Bonjour from Babolat: Part Trois

Wonie88

New User
If Rafa's APD has a low RA (ie low 60s) many people who buy it are going to be disappointed with it because it will be too soft for most Beginners or Intermediate Weekend Warriors.

The Wilson RF97A is quite stiff (RA is 68 unstrung). The only challenge to most Weekend Warriors is its weight. But the stiffness helps Beginners to hit the ball a lot more than any soft frame would.

The big challenge Babolat would have with releasing a Rafa Pure Aero would be what happens if lots of people go out and buy them, and end up being disappointed because the frame does not suit their game. That is something Babolat would not want because it would sully its brand image somewhat.

The main reason why the 2013 APD was so successful was because it was stiff. Many people who bought that racquet for the PJ because they thought it was the same racquet Rafa used, were able to use it effectively regardless of their tennis ability. The stiffness of the racquet made it easier to hit the ball over the net. (Same as the RF97).

So basically, if Rafa had always used an RA68 (or stiffer) racquet from Day 1 and stuck with it. Babolat would have been churning out Rafa APDs and Rafa Pure Aeros all along.

Imho, sadly I don't think we will ever see Babolat release a Rafa spec APD / PA again - except for perhaps a special very limited Edition model. It would not sell enough and if it did, it is likely to damage the Babaolat Rafa Brand.
No disrespect but I don’t think you can know for sure what his racquet RA is. Especially when NEW. Josh can know because he has strung them himself and would potentially have been able to put one on an RDC. I bet they are (originally) pretty stiff and many that get RDC tested have, by now, been strung 50-100 times.

This is my somewhat educated opinion and could be wrong.
 
No disrespect
Absolutely not! I agree with you 10000% Nobody knows for sure except for those who manufacture Rafa's actual racquets.

I bet they are (originally) pretty stiff and many that get RDC tested have, by now, been strung 50-100 times.

This is my somewhat educated opinion and could be wrong.
And I would tend to agree with your opinion as well.

I have five 2013 Babolat APDs since new. Three of them have been strung more than 50 times each. Two of them only about 5 times. The ones that have been strung more than 50 times are noticeably softer than the ones that have only been strung a few times.

That's why I have always said it does not matter what a Pro Player's specs are for most players. It is not going to improve their game. Hundreds of hours of on court practice is going to improve their game. The smartest players work on their game and fine tune their own equipment to meet their own needs.
 

ron schaap

Hall of Fame
Absolutely not! I agree with you 10000% Nobody knows for sure except for those who manufacture Rafa's actual racquets.



And I would tend to agree with your opinion as well.

I have five 2013 Babolat APDs since new. Three of them have been strung more than 50 times each. Two of them only about 5 times. The ones that have been strung more than 50 times are noticeably softer than the ones that have only been strung a few times.

That's why I have always said it does not matter what a Pro Player's specs are for most players. It is not going to improve their game. Hundreds of hours of on court practice is going to improve their game. The smartest players work on their game and fine tune their own equipment to meet their own needs.
So you tell on this thread much more sensible things than on the Pros pro. What you mention for racquets is also true for strings you know. Are you some sort of dr Jekyll and mr Hyde?
 

Babolat Official

Hall of Fame
Hi Josh @Babolat Official
is there any diff in the center strings spacing beweeen the 19 pure aero and the 21 pure drive. or are they exactly the same?
Hi Dan,

There is a slight difference in spacing. From what I can tell, the Aero has around 1 mm more space between the center strings. I don't know the exact specifications, so it's just by me measuring each of them, so my number may not be spot on, but there does appear to be slightly more space between the center 2 mains on the 2019 Aero as compared to the 2021 Pure Drive.

Josh
 
So you tell on this thread much more sensible things than on the Pros pro.
Racquet doesn't hit the ball ... the string bed hits the ball. Racquet is important ... but string is the most important component of the equipment.

There is no Pros Pro tennis string that comes anywhere near Babolat RPM Blast or RPM Team in terms of performance. Anyone who has played with both in a Babolat racquet knows this as a fact.
 
