Track: 715T

by Bob Johnson 0

55 Hook 13 Length 14 Breakpoint Shape

Core Design: The Catback asymmetric core boasts a .015 intermediate differential, a 2.52 RG and a .052 Diff. We saw nearly 6” of track flare with our aggressive 4” layout with a lower quadrant weight hole.

Coverstock: The new aggressive solid reaction is designed for earlier traction in heavier oil concentrations. It is a tri-colored fusion of red, yellow and blue. The surface is sanded with 500, 1000 and 2000-grit pads. Oil traction was well above average, while response time off drier boards was slow. To quicken the response, just sand the surface to 4000 or apply polish.

Manufacturer’s Intent: Brand Manager Paul Figliomeni offered this about Track’s new release: “The 715T is our first ‘T’ (Track-tion) ball released in the 7 series; it’s designed to be a stronger version of the 505T. The designers set out to make a more aggressive product by using an all-new UMP GEN4T coverstock. This cover has a larger footprint on the lane to help carve through the head oil.”

Test Results: The 715T will be condition-specific for most bowler styles. We noticed a strong mid-lane motion with a more tempered and subdued backend reaction. Our best looks were on heavier volumes with cleaner backends. Even our skid-flip (70°x4”x30°) layout produced a pronounced mid-lane hook spot with a smoother arcing finish. Overall, total hook was similar to the 607A, but the hook spot and breakpoint shape were diametrically opposed.

When to Use: The 715T will match up well on heavier and longer patterns, from house conditions to Sport or challenging Kegel oil patterns. Speed-dominant players will find many more applications than will those with matched ratios. Be advised that layout choice will play an important part in creating the proper shape. Also, surface smoothing or light polishing should allow for more uses for those looking for easier length and a stronger backend. Our most versatile layout was a 65°x2.5”x35° dual angle drilling. This configuration helped conserve core dynamics best and gave us our highest carry percentage.

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.

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