Tennis Warehouse Playtest: Babolat Pure Drive 2021

TW Staff

Administrator
Attention Talk Tennis Members:
We have a VERY Limited number of Babolat Pure Drive 2021 racquets for a playtest. This playtest is open to USA Talk Tennis members only.

VERY IMPORTANT: Playtesters will be required to get their test racquet strung. Each racquet will come with a set of Babolat RPM Blast 17 & XCel 16.

Application period is now closed. Participants will be notified via email by Tuesday, September 15th, 2020.

We have a very limited quantity of racquets to playtest. We select playtesters based on a number of factors, including message board participation and performance on past playtests.

In order to participate and remain in good standing for future playtests, you must post your findings in this thread by the deadline.

Deadline: October 23 by 5 pm PST

*Updated Form*
Include the following in your review:

String and tension used for test:
Tennis experience/background:
Describe your playing style (i.e. serve & volley):
Current racquet/string setups:
How many hours did you play with the racquet?

Comments on racquet performance for each stroke (each section should be 3-5 sentences minimum):
-Groundstrokes:
-Serves:
-Volleys:
-Serve returns:

Comments on racquet performance in each area (should be 2-3 sentences minimum)
Power/Control-
Top Spin/Slice-
Comfort-
Feel-
Maneuverability-
Stability-


General reaction/comments on overall performance:


TW Staff

We will delete “request sent” emails, but encourage a lively “pre-game” discussion on the racquets.
 
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A_Instead

Hall of Fame
Enjoy every one... a very anticipated update.. one of the GOAT product line.. often imitated...never duplicated..
 
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kimboslice

New User
I demoed the previous iteration of this model and once I calibrated for the extra power from the racket, this stick absolutely rips! My normal setup is a Babolat Pure Strike 16x19, so I am very curious to try out the new version!
 

pyrokid

Hall of Fame
After the APD got killed off I'm starting to wonder if the pure drive might be a better move than the pure aero is, I'll be watching this. Biggest thing for me will be if the spin production is in the same range or not
 

BiGGieStuFF

Hall of Fame
It's been awhile since I've played with a babolat. I've been mostly a prince and then Wilson guy but I'd love to try out the babolat since I'm in the market for new rackets. My ultra 100s are about to bite the dust.
 

fundrazer

Legend
Was keeping my eyes out for this thread. Last Pure Drive I've tried was the 2012 version which I picked up used, but used the original PDR for a bit too. Curious to see how this one plays

@JonnyAbs get in on this!
 

Slowtwitcher

Professional
Got the 2018, I wonder how much different the 2021 will be.

Loved the base specs, overgrip + 4g of lead at 3/9 o'clock really made it come alive.
 

JonnyAbs

Semi-Pro
Was keeping my eyes out for this thread. Last Pure Drive I've tried was the 2012 version which I picked up used, but used the original PDR for a bit too. Curious to see how this one plays

@JonnyAbs get in on this!
Great looking out buddy!

I use the 2015. Have owned the 2018 twice and it's a bit heavier in the head. Whollops the ball though. New string spacing launches it a bit. It sounds like this swings a little faster than 2018 which could be perfect!
 

Rohith Kolli

New User
I am hyped for this racket. I loved previous iterations and really look forward to trying this. Recently have been playing tournaments every weekend and this will be a great racket to look forward to.
 

haqq777

Legend
I thought this was the playtest for the rerelease 2013 AeroPro Drive. ;) Going to wait for the future APD playtest and hope some of you regulars like @haqq777, @mad dog1 and @Babolat Official might send me a PM when that playtest pops out. :)

Have fun with your PureDrive 2021 folks
Absolutely @g4driver! I think we are all longing for APD rerelease. I know there are a lot of fans so it will be amazing if Babolat decides to go that route :)
 

TennisHound

Legend
The 2018 was the first PD I have used. Since then I’ve gotten a swirly and a 2013 (black one). I’ve liked them all, but the ‘18 feels the least vibratey. Hopefully this new one will be just as good.
 

pyrokid

Hall of Fame
I tried a hitting partner's 2018 when I first saw this thread and I actually kinda liked it.

