900 Global Zen Gold Label Bowling Ball Review

First Impressions
When you need a more skid flip Zen reaction, here you go.

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Tamer Elbaga (Lefty)
Style: Tweener
RPM: 375 rpm
PAP: 5 & 3/8 up
Average Speed: 18.5 mph (at release)
Axis tilt: low
Axis rotation: medium/high
Test Equipment: 14 Pounds
Layout: 50 x 5 x 45

Bryan Hoffman (Righty)
Style: Stroker
RPM: 280 rpm
PAP: 4 1/2 & 1 1/2 up
Average Speed: 18.5 mph (at release)
Axis tilt: high
Axis rotation: medium
Test Equipment: 14 Pounds
Layout: 50 x 5 x 45

Tyler Church (Righty)
Style: Power Player
RPM: 450 rpm
PAP: 5 1/2 & 1/2 up
Average Speed: 19 mph (at release)
Axis tilt: med
Axis rotation: medium
Test Equipment: 14 Pounds
Layout: 50 x 5 x 45

“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.”

THS: 42ft, 23ml
Sport: TBD

The 900 Global Zen Gold Label uses the Meditate symmetric core inside the Reserve Blend 801 Pearl Response Reactive coverstock.

15 pound = RG of 2.49, diff of .051
14 pound = RG of 2.50, diff of .051
Coverstock finish: Reacta Gloss

The very quick hit on the new 900 Global Zen Gold Label is it’s basically a more flippy Zen. What Storm has done is stick the big Meditate core from the original Zen into a cleaner pearl coverstock. The basics is that it allows the Gold Label to get through the lane longer than the OG so less midlane reaction and then create the pop downlane. So for those times when the Zen kind of feels a touch too big because of the mid lane read, you can drop to the Zen Gold Label. Honestly this thing kind of feels a lot like the Rubicon UC2. Kind of helps that it looks just like it as well. For Tyler he was right at home with the Gold Label. This is a pretty easy reaction to manage for him on a medium house shot. He’s got a medium/higher rev rate and a slightly rev dominant style which means he doesn’t struggle to see ball motion. As advertised, the ball is long and strong. It does have a bit of a forward roll which is sometimes exacerbated with Tyler’s very high track. Any over under we saw is mostly due to the Reacta Gloss finish. We went back to try it out of box and nope, we still don’t like it. At the lanes we hit it with light 3000 scuff to take a touch of the shine off and it improved it while still maintaining the shape. On the house shot, it’s a little bit of a struggle to see the difference between the original Zen and Gold Label but if you pay really close attention, you will notice a touch more midlane but mostly noticeable because of the slightly different entry into the pins and off the deck. But it makes total sense as a compliment in the Mid Late Category of the bag.

Bryan is next and really it feels like we’ve seen this ball reaction before if I have to be totally frank. I’ve discussed the multitude of Mid Late balls Storm has released and then here’s another. And we can keep calling out subtleties but ultimately, you the bowler can choose from lots of balls in this category. Same story here in terms of getting down lane quite easily but then has a small backend reaction for Bryan’s style. Again I don’t think the Reacta Gloss does the ball any favors. Even with the 3000 scuff, it feels like a reaction that has limited use for Bryan in terms of the conditions he sees. Mid Late balls don’t get a ton of play for him until he’s on something like Cheetah or Boardwalk. Generally the balls don’t have much in the way of midlane control to help him on the typical house shot. With the Gold Label, he doesn’t quite have to straddle the friction though since it does have some backend and despite the ball having questionable entry and exit, he did carry more often than not if it’s any consolation. My hunch is changing the surface it will improve but I think the Iq Tour Ruby is better suited in this slot for Bryan. You’ll see the house shot really not separate the Zen and Zen Gold Label too much but enough to where he prefers the slightly added midlane reaction of the Zen.

Final Thoughts
I wasn’t able to test for this initial test due to a bicep tear so hopefully I can do that soon. Generally I will say that the house we bowl on has high friction midlane synthetics which when combined with this house shot tends to do weird things to ball reaction. So the extra slowing for example with not as much pop for Bryan has as much to do with the conditions as his style. If you’re on cleaner synthetics or condition that holds up the midlanes, you will find the Zen Gold Label likely really show off a bit more motion. Personally, I think this ball will do very well on house and I’m betting you’ll see it on tour as well as a Mid Late ball when the lanes ask for opening up the angles.

Thanks for watching.

I had a chance to test the 900 Global Zen Gold Label during my bicep tear recovery. Just so you are aware, I did the full resurface of the Reactagloss to 1000 hard then Step 2 Compound. I mentioned in the first video that it looks and feels like the Roto Grip Rubicon UC2 and I confirm I feel the same way in my personal test. Honestly, this ball made me feel like a house shot hero, plain and simple. There is so much balance and self-correction if I can call it that. Basically it’s clean enough that I never felt i have to try to push it down lane but it’s strong and punchy enough where I never felt it won’t make it back, unless I completely threw it out the window. Get out to the friction and it kind of picks up down lane with a building boomy reaction. I you get it in, it smooths out since it gets more length but doesn’t over hook. I had so much miss room. Even when I did toss it out the window, it still saved me with a reasonable leave. I started pretty direct anything left of 10 it’s a bit too angular but from the 2nd arrow to past the 4th arrow the thing just worked. I didn’t leave that wrap 7 until I was right of the 4th arrow and that’s a ton of room for me personally. Long story short, the 900 Global Zen Gold Label was a house shot killer that fits theoretically in Mid Late category. It’s going to be a bit stronger than the IQ Tour which is a perfect fit in that category but I don’t see anyone being hurt by having the Gold Label in their bag. Plus it’s a perfect stepdown from the Zen.