Last edited:
Hi Josh @Babolat Official !

First I'd just like to throw you a shout out for consistently being here and answering questions. It really is a luxury for us tennis/equipment enthusiasts!

Also a quick question: Can you confirm or deny that top doubles player Robert Farah uses the 2016 Pure Aero VS? Seems Juan Sebastian Cabal uses some version of the Pure Aero but Farah's frame looks noticeably like the VS. In fact it looks like the VS may be a popular frame among several pros but hiding under PA paint jobs (I don't expect you to comment on that though, I realize this is a business!).

Lastly, I know Felix Auger-Aliassime tried out the new 2020 Pure Aero VS but went back to his 2016 model. Do you by chance know any of his thoughts on the new model?
 
May as well add another question @Babolat Official !

When will the newest Pure Aero bags be available in Canada? I see they just became available on TW but I'm not seeing them on any of the Canadian sites I order from.

Thank you!
 

Babolat Official

Hall of Fame
Hi Josh @Babolat Official !

First I'd just like to throw you a shout out for consistently being here and answering questions. It really is a luxury for us tennis/equipment enthusiasts!

Also a quick question: Can you confirm or deny that top doubles player Robert Farah uses the 2016 Pure Aero VS? Seems Juan Sebastian Cabal uses some version of the Pure Aero but Farah's frame looks noticeably like the VS. In fact it looks like the VS may be a popular frame among several pros but hiding under PA paint jobs (I don't expect you to comment on that though, I realize this is a business!).

Lastly, I know Felix Auger-Aliassime tried out the new 2020 Pure Aero VS but went back to his 2016 model. Do you by chance know any of his thoughts on the new model?
Hi Down the line,

Sorry for my late reply, but I've been out of the office a lot over the last few weeks unfortunately. Not covid related thankfully, and it's good to be back Hope you had a nice Thanksgiving. I appreciate the kind words as well and I enjoy being on here to help as much as I can. I actually don't know what Farah is playing with, but I will try to find out and let you know what I can. I'll also ask about what FAA thought of the current Pure Aero VS. You know how it is with players though. most don't want to switch from what got them there unless they have to, imho. I'll reach out to the guy who works with our tour players and let you know.

Josh
 

Babolat Official

Hall of Fame
Good afternoon @Babolat Official ,

Are the 25" junior performance racquets (Pure Drive, Pure Aero, Pure Strike) available anywhere in grip size 00 ? The Babolat website has the grip size listed.
Hi Inno,

We do not carry these racquets in a grip 00 in the US. I checked Tennis Warehouse Europe and they don't appear to either. You might reach out to them to see if they can get them. I do see them in our international catalogue, but we don't carry everything we make in the US, and won't be getting any unfortunately.

Josh
 

Babolat Official

Hall of Fame
May as well add another question @Babolat Official !

When will the newest Pure Aero bags be available in Canada? I see they just became available on TW but I'm not seeing them on any of the Canadian sites I order from.

Thank you!
Hello again,

I don't know if or when the Canadian distributor will have the new Aero bags. I'll dm you their contact info though and you can reach out to them.

Josh
 

PaulC

Semi-Pro
Hi Dan,

There is a slight difference in spacing. From what I can tell, the Aero has around 1 mm more space between the center strings. I don't know the exact specifications, so it's just by me measuring each of them, so my number may not be spot on, but there does appear to be slightly more space between the center 2 mains on the 2019 Aero as compared to the 2021 Pure Drive.

Josh
Hello Josh,

Speaking of center spacing...

I have played with both PS 16X19 and PS VS Tour (and PC Tour), and noticed that PS VST (or PCT) has a MUCH easier arc / spin production than the PS 16X19, due to the slightly more open center main spacing, even when it got 20 cross strings.

(For me, arc / spin production is a different matter from initial launch angle)

IMO, even if PS 16X19 has the same main center spacing as the PS VST, it shouldn't reduce too much control for most players.

The reason I don't exactly like PS VST is the beam shape, not as modern or firm-feel as the PS 16X19.

