Made it through a rack

CGM

One Ball Runner
Silver Member
So I finally made it through a rack and had a good break and ran off 7 more until I got hooked. My goodness this is a difficult game.
 

measureman

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Straight pool is an easier game then one pocket-9 ball-10 ball-8 ball.
You can shoot any ball in any pocket.
No solids or stripes to contend with.
No shooting balls in numerical order.
You are not confined to just one pocket.
Now after reading the above straight pool sounds easier doesn't it?

It really doesn't matter what game you are playing its just putting balls in the holes.
 

CGM

One Ball Runner
Silver Member
Straight pool is an easier game then one pocket-9 ball-10 ball-8 ball.
You can shoot any ball in any pocket.
No solids or stripes to contend with.
No shooting balls in numerical order.
You are not confined to just one pocket.
Now after reading the above straight pool sounds easier doesn't it?

It really doesn't matter what game you are playing its just putting balls in the holes.
Playing it makes me truly appreciate the incredible runs some guys make. Just the shear fact that you can break
Up every cluster that comes up and always have a shot in amazing. Really cool albeit frustrating game
 

Straightpool_99

I see dead balls
Silver Member
Playing it makes me truly appreciate the incredible runs some guys make. Just the shear fact that you can break
Up every cluster that comes up and always have a shot in amazing. Really cool albeit frustrating game

It's a beautiful game for sure. I think a little bit of the secret is to get the balls open early. Break the balls fairly hard, then if there is a small cluster in the rack area, go into it again as soon as possible. It's usually easy to get a secondary breakball to a cluster that's located here. It's very hard to run any balls if you're fighting with clusters all the way through.

Congrats on your run.
 

mikemosconi

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
It's a beautiful game for sure. I think a little bit of the secret is to get the balls open early. Break the balls fairly hard, then if there is a small cluster in the rack area, go into it again as soon as possible. It's usually easy to get a secondary breakball to a cluster that's located here. It's very hard to run any balls if you're fighting with clusters all the way through.

Congrats on your run.

For sure there are some great 14.1 players to teach the game as you said- to get the balls open as early as possible - that style works real well when the break shot leaves only minor clusters left with 2 or 3 balls to break out. However, there are also a lot of very good 14.1 players who prefer not to execute secondary break shots until they have cleared off a good portion of the loose balls- so as to avoid creating new problems when the broken clusters mix with the already loose balls.
This week we saw a lot of the latter style where theses players were passing up early secondary breakouts until some loose balls were cleared off the table- they were also passing a lot on secondary break shots from below the stack - preferring to break out those clusters when they got the cue ball to the middle of the table. This was commented on several times this week.
Of course, opportunity and layout may dictate earlier breakouts of secondary clusters, but i think keeping balls clear of EACH OTHER and keeping pocket paths clear are the primary goals with the first 9 or 10 balls in the rack- then the priority is aligning a simple run out path to the next primary break ball - assuming you were diligent enough to Leave the correct balls on the table.
 

Straightpool_99

I see dead balls
Silver Member
For sure there are some great 14.1 players to teach the game as you said- to get the balls open as early as possible - that style works real well when the break shot leaves only minor clusters left with 2 or 3 balls to break out. However, there are also a lot of very good 14.1 players who prefer not to execute secondary break shots until they have cleared off a good portion of the loose balls- so as to avoid creating new problems when the broken clusters mix with the already loose balls.
This week we saw a lot of the latter style where theses players were passing up early secondary breakouts until some loose balls were cleared off the table- they were also passing a lot on secondary break shots from below the stack - preferring to break out those clusters when they got the cue ball to the middle of the table. This was commented on several times this week.
Of course, opportunity and layout may dictate earlier breakouts of secondary clusters, but i think keeping balls clear of EACH OTHER and keeping pocket paths clear are the primary goals with the first 9 or 10 balls in the rack- then the priority is aligning a simple run out path to the next primary break ball - assuming you were diligent enough to Leave the correct balls on the table.

A players strategy depends on many things. The conditions of the table and balls, his ability, if he's in stroke etc...A pros strategy will differ significantly from a beginner.

As a general rule, I think the aggressive and somewhat "brute force" strategy is more tolerant of player error, meaning it will allow more balls to be run by a middling or low level player. At the highest level this is no longer true, and more caution may be adviced, as small errors are much more severely punished. For two C players, a player running 20 and then missing is not a catastrophe, but is rather a good start to a game. For two pros the same run could qualify as a disaster, if he leaves any sort of shot to the opponent.

At the highest level, the thing that is likely to stop a run is a "bad roll", usually taking a chance on going into something, or accidentally doing so and ending up out of position. Picking around the balls, rather than going into them, biding ones time etc. is a way to lower the risk of such mishaps.

For lower levels of players, run stoppers, are more likely to be misses of some sort, usually provoked by having to difficult a shot (tough shot or combination of tough shot and tough position). What qualifies as "tough" is also wildly different for the pro and amateur.

