I have been Playing tennis since I was 13 years old. I have taught tennis for over ten years now.
Describe your playing style:
I have a one handed backhand with an eastern grip and a forehand with a semi-western grip. I like to serve and volley; and to be aggressive on the baseline and finish points at net.
Pure Drive Roddick w/ Babolat leather. Tourna Grip XL. I am currently stringing with Solinco Tour Bite 16g strung at 55lbs.
Racquet model tested:
AeroPro Drive 2013 w/ RPM Blast
How many hours did you play with the racquet?
General reaction/comments on overall performance:
While I have used Pure Drive Roddick since the Cortex iteration and have used Pure Drive Teams I have never actually hit with an AeroPro Drive.
the first thing I noticed was the feel on left hand during the one-handed backhand. At first it felt like I could not get enough real estate with my left thumb, which I often use to rotate the racquet in position. It was somewhat off putting and just made the racquet feel very foreign compared to my PDR GT. This was absent on backhand volleys and felt fine. The paintjob itself looks great and is probably my favorite AeroPro Drive one yet.
Comments on racquet performance:
I loved the feel on groundstroke as it felt very plush. The feedback was very dead on full out swings which I enjoyed. It may seem counter-intuitive but the AeroPro has a less hollow and more solid feel compared to the PDR GT but the APD 2013 is not as stable compared to my PDRs.. However, it has great stability for it's weight class. The power on groundstrokes felt odd to me at first. Due to a lower swing weight the AeroPro lacked the power and plow through but was easier to maneuver. While the AeroPro is certainly still a tweener (power players racquet) it had less power than I expected or prefer; this was probably due to the lower swing weight more than anything. So I had to swing faster for more power and at the same time I had to generate the spin to control the ball they way I prefer.
With serves it was easy to generate the all the spin I wanted, but lacked the BOOM Factor of Pure Drives. This is common and perfectly normal for tweeners with lower swing weights.
Volleys with great and felt it had very precise directional control. With the jumpy tendency of these types of frame under-spin on my volley were very important. With touch volleys and half volleys that use less spin. I felt a disconnect due to the dead feel. The string I use are crisper to me than RPM Blast and this could be a factor in the disconnect.
The racquet is maneuverable but lacks weight for plow-through.
Babolat Pure Drive "Black," Pure Drive Play. RPM Blast 16 @ 50lbs.