In short, my wish list item is a PS 16X19 with tour weight 11.1-11.2 oz unstrung, AND with PS VST MAIN spacing.

Please pass it on to your dev team for future consideration.

Thanks in Advance
 
Hi Down the line,

Sorry for my late reply, but I've been out of the office a lot over the last few weeks unfortunately. Not covid related thankfully, and it's good to be back Hope you had a nice Thanksgiving. I appreciate the kind words as well and I enjoy being on here to help as much as I can. I actually don't know what Farah is playing with, but I will try to find out and let you know what I can. I'll also ask about what FAA thought of the current Pure Aero VS. You know how it is with players though. most don't want to switch from what got them there unless they have to, imho. I'll reach out to the guy who works with our tour players and let you know.

Josh
Hello again,

I don't know if or when the Canadian distributor will have the new Aero bags. I'll dm you their contact info though and you can reach out to them.

Josh
Thank you for the replies! No apology necessary. Just appreciate whenever you're able to take some time here. I'll be looking forward to hearing from you again!
 

innoVAShaun

Hall of Fame
Hi Inno,

We do not carry these racquets in a grip 00 in the US. I checked Tennis Warehouse Europe and they don't appear to either. You might reach out to them to see if they can get them. I do see them in our international catalogue, but we don't carry everything we make in the US, and won't be getting any unfortunately.

Josh
Thank you!
 

RandomAsian

New User
Very curious too see what the Strike VS will look like since the Strike is already kinda the “control” line of Babolat. A thinner beam and lower RA will go against the DNA of the brand, unless they use the name Strike VS to release the old Storm / Pure Control mold that people on this thread so desperately crave. Anyway the glossy metallic dark-grey paint with orange accents I think will look amazing! The Aero VS’ paintjob is probably my favourite out of all the brands.
 

PaulC

Semi-Pro
Very curious too see what the Strike VS will look like since the Strike is already kinda the “control” line of Babolat. A thinner beam and lower RA will go against the DNA of the brand, unless they use the name Strike VS to release the old Storm / Pure Control mold that people on this thread so desperately crave. Anyway the glossy metallic dark-grey paint with orange accents I think will look amazing! The Aero VS’ paintjob is probably my favourite out of all the brands.
It already existed until it was sold out recently on TW:

It was indeed the old Storm/PC mold.

(But I still prefer they do a new PS 16X19 Tour with PC mold main center spacing per my posting above)

On the other hand, your paint job suggestion WILL kick some serious ass !!
 
Good Morning @Babolat Official

First of all, thanks for taking the time to personally provide all this information on Babolat's extensive product range.

I have some questions pertaining to the SFX line of shoes, a superb product that I think represents some of the best value in tennis.

I was slightly concerned when i couldn't find the SFX line listed on Babolat's site when browsing it this morning.

My questions:

- Is the SFX line (ie SFX 3) still a current shoe. How long will it remain on the market?

- Is there an SFX 4 on the way? If so, when will it be released and is the fit designed to align with the SFX 3?

- If the SFX line is being removed, is there a similar line of shoes coming with the same hallmarks (ie wide fit, light, great factory insole, great comfort)?
 

Babolat Official

Hall of Fame
Good Morning @Babolat Official

First of all, thanks for taking the time to personally provide all this information on Babolat's extensive product range.

I have some questions pertaining to the SFX line of shoes, a superb product that I think represents some of the best value in tennis.

I was slightly concerned when i couldn't find the SFX line listed on Babolat's site when browsing it this morning.

My questions:

- Is the SFX line (ie SFX 3) still a current shoe. How long will it remain on the market?

- Is there an SFX 4 on the way? If so, when will it be released and is the fit designed to align with the SFX 3?

- If the SFX line is being removed, is there a similar line of shoes coming with the same hallmarks (ie wide fit, light, great factory insole, great comfort)?
Hi Subway,

You're very welcome! I enjoy helping out as much as I can, and I ran a shop for years that was one of Babolat's first accounts in the US, so I've been selling Babolat equipment for 20 years at this point. They refer to me as the encyclopedia around the office Thankfully the SFX 3 is still inline and available, and it goes forward for 2021. It is on our website on page two of the men's shoe listings. We are out of some sizes in the white/blue, but have all of the dark blue in stock. TW has them as well, and is having a sale on the dark blue. The white/blue color goes forward for 2021, and there will be a new dark blue color launching in March. Additionally, we will offer it in size 14 again, which is good news for me!

