Roto Grip Idol Ball Review
Layout: 45 degrees x 5 1/2" pin x 20 degrees
Weight hole: Not required
Surface: 4000 grit sanded
What I wanted from this ball:
I've been piecing together a new arsenal for the upcoming tournament season. One thing I simply didn't have was a benchmark ball reaction that would clearly indicate where the oil is, and where it isn't. My preference in a benchmark ball has always been something on the smoother side, and something that doesn't "flip" when it sees the dry boards. I wanted predictable and smooth without being overly aggressive like my Hyroad Nano is.
What I ended up with in this ball:
I knew that the surface would be too much out of the box, so I took this ball up to 4000 grit before I even drilled it. From there, I went with a smaller drill angle (45 degrees) than most of the stuff I've drilled recently (65 degrees on most stuff). I did this to get the ball to start up a touch earlier and react more at the mid-lane distance. I also used a slightly longer pin position than normal (5 1/2") so this ball wouldn't over-flare too much.
The Idol is the perfect benchmark ball for me. For the last few years I've used a Storm IQ Tour in this spot in my bag. But in the last 18-24 months, it simply hasn't been as useful. The IQ Tour features a very low differential core system, and my belief is that as oils continue to get stickier on the lane, and heavier in application, the lower strength cores struggle more to gain traction on the lane. The Idol will take the place of that IQ benchmark motion in my bag.
I actually bowled the Greater Ozarks tournament this last weekend and the Idol was very useful for me throughout the tournament. Day one require a ball that would control the backs a little bit, and this ball was perfect for that. It didn't last long though, and I transitioned to the Intense that you can see in a previous blog. Day two required me to stay more direct than usual, and create very early roll. This ball was strong enough in that aspect that I was able to stick with it for all 3 games.
Overall, this ball is a fantastic addition for Roto Grip, and one I think they've needed for quite some time. I wasn't a fan of very many of the RG sanded symmetric balls of the past 18 months, that is for my game personally. Many of them were simply too strong in the front of the lane, and frankly had colors that made it nearly impossible for me to see the ball motion. With the solid violet color on the Idol, this motion is easy to see. A 10-star effort here from Roto Grip!