UP AND OVER

(April Issue 2004)

This month's artistic shot is from the jump Discipline and has a Degree of Difficulty, (DOD) of 7. If you understand the principles of this jump shot and are able to execute it, you're on your way to winning a few games that your opponents never thought you would. This type of shot could very easily come up in an eight ball game.

To set this shot up, place row of three balls as per diagram with the center ball one half diamond segment out from the long rail and straight in line with the first diamond to the left of pocket B. One object ball is to the left of the center ball and one ball is to the right of the center ball with one inch spacing between all balls. The object ball on the left is the E ball. The cue ball is in hand, anywhere or as the diagram suggests. The object of this shot is to shoot the cue ball into E ball with a jump stroke. The E ball will jump into the cushion and rebound back over the other balls and be pocketed in E pocket. When executing this shot the E ball can't contact any other ball and the cue ball can't jump off the table. A scratch is allowed. Here are a few helpful hints on executing this great shot. I place my cue ball about three and a half balls away from the E ball. Next I line up the cue ball and the E ball the same as the diagram shows. Your cue should be elevated about 20 to 25 degrees. Seeing this is a jump shot don't stroke but snap the execution of the shot with a moderate speed. Best of luck. If a similar shot like this one came up in a game of eight ball and E ball was the eight, I bet your opponents jaw would drop to the floor if you pulled this shot off. Next months artistic shot will be from the Masse Discipline and has a (DOD) of 8!




THE DOLLAR BILL SHOT

(March Issue 2004)

This months Artistic Shot is from the stroke discipline and has a Degree of Difficulty (DOD) of 8. There are no object balls in this challenge, just a dollar bill. To set up the dollar bill, place its edge even with the head cushions nose. The bill is centered halfway between pocket D and the first diamond over from pocket D, as diagrammed.

The cue ball is in hand behind the centerline, (B-E). The objective of this challenge is to shoot the cue ball 8 or 9 cushions in diagram pattern to the dollar bill. The cue ball must stop on or over the dollar bill. The vertical edge of the cue ball closest to the dollar bill will determine success of the shot.

Here are a few helpful hints on how to execute this shot. I place my cue ball in the 1 x 1 diagram quadrant where the number 8 is in the diagram. If you place the cue ball as diagram you risk the chance of hitting your hand on the table as you follow through, You'll need to use at least a 10 inch bridge length so you can execute a long fast warm up stroke. I cue the cue ball with a touch of left English and a touch of draw. The closer the cue ball hits the fifth rail by pocket E, close to scratching, the better your chances of making the shot. If your head is low on the cue when you shoot pool, stand up more so your upper body doesn't get in the way as you follow through with this powerful stroke. Next months Artistic Shot will be from the jump Discipline and have a DOD of 7.




BANK/KICK DISCIPLINE

(February Issue 2004)

This month’s Artistic shot is from the Bank/Kick Discipline and has a Degree of Difficulty (DOD) of 7. This is another shot that has recently appeared on ESPN's Trick Shot Magic. This bank shot is also the opening shot from the movie "The Hustler" where Fast Eddie hustles the bartender. To set this shot up, place object ball D one half diamond segment to the right of A pocket and frozen to the rail.

Next, place the cue ball in a straight line and frozen to D ball per diagram graphic. The other two object balls are one diamond from the cushion that object ball D is frozen to. The objective of this shot is to shoot the cue ball into D ball. The cue ball and D ball will come out from between the two other object balls, separate and D ball pockets in D pocket. The cue ball goes to the right and avoids D ball travel line. The two solo balls must not be disturbed by any means. A scratch is allowed and the cue ball and D ball may make additional contacts after initial hit. Here are a few helpful hints on how to execute this great shot. Instead of aiming straight at the D ball and just using high right English for the bank, I begin by aiming straight in line with D balls vertical axis and then pivot the butt of my cue to the left. The amount of pivot is so that the center of my cue shaft is aimed between one quarter and three eight's in from the right side of D ball, in other words I'm cutting the D ball to the left slightly. The elevation of my cue is between 10 to 15 degrees. Remember this will be high right English. I also use an open V bridge. Be sure to get your bridge hand out of the way because both balls will quickly come back at your hand. When you master this one you will definitely impress your friends.

Next months Artistic shot will be from the Stroke Discipline and have a DOD of 8.