Josh
 

Babolat Official

Hall of Fame
Hello Josh,

Speaking of center spacing...

I have played with both PS 16X19 and PS VS Tour (and PC Tour), and noticed that PS VST (or PCT) has a MUCH easier arc / spin production than the PS 16X19, due to the slightly more open center main spacing, even when it got 20 cross strings.

(For me, arc / spin production is a different matter from initial launch angle)

IMO, even if PS 16X19 has the same main center spacing as the PS VST, it shouldn't reduce too much control for most players.

The reason I don't exactly like PS VST is the beam shape, not as modern or firm-feel as the PS 16X19.

In short, my wish list item is a PS 16X19 with tour weight 11.1-11.2 oz unstrung, AND with PS VST MAIN spacing.

Please pass it on to your dev team for future consideration.

Thanks in Advance
Hi Paul,

Thanks for the feedback, and I will for sure pass this along. I haven't heard a peep yet about the update for the Strike VS, and don't even know if they've decided on exactly what it will be, or where they stand in terms of prototypes, etc. My guess is we will get an update in January or February when we have a sales meeting. I have played Storm/Control/Strike VS tour for a long time, and still prefer it to the Pure Strike 16/19 overall, and I have to say I didn't notice what you're mentioning about spin, but then again, my strokes are fairly old school compared to some. I also didn't try the Strike 16/19 for long, as I prefer the feel of my old reliables I'll try to update when I know more.

Josh
 

nickl9259

New User
Hello @Babolat Official,

You've probably answered this question a few times, but is the next updated Pure Aero line going to be released in 2021 for 2022? I know that the Pure Aero Rafa is planning to be released but I was wondering if you are also releasing the next edition of the Pure Aero line. Also, if there is a plan to release the next line of Pure Aero's, what improvements are needed to made for the next Pure Aero? If this is confidential information then I'm okay with that but I'd still like to know if there is going to be the updated line for 2022.
 
Hi Subway,

You're very welcome! I enjoy helping out as much as I can, and I ran a shop for years that was one of Babolat's first accounts in the US, so I've been selling Babolat equipment for 20 years at this point. They refer to me as the encyclopedia around the office Thankfully the SFX 3 is still inline and available, and it goes forward for 2021. It is on our website on page two of the men's shoe listings. We are out of some sizes in the white/blue, but have all of the dark blue in stock. TW has them as well, and is having a sale on the dark blue. The white/blue color goes forward for 2021, and there will be a new dark blue color launching in March. Additionally, we will offer it in size 14 again, which is good news for me!

Josh
This is fantastic news! I think many of us will be picking up more of the SFX 3 in the new year.

Thanks again for supplying the info. (y)
 

Babolat Official

Hall of Fame
Hello @Babolat Official,

You've probably answered this question a few times, but is the next updated Pure Aero line going to be released in 2021 for 2022? I know that the Pure Aero Rafa is planning to be released but I was wondering if you are also releasing the next edition of the Pure Aero line. Also, if there is a plan to release the next line of Pure Aero's, what improvements are needed to made for the next Pure Aero? If this is confidential information then I'm okay with that but I'd still like to know if there is going to be the updated line for 2022.
Hi Nick,

The Pure Aero family will be updated for 2022, but I don't know any details beyond that at this point. Sometimes we release the flagship model a few months earlier than the rest of the family, like we did with the Pure Drive 2021, but I don't even know yet if that will be the case with the 2022 Pure Aero to be honest. I also don't know yet what the improvements will be, but I might here something during our winter sales meeting ealry next year. I'll try to update when I know more. Thanks!

