EBONITE’S MOHR READY FOR SUCCESS ON PBA50 TOUR
Jan 31, 2013
Ebonite Staff member Ron Mohr had a reality check in 2012.
The right-hander from Eagle River, Alaska turned the 2011 Professional Bowlers Association Senior Tour into his personal playground. In his 10 tournament appearances, Mohr bowled for the title in six events. He won four titles and finished in the top four nine times, with his lowest finish being 13th. His efforts, which included the 2011 Senior U.S. Open, earned him Senior Player of the Year for the second time.
And the 2012 season? It didn’t go quite as well. While the 56-year-old didn’t have an explanation for his dominant 2011 season, he could tell you quite a bit about 2012.
For starters, Mohr says the influx of talent changed the landscape of PBA Senior competition.
“There was a significant step-up in competition,” he said. “We had four ‘rookie’ winners in Lennie Boresch, Jr., Bob Learn Jr., Mike Edwards and Amleto Monacelli, but they weren’t rookies in the traditional sense. The competition is significantly greater, which makes it more difficult to win.”
Added to the equation were the expectations Mohr put on himself, which he admits were unrealistic.
“When you qualify for the top four in nine out of 11 tournaments, anything less than 4th place is a disappointment,” said Mohr. “It’s one thing to think you are good enough to win every week. It’s another thing to expect it and not perform up to those lofty goals. In hindsight, I put too much pressure on myself to perform up to 2011 standards.”
The fact that he didn’t drill any new equipment during the first half of the season didn’t help Mohr.
“The PBA always makes adjustments to their patterns, and the stuff I had didn’t match up as well. My ability to strike wasn’t the same. It came down to adjusting, and I really didn’t start making the right moves until about the middle of the season.”
Enter Ebonite Brand Manager Ed Gallagher, who allowed Mohr to use not just Ebonite equipment, but balls from all of the Brands of Ebonite International. While Mohr has made his name throwing the Ebonite brand, the final three stops of the 2012 Tour saw Mohr throwing Hammer and Columbia 300 balls as well.
“The move opened up my options and it gave me a chance to compete on any pattern I saw,” Mohr said. “It was the last change that made the difference towards the end.”
The PBA Senior Decatur (Ill.) Open was the culmination of the changes, which saw Mohr throw everything from the Ebonite Innovate and Pursuit, to the Hammer Jet Black Taboo and the Columbia 300 Violent Eruption. The end result was his 8th PBA Senior Tour title, and the end of one of the more challenging seasons of his career.
Mohr continued his winning ways as he joined a group of United States bowlers in competing at the International Senior Classic Bowling Championship in Malaysia. A former member of Team USA, Mohr was able to win three Gold medals, including a win in the Masters.
“I threw everything over there,” said Mohr. “The conditions were a bit of a challenge. I led the field for the Masters with a 207 average. So you know strikes weren’t easy to come by.”
As a four year member of Team USA, Mohr says you don’t know what to expect when bowling inter-nationally.
“You’re fortunate if you encounter a center where the mechanic knows how to use the lane machine,” he said. “And then there are other times where the mechanic just pushes buttons on the machine, and whatever happens, happens.”
Back in the States, Mohr has won four events on the rebranded PBA50 Regional Tour, and leads all statistical categories for Seniors in the PBA Northwest Region. With the exception of a handful of events, the only opponent Mohr will face between now and April is himself.
“Because there aren’t a lot of events for me to bowl, I practice a lot, and the competition is in my head,” he said. “I practice tournament type of situations, and opponents
Mohr looks forward to the latest offerings from Ebonite, including the Challenge and the Persevere. The Challenge is Ebonite’s latest High Performance ball, and pairs the Reaction Control System coverstock with all new AXS core. The result offers bowlers more down-lane motion control.
The Persevere takes the venerable V5 core, and pairs it with Traxion Reactive™ Hybrid .039 coverstock, which gives users length with strong backend on medium lane conditions.
“I’m excited to try the new equipment,” said Mohr. “They look versatile, and should fall in with the other great balls from Ebonite.”
Mohr says that using other brands hasn’t given him the same consistency that he gets by using Ebonite.
“When I bowled with other equipment, it wasn’t a problem for me to use one ball. It was tougher for me to predict whether the next ball in the line would do what I wanted it to do. With Ebonite, I can make great decisions with knowing what the ball will do off my hand.”
When the PBA50 Tour convenes in April, Mohr will face the likes of Wayne Webb, Walter Ray Williams Jr., and Hall of Fame “rookie” Pete Weber.
“I didn’t bowl on the PBA Tour, so it’s my first time bowling with the majority of the new guys,” said Mohr, an Indiana native who spent 25 years as an air traffic controller after moving to Alaska in 1979. “But I know I can win when I focus on myself. So if I go out there and pay less attention to the competition, I know I can do more than just compete. With Ebonite, I Bowl to Win!”
Based in Hopkinsville, Ky., Ebonite International is a privately-owned company that currently services bowling centers, distributors and retail outlets both domestically and internationally. The company’s consumer product brands include Ebonite, Hammer, Robby’s, Columbia 300, Track and Powerhouse™; its commercial product brand is Ebonite Bowling Center Direct.
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