Ping’s latest women’s line-up includes a nod to the company’s beloved co-founder Louise Solheim 

She’s been credited as the “brains” behind Ping’s success and, six years on from her passing, it seems Louise Solheim [Below] is still calling the shots.

The matriarch of the Ping equipment family and the person who gave Ping’s iconic putter the name ‘Anser’, features in the company’s latest women’s offering – the G Le3 family. The company is famously big on its heritage and strong support of women’s golf. The Solheim Cup, of course, is named after Louise’s partner in life – and Ping – Norwegian-American clubmaker Karsten Solheim. And while Karsten was the face of equipment giants, Louise was the glue keeping it all together, according to the company’s Australian product and fitting manager Colin Field.

“Louise played a very significant role in the emergence of Ping,” Field says. “Whereas Karsten was the theoretical scientist – the innovative engineer – Louise was the mathematician, and definitely a key reason why the business grew and thrived.

“Karsten was the creative genius, but Louise was really the business person behind the evolution of Ping. It’s nice that the G Le3 line is able to give a nod to such an influential figure in the game.”

The company’s latest line-up pays homage to its mathematician in the form of the G Le3 ‘Louise’ putter, one of the many models Ping believes will help shave strokes off the games of women across the country. But it’s the technology Ping is employing throughout the bag that it believes is will produce some impressive results.

“In true engineering form, everything we did in [the men’s] G430 range, we’re incorporating into the ladies,” Field says. “Ping’s always been very consistent with moving that engineering forward in small incremental steps, and you get six or seven incremental gains that all contribute to one big quantum leap.”

With the G430 range producing distances gains of up to 20 metres for some customers, Field revealed proportionally similar gains were already being seen in G Le3 testing.

“Of the average female golfer who might hit a driver and two woods onto a green – she’s going to pick up 20 metres collectively with the woods alone. The gains we’re seeing on the driver and the two fairway-wood shots, I think it’s four, seven and nearly eight metres on those three shots, so you’re suddenly 19 metres closer to the green. That’s a pretty significant gain.”

Field said where the G Le3 range will particularly shine is an area most simply don’t pay enough attention to: gapping your irons. “Properly gapping your set is really, really important,” Field says. “The interesting thing with these irons is they’re weakening the shorter irons for ladies to fly their wedges more effectively and strengthening some of the longer irons. We want more spacing, proper spacing between each club and by weakening off the shorter irons and then strengthening longer irons, it’s stretching out the gaps between each club. So, ladies are not hitting their 8-iron 105 metres and hitting their 7-iron 109. We’re really conscious of that and optimising the set. With the G Le3 irons, we’re avoiding overlaps in the set. It’s unusual, in this day and age, to see a set of short irons weakened and the long irons slightly strengthened, although we are still getting a high ball flight, but the combination of that is a better gap between each golf club, which better services the typical lady golfer.”

Field said a big revelation from recent fittings was just how many Aussie women were stronger than the specifications of their clubs.

“There is a very high percentage of women we are seeing at fitting days who are actually stronger than typical ladies clubs. So even though we’re launching a new G Le line (in stores July 29), we have a lot of success with lightweight G430 product at the same time. So, I think the takeaway from that is that, realistically, it’s really important for ladies to get fitted to optimise their performance because sometimes they just fit in an athletic shaft flex that’s a little bit stronger than what’s on offer in women’s sets. Obviously, we’re seeing some really nice gains with G Le, but we don’t want to pigeonhole women golfers. We want to fit them into the best performing clubs as opposed to just saying, ‘You’re a woman, you need women’s clubs.’”

If Ping’s G Le3 collection proves anything, it is this: contrary to what you might have seen on TV or read in books about men and women and Mars and Venus, all humans – at least when it comes to golf – are the same.  

G Le3 Driver

Higher, longer, straighter results off the tee are generated by a lighter overall club build that makes the powerful 460cc, 11.5° driver easy to swing and square the face at impact. This delivers more speed and distance with improved accuracy and greater satisfaction. The adjustable, highly forgiving titanium head has a forged face optimised to get the best performance from swing speeds of 80mph or less. Ping’s longest women’s driver to date provides about four metres of added distance.

SRP $930 

G Le3 Fairway Woods

Engineered to emphasise faster ball speed and optimal launch, the stainless-steel heads combine with a maraging-steel facewrap to optimise flexing while reducing spin, making each loft a reliable and consistent choice from anywhere on the course, including the tee. These high-MOI fairway woods are also seven metres longer, thanks to a lower, more forward centre of gravity that better aligns with the force line. The variable roll radius of “Spinsistency” improves performance (especially on thin shots) by reducing spin to increase ball speed. SRP $580

G Le3 Hybrids

The G Le3 hybrids are sized and shaped to inspire confidence while delivering distance and high launch to bring greens within reach. Like the fairway woods, they rely on a distance-delivering maraging-steel face, flexing faster to ensure high launch and longer carries. The transition between individual irons and from iron to a hybrid is made easier through a new length progression.

 SRP $330 

G Le3 Irons

Continuing the success of previous generations of Ping’s women’s line, the G Le3 is designed as an iron/hybrid combo solution, allowing golfers to create the ideal set make-up with optimal gapping to help ensure success with every swing.

The G Le3 sand wedge relies on the proven design attributes of the iconic Ping Eye2 sand wedge while ensuring a modern-day appeal. Its slimmer hosel, wider sole and more traditional head shape combined with fully machined grooves help take the fear out of one of the most intimidating shots in golf.

SRP $330 per club

G Le3 Putters

Four distinct G Le3 putters are offered in a variety of shapes, materials and alignment cues to fit every golfer’s eye and stroke type (straight, slight arc and strong arc). Each model is engineered with a white, two-piece Pebax elastomer insert consisting of a soft front with
PLD-inspired shallow grooves and a firmer back to ensure the optimal combination of feel and distance control. They are paired with a Ping Pistol PP59 Deep Sea grip that offers superior feel and a premium look in distinctive
G Le3 colours. 

SRP $450; Ketsch G SRP $575