Josh
 
  • Like
Reactions: esm

nickl9259

New User
Hi Nick,

The Pure Aero family will be updated for 2022, but I don't know any details beyond that at this point. Sometimes we release the flagship model a few months earlier than the rest of the family, like we did with the Pure Drive 2021, but I don't even know yet if that will be the case with the 2022 Pure Aero to be honest. I also don't know yet what the improvements will be, but I might here something during our winter sales meeting ealry next year. I'll try to update when I know more. Thanks!

Josh
Great thank you Josh.
 

Babolat Official

Hall of Fame
So what will the strung swing weight of the new pure drive plus that is to be released in 2021 ?
Hi Nostradamus,

The target unstrung (we always list our specs unstrung) swingweight is 290 (+/-10), and strings add roughly 28-30 points to the swingweight in my experience, so I imagine there will be some that have the spec you're looking for.

Josh
 

gutfeeling

Hall of Fame
Just want to give a shoutout to Josh for the tremendous support he has given me lately surrounding some springs I needed to acquire for one of my Sensor base clamps. Josh went out of his way to source the parts for me and keep me updated while managing a new position, his day to day, and oh a global pandemic. Eternally grateful for his service and we and Babolat are lucky to have him. Cheers @Babolat Official!
 

Nostradamus

Bionic Poster
Hi Nostradamus,

The target unstrung (we always list our specs unstrung) swingweight is 290 (+/-10), and strings add roughly 28-30 points to the swingweight in my experience, so I imagine there will be some that have the spec you're looking for.

Josh
Wow, Thank you so much for the info. That is wide range of SW +/- 10 ? so SW could be anywhere from 320-330 ? That is about what i was hoping for. prefer 320 though. Again thank you so much for the information. Much appreciated.
 

Babolat Official

Hall of Fame
Wow, Thank you so much for the info. That is wide range of SW +/- 10 ? so SW could be anywhere from 320-330 ? That is about what i was hoping for. prefer 320 though. Again thank you so much for the information. Much appreciated.
Hi Nostradamus,

You're welcome! And yes, it could be 320-330. Actually 310-330 roughly if you include one that is on the low end and one on the high end of the range of swingweight. I think the +/- 10 range of swingweight tolerance is due to the tolerances in target weight (+/-7 grams) and balance (+/- 7 mm).

Josh
 

socallefty

Legend
@Babolat Official
How about Babolat making an all-black 9 or 12-racquet bag with the Babolat logo and not connected to any particular racquet model? For a lot of us urban types, black is always in style especially when we play night matches.

The Pure Strike Tour is a great racquet, but having a white racquet bag for it causes the bag to become dirty really fast. Also, I‘ve had to replace my last few Babolat bags because of malfunctioning zippers and it would be nice if you guys improved the design. I’ve been using Babolat racquets and gut for more than 20 years - love the Pure Control (circa 2000) and G1/G3 Pure Strike Tours in particular.
 
How about Babolat making an all-black 9 or 12-racquet bag with the Babolat logo and not connected to any particular racquet model? For a lot of us urban types, black is always in style especially when we play night matches.
@socallefty, what a fantastic suggestion. Although I imagine it might become the most popular bag because of its neutral colour. (Possibly at the expense of the pj centric bags.)

Of course, it would have to have decent thermal protection because a black coloured bag and the very hot Australian Summer Sun is a recipe for disaster for most tennis racquets and / or string tensions.

Personally, I think the old Rafa Signature APD Bag from the early 2010s was the best tennis bag I have ever seen. Lasted years with a lot of punishment and exposure to extreme ends of the weather spectrum. Protected the racquets beautifully. The key to its durability was the strong and reliable zippers. Most modern bags have rubbish zippers. Although there is one particular bag that still offers similar durability which I now use. It is not a big name racquet brand bag though.
 

Babolat Official

Hall of Fame
@Babolat Official
How about Babolat making an all-black 9 or 12-racquet bag with the Babolat logo and not connected to any particular racquet model? For a lot of us urban types, black is always in style especially when we play night matches.

