Wow! Majors never get old! There just isn’t anything quite like a bowling center packed with people bowling for thousands of dollars! We have had many major events over the years but, they never get old. We may not be breaking records over and over again like we did in the early years, but it’s still a lot of fun, and we look forward to it every time! This year’s Labor Day event drew 207 entries, had 56 cashers a 1 in 3.7 cash ratio and paid out over $11,000.00 in main and side event prize fund. This payout included over $1,500.00 in high game pots, nearly $1,000.00 in the 3-day mega sweeper, and an $8000.00+ tournament prize fund!
This weekend we were in beautiful Flagstaff, AZ at the always hospitable and cozy Starlite Lanes. We always have an annual event here and while we don't get the same entry counts in town, there are many of us that look forward to getting out of town and experiencing the great weather and awesome staff at Starlite. Not to mention we always have our SFT AHT "out of town" dinner which is a nice treat. This weekend specifically was a very busy one with a lot fo other events and tournaments going on. Our criss cross doubles event had 5 teams and our standard event drew 39 entries (29 qualifying and 10 economy parlay), each event had nearly a 1 in 3 cash ratio and paid out over $2,500.00 in main and side event prizes. The players bowled on a 39ft Viper oil pattern that had slightly high cut scores with most cut scores being around +80 which requires about 15 pins over average per game.
Well, this was a great event for one small reason. We ran on time for pretty much the whole event! This was our first three squad event that we put 2 hours between each squad and it helped tremendously! The number of bowlers that we are getting per squad now is too large to only leave an hour and a half between squads. The event this Sunday drew 102 entries in three squads, which were 59 qualifying entries and 43 economy parlay entries. There were also 26 prize winners, a 1 in 3.9 cash ratio and a payout of over $4,000.00. The players bowled on a 40ft Kegel Highway to Hell oil pattern which, as the name indicates, wasn't the easiest of patterns. There was plenty of hook, even for 40 feet, which meant players could play all over the lane from straight to inside, to really far left. However, this also meant that the pair to pair was very different since players were playing all over the place. Regardless of all of that, the key was being able to make your spares.
Our event this Sunday was at Brunswick Tri City Lanes and was a 2 squad event. Although the event was located a bit far away for most, that didn't stop the amazing SFT AHT family from coming out in a big way! There was nearly 40 bowlers per squad, which resulted in 76 total entries (44 qualifying entries and 32 economy parlay), 22 cashers and a 1 in 3.5 cash ratio that paid out over $3,000.00 in main and side event prizefund. The players bowled on a 43ft Shark Oil pattern that forced most players to play the middle of the lane due to the outside having a lot of oil and it being difficult to get the ball to return from the outside part of the lane. The cut scores were also very low through out the whole day in most cases not even requiring players to bowl their average to make it to the quarter finals.
Our event was at Brunswick Kyrene this weekend, and it was another fun one! The event drew almost 100 entries, and was able to pay the $1,000.00 for first place! It had a 1 in 4 cash ratio and paid out over $4,000.00 in main and side event prize fund. The players bowled on one of the longer oil patterns that we bowl on, the 47ft Scorpion. Most players were very straight, either from the right or the middle of the lane, they didn’t “belly” the ball very much. The key was consistent speed and the ball going fairly straight off the person’s hand.
This weekends event was at AMF Christown Lanes where we featrued our increasingly popular two squad format that is a "in and out" fast format. There is only two squads, and it doesn't feature a re-oil. The event drew a total of 60 entries (39 qualifying & 21 economy parlay), had 20 cashers, a 1 in 3 cash ratio and paid out over $2,500.00 in main and side event prizefund. The players bowled on the 40ft highway to hell oil pattern that was one of the lowest scoring patterns we have seen in quite a while. The average cut scores were all well below +45, which means that players didn't even have to bowl their average to advance to the quarter finals. Players were able to play all parts of the lane, but it didn't seem like the best scores came from players who could play a little further inside with a small belly.
Our event this weekend was at Brunswick Mesa after being moved from AMF McRay. The SFT AHT members did a great job of spreading the word quickly on the location change. We had a great turn out with 93 entries (68 qualifying entries and 25 economy parlay), 26 cashers, a 1 in 3.5 cash ratio, and a payout of over $4,000.00 in main and side event prize money. The players bowled on a 36ft Kegel Boardwalk oil pattern where it's common ot have some higher scores. However, the key to higher scores is getting comfortable playing closer to the gutter then your typical house shot. The pattern certainly seems to fair better for the straighter players, but as always we did have players of all styles in the quarter finals.
What a weekend! The support you all show to compete in our events shines through during events like this one. THANK YOU ALL for making this 3-day weekend action packed from the first squad to the final match.The event as a whole drew 228 total entries (166 Qualifying & 62 Economy Parlay), had 54 cashers, a 1 in 4.2 cash ratio and paid out over $11,000.00 in main and side event prizefund.The pattern that was put out was the USBC Nationals Singles & Doubles pattern and it was challenging to say the least, although the most difficult was on fresh conditions. Out of bounds towards the gutters, with jumpy back ends required smooth rolling bowling balls that didnt want to over react on the backend. As the oil pattern broke down and "opened up," it allowed bowlers to move left and keep their breakpoints around 9-10 board.
We were excited to make our return to Lakeview Lanes after nearly two years since the last time we were there. It was a great turn out as well, with over 30 bowlers per squad and afinal 62 entries for the two squad standard event.The players bowled on the 39ft Winding Road oil pattern which started off a little tricky but quickly opened up and became one of our highest scoring events for the season. There were quite a few players that managed to go more then +150 and the average cut score crept very close to +100 but still hovered around +80. It was also high scoring because it could be played at a lot of different angles. You could play it straight, in the middle or even further left. Really, no matter the style, there was a shot for everyone, which commonly leads to very high scores.
I know that we can't break records forever, and all good things have to come to an end, but I sure hope it lasts as long as possible. To think we are still breaking records is crazy, since we started up 4 years ago. Our formats have adapted with what our members want, but it is clear that their ideas have done a great job to keep us going in the right direction. Prior to this event, the only time we ever got over 100 entries on a non-holiday event, was 2 day events with 6 squads total. However, with 6 squads, 100 entries is only a little over 15 bowlers per squad. This event set a record that we may never break. It not only got 100 entries in 3 squads, but soared past that with a total of 143 bowlers in 3 squads! We also paid out over $6,000.00 in main and side event prizes! It was an incredible event and I can't thank the SFT AHT family for helping us get there!