Tour Repping USBC Masters Day 1

Tour Rep USBC Masters Syracuse, NY 2018:

Day 1

Today was practice session for A, B, and C squads. A and C squads will bowl on fresh and B Squad will bowl on the burn. The squads will rotate each day so that all 3 squads bowl on two fresh squads and one burn squad.

For practice day, the lanes were stripped and oiled prior to each practice squad. Each squad practiced for one hour today. Closer look at the pattern HERE

A squad practice started bright and early at 8am. I didn’t see the pattern prior to the start of practice, even though it was posted just prior to practice. I like to watch for a bit to see if I can figure out the distance and shape of the pattern prior to seeing it on a pattern sheet. It was very evident from the first couple shots that the pattern was very flat.

I guessed it to be 39 feet, and I was very close, as the pattern was 40 feet. It looked shorter because of how crisp and sharp the backends were; the ball hooked quite a bit down lane. But you have to keep in mind that the surface is only a month old and virtually all new lane surfaces have a lot of backend on their own.

There is a decent amount of volume on the lane with 28.035 mils. There were two places to play on the lane. Right up 2-4 or moving way in to around 17-19 at the arrows. Regardless of which plan of attack you choose, you cannot go away from the pocket very much. You have to keep your angles more in front of you and in-line with the 3 pin for a right hander.

If you look at the pattern, the pattern is slightly offset to the right (asymmetrical). This Is done for a couple reasons. Trying to keep an equitable and fair condition for both right and left handers (because of the amount of right handed bowlers compared to left handed bowlers). And to keep the right handers from playing too far left, too early.

With the pattern being so flat, there isn’t any place on the lane that is great, honestly. But the two areas described earlier did have the most room for error.

The lanes were then stripped for B squad and practice started at 10:30.

Again this practice squad was one hour.

After watching for an hour on the previous practice squad, it was a little easier to advise the staff players of what worked on A squad practice. The lanes seemed to hook just a tad more, not uncommon when stripping the lanes multiple times a day.

Again, though, the two places on the lane to play were right up 2-4 and 17-19 at the arrows and keeping the angles tight.

This squad did seem to migrate left a little quicker, however. By the end of this squad, the lanes were much more playable. Most of this is due simply because more people started in the same part of the lane because of the information learned from A squad, therefore breaking the lane down more uniformly and making them easier. And I say easier, not easy; the lanes are not easy this week with this flat pattern.

But they are definitely not impossible, either. You have to make good, crisp, clean shots. And you have to make those shots consistently and frequently. And when you don’t strike, and you leave whatever is left, hope your spare game is in good shape this week, as they will be very important.

The lanes were stripped again for C squad, which started at 1pm and again for one hour of practice. C squad is by far the strongest squad talent wise. This also helped to really dial in any last minute ideas for different parts of the lane to play and balls or surfaces to try.

Again, no surprise, the two places on the lane to play were right up 2-4 or 17-19 at the arrows. 900 Global staffer Chris Barnes is on C squad. Chris is so versatile he can virtually play any part of the lane with many releases and speeds. His best look was with a Truth Tour, out of the box surface, and pin in the palm.

This layout really helps get the ball to roll and not hook a lot in the backend. Given that the lane is already hooking a ton in the back, bowlers don’t need balls to hook even more down lane.

Balls that looked good for all three squads were Truth Tour, Covert Ops, and Shadow Ops. The new Badger and Dream On also looked good when the lanes broke down a bit. Most of the layouts being used are weaker layouts so the balls don’t over hook down lane. Players will be using a moderate amount of surface, 1000-1500, depending on speed and rev rates.

So there you have it. Busy first day of practice. But I feel like the 900 Global staff have a good game plan and have their equipment lined up. Hope to do a couple of Facebook live sessions during and after round 1 of qualifying.

Stay tuned!

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