The Pure Strike Tour is a great racquet, but having a white racquet bag for it causes the bag to become dirty really fast. Also, I‘ve had to replace my last few Babolat bags because of malfunctioning zippers and it would be nice if you guys improved the design. I’ve been using Babolat racquets and gut for more than 20 years - love the Pure Control (circa 2000) and G1/G3 Pure Strike Tours in particular.
Hi socal,

I think you should check out the expandable bag we make in all black: Expandable 4-9 and we'll have a Pure Line 9 pack bag that is black/grey/white launching in February. This bag has been out previously, and is of similar construction to the current Pure Aero bag, but in a neutral color.

Josh
 

socallefty

Legend
Hi socal,

I think you should check out the expandable bag we make in all black: Expandable 4-9 and we'll have a Pure Line 9 pack bag that is black/grey/white launching in February. This bag has been out previously, and is of similar construction to the current Pure Aero bag, but in a neutral color.

Josh
Thanks. The expandable bag is not a design I like as much as the Pure Strike bag I have now for all the stuff I carry onto the court. I look forward to the release of the new black bag early next year.
 

esm

Hall of Fame
Hi socal,

I think you should check out the expandable bag we make in all black: Expandable 4-9 and we'll have a Pure Line 9 pack bag that is black/grey/white launching in February. This bag has been out previously, and is of similar construction to the current Pure Aero bag, but in a neutral color.

Josh
Thank you Josh. Am a big fan of the Pure line 12 racquet bag (RH12), so I’d be interested in a more neutral colour way. As this has been out previously, is it possible to see an image of it? Also, will it come in the 12 pack version? Thank you again.
 

socallefty

Legend
Thank you Josh. Am a big fan of the Pure line 12 racquet bag (RH12), so I’d be interested in a more neutral colour way. As this has been out previously, is it possible to see an image of it? Also, will it come in the 12 pack version? Thank you again.
If you google black Pure Line bags, you’ll see images. The Babolat logo was pretty big in white on both sides and it looks like a black/white bag rather than an all-black bag - I used to have one before the Pure Strike bag came out.

I wish they would release the all-black Pure Line 12-racquet bag from 2017 (I think) which had the Babolat logo in black also.
 
  • Like
Reactions: esm

esm

Hall of Fame
If you google black Pure Line bags, you’ll see images. The Babolat logo was pretty big in white on both sides and it looks like a black/white bag rather than an all-black bag - I used to have one before the Pure Strike bag came out.

I wish they would release the all-black Pure Line 12-racquet bag from 2017 (I think) which had the Babolat logo in black also.
Thank you. Googled it and was able to see it. I think it looks cool, but I like the all black version you mentioned better. I think they called it the Babolat Ltd. Black Pure Line 12 Pack Bag. I’d definitely get one if they are re-released. Lol
 

jmacdaununder2

Hall of Fame
No 2021 PDTour+ so will most likely be abandoning the 2018 PDT+ experiment and switching brands; could weight a 2021 300g + up I guess, given that the only difference between Tour and standard other than the decals is the two weights either side of the metal lattice inside the trap door, but no 2021 Tour+ is kinda the final nail in the coffin for me as far as the Pure Kennex experiment goes.
 

Nostradamus

Bionic Poster
Hi Wilsonbro,

The rest of the Pure Drive 2021 family, including the Tour, is scheduled to launch January 19th. As far as I know, we're still on target for that date, and hopefully there aren't any delays.

Josh
Are they coming over by Ships or Airplanes ? Shipping lanes have been delayed big time due to Covid virus shut downs from what i am hearing.
 

Nostradamus

Bionic Poster
No 2021 PDTour+ so will most likely be abandoning the 2018 PDT+ experiment and switching brands; could weight a 2021 300g + up I guess, given that the only difference between Tour and standard other than the decals is the two weights either side of the metal lattice inside the trap door, but no 2021 Tour+ is kinda the final nail in the coffin for me as far as the Pure Kennex experiment goes.
yes i agree, it is just too hard to swing that Pure drive Tour Plus version. i think only Andy Roddick could use that hefty frame. but you can get monster power on your serve though. if you ever go on the Fast Serve competition, that is the racket to carry on the court.
 
Top