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Kegler's Connection

   September 11, 1999

Table of Contents
  * Grandstand News
     ~ Tip of the Week
     ~ Rick's Report
     ~ PBA Leaves Network TV for Cable Only
     ~ Regional Schedules Listed
     ~ Bowler's Guide Available
     ~ USA Bowling Championships
  * YABA
     ~ 1998-99 Junior Highlights
  * Miscellaneous News
     ~ Stock Watch
  * And Finally

*** Grandstand News ***
***** Tip of the Week *****
Consistency...brought to you by GSTDMaul. Get tips and advice to better your game during Chat (Available to AOL Members Only) from the Dark Side with GSTDMaul at 10 PM ET on Tuesdays.

In today's game, every style in the game can play--the spinners, the full rollers, the 3/4 rollers. The key is consistency. Consistency is simply the ability to repeat a shot. If you are consistent, you can adapt to lane conditions as they go into transition (the period when the lane starts to change). If you don't throw the same ball twice, you can end up adjusting to a bad shot, and that will end up in more bad shots, and you can get into trouble quickly.

There is no wrong way to play the game anymore, but the key is doing the same thing over and over again. Next time you practice, just concentrate on repeating the same shots over and over. The more consistent you are, the better your game will be.

***** Rick's Report *****
Kegler's Connection readers have been enjoying Rick's Reports from both the PBA and PWBA tours for several months now. While the tour is on hiatus, he's presenting the behind the scenes look at what the job of a Tour Rep entails.

A Week in the Life of a PBA Tour Rep by Rick Benoit
Part One
Don't get me wrong, I love my job. But a week in the life of a tour rep is tough duty. Right now I'm in Muskegon, MI, the home of Brunswick. While I'm here, I get to work with the Research and Development team, feeding them experiences and observations I've gathered on the road.

But in just a couple of days, Art McKee and I will hit the road again. This time, for an 11-week, coast-to-coast stint representing Brunswick on the PBA Tour. Time to load up the Brunswick Suburban.

After two days of driving, we arrive in Albany, NY, one day before practice day begins. Inventory is first on the list, everything from balls and bags, to shirts and accessories. Inventory is kept on two semi-tractor trailers owned by the PBA.

There are three drill presses on the trailers and the rest of the room is taken up with manufacturers' inventory and everything else the PBA needs to run a Tour stop. Brunswick alone has 400 balls on the trailer, just to be sure we'll be prepared for any kind of lane condition.

Believe it or note, it's possible to go through all 400 balls and not find the pin placement and top weight we want. It's our job to anticipate what we'll need so that doesn't happen.

Once we are satisfied the inventory is taken care of, we tend to the Pro Staff. Each player has different needs, ranging from equipment to practice time on the lanes. Our job is to meet those needs, making sure their arsenal is complete.

Since we're coming off a long break, many of the players show up with a minimal selection of balls. If they show up early enough, we can get them outfitted with whatever equipment they makes for a long, busy day, but there'll be no time for that tomorrow. Tomorrow is practice.

Practice day begins with a three-hour practice session. This is when we develop lane and equipment strategies that will give the bowler his best chance for victory.

During this three-hour session, our bowlers will use different strategies, some staying on one pare the entire time, while others wander from pair to pair trying different equipment in different areas of the lane. This is the first day we see the condition that will be used that week for competition.

With the wealth of information provided to us about surface conditions, (types of oil, volumes of oil, pattern of oil, length of oil, length of buff, and speed of buff), you might think it would be easy to tell where to play. Trust me, it's not. In fact, most of the time I ignore these readings because they tend to narrow the thinking process.

I prefer to watch the ball reaction and make my educated guess, then see how this matches up to what I read after practice. Of course, one of the biggest challenges is that the conditions on practice day and those we see on qualifying days will not be identical.

The main reason for this is that the lane conditions are a product of the strategies and the equipment the bowlers use. Many times the guy who seems to have them figured out on practice day is not so fortunate once qualifying begins.

Understanding that the lanes are maintained once each day and will not be touched again until the completion of bowling each night is the key. This allows for a lot of transition during a day of competition. At the pro's skill level, many tournaments are won by having the best strategy from day one.

I compare bowling at the professional level to that of chess. It is all about making the right move at the right time, and doing it faster than the next guy. It isn't very often that a player wins because he or she bowls that much better than the rest of the field.

Forget thinking you are physically better than the rest, it isn't going to happen. You have to be physically good just to compete and the rest is all about matching up. To win, you need an advantage over the field. The advantage is your strategy.

(To be continued next week)

*** PBA/PWBA ***
***** PBA Leaves Network for Cable Only *****
Rumors have abounded for months, and now, Bowler's Journal International is reporting that that PBA has indeed left CBS and network television behind, concentrating on its relationship with ESPN. The PBA contract with CBS was still in force, but due to heavy losses, the PBA chose to pursue other venues to televise its tour. For details please read PBA Tour.

***** Regional Schedules Listed *****
With the national tours on hiatus, now is a good time to check up on the regional tournaments held in your area. The PWBA Regional Schedule is virtually one-stop shopping for all the regions.

The PBA Regional organizations each have their own site, and update the sites with varying frequency. The best jump point for PBA regional info is PBA Tour.

*** ABC/WIBC ***
***** Bowler's Guide Available *****
Have you ever wondered about the history of bowling? Do you have a friend you'd like to convert to the sport? Bowling, Inc., is selling a $5 Bowler's Guide. Maybe you think you already know it all, but for the price of a fast food lunch, you can be sure. The booklet includes tips from Team USA coaches, and special sections for seniors and youth bowlers. For more information, click on Bowl BOWLDOTCOM.

***** USA Bowling Championships *****
Can another year be almost over? The USA Bowling Championships are set for December 13 through 18, at the National Bowling Stadium in Reno, NV. Bowlers will be vying for berths on Team USA. In order to qualify to bowl in the tournament, bowlers are either state amateur champion or state national advancer or they bought in an entry to the tournament or they are current Team USA members. A list of the current qualifiers for the national event can be found at: Bowl USA

For last chance qualifying in your area, check Bowl USA

*** YABA ***
***** 1998-99 Junior Highlights *****
The 1998-99 season proved to be a good one for many junior bowlers. The season is now over and the folks at have compiled a list of the honor scores for the year. Check out how juniors from your area did, or just visit the site to appreciate the accomplishments of the future of the sport by visiting Bowl YABA.

*** Miscellaneous News ***
***** Stock Watch *****
AMF (PIN) 4 3/8
Brunswick (BC) 26 1/4

*** And Finally ***
So ends another week at the crossroads of the sport of bowling and the information superhighway. Knowledge is power, and it's a power we'd like you to share. Share it with your friends and teammates. They can get their own free subscription by visiting Subscribe to the Newsletter (Available to AOL Members Only), or e-mailing HOSTGSTDSteveM for details.

If you have bowling news you'd like to share with the rest of the Kegler's Connection subscribers (3,000 readers and growing), e-mail Bowling GSTDs.

Copyright © 1999 - Angel Zobel-Rodriguez and Steve Mermelstein.
This newsletter is the exclusive property of Angel Zobel-Rodriguez, Steve Mermelstein, or the parties credited as the provider of the content. No story may be reproduced without our expressed written consent. All trademarks and tradenames are property of their respective owners.

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