Unlike many drivers aimed at high handicap golfers, the Rogue comes with a loft sleeve, to give your drives more leap and loft when you strike the ball. It has a stationary sole weight, which will add to the height you can get on your drives.
And the familiar Callaway Jailbreak technology – a couple of metal rods behind the clubface to push the energy of the clubhead behind the sweet spot for extra speed and distance to your shots - is back with a vengeance.
That’s a combination that makes for reassurance, forgiveness, and performance – which every high handicap golfer wants.
Then Callaway adds a couple of extra special surprises. First, it’s worked with aeronautical firm Boeing to develop one of the sleekest, most aerodynamic club heads in history. Seriously, don’t ever throw your Rogue away in frustration; there’s every chance it will take off.
What’s more, the clubhead is made of an advanced carbon composite. That allows Callaway to bring a huge sweet spot to the 2020 Rogue, which means it gives you the most slice-forgiveness possible and an extra kick of speed off the tee.
The Callaway Rogue has always been a great driver for high handicap golfers because it focuses on everything they need out of that first shot.
The 2020 version refines everything that’s gone before, adds a new sleek clubhead design, and gives you the best sweet spot we’ve seen. That’s why it’s our best driver for high handicap golfers.
- Loft sleeve
- Sole weight for extra height
- Jailbreak technology for speed and accuracy
- Boeing designed clubhead
- Enormous sweet spot for slice-forgiveness and straight shots
- Sole weight, rather than adjustable weights
- Loft sleeve is aimed at height and distance, not shot-shaping
The Mazel titanium driver is a real workhorse of a club, that lets you do what you need to do as a high handicap golfer – get the ball down the fairway with speed and accuracy.
Is it as technical or as design-driven as some other drivers on our list? No. Does it have a look that screams ‘80s Excess’? Mmmmaybe a little.
Ignore all that. For high handicap golfers, the Mazel is a good friend on the tee. The sleek black of the club gives you sharp definition through the swing, especially at the point of contact.
A boxy style makes it look like a driver with shoulder pads, but that, combined with the height of the face, helps push the energy of the club sweetly through to the ball.
That taller, broader surface area in the clubface also cuts down on spin, giving you more forgiveness and increased accuracy. And the titanium clubhead allows for higher swing speed and more power.
As an additional accuracy-booster, the Mazel has an arrow to help you find the center of the strike zone.
It all combines to make an unfussy, fast-swinging driver that delivers both power and a handful of accuracy aiding elements which make the Mazel titanium driver well worth a look for high handicap golfers.
- Titanium clubhead for lightness and swing-speed
- Black design for high contrast on impact
- Tall, broad clubface for a larger sweet spot
- Arrow indicator trains golfers to drive through the strike zone
- Loses value as you progress down your handicap
- Less technological than many serious drivers
The TaylorMade M6 is a Prince Charming among drivers. Most at home with lower handicap golfers, it still offers high handicap players enough to make them love it.
Example? It comes with an optional higher loft version, specifically to help high handicappers get the most height and distance out of those intimidating long drives.
It also comes with TaylorMade’s Twist Face technology.
Why should you care? Because the Twist Face design does two things. Firstly, it allows the ball a mighty spring off the clubface, which can boost a tentative or slow swing-speed and give you more yards of distance than you might initially deserve.
And secondly, it focuses the energy of the swing through the sweet spot, which brings forgiveness to some of your miss-hits.
Did we mention the sweet spot? The M6 has an updated version of the TaylorMade Hammerhead slot too, which enlarges that spot so you have a better chance of hitting straight shots and placing them where you want.
Like our list-leading Callaway Rogue, the M6 has a stationary sole weight for more loft on launch, and a loft sleeve that can help keep your drives high, straight and true.
That’s the secret of the M6. It has plenty of features that more advanced players will appreciate, but it brings them to high handicap golfers too, without any sense of condescension.
That combination of technology, thought, power, and definitive help for high handicap golfers earns it respect and a place on our list.
- Optional higher loft version
- Loft sleeve to help keep shots straight
- Sole weight for extra height off the tee
- Twist Face technology to boost slow swing-speeds
- Hammerhead technology enlarges the sweet spot
- Some high handicap golfers may find the M6 a lot of driver to handle
We’re back with Callaway for the Epic Flash. It’s a driver that can give high handicap golfers plenty of customization when they’re on the tee.
Shot-shaping is generally considered something to master once you’ve got the basics of power, distance, and accuracy under your belt.
The Epic Flash sees that argument, sniffs derisively, and helps you make a start on your shot-shaping even while your handicap is still high.
Is that a good move?
That depends. The high handicap golfer determined to take things in stages will be better served by the likes of the Callaway Rogue or the Mazel Titanium.
But there’s no denying that the Epic Flash is a driver that has a range of options that can make it a lifetime club, sticking with you through your journey down your handicap.