FOLLOW DISCIPLINE

(January Issue 2004)

I hope everyone had a great Christmas and a Happy New Year.

I hope Santa brought all of the pool accessories you wanted. This months Artistic shot is from the Follow Discipline and has a Degree o Difficulty, (DOD) of 7. This shot has also appeared on ESPN's Trick Shot Magic.

To set this shot up place F ball centered between the pocket points. Next place E ball one half of a ball to the left of pocket E and one half of an inch out from cushion # 3, the long rail. The cue ball is in hand anywhere behind the X line. The objective of this shot is to shoot the cue ball to E ball, carom to cushion # 3, then rebound and curve back to F ball. You make both object balls as pocket letter designated. A scratch is allowed and you may contact an extra cushion by F ball. Here are a few helpful hints on how to execute this shot. I place my cue ball centered from pocket A to E ball, not as diagrammed. Keep your cue level to the plane of the table. You don't need as much high, (follow) on the cue ball as you think you do. Stroke at a moderate speed and not with a lot of power. Based on a 13 mm tip, I use about two-thirds of a tip of left English. Don't forget to follow through. Have fun with this one. Next months Artistic shot will be from the bank/kick Discipline and have a, DOD of 7.




DRAW DISCIPLINE

(December Issue 2003)

This month's artistic shot is from the draw discipline and has a degree of difficulty (DOD) of 9. This shot in my opinion should have a DOD of 11. This is an extremely challenging shot. To set this shot up place B ball by the long rail one ball's width plus 2mm from the cushion and in line with the first diamond to the right of pocket D. The B ball by the side pocket is centered and placed so that the pocket side of the ball is at the slate cut. The cue ball is in hand or as the diagram suggests. The objective of this shot is to shoot the cue ball to ball B on the long rail. The cue ball caroms to the long rail and rebounds around moving B ball. The cue ball then makes B ball at the side pocket and gets out of the way. The first struck B ball then goes into the side pocket. Here are some special notes on this shot. The B ball by the long rail may be adjusted slightly away from the rail but must still be in line with the first diamond. There is no penalty for scratching. Here are a few tips to help you execute this great shot. I place the cue ball half way between the space of the short rail and the B ball by the long rail. My cue ball is one and one quarter balls away from the long rail. Based on a 13mm sized tip I use one and three fourths tips of draw on this shot. The speed of the shot is a moderate stroke. Adjust your speed and amount of draw based on how the cue ball bends off of the long rail and arcs over to the side pocket. There are many factors that complicate this shot. Here are a few of them. Rail height, grade of cloth, newness of cloth, tightness of cloth, how used the balls are, (new, slightly used, old), size of table, profile of rubber, wet or dry climate. There are more, but my article can only be so long! Don't worry if you can't make this shot, I've only made it less then 50 times in my life, and I have about 200 hours of practice in this shot. Best of luck to you on this shot. Here's wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.




ONE-HANDED JACKED UP SPOT SHOT

(November Issue 2003)

This month's artist shot is from the prop/novelty/special arts discipline and has a degree of difficulty, (DOD) of 8. You may choose either C of F pocket on this shot. To set the shot up place an object ball on the foot spot. The cue ball is in hand anywhere behind the head string. The objective of this shot is to shoot the cue ball one handed jacked up (no rail or bridge allowed) to the object ball on the foot spot. Make the object ball in either pocket C or F. Unless obvious from cue ball placement shooter must designate which pocket the object ball will be made in. There is no penalty for scratching. Here are a couple of tips to aid you in making this shot. Hold your cue very close to the balance point so it stays level as you come down to shot this shot. Align the tip on the cue ball to hit the cue ball along it's vertical axis, (no English), and use one tip of high. Don't stroke this shot in mid air, just come forward with your cue. When practicing this shot, align the cue ball to the object ball for a half ball aim. To do this put a ghost ball where the cue ball will be upon contact of the ball on the foot spot. Of course align the ghost ball and object ball to be made in the full opening of the pocket. With your cue ball aligned for a half ball aim you now can use the center of your shaft as an aiming device. Aim the center of your shaft to the farthest outside edge of the object ball opposite the side of the pocket you wish to cut the ball into. This shot takes steady nerves. I made this shot on my first attempt at the recent U.S. Open Artist Pool Championship at Accu-Billiards in New Bedford, Mass.

