Two classic, iconic rackets go head to head.
Head will launch a new version of their Radical racket in 2021 and Babolat have already launched their Pure Drive 2021. I have received countless messages from players asking advice about the best racket. Which is the better racket? Which should you buy?
As you can read I loved both these rackets in my racket review. I enjoyed playing with both frames and got to become grooved quite quickly. In the tests I reviewed the Head Radical MP and the Babolat Pure Drive. There are many other models available in the range to suit every player.
What type of player are you?
To buy any racket it is important to know what type of player the racket is for. The Pure Drive and Radical are two vastly different rackets. The Pure Drive will suit many players. It is easy to pick up and hit with straight away. I noticed the easy power that I could generate from this racket and the plentiful sweetspot which gave me a good feeling every ball I hit.
I felt like a pro with the Pure Drive, every shot I touched usually worked out good. With this racket I just had a lot of confidence, it was good for my game and just a fun racket to play with. It is comfortable yet powerful and provides plenty of spin. What else do players want? The Pure Drive will appeal to a lot of players of Intermediate and advanced level. Any beginner moving onto their first proper racket will be immediately sold with the Babolat. It really makes the game easy if you know how to use it. That is have properly formed swings and the strength to swing the racket.
The Radical is a different beast altogether. This narrow beam frame provides a lot of control and relies on the player to generate the power. For me this is fine. I have long fast swings and take pretty big cuts at the ball. The Radical just guides the ball in the court. Two things I noticed with the Radical. It gave me great penetration on my groundstrokes. I noticed my shots move through the court better than not just the Pure Drive but any other racket I play with. The Radical also provides great precision. I found that the relatively stiff frameset gave me good control and confidence to hit the ball where I wanted. In a blind play test there is a big difference in how these rackets feel.
The Radical will attract players who like to hit cleanly from the baseline that need a laser guidance system to play their shots. I got more power and precision from the Radical than the Pure Drive. The Radical is certainly not as forgiving as the Pure Drive and this fact may sway many buyers
You will like both rackets. Both are player friendly frames. It is easy to see why the Babolat Pure Drive is such a popular racket and continues to be so. It is really player friendly and it should make your game better. It’s ease of use make it a popular choice amongst a large group of players. Some experts have even called it the best racket of 2021 (already). I wouldn’t go that far just yet.
I love the Head Radical. It is an improvement on the already excellent predecessor. If precision and penetration are top of your wanted lists then this will be an excellent choice. Even if you play with a different brand or model of racket try the Head Radical and watch your shots go. The new colourscheme is pretty distinctive too 😍.