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작성자  LuvTennis 작성일  2018.12.31 10:46 조회수 194 추천 0
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 Wilson Ultra Tour Racquet Review  
첨부파일 : f1_20181231104619.jpg
 
 

Summary

With its dense string pattern, head light balance, thin beam and buttery flex, Wilsons Ultra Tour has many of the ingredients found in a traditional players racquet. Those ingredients point to a bygone era in racquet production -- a time before the classic virtues of control and feel were overtaken by the modern seductions of power and spin. Granted, the Ultra Tour lacks the weight of a classic players racquet, and its 21mm beam is a far cry from the sublimely thin Pro Staff 6.0 85. However, this racquet provided our crew with levels of control and feel worthy of the classics. In addition to its outstanding feel, our playtesters applauded the Ultra Tours comfort and maneuverability. Although we failed to reach a consensus on this racquets downsides, a couple of our playtesters struggled to get sufficient spin (a common problem with dense 18x20 string patterns). Additionally, some of our players required weight customization to reach their preferred levels of power and plow through, but this was more a matter of fine-tuning than a defect. Ultimately, even with its many strengths, the Ultra Tour isnt for everyone. Players raised on thick beams, open string patterns and easy power will likely find a better fit with the more explosive Ultra 100 Countervail. However, if you want the control of a classic players racquet minus the bulk, you should definitely clear some space in your bag for the Ultra Tour.

Power 78
Control 88
Maneuverability 85
Stability 81
Comfort 91
Touch/Feel 91
Serves 80
Groundstrokes 88
Returns 86
Slice 86
Topspin 79
Volleys 88
Overall 87

Groundstrokes - Score: 88

Although a few of our players wanted a tad more power and plow through, we appreciated the Ultra Tours fast feel and easy targeting on groundstrokes. We also found the dense 18x20 string pattern to be quite plush and comfortable (as opposed to boardy). Finding the most success from the backcourt was Mark, who commented, "I was pretty certain that I would like swinging the Ultra Tour from the first time I saw it, and I have to say that it delivered far more than expected. Typically, an 18x20 pattern complements my more linear backhand, but not so much my loopy forehand. To my surprise, the spacing of the Ultra Tours 18x20 matched up well with both wings, and within an hour of hitting groundstrokes I was successfully hitting smaller targets with lots of topspin. As expected, the Ultra Tours tight pattern helped keep my backhand slice ultra low and effective. After some inspection, I can see that the 18x19 pattern I play with on the Blade SW 104 has approximately the same spacing as the Ultra Tours 18x20. For me, this was a fantastic racquet from the backcourt."

"I really, really enjoyed playing with this racquet from the baseline," said Chris, who liked it even more after adding a little weight. "The Ultra Tour was by far my favorite racquet from the current Wilson offerings. The Ultra Tour has some old-school feel to it, and I felt very dialed in on all of my groundstrokes. I felt comfortable and confident attacking, rallying and when pushed into defensive situations. In stock form the racquet felt very fast and easy to swing. There was just enough mass to help me drive the ball deep and to prevent the racquet from getting pushed around during heavier hitting. However, we couldnt resist weighting an Ultra Tour up a little, and I found the racquet much improved. The Ultra Tour is a great platform racquet for customization, and I loved how it responded to some added weight. The feel became very silky smooth, and I felt totally in control of my slice backhand and drop shots. It also became easier to drive the ball deep, and I was able to coax some additional power from the 18x20 string pattern."

Like Chris, Troy was also impressed by this racquet in stock form, but he too discovered the benefits of weight customization. He said, "My first impression from the baseline was that this Wilson Ultra Tour racquet felt light and fast compared to the racquets I typically play with. Although it felt lighter than what Im used to, it possessed impressive stability on contact. The high level of control allowed me to take aggressive swings off both wings. I was rewarded with deep penetrating groundstrokes that helped me push my opponents back and let me stay offensive. The confidence I had on fast swings allowed me to get decent spin from this racquets dense pattern. I also found a good amount of pop when I hit the sweetspot. The only thing lacking was the plow through. In stock form, I felt this racquet needed a bit of help driving through the ball, and it needed easier put away power. After playing with this racquet in stock form for a couple of weeks I messed around with a bit of weight in the handle and in the hoop at 3 and 9 oclock. With the added mass the Ultra Tour turned into an even better racquet. I was really enjoying the overall performance."

