So if you aren’t excited yet about the upcoming Pure Strikes coming early 2014 from Babolat, then listen up, because there’s more coming to you from Babolat in January!
While the new Pure Strike series is aimed to appeal to players that take the first strike in the point, the new Pure Controls should be attractive to players looking for that traditional, plush feel from their racquet. This racquet has an added response for players looking for the ultimate precision combined with control. The new Pure Control series offers an answer for players with longer, faster swings. This racquet will offer you longer contact time between the ball and racquet leading to the ultimate on court control.
The Active Cortex really does it job, and our testers found the feel and response both were much improved over the previous AeroPro Drive GT. This racquet continues to be forgiving, and it offers easy access to spin and power. Pair that with better feel, and this 2013 version of the AeroPro Drive is a winner.
The wildly popular AeroPro Drive has fans around the world for its ease of use, extremely spin friendly response and easily tapped power. It doesn’t hurt either that none other than Rafael Nadal swings this racquet on the ATP World Tour. We can’t all hit with the massive RPMs of Nadal, but as our testers discovered, the AeroPro Drive GT 2013 certainly helps in the spin department.
Siobhan hits a western forehand and puts quite bit of spin on her baseline shots. This racquet fit right into her game.
” I got a lot of comments on my ability to whip back really low balls with a lot of pace with this racquet, and I like how I didn’t have to adjust my swing speed,” she said. “The Aero just flies through the air, allowing me to create some heavy racquet speed, so I can absolutely fire forehands with this racquet.”
Though a top seller, the Babolat AeroPro Drive has had its detractors who disliked the feel and stiff feel. Our tester Andy was previously among those who didn’t count himself as a fan. With the Active Cortex, all that has changed.
“Active Cortex, now introduced into the AeroPro Drive line, does a great job dampening the feel and creating a better connection between ball and player, which I felt previous versions of this racquet didn’t quite have,” Andy said. “It’s still very stiff feeling, but the dampening system in the handle does a great job of making it more comfortable than ever.”
The racquet excels off the ground, but it performs just as well at net. As an all-court player, Chris likes to mix up his net tactics, and the AeroPro Drive GT 2013 was up to the task.
“Sure, it doesn’t have the mass to punch the ball quite as much as I like, but its stiff beam did enough to keep the racquet feeling solid most of the time and for power to be decent,” Chris explained. “I was able to carve some nice angle volleys and punch the ball away, and that had me keeping my opponents guessing.”
If you’ve played with a previous Babolat AeroPro Drive or a Pure Drive, this racquet will feel familiar in the hand.
“It fits right in there with those two and really impresses with spin, power and forgiveness,” said Chris, who has hundreds of playtests under his belt. “If you have hit a Pure Drive or previous AeroPro Drive, you’ll feel the lineage in this one from the first hit. I don’t think Babolat has changed much here, and for me that is a very good thing, as the previous version still feels very good. This update has slightly better feel and comes around a tad faster — both solid improvements to an already impressive racquet.”
There’s not much to dislike about this racquet, though some say it is stiff feeling, and is definitely worth a look if you’re seeking controllable power, spin and a user-friendly feel. There is a reason the AeroPro Drive has such a wide appeal. Just about anyone can use it with success.
Check out or full review here.