Feel wasn't ideal but I was hitting balls a lot like I want to be.

Seems like Babolat kinda took the aero line away from what I wanted it to be, but they're moving the pure drive into my wheelhouse. Still haven't tried the 2019 aero though, so just basing this on the 16
 
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joah310

Professional
You guys crack me up, so many people in the racquets forum beg for 18/20 tweener frames. Why would you want a tweener frame to play like a player’s frame?
I think volkl has the v8 pro which is a tweeter with 18x 20 so I guess the idea isnt too far fetched
 

SinneGOAT

Professional
I think volkl has the v8 pro which is a tweeter with 18x 20 so I guess the idea isnt too far fetched
I hear about an 18/20 clash and it just confuses me the racquet is made for power and you want an 18/20 sense pattern, use a gravity or blade 18/20.
 

joah310

Professional
I hear about an 18/20 clash and it just confuses me the racquet is made for power and you want an 18/20 sense pattern, use a gravity or blade 18/20.
I think an 18x20 will provide better control without sacrificing too much power. It will help tame the frame for people who over hit like I do... I'm also used to 18x20 and prefer its stringed response.
 

haqq777

Legend
I hear about an 18/20 clash and it just confuses me the racquet is made for power and you want an 18/20 sense pattern, use a gravity or blade 18/20.
A dense pattern Clash is by no means a far-fetched proposition. In fact I think it would serve a certain portion of target demographic well. There has already been testing going on for a 18x20 Tour version, FYI (pic courtesy @RoarTT).

 

joah310

Professional
A dense pattern Clash is by no means a far-fetched proposition. In fact I think it would serve a certain portion of target demographic well. There has already been testing going on for a 18x20 Tour version, FYI

I think I would enjoy it in the 100 version tho. And in a lighter model. 315 wont let me customize
 

haqq777

Legend
I think I would enjoy it in the 100 version tho. And in a lighter model. 315 wont let me customize
Lets see what options they come with. I haven't heard anything about 18x20 Clash for a while now and local Wilson rep has no clue about it either.
Is the string pattern the same spacing as the pure aero? Interested in how those frames differ besides the paint.
Slightly tighter than 2019 Pure Aero, very similar to current 2018 Smurf PD. I actually hit with one for a brief hit alongside current version recently. Both freshly strung with Solinco TB at 52 lbs. They both seem very similar to me. I think the 2021 plays a bit more livelier and you can feel the ball on string bed a tad bit better than 2018. But overall, very similar stability, spin, power and control. So if you liked 2018, you will like the 2021. If you liked 2015, chances are slim you like it (since 2015 and earlier versions had better control with tighter spacing and weren't as muted).
 

Power Player

Talk Tennis Guru
Lets see what options they come with. I haven't heard anything about 18x20 Clash for a while now and local Wilson rep has no clue about it either.

Slightly tighter than 2019 Pure Aero, very similar to current 2018 Smurf PD. I actually hit with one for a brief hit alongside current version recently. Both freshly strung with Solinco TB at 52 lbs. They both seem very similar to me. I think the 2021 plays a bit more livelier and you can feel the ball on string bed a tad bit better than 2018. But overall, very similar stability, spin, power and control. So if you liked 2018, you will like the 2021. If you liked 2015, chances are slim you like it (since 2015 and earlier versions had better control with tighter spacing and weren't as muted).
I liked the 2015 but the feel of it bugged my arm (lots of vibrations). I couldnt use full poly and did a gut poly setup which i never had confidence with in a match. Never used the newer ones.

