Visionary: The Classic

by Bob Johnson 0

50 Hook 15 Length 15 Breakpoint Shape

Manufacturer’s Intent: “Because this ball was designed for a travel league, the Classic works well for a wide variety of bowling styles and lane conditions,” says Visionary’s Jason Wonders. “Along with a reactive hybrid coverstock, the Classic boasts a low RG of 2.51, a total differential of .052 and an intermediate differential of .007. This combination of core and cover allows the ball to clear the heads easily, generate a strong mid-lane read and provide well above-average backends. This is a must-have ball for standard house shots and medium lane conditions.”

Core Design: The core numbers that Wonders listed enabled us to see a smooth, even mid-lane motion with very good down-lane continuation. Testing showed nearly 5 inches of track flare.

Coverstock: The Classic’s coverstock is a moderately strong hybrid formula called React A Tack reactive. Colors are a patriotic mix of dark red and blue swirls with white engraving. Oil traction is moderate and response time is moderately quick off dry. The Ra is 1.40. Factory finish is a 1500 polished grit.

Test Results: The Classic is one of those balls that isn’t flashy, but matches up perfectly on many medium oil volume patterns. It isn’t overly strong in the midlane or backend. It does, however, possess a very heavy roll and reward the user with well above-average pin carry. The Classic shows easy length with a smooth arcing finish for most player styles. Sanding the surface to 3000 or 4000 will surely increase its uses on medium-heavy patterns and through moderate oil carrydown.

When to Use: Use when added length and a smooth down-lane arcing motion are needed. “Handed” players will find additional uses on heavier volumes with the box polished surface. Others will likely add some surface. The Classic maintains its arcing shape with different surfaces, which is probably due to the core shape and cover strength. We noticed minimal motion shape differences from our pin-above and pin-below the fingers layout choices. Visionary continues its tradition of high-quality products with above-average longevity and performance characteristics.

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.