Motiv Jackal Ghost Bowling Ball Review

I Think I’ve Seen a Ghost…

Motiv Jackal Ghost Bowling Ball

Motiv Jackal Ghost Layout

Tamer: 60 x 5 x 40

Motiv Jackal Ghost Layout

Brett: 50 x 4.5 x 45

Motiv Jackal Ghost Layout

Greg: 40 x 5 x 40

First Impressions
Cliches not withstanding, I can’t recall throwing a stronger ball with this much continuation downlane. There are other beasts out there and this one fits in with the elite few.

Our Testers:
Tamer Elbaga (Lefty)
Style: Slightly Rev Dominant Tweener
RPM: 375 rpm
PAP: 5 & 3/8 up
Average Speed: 18.0 mph (at release)
Axis tilt: low
Axis rotation: medium
Test Equipment: 14 Pounds

Greg Bickta (Righty)
Style: Cranker
RPM: 450 rpm
PAP: 5 & 1 up
Average Speed: 19 mph (at release)
Axis tilt: medium
Axis rotation: medium
Test Equipment: 15 Pounds

Brett Carlson (Righty)
Style: Speed Dominant Tweener
RPM: 375 rpm
PAP 5 1/2 & 1/4 up
Average Speed: 19 mph (at release)
Axis tilt: low
Axis rotation: medium
Test Equipment: 15 Pounds

Thanks to Greg Bickta and Perfect Aim Pro Shop for drilling our equipment.
Thanks to Limerick Bowl, Limerick, PA for providing the test lanes.

“Keep in mind that coverstock accounts for 70% of ball reaction, but the core creates the dynamic shape of the reaction. Your driller will alter the shape to suit your game.”

Test Pattern:
40ft THS, 24ml

As is normal, these top dollar bowling balls will always struggle for value proposition. You can look at it a number of ways but we always look at it in relation to how often you can use the ball. With the Motiv Jackal Ghost guaranteed to be the strongest ball in your bag, you’ll be taking it out more often when you face heavier conditions. If you have less hand, you may find the value prop higher.

The Motiv Jackal Ghost uses the Predator™ V2 weight block along with a new coverstock known as Coercion™ HFS Solid. Cover is finished with a 3000-grit LSS pad out of box. For a 15lb ball, it has an RG of 2.47, diff of .054 and a high mass bias of .015.


The Motiv Jackal Ghost hooks…and hooks a ton. This is a very heavy rolling ball. Motiv has found a nice niche in bowling ball motion actually. In my mind, their overall family of motion fits somewhere in between Brunswick and EBI family. I know that most brands can create a range of motions, but there is a sweet spot that each brand centers on and that’s where I would place them. They have generally heavy rolling cores with covers that cut through oil more than absorb it, yielding balls that are medium-reacting off the end of the pattern. That smoothness in the midlane and end of the pattern is in my mind what defines Motiv’s motion.

Specifically to the Jackal Ghost, the cover is clearly strong as is the rolly core. This ball really needs some oil or it will just start up too early with no chance to hold pocket. The characteristics look like this: The cover obviously needs some oil. You’ve got to give this ball some room to get to the pocket as it’s combined cover and core strength yields a ball that definitely doesn’t like to be tugged inside. Now throw it away and it still has enough energy to drive through the pins.

For Tester #1, the lefty tweener, I couldn’t believe how far right I can get. As a lefty and medium revs at that, I usually don’t ever look to be in 4th arrow and beyond on a regular basis. After testing another ball in the session, I was just taken by surprise how much further right I had to move. Moreover, I frequently worry about balls being DOA when I have to cover that many boards. That’s where the Jackal Ghost really impressed me. It seemed to have no quit. I moved in and it kept moving. That midlane read is so consistent, you knew it was coming up. Absolute trust! Standing out to me was the amount of continuation through the pins no matter how deep I got. Again, a benefit of a seemingly perfect matchup of core and cover. The Trident is a touch cleaner getting a little easier length and several boards weaker. It’s still a strong ball as well with good continuation, but ultimate control and heavy roll would go towards the Jackal Ghost. The Trident might be a touch more forgiving due to the same reasons, it is cleaner so you can miss in just a touch more than the Jackal Ghost. The Ghost generated 6 to 6.5 degrees of entry angle while the Trident 7.5 degrees.
Trident = Light Blue
Jackal Ghost = Dark Blue

For Tester #2, Greg, he was impressed with the ball motion from the first roll and continued to be impressed. The Motiv Jackal Ghost is a ball that you can trust to roll. Greg who sometimes gets fast with his feet can blow through the breakpoint on his misses. With this ball in his hand, that was much harder to do. The ball has such a heavy midlane roll that he didn’t have to worry so much about that. With his rev rate, many balls can seem continuous, and the Jackal Ghost was no exception. It really drives heavy through the pins. Greg got deep fairly comfortably, feeling confident this thing will always turn over. Compared to his Jackal LE, this ball is more midlane rolly whereas the Jackal LE is a touch cleaner with a boomier move down lane. They cover similar boards for him but there is a differentiation in shape. When comparing to the Trident, the Ghost again has a stronger midlane reaction while the Trident is cleaner midlane with more angularity downlane. On this condition, the Ghost generated 6.5 degrees of entry angle, Jackal LE 8 degrees, and the Trident 7 degrees.
Jackal Ghost = Dark Blue
Jackal LE = Medium Blue
Trident = Light Blue

Tester #3, Brett rolls the ball up the back with very low tilt. Again, he easily demonstrated how strong this ball was. Because of his heavy forward roll, you might guess that balls this strong can poop out downlane. He does get a bit of a hook set motion but no loss of power and drive through the pins. He had to get comfortable and trust the ball away from the pocket as misses in just go through the face. But giving it some room and wow, a very strong roll. Brett got about 7 degrees of entry angle from the Jackal Ghost.


To cover shots that didn’t make the cut, let’s talk about forgiveness and misses. Greg had room to miss outside and with his tendency to get fast, this ball saved him from the 2-8-10 type leave more than other balls. Missing in and the ball is cutting too hard. For me, again, it was better to miss outside. Misses inside pretty much never held pocket as the ball is too early rolling. For Brett, same story. Every ball that missed in went through the face. Miss outside and it comes back really nicely. So the ball’s characteristic is clearly a rolly one.

Final Thoughts
In the end, all 3 testers of the Motiv Jackal Ghost saw very similar characteristics. It really didn’t surprise anybody in a bad way, only positives. It’s a very rolly ball with strong continuation through the pins. However, lots of times, these types of balls have a hard time being thrown away from the pocket. Not the Jackal Ghost. It had no issues with that whatsoever, even deeper than I would traditionally be. In addition, you can feel comfortable giving the ball some room because everyone had miss room out but really none in. We would love to see this ball on a sport pattern where it’s likely to provide significant motion control which is what you need to score well. Lower rev bowlers, up the back bowlers, or seeing higher volumes will allow you to take this ball out, but when you do, it will be fun!