ARLINGTON, Texas - Six United States Bowling Congress Sport Bowling members from across the country traveled to the International Training and Research Center to train like Team USA members this week.
The Team USA Fantasy Camp was the final portion of a year-long contest on BOWL.com for USBC Sport Bowling members and culminated with a six-game competition alongside Team USA members Friday.
Chuck Hayslett of Apple Valley, Minn., David Jecko of Whitesboro, N.Y., Eric Payawal of Elk Grove Village, Ill., Kevin Prior of Allen, Texas, Lindsey Siegel of Gurnee, Ill., and Mike Reed of Honeoye, N.Y., took advantage of the opportunity to receive coaching and training at the ITRC.
"I could do this forever," Hayslett said. "This isn't quite heaven, but it's close."
The six players received advice from the same coaches who coach Team USA - Rod Ross, Kim Terrell-Kearney and Bryan O'Keefe. After spending a couple days training on the lanes, they put their skills to the test in a six-game competition.
Matched up with a different Team USA member each game in the Baker format competition, the players took on three World Tenpin Bowling Association patterns.
Siegel came out on top with a six-game total of 1,323, while Jecko finished second with 1,309. Payawal took third with 1,273, Prior was fourth with 1,237, Reed finished fifth with 1,210 and Hayslett rounded out the field with 1,159.
"The Team USA members were very helpful in communicating about ball choices and lane conditions," Siegel said. "Since we were the ones moving from lane to lane and they stayed on their lane, that was really helpful."
A group of current and former Team USA stars teamed up with the Sport bowlers. John Janawicz, Derek Eoff, Leanne Hulsenberg, Shannon O'Keefe, Stefanie Nation and Terrell-Kearney represented Team USA.
All six of the Sport bowlers said they enjoyed the chance to compete and improve their skills this week.
"Right now my brain is on overload because I've learned so much," Siegel said. "I think the personal attention they gave me has given me the confidence and the knowledge to improve and adjust my game based on what I can do, not on what someone wants me to do."
The ITRC is home to some of the most innovative and cutting-edge coaching technologies available in the bowling industry today, including high-speed video cameras, motion-capture devices, foot-pressure sensors and goggles enhanced with cameras to show exactly where a player is looking during the approach and delivery. A DVR system also is in place and can record any video feed to let a bowler see what they did on their last shot as soon as they step off the lane.
A United States Olympic Committee-recognized training center, the ITRC is a joint venture of USBC and the Bowling Proprietors' Association of America. It is the most innovative and advanced training, research and testing facility in the sport of bowling with 14 lanes for training and six for research and testing.
For more information on USBC Sport Bowling, visit BOWL.com/SportBowling.