Cobra KING F9 Speedback Fairway Review

50 Words or Less

The Cobra KING F9 Speedback Fairway features a CNC milled face – the first for a Cobra fairway – and signature Baffler Rails.  Strong performance in a good looking club.

Introduction

Being part of a strong lineup like the Cobra KING F9 Speedback club family isn’t always easy.  The big dog driver (review HERE) has been the talk of the town while even the hybrid (review HERE) has received a ton of attention.  Can the middle child fairway wood find its own voice?  I set out to give it a fair chance.

Looks

At address, the Cobra KING F9 Speedback Fairway looks like a smaller version of the driver.  The only distinguishing aspect is that the exposed carbon fiber is an insert rather than wrapping over the edge.  Two subtle ridges on the insert focus your eyes to the classic Cobra logo and centerline of the club face.  Helping to direct air flow, slightly raised polymer ‘trips’ are positioned across the front of the crown, providing visual interest without looking busy.

On the sole, dual Baffler rails give this fairway wood distinction while the red weight pod adds a pop of color.  The all-black CNC milled face looks like it means serious business.  The KING F9 also comes in an eye catching black and yellow combination.

Sound & Feel

The sound at impact is reminiscent of the crack of snapping a green branch – crisp and restrained.  Paired with the Fujikura ATMOS Blue 7 shaft, the head felt solid and reactive when striking the ball anywhere on the face.  There’s the obvious feedback on extreme heel, toe or thin shots; otherwise the designed forgiveness is reflected in the uniform feel.

Performance

After learning about, and enjoying the benefits of, the CNC face milling on the Cobra KING F9 Speedback Driver, I was amazed to see it included in the fairway.  Turns out this was the first ever Cobra fairway to include the remarkable feat of precision milling, which also incorporates Dual Roll Technology designed for straighter, more consistent ball flights.   Data collected at Club Champion confirmed the consistent distance I had observed in my range testing.  What was eye opening were the extremely high smash factors – this face is hot.

The Cobra KING F9 Speedback Fairway comes standard with a 15 gram tungsten weight that can be changed out to adjust swing weight.  The resultant deep and low center of gravity promotes higher trajectories and helps power the club head through turf.

Having gamed the F8 Hybrid for a year, I’ve come to believe in the Cobra Baffler Rails and their ability to glide the club head through grass of varying height.  The Baffler Rails of the F9 Fairway are shallower than the Hybrid and designed for more of a sweeping club path.  When my swing got a bit steep, the rounded leading edge of the Cobra KING F9 Speedback Fairway Baffler Rails kept me from digging into the turf and losing valuable yardage.

One note of caution – if you test the club on tight or worn artificial turf, be cognizant that the Baffler Rails raise the bottom of the club and thus the center of the clubface a bit.  Performance is still good, but as I learned, hitting off a more forgiving mat and grass, ‘real’ performance is much more impressive.  Also note that teeing up the Cobra KING F9 Speedback Fairway makes for an impressive mini-driver.

Conclusion

So often, fairway woods can’t incorporate the technology of their bigger siblings due to their physical limitations.  Not so with the KING F9 Speedback Fairway, where the Cobra designers were able to integrate CNC face milling to a revamped aerodynamic head.  Along with re-engineered Baffler Rails, this is a fairway wood worthy of consideration by golfers of all abilities.

Cobra KING F9 Speedback Fairway Price & Specs

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Matt Meeker

Matt lives in sunny Orlando with his wife who allows his golf obsession to stretch the limits of normalcy. He's also a proud coach with The First Tee of Central Florida who loves teaching kids about golf and life skills.

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9 Comments

  1. paul kalar

    the rails on the sole is not new tech – the innovation clubs from the 80’s had this – good try cobra –

    • Matt Meeker

      Well, you’re kinda right Paul. Tom Crow, the founder of Cobra Golf, figured it out over 40 years ago.

      – Meeks

  2. Michael Haley

    Nice solid review with someone close to me in clubhead speed. I’d like to have a 115 mph clubhead speed on my driver, etc but that’s not the case anymore. #fathertime. I’ll be adding this into the testing tomorrow at club champion for sure. I’ll see if it can get the TS3 out of my bag.

  3. I picked this club up about a month ago. It really goes out there. What impressed me the most was when I felt I missed the shot, I would still get 200yards.

  4. What loft did you have it set at for the numbers provided? Kind of seems like an important thing to mention.

  5. I picked up this 3 wood about 2 months ago. I play a fairly tight course here in Hawaii and it fits the bill for control and distance. I’m 61 and my swing speed has diminished, however, I’m getting some fantastic distance with this club. Several times, I felt a mishit, yet it still traveled about 220 yrds. I have mainly used this club to tee off and rarely need to try a fairway shot.

  6. Im a high handicapper with a slow swing speed (regular flex) i currently use an m4 5 wood. I rarely thin a shot and chunk all the time, do you think this fairway will be better for me than the m4? Most review sites show the cobra f8 and 9 for moderate to high swing speed players, am i out of my league with the f9?

    • Matt Meeker

      Thanks for visiting our site Mike. First, don’t be alarmed by the swing speed advisory by Cobra on the F9 – it’s a great club regardless. The only down side for slower swing speeds is not being able to fully take advantage of the aerodynamic designs. Although I found the F9 slightly better than the M4 – especially with turf interaction – it sounds like swing mechanics may be the biggest issue for you. Chunking won’t be diminished with a different club.

      – Meeks

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