Storm: IQ Tour Pro

by Bob Johnson 0

52 Hook 15 Length 15.5 Breakpoint Shape

Manufacturer’s Intent: “The IQ Tour Pearl offers a balance of power and control for the tournament enthusiast,” says Steve Kloempken of Storm. “The lower-flaring core helps power players control the mid-lane hook motion, and allows for greater energy-storing hitting power. The pearlized cover will complement the original IQ Tour solid, introduced in August 2012.”

Core Design: The 4-cylinder, turbocharged C3 Centripetal symmetric core supplies plenty of down-lane power. The RG remains low at 2.49 and the differential small at .029. We saw only about 3 inches of track flare with our strong layout.

Coverstock: Not many balls have been produced using a gold pearl color scheme over the past 50 years, due to the possible blending-into-the-lane visual it presents. But as Jason Belmonte would say, “No worries, mate.” The new IQ Tour Pearl pulls off this look perfectly. The R2S pearl cover is factory polished with 1500 grit. The response is quick off friction, and oil traction is average. The average Ra reading is 1.70 and the surface grit is 5100, great on most medium volume patterns.

Test Results: With the huge success of the IQ Tour Solid, we knew it was only a matter of time before a pearlized edition emerged. Storm decided to choose the R2S cover instead of the slightly stronger mid-lane reading R2X cover. The R2S tends to store more energy for a stronger back-end motion off friction areas, and that’s exactly what we saw. The IQTP will hook a few boards less than a Marvel pearl (August 2011) and display slightly more angularity. It also will rev up easier and read the midlane a touch sooner than a like-drilled Victory Road pearl (March 2011), which also uses the R2S coverstock. We felt the back-end shape was more arcing (less angular) than a Victory Road on most of our test patterns.

When to Use: On most medium oil volumes when looking for control in the midlane but with some down-lane attitude. PBA player Andres Gomez says, “Great midlane with just enough back-end motion is perfect.” We also felt the shape was similar with both our pin above and pin below the fingers, but just a touch slower on the backend with the pin below the fingers. The IQTP also will do well on many Sport patterns, as it plays well in oil without showcasing too much back-end flip motion.

Bob Johnson

Bob Johnson has received more national writing awards than any other bowling writer — close to 70 over the course of his 40-year career. He began at age 16 as a staff writer and then assistant editor for the weekly Pacific Bowler newspaper in his native California, and within three years was writing feature stories for Bowlers Journal. He has written for the magazine ever since, except for a five-year span when he was hired as the founding editor of another magazine. He moved to Chicago in 2000 and spent 13 years in the Windy City, including five as Bowlers Journal’s Editor. In 1975, Johnson received the Robert E. Kennedy Award as California’s top undergraduate high school journalist. Five years earlier, on the lanes, he had shared the Bantam Division Doubles championship in the Orange County Junior Bowling Association Championships. Today, he continues to work full-time for Bowlers Journal as its Senior Editor, to write his popular “Strikes Me” column, and to edit Luby Publishing Inc.’s weekly business-to-business Cyber Report.