A muted pure drive for me is much more appealing. Id string at the same tension with a similar string in silver 7 tour.
 

haqq777

Legend
I liked the 2015 but the feel of it bugged my arm (lots of vibrations). I couldnt use full poly and did a gut poly setup which i never had confidence with in a match. Never used the newer ones.

A muted pure drive for me is much more appealing. Id string at the same tension with a similar string in silver 7 tour.
Yeah I know you played with PA+ and if you could handle the string spacing in that you can handle 2018 PD or this new 2021 one. They are still pretty open though for a 16x19 and coming from a dense pattern UT or 18x20 Blade, it will be quite a transition if I am being honest.
 

Power Player

Talk Tennis Guru
Yeah I know you played with PA+ and if you could handle the string spacing in that you can handle 2018 PD or this new 2021 one. They are still pretty open though for a 16x19 and coming from a dense pattern UT or 18x20 Blade, it will be quite a transition if I am being honest.
Yeah thats a big change for sure. Well if i get on the play test I’ll describe the differences there.

A pure drive with a 16x20 or 8 throat main pattern would be pretty sweet. That said, i know the more open pattern compliments the stiffness of the frame better.
 

JonnyAbs

Semi-Pro
I got a hold of a local demo and its a great frame. About the swing weight of the 2015, but better plow. More touch and muted than 2018. I didnt love the 2018 because although its a beast, it swung a little too heavy and was erratic for me. This 2021 takes those attributes and tames it down some. Only used so far with the 16 gauge addiction multi in it but I will try next with some cyclone 17 poly and report back Monday or Tuesday. I was getting a little lower launch angle and a little less spin than normal but I think its the strings.
 

pyrokid

Hall of Fame
I have a buddy who let me try 2018s because I'm trying to compare the spin you can get between these and the 2013 APD or 2020 PAVS, but he had it strung with a multi so I couldn't get a good idea. It was clearly less than mine, but I'm not sure how much it would be if they were both strung the same. Does anyone in here have an idea?
 

JonnyAbs

Semi-Pro
I have a buddy who let me try 2018s because I'm trying to compare the spin you can get between these and the 2013 APD or 2020 PAVS, but he had it strung with a multi so I couldn't get a good idea. It was clearly less than mine, but I'm not sure how much it would be if they were both strung the same. Does anyone in here have an idea?
All aeros hit more loopy and spinny balls whereas pure drives are more linear with lower launch angle.
 

joah310

Professional
I have a buddy who let me try 2018s because I'm trying to compare the spin you can get between these and the 2013 APD or 2020 PAVS, but he had it strung with a multi so I couldn't get a good idea. It was clearly less than mine, but I'm not sure how much it would be if they were both strung the same. Does anyone in here have an idea?
It would be less but it's still quite a bit. I prefer the lower launch angle of the pure drive over the aero pro drive or the pure aero.
 
A dense pattern Clash is by no means a far-fetched proposition. In fact I think it would serve a certain portion of target demographic well. There has already been testing going on for a 18x20 Tour version, FYI (pic courtesy @RoarTT).

They should launch it! It would also be cool if they made a 95 Clash or something, although I know that wouldn't probably do too well on the market.
 

sanister

Professional
Slightly tighter than 2019 Pure Aero, very similar to current 2018 Smurf PD. I actually hit with one for a brief hit alongside current version recently. Both freshly strung with Solinco TB at 52 lbs. They both seem very similar to me. I think the 2021 plays a bit more livelier and you can feel the ball on string bed a tad bit better than 2018. But overall, very similar stability, spin, power and control. So if you liked 2018, you will like the 2021. If you liked 2015, chances are slim you like it (since 2015 and earlier versions had better control with tighter spacing and weren't as muted).
Very well put. My experience exactly.
 

agab

New User
This is definitely GOAT in the modern rackets era. I feel like this racket can instantly take your level up a few notches. Not many rackets do that. I still think this racket suits slightly advanced (>=4.5) players. Anyone less than 4.5 might not make the most out of this racket.
 
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