Although she could have used a tad more plow through and spin, Michelle was still able to find a groove with the Ultra Tour on groundstrokes. She said, "Its no secret that 18x20 string patterns are not usually my favorite racquets. Pair that with the fact that I was told this racquet would have a more classic feel, and I was slightly hesitant going into this playtest. After hearing Chris and Mark rave about it I was hopeful that I would also come away with a positive experience, and Im happy to report that I did! The first thing I noticed was how big the sweetspot felt and how I could really elongate and exaggerate my strokes, which is always a good thing. I was shocked at how much I could ramp up the power and still have control. I struggle juicing power out of many 18x20 racquets, but I found I could accelerate and be aggressive on my groundstrokes. While I was missing a bit of the plow through I get from my RF97, and I definitely would want to add some weight in the hoop, I was pretty satisfied with this racquet in stock form. It didnt feel stiff and it had a nice flex, which felt to be a bit lower than what I normally prefer from my favorite racquets, but it didnt hinder my time with the racquet. I found good precision and enjoyed hitting my targets and putting balls away with it. If I had a complaint, it was that the string pattern wasnt the most spin friendly, and I found myself missing into the top of the net a tiny bit more often."

Volleys - Score: 88

Our playtesters had a blast with the Ultra Tour at net. The quick handling and great feel won the day. Even Michelle, who typically plays with a weighted up version of the Pro Staff RF97 Autograph, was impressed by this lighter racquet. She said, "This racquet was legit at net. I really felt like I had control over what I was doing with the ball and the feel just lent itself to precision and touch. Its not always my game style, but I could take advantage of what the racquet offered. I really enjoyed it at net and had fun playing doubles with it. Despite it being a bit lighter than my normal spec, I really didnt have any issues with stability. I could absorb power from my opponents and redirect it or return it with soft touch."

For Mark, this racquet had the perfect specs at net. He explained, "This was another part of the playtest where the Ultra Tour stood out for me in a positive way. Its combination of an 18x20 string pattern, forgiving beam, 97 square-inch head size, low 11 oz string weight, standard length and substantial 320-ish swingweight complemented my game anywhere near the net. Overall, the Ultra Tour is light enough for me to swing through a volley and stable enough to execute a traditional volley against a heavy passing shot."

Even in stock form, Chris had zero complaints with the Utra Tour at net. However, as he found on groundstrokes, the difference between good and great was added weight. He explained, "The feel and control I found with the Ultra Tour was great at net. I loved hitting touch volleys with this racquet. The dense 18x20 string pattern and smooth response had me feeling very connected to the ball. I felt confident punching volleys deep and found adequate power from the racquet. In stock form the racquet felt very good; with some added weight it felt great."

Even though he prefers volleying with a heavier racquet, Troy appreciated the Ultra Tours maneuverability and feel at net. He commented, "The maneuverability was evident at net, where I felt I could position the racquet with ease. During fast exchanges the maneuverability helped me to react quickly and get my hands into place. For the relatively light weight I found decent stability. The feel on contact was plush and solid at the same time. The overall command made it easy for me to hit my targets, and I was surprised by the power, especially when hitting the sweetspot. Since I lost a bit of control when I took bigger swings I found it best to keep my volleys short and simple and let the racquet provide the pop. I also really appreciated the touch and feel on short angles and drop shots. In stock form this racquet had decent stability when I was volleying heavy hit balls. After I added some weight to the head the stability was more similar to the racquets I typically favor (Wilson Six.One 95, Wilson Pro Staff RF97 Autograph)."

Serves - Score: 80

The Ultra Tour received mixed opinions from our playtesters on serve. A couple of our players were able to wield it very effectively, but the other half had trouble generating enough power and spin. For Troy, this racquet had the perfect balance of features on serve. He said, "The blend of maneuverability and precision allowed me to attack my first and second serves with lots of racquet head speed. On my flat first serves I was getting a good amount of pop, if not the huge power I get from the Babolat Pure Drive Tour Plus or Yonex VCORE SV 98+. I found better than average power on my first serves compared to other midplus racquets with dense string patterns, and I was able to generate heavy spin on slice and kick serves. Because of the easy maneuverability I was able to get some extra wrist pronation, and this helped me add some extra kick to my spin serves. Being that I am a spot-server more so than a raw power hitter, this racquet boosted my ability to locate the corners of the service box. Overall, this racquet allowed me to use my variety and placement and to be in control of my service games."

