The PBA Regional Tour has always been designed to allow for amateur bowlers a chance to experience a shortened PBA tournament close to home. Entries in the tournaments have continued to rise each year, and there are usually several PBA stars competing each week. While the improving success of the Regional Tour was great, it was not enough for the PBA. The PBA decided to add a new animal pattern series to the Regional Tour, and it could not have been more successful.
The animal pattern series took part between March and August in specially designed tournaments on the Regional Tour. The PBA announced the final results of the series on Monday, Sept, 10, and nobody could have predicted such a good outcome. Through the six month period of the animal pattern series, there were 28 special tournaments throughout the five regions of the PBA Regional Tour. There were 1991 entries in the 28 tournaments, which is an average of 71.1 entries per tournament. It is also over a nine percent increase in entries compared to all of the Regional Tour tournaments last year. The animal pattern series was so unique on the Regional Tour because tournament winners and bowlers that bowled well throughout the series received free entries into tournaments at this year's PBA World Series of Bowling.
I personally think that this series was a great way for the PBA to help build the sport and get more entries on the PBA Tour. Most of the bowlers that won free entries have not tried to bowl on the PBA Tour due to the costs and travel. These free entries allow them to see if they are able to transfer their success on the Regional Tour to the PBA Tour. If one of these bowlers obtains success at the World Series of Bowling, then it will only inspire more regional bowlrs to attempt to step up to the PBA Tour. The only way to rebuild a struggling sport is to find a way to gather more interest, and the PBA is continuing to prove that they are doing whatever it takes to return bowling back to its glory days.
Jake has been an avid bowler since the age of 8, and regularly follows the PBA throughout the year.