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Jason Belmonte

From Outcast To Bowling Prodigy


In this episode

My guest today is Jason Belmonte, the best bowler in the history of this sport. He has won a record number of 15 major championships and has been named PBA Player of the Year 7 times. He is also the second person in PBA history that has won the Super Slam, winning all 5 PBA major titles in the same year.

01:30 Off days during world tours

- It is brutally hard to compete
- Tournaments are exhausting for both mind and body
- Days off are mostly for sleep and relaxation

04:17 The first event outside of Australia

- At 16, he traveled to Malaysia on a mini tour
- Bowling conditions in Asia
- That was the catalyst for understanding    

10:35 The preparation for tournaments

- Tries to leave Australia as late as he can
- Most people like to play in the middle part of the lane
- Bowling in a new tournament is a puzzle that you need to solve
- Japan bowling centers

17:36 Types of lane surfaces and bowling balls

- Synthetic lanes are made of tough plastic    
- Bowling balls are very similar to golf balls    
- Jason carries 20 balls on his tours
- Bowling balls weigh up to 16 pounds
- Materials and designs vary depending on the goal

26:32 Jason’s childhood

- His parents built the bowling center after he was born
- He started bowling at 18 months
- The ball was too heavy so he had his own way of bowling
- That difference gave him the advantage

31:16 Norm Duke and the Beast

- Norm Duke is one of Jason’s favorite bowlers
- Norm Duke’s ball was called the Beast
- Got the Beast from his parents
- Met Norm and competed against him

34:50 The culture of bowling

- The popularity of bowling shirts, shoes, and other apparel
- Breaking the stereotype of the burger-eating and beer-drinking bowler

39:02 Focusing on a bowling career

- As a kid, besides bowling, played rugby and cricket
- Realized he had to commit to one
- Quit his job at Blockbuster
- Dad fired him, his safety net was gone

45:07 What did Jason do with his first prize money

- The first thing he bought was a Nokia 5110
- Invested the money into his career
- Losing and not generating income
- Became incredibly analytical of his game

Sandee | Bliss: Beaches

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