Surviving the Hot List: Season 2

What happens when you drop a golf-crazed Hollywood actor and a retired NFL player into the most grueling gig in golf? At the 2023 Hot List summit, Golf Digest's cameras followed Michael Peña and Danny Woodhead's quest to ace their new jobs as rookie club testers.

Players-Distance Irons

Let’s face it—everyone wants to hit the ball longer. Not just off the tee, but with your irons as well. That’s particularly true of of the best new Payers-Distance irons. In recent years the inclination of designers has been to produce as many yards as humanly possible without sacrificing look or launch angle. Innovations such as cupfaces (first used in drivers) where the face wraps around the topline and sole, boost ball speed by providing more face flex. Others thin the face to create a better trampoline. The use of multiple materials also is prevalent, in many cases tungsten weights to move the center of gravity to help elevate the ball. Of course, none of this appeals to the better player if the sound is like a cymbal clashing or a cat having its tail stepped on. Designers have paid attention here as well, using polymers and badges to damp unwanted vibration while protecting ball speed for that distance shot in the arm.