Gear Review

When asked, what a mini driver is, Blythe quipped, “Basically, a shortened driver.” TaylorMade’s BRNR is about 3-4cm shorter than a regular driver, has a standard loft of 11.5° (as reviewed but can also be bought with a 13.5° option – ed) and a head size of 304cc, which is about the same as a 2-wood if you had to categorise it by loft.

Why would you use a mini driver? It would mostly be an alternative to a 3-wood or fairway wood. I prefer it to my regular 3-wood; with the bigger head, I feel more comfortable over the ball. So, I just feel more comfortable with it. But undoubtedly, I find the biggest advantage is as an alternate driver. I get a lot more accuracy and I don't lose that much distance with it, so on a 250-260m drive, I probably lose about 20 metres.

This is my second mini driver, my first being the TaylorMade 300 Mini driver, which I still have. To be honest, there isn’t a great deal of difference between the two. The previous shaft is as good, and I don't see much difference in the shape of the faces other than the fact the 300 has quite a “raw” face, whereas the latest driver has a smooth finish that is complemented by the copper bronze colour that looks amazing on the eye – it just looks a lot better to me.

Coming back to the mini driver vs a 3-wood, the 3-wood has a flatter head and, particularly when hitting off a tee, a lot of people tend to go under it; they just don't feel comfortable. With the mini driver’s much bigger head, you just feel more relaxed standing over the ball; it gives you more confidence to let rip. I love to use it into the wind, teed down, and with the lesser loft it gives a more penetrating flight; it also gives me more distance than a 3-wood does. The BRNR Mini driver is also great off the deck, again because of the bigger head, and the ability to adjust the loft (of course, before the round) also gives you so much more confidence to pound it off the short stuff.

The new BRNR, which packs the latest technology, feels like the strike is “softer” off the face; I’m not getting that much difference in distance. The sound of the BRNR is just lovely, and both having a larger face and a shorter shaft has meant my timing is so much better. This has given me a lot more control which has translated into consistency, which, of course, has meant lower scores!

The latest club just looks fantastic. It’s really good on the eye, and I get positive comments, like, “Hey what is that? It looks amazing!”, from playing partners when they first see it. It has stunning bronze and black livery that runs through from the grip and the shaft to the head. Even the head cover looks cool! It just has a brilliant retro but unmistakably modern look to it and is a great addition to the bag.

The new driver pays homage to the previous Burner ranges of the late 1990s. BRNR sans the vowels continues the retro theme but is certainly not a retro club. In fact, the mini driver is quite popular with a number of tour pros: Tommy Fleetwood, Bryson DeChambeau and Adam Scott use the BRNR as their 3-wood.

While classic in design, the BRNR has all the latest tech, including movable weight and the TaylorMade loft sleeve system that allows you to make loft changes and face angles on the fly. It also utilises a combination of materials, including carbon fibre, steel and titanium to produce the club’s classic look and feel, as well as consistent performance. If you have issues with using a driver off the tee, I would highly recommend that you give the BRNR Mini driver a test run. Confidence and consistency – what more would you want?


Split weights allow golfers to switch between the standard setting for balanced performance, and the low spin setting for a piercing trajectory and increased roll out.

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Brett Blyth is an amateur golfer who plays out of Royal Cape. He has a handicap index of 6.4 and is a self-confessed golf fanatic. 

Credit: UA Website

Brett Blyth is an amateur golfer who plays out of Royal Cape. He has a handicap index of 6.4 and is a self-confessed golf fanatic. 

Brett Blyth is an amateur golfer who plays out of Royal Cape. He has a handicap index of 6.4 and is a self-confessed golf fanatic.