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Babolat AeroPro Drive Plus GT 2013

The Babolat AeroPro Drive Plus GT 2013 is the extended version of Rafael Nadal's racquet of choice. This is an exceptionally aerodynamic racquet, allowing for tremendous swing speed, awesome power and great access to spin.

Shipping Restriction: U.S. Sales only. Babolat policy forbids shipping this item outside the United States.

  • Technology: GT, Cortex Active, Aero Modular, Woofer
  • Construction: Graphite/Tungsten
  • Beam: 23/26/22mm Dual Tapered Beam
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$199.00
 
  • Description
  • Specifications
  • Technology
  • Product Review

The Babolat AeroPro Drive Plus GT 2013 is the extended version of Rafael Nadal's racquet of choice. The AeroPro Drive GT, released December 2012, is the latest model of Babolat's famousAeroPro Drive frame. Incorporating Graphite and Tungsten (GT), this racquet features even more control, with exceptional solidity and stability. This is an exceptionally aerodynamic racquet, allowing for tremendous swing speed, awesome power and great access to spin.

Comes without cover.

  • Technology: GT, Cortex Active, Aero Modular, Woofer
  • Construction: Graphite/Tungsten
  • Beam: 23/26/22mm Dual Tapered Beam
  • Length: 27.5"
  • Headsize: 100 sq in/ 645 Sq cm MidPlus
  • Weight: 10.6oz/300g Unstrung
  • Grip Size: 1-5
  • Balance: 320mm 7 Pts Head Light
  • Swing Style: Long/Fast to Moderate
  • Recommended Strings: Power - Pro Hurricane Tour or RPM Blast, Durability - Pro Hurricane, Comfort - XCEL, Hybrid - RPM Blast + VS
  • Recommended Tension: 55-62
  • String Pattern: 16x19
  • Stiffness: 72 RA


Babolat Cortex ActiveCortex Active: Every time a racquet hits a ball, it generates thousands of vibrations, hundreds of which cause discomfort, while others help players get a better feel for the ball. Since each player has different needs, Babolat has designed a system with three new types of dampeners to enable all types of players to find just the right amount and kinds of sensations to suit their specific style and preferences.

 



Babolat Aero Modular TechnologyThinner width at the upper section of the raquet provides increased power. The standard width midsection provides stability, and a wider base provides more stiffness for increased control and a faster swing.

 



Babolat Woofer Dual TechnologyWoofer, Babolat's patented innovation, is the first technology that causes the frame and strings to interact when striking the ball. Woofer provides 25% more contact time between the ball and strings, giving players more control and feel. Further, the optimized interaction between the frame and the strings allows the racquet to deliver its full potential.
 

Babolat AeroPro Drive Plus GT 2013 Tennis Racquet Review

By Chris Lewis


INTRODUCTION: The Babolat AeroPro Drive Plus GT 2013 is an extended (1/2") version of the regular 27" AeroPro Drive frame. Aside from the extra length, the racquet has the same composition, characteristics and specifications of the regular version. Unlike many of the extended versions of a popular 27" frame, the AeroPro Drive Plus GT is an extremely popular racquet with a very loyal following.

GROUNDSTROKES: I was fortunate enough to be able to test the AeroPro Drive Plus GT 2013 straight after testing the 27" frame. Although the feel of the two racquets was virtually identical, the extra length definitely makes a difference in a few areas. First, the extra power was noticeable. This is because the longer racquet is travelling a little faster at the point of contact than the 27" frame. And not only did it add more power, the racquet also increased the length of my shots. It wasn't by a huge amount, but it did take a little while to make the adjustment. With the extra power, I was interested to see if this also translated into being able to generate more spin. In this regard, even though I could definitely hit harder, I was pretty sure I couldn't get any more spin out of the longer 27 1/2" frame. The other thing that was of interest was whether I sacrificed any
control to the extra power. In the first instance, I thought that there was a little less control; however, as soon as I got used to the extra length, I think it was more a case of making an adjustment to the extra power rather than the regular racquet having more control.

 

Second, the additional length of any extended racquet definitely affects maneuverability. Personally speaking, I prefer a 27" frame because I feel I can both improvise better with it as well as handle it better when it comes to anything requiring quick reflexes and reactions, particularly when dealing with shots coming straight at me. On the other hand, the extra length is definitely an advantage when it comes to countering shots that require extra reach out wide. What it really comes down to is personal preference as the racquets feel so similar that only minor adjustments are needed to play with one racquet or the other.

 


All I said in my review of the regular Babolat AeroPro Drive GT 2013 holds true for the extended version as well. I found it great for producing spin and power, and felt it was an improvement on the 2010 model when it came to hitting slice backhands. It is a pretty stiff racquet, but it also absorbs the impact of the ball extremely well, unlike many stiff frames which tend to be too unforgiving, especially when hitting a little off-center. Players who are used to the feel of the 2010 AeroPro GT are not going to find this racquet too much different. I like it a little more than the previous model as it felt a little smoother to me even though, at the same time, it also felt a little stiffer.

VOLLEYS: Once again, the distinctive qualities of the AeroPro Drive, the 2013 model included, lend themselves to solid, penetrating volleys hit firmly and decisively into the corners. The racquet's stiffness and stability made it easy to deal with even the hardest shots coming at me as all it requires is a really compact, firm stroke and the ball behaves exactly as you tell it to. Although it's probably illusory, I felt as though the ball stayed on the strings for an extremely short time, which is great for producing pace, but it didn't in any way tempt me into hitting volleys that required touch and feel. It's just not that sort of racquet.

SERVES and OVERHEADS: The Babolat AeroPro Drive GT 2013 is an impressive serving racquet. With its relatively light weight enabling massive swing speed, thicker than usual player's racquet beam width enabling extra power, and extended length adding even more power, not to mention extra  height, the 2013 GT is great for every type of serve. Of all the serves, though, I found I most enjoyed hitting slice serves out wide on the deuce side. The racquet produced an impressive blend of power and spin, while at the same time being very accurate.

Equally so with overheads. It's a highly maneuverable, powerful racquet that made hitting overheads a pleasure.

RETURN OF SERVE: As with hitting groundstrokes and volleys, I found returning with the Babolat AeroPro Drive GT 2013 to be lots of fun. It was equally impressive for both handling big first serves and crushing weak second serves, and everything in between. It's no accident when a racquet becomes universally popular. And this is absolutely the case with the AeroPro Drive. It combines so many positive individual attributes and wraps them up into a complete package that can't help but appeal to certain types of players by providing them with exactly what they are looking for. How can you not like a racquet that combines loads of power with an excellent spin generating capacity together with terrific maneuverability and stability? What this translates to when returning is that it's good for whatever's needed in every particular case, from countering tremendous power to
generating huge power yourself, from dealing with wide serves that need to be played at full stretch while depending on a racquet that does some of the work for you to needing a racquet that's agile enough to improvise against unexpected serves that catch you by surprise. The Babolat AeroPro Drive GT 2013 does all of that. In short, it's a great racquet for not just serving, but returning too.

SUMMARY: The Babolat AeroPro Drive Plus GT 2013 is another AeroPro Drive winner. It is everything it is designed to be; namely, a highly maneverable racquet that combines a tremendous spin-generating quality with impressive power in a stable, aerodynamic frame. I was, once again, most impressed.

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