May 15, 2012

Viper Oil Pattern

Pattern Description

I have it on good authority that the first oil pattern we will be facing in the PBA Experience League is Viper. The Viper pattern is 37' in length, which is a few feet shorter than your typical house pattern. This will result in an early break point once the ball clears the moderate front end oil. At the beginning of the night it will be important to throw straight through the oil, playing on the outside near the gutter to avoid coming in high. However, once the pattern breaks down multiple angles should become available. Then it is just the matter of identifying the line that works best for your style . . . over and over again as each angle breaks down and you start to come in high. If you can find your lines and stay one step ahead, scores on this pattern are typically medium to high.

My Plan of Attack

Coming into the league, this is the pattern I am most excited about and most fear. Early on I think I should be alright playing a shot similar to the house pattern from the first half of fall league. Once that line starts to break down I will be tested on how well I can read the changing lanes and adjust accordingly. I shouldn't get settled in any one place for too long, but small adjustments like ball speed and moving up/back on the approach should allow me to linger a little longer at one spot before shifting to a completely new line. It will be important to not only pay attention to my shots, but also those of the other bowlers so that I can survey potential new lines without wasting any of my frames on testing. I shouldn't be afraid to move my body and target left, sometimes several boards at a time, so that my straight shot from the beginning of the night changes to a large arching shot by the end. Not adjusting soon enough has the potential to result in some nasty splits and missing my mark to the right a board or two should be OK; however, I typically miss my mark to left which could have disastrous results on such short and dry oil conditions.

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