Marks deep appreciation for the Ultra Tour continued on serve, dense pattern and all. He said, "Although I determined that the Ultra Tours string spacing is pretty much the same as my Blade SW 104s 18x19, I still had the thought in my head that spinning the ball will be an issue with an 18x20. This was not the case, and I hit my regular Playsight numbers. I had all the spin I needed, along with a high degree of comfort and consistency."

Although Chris eventually made do with this racquet on serve, he could have used a bit more power and spin. He explained, "The one shot where I was missing some power was on serve. My Yonex EZONE DR 98+ packs way more punch than this racquet. I think the combination of a standard length, dense string pattern and a more control-oriented frame response conspired to provide less power. I also struggled to generate the amount of spin Im used to getting. It was tougher to get aggressive second serves to drop inside the box. Things got better the more I got used to the racquet and was able to adapt my game, but I rarely served as well with this racquet as I do with my regular racquet."

There was no love lost between Michelle and the Ultra Tour on serve. "Im not going to lie, this wasnt my favorite place to use the Ultra Tour," she said. "I just never felt I was getting enough power out of my serves and never felt like I was making the racquet work for me. Its tough, because we were playtesting this alongside the new Pure Drive, which I loved on serves. I could go after flat first serves and I was able to get some good spin out of my kicks and slices but I just didnt feel like this racquet enhanced my serves."


Returns - Score: 86

A few members of our team were calling for extra weight and more plow through for their service returns, but, on the whole, the Ultra Tour performed admirably in stock form. Chris was impressed. He said, "A great racquet to return with, the Ultra Tour felt fast, solid enough and very controlled. The Ultra Tour encouraged me to return aggressively, and I found I could take a big cut at the ball without losing control. Both my drive and chip returns were working well. Again, the blend of stability and maneuverability was pretty good, but theres definitely plenty of room for stronger players to add weight."

Michelle had no problem hitting her mark on returns, but she would have liked a tad more pop. She said, "What I appreciated most about this racquet was being able to block big serves back without really worrying that the ball was going to float out. I could also step up, pick my target and execute the shot. I was hoping for a bit more plow through and missed some of that put-away power that Ive grown accustomed to with my favorite racquets."

For Troy, this racquet had impressive comfort and control on returns, but it got better with some well placed weight. He said, "I was loving the plush feel of this racquet on serve returns. The comfort level allowed me to feel confident when I stepped in and took returns early. With a racquet that provides great control and a comfortable feel I can be more aggressive, without having to fear the jarring sensations I get from stiffer racquets. The only downside was the lighter weight, which meant I was lacking some plow through. After I added some mass to the hoop of this racquet I found all the plow through and stability I was looking for on my returns. My backhand slices were getting easy depth and staying low, which made it hard for my opponents to create offensive shots. The added weight and plush feel had me hitting my two-handed backhand return with good consistency and depth. The feel on my returns reminded me of my old Head MicroGEL Radical Midplus, which (big surprise coming) I weighted up."

"This was the fourth part of the playtest, and like the prior three portions, I loved this frame when I was hitting returns," said Mark, who simply couldnt find anything wrong with the Ultra Tour. "I most often chip the return with my 28 inch length masterpiece, but I could whip through the return more effectively and more often with this standard length masterpiece."

Overall - Score: 87


Technical Specifications
Length27 in69 cm
Head Size97 sq in626 sq cm
Weight11.4 oz323 gm
Balance Point12.76 in 32 cm6pts Head Light
Construction21mm / 21 mm / 21mm
CompositionGraphite
String Pattern18 Mains / 20 Crosses

Babolat RDC Ratings

ScoreGrade
Flex Rating63Range: 0-100
Swing Weight324Range: 200-400

















 
 
   
 
 
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