If you haven't heard, Stefano Pelinga won the event and Mike Massey finished second. Good luck on this one! Next month’s artistic shot will be from the draw discipline and have a DOD of 9.




TRICK AND/OR FANCY DISCIPLINE

(October Issue 2003)

This month's Artistic Shot is from the Trick and/or Fancy Discipline and has a Degree of Difficulty (D.O.D.) of 7. Object ball letters coincide with corresponding pocket letters.

To set this shot up an F ball is on the foot spot and the C ball is frozen to the F ball and on the tangent line to pocket C with allowance for throw effect on F ball (on right), F ball (on left) is frozen to C ball and F ball (on right). Place E ball one-half ball's width to the right of center of pocket E, with the back edge of ball flush with the slate cut. The cue ball is in hand anywhere behind the X line.

The objective of this shot is to shoot the cue ball to C ball, carom to F ball (on left), then travel to E ball. Make all four object balls as pocket letter designated. A scratch is allowed.Here are some helpful hints to aid you in making this shot. First and foremost, you must make sure that the foot spot on the table is in the proper place. Many people don't spot the table properly. Your chances of making this shot are tremendously lowered if the foot spot is even off 1/8 of a balls width. I place the cue ball farther up the table than shown in the diagram, about another 1 ½ balls. The key to this shot is hitting the C ball so that the cue ball caroms over to the F ball (on the left), for the proper hit to make it in the F pocket. I also use a little draw on this shot. The cue ball caroms off F ball and travels to pocket E ball. This shot should be hit with a moderate stroke.

Good luck with this one.




THE PASSING LANE SHOT

(September Issue 2003)

This month's Artistic Pool Shot is from the Masse Discipline and has a Degree of Difficulty (D.O.D.) of 8. Object ball letter coincides with corresponding pocket letter. This skill shot is one of the most talked about shots form ESPN's Trick Shot Magic. I was stationed at Davis Monthan Air Force Base the first time I heard about this shot. It was in the mid 70's. The way it was shown to me, the set up looked wrong for this shot to have any chance of being made. I thought the show was impossible. I didn't pay any attention to the shot until I saw it again in Nick Varner's book. It still looked wrong in the diagram, so I called Nick and asked him how the shot was executed. He told me and I realized that the cue ball and object ball had to be farther away from the rail. Well through trail and error on my Gold Crown One, I finally figured the shot out. I would have to say I have well over 350 hours of practice and execution time during exhibitions in this one shot. This is my wife's favorite shot.

Let's take a good look at this shot and give you some knowledge you may not have. This shot looks like it defies physics! This skill shot is a half masse. The set up for this shot is critical!

You may put the cue ball and object ball F anywhere within the noted 1 x 1 square as shown in the diagram. The cue ball and F ball are froze together. If they aren't froze together the shot WILL NOT work! I'm going to reveal where I put the cue ball for my setup. I put the cue ball 1 ½ ball spaces from the head rail and 1 ½ ball spaces from the long rail. Now with the cue ball tapped lightly into the cloth I freeze the object ball to the cue ball. The line of centers between the cue ball and object ball are pointed to the right of pocket F, at the long rail by pocket F. If you extended the line of centers through the rail it would point at about ¾ to 1 diamond up from pocket F. Why is this aligned so far to the right? It is aligned so far to the right because you have the full length of the table in which the object ball will throw to the left before it gets to pocket F, (contact induced throw) caused by friction.

The aiming area for the cue ball is shown in the diagram. Seeing this shot is a half masse the butt end of your cue is usually 45 degrees or less. Mine is usually less. You will be cueing the cue ball at about 2 o'clock for the masse effect to work on the cue ball. You don't hit this shot with a lot of power. This shot is usually performed with a moderate to medium hard stroke. The objective of the shot is to shoot the cue ball into F ball with a half masse. The cue ball will go around F ball as it travels down table toward pocket F. The cue ball will be made first in F pocket and the F ball will be made in the same pocket. You will need to make adjustments with aim and alignment of balls depending on where the object ball goes.

I know some of you are laughing already. This is a great skill shot, and I would like to comment that I think George Middleditch executes the shot better than anyone when he was giving exhibitions.

You MUST get the OWNER'S PERMISSION to try this shot on their tables. Good luck and I hope you make the shot. Next month's shot will be from the Trick and/or Fancy Discipline and will have a D.O.D. of 7.




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