You can tweak and tailor this thing’s features till it fits you and your style of driving perfectly – and then re-tweak it as your handicap drops and your style changes.
With the Epic Flash, you can compensate for slice, you can speed up the power transferred from clubhead to ball, you can even shave away some of the drag, so you get more accurate driving.
So if you want “one driver to rule them all,” rather than the driver that will suit you best for right this minute, the Epic Flash is undoubtedly the way to go.
The Epic Flash brings great speed to your drive, especially through the Callaway Jailbreak technology that helps make the Rogue our best club for high handicap golfers.
And the same carbon fabric material in the clubhead gives you a broad sweet spot to help balance speed with forgiveness.
And it gives you shot-shaping elements, like an adjustable rear weight that can add or reduce levels of draw and fade, and the loft sleeve that can help you make the most of them.
Definitely a driver for high handicap golfers who foresee their journey towards lower handicaps, the Epic Flash is the ultimate in do-everything drivers.
That makes it perfect for some high handicap golfers, while possibly overcomplicating the lives of some others.
- Jailbreak technology for a really hot, fast clubhead
- Rear weight allows for customization of draw and fade
- Loft sleeve for adjustable control
- All these options allow for shot-shaping, unusual in a high handicap driver
- One driver flexible enough to last for years
- Potentially over-complicated for beginners
If you’ve had your mind boggled by the adjustability of the Epic Flash, the Cleveland Launcher HB Turbo driver might come as a welcome relief.
It manages to deliver power and various loft options without all the complication of an adjustable club.
The Turbo Launcher comes in a 9-degree, a 10.5-degree, and a 12-degree variant. For our money – and yours too – if you’re a high handicap golfer looking for a confidence boost off the tee, go with the 12-degree option as your first choice.
Another bonus for beginners and those with higher handicaps is the fixed hosel you find in the Cleveland club.
As with the Epic Flash, the range of options in an adjustable club can be startling and even overwhelming if your aim is simply to get the ball from here to roughly there with the least slicing or drama.
When you connect well, the Turbo Launcher lives up to its name and rockets your ball down the fairway with minimal spin. That, as far as Cleveland is concerned, is its job.
The yang to the Epic Flash’s technological yin, the Cleveland Turbo Launcher brings simplicity, weight, power, and distance to your golf bag. It’s less Steve Jobs, more John Wayne in its approach to golfing.
And where some high handicap golfers will revel in the options the Epic Flash can bring them, and the length of lifetime it can have in their golf bag, the Cleveland Turbo Launcher will appeal to a different kind of high handicap golfer.
If your goal is just to fire the ball down the fairway like a cannon, and not spend half an hour in the tee box, adjusting and shaping what should be the most basic shot of them all, there’s room for your style with the Cleveland Turbo Launcher.
- Simple club for hitting balls with
- Three loft options available
- Staggering punching power when the ball is well struck
- Fixed hosel makes for uncomplicated driving
- A lack of engineered forgiveness
Best Driver For High Handicap Beginners Buying Guide
Buying the best driver for high handicap golf can be complicated.
The right driver for you is out there, but remember a few things before you buy.
Know Your Golfing Temperament
There are high handicap golfers who want all the gizmos under the sun, and there are high handicap golfers who want to just hit the ball and have it go where they want.
There are divers out there for each kind of golfer – know which kind you are, and buy accordingly.
What Price Forgiveness?
If you’re a high handicap golfer, it’s likely that you’ll need as much in-club forgiveness as possible.
Anything which gives you added forgiveness without adding to the complexity of taking a shot is your friend. Don’t be afraid to pay extra for more forgiveness.
Buy For Confidence
While forgiveness in a driver is a good idea for all high handicap golfers, let your choice be guided by your own play. If you’re lacking distance, consider something simple like the Callaway Turbo Launch.
If your swing-speed is tentative, try the TaylorMade M6. If you’re looking for an overall pick-me-up, the Rogue’s your first choice driver. Know where your driving weaknesses and worries are, and buy the driver that does the most to improve your shots.
Frequently Asked Questions
What do I need in a driver for high handicap golf?
This will depend on your particular swing, but look for a driver that gives you lots of forgiveness, decent distance, if possible boosts your ball speed, and cuts down spin.
Will one driver last me my entire golfing career?
Most high handicap drivers are designed to help you during that phase, and to be exchanged for more complex clubs as your handicap lowers.
The likes of the Callaway Epic Flash and the TaylorMade M6 though might well outlast your high handicap days, as they’re made to help golfers over a wider timespan.
Are the high-tech drivers worth the money?
Often they are, as the club makers have put a lot of thought into ways of helping you solve particular problems with your drive.
But if they feel too fussy to you, go for something simpler that still delivers the distance.