My contention is merely that by trying ones best to get the balls open, one is more likely to have more than one shot, and be less severely penalized for inaccuracy in position. Trying to avoid mistakes for a low level amateur is hard, because the player may not have the knowledge to foresee possible bad outcomes, or may not be able to hit the balls with the correct speed, even if he does see such things. His best hope (IMO) is to get the balls open and stay within his abilities while picking the balls off.

Going into the balls hard, spreading them open allows the player to build his confidence, to hit the balls in a positive fashion and to reduce "paralysis by analysis" which often strikes the beginning students of the game. Even if you are not a good player, I think running balls and having an aggressive mindset is more likely to make you a winner. At lower levels, you won't play perfect safety anyways, and 20, 30 and even the occational 40 ball run will add up very quickly to a solid victory.

Just my opinion, as always.
 
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CESSNA10

AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
Straight pool is an easier game then one pocket-9 ball-10 ball-8 ball.
You can shoot any ball in any pocket.
No solids or stripes to contend with.
No shooting balls in numerical order.
You are not confined to just one pocket.
Now after reading the above straight pool sounds easier doesn't it?

It really doesn't matter what game you are playing its just putting balls in the holes.

Sorry any game where you pick the cue ball up and place it with
your hand is Bu#$$%it
 

Pete H

Registered
So I finally made it through a rack and had a good break and ran off 7 more until I got hooked. My goodness this is a difficult game.

To more I play 14.1 the more difficult I think it is. Made my first 20 point run yesterday at a tournament. 21 to be exact so same as yours. My best practice run is only 17.

The complexity of finding the best pattern is insane and I believe you need to run thousands of racks before you start seeing them. So far I've run dozens of racks so there's plenty of work to do.
 

Pete H

Registered
It's a beautiful game for sure. I think a little bit of the secret is to get the balls open early. Break the balls fairly hard, then if there is a small cluster in the rack area, go into it again as soon as possible. It's usually easy to get a secondary breakball to a cluster that's located here. It's very hard to run any balls if you're fighting with clusters all the way through.

I used to go to the rack hard (because I had no clue what'll happen and I just tried to get maximum spread), but after watching Mike Sigel's Perfect Straight Pool I started go softer. Most of the time I need 2-3 break shots, but they are much more controlled and I'm much less likely to hook myself.
 

Mick

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Sorry any game where you pick the cue ball up and place it with
your hand is Bu#$$%it

Honestly I think that the ball in hand anywhere rule would improve straight pool, it's my biggest gripe with the rules. The only reason I haven't switched on my own is that I want any runs I put up to be "legit". It would make safety play much tougher, and make mistakes way costlier. It would definitely make for a more aggressive style of game.
 

Island Drive

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
So I finally made it through a rack and had a good break and ran off 7 more until I got hooked. My goodness this is a difficult game.

It's a tough game. Getting into & especially thru your second rack is not that easy. Plateaus are near, running two racks, then once you've gotten a break shot and run that second rack your coming into a new area. 40 balls is the next plateau, once your in that realm it's real tough to get past the 50's. Once your there then 80 is a Very difficult area to reach. Once you get into that ball count, running over 100 will follow but not often. Competition in this game, will get you to your next level much quicker, than practicing, it's gotta cost you something when you make an Easy mistake that gives the table to your opponent. My father and Otto Graham (best friends) played $1 a hole golf their entire life, even in their retirement years. Bragging rights are important.
 

mikemosconi

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I have found that NEVER thinking about racks run - but rather thinking about getting to and making each breakshot is much less stressful and much more liberating to the mind when playing this game. Once you know how to maneuver racks the right way in 14.1 then the key is to get to break balls and make them to get at another open rack and then just repeat the process over and over - look at it as a process and not as a goal to run racks - it flows better that way IMO and experience. Of course you want to make note of your runs when each rack is cleared off the table; but that's the extent of it for me while in the middle of a run. Some of the best 14.1 players I have known have told me they never know how many balls they run while practicing. they don't even bother to count racks- it is all about following the right process for them - the patterns, the do's and don'ts, setting up the next key/break ball via shot selections, etc. Running 100 balls requires doing so many things the right way and Not doing so many things the wrong way - it is way harder than 9 ball, 8 ball, etc. The guy who said it is just about putting balls in pockets must have been joking- I hope!
 

Island Drive

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
I have found that NEVER thinking about racks run - but rather thinking about getting to and making each breakshot is much less stressful and much more liberating to the mind when playing this game. Once you know how to maneuver racks the right way in 14.1 then the key is to get to break balls and make them to get at another open rack and then just repeat the process over and over - look at it as a process and not as a goal to run racks - it flows better that way IMO and experience. Of course you want to make note of your runs when each rack is cleared off the table; but that's the extent of it for me while in the middle of a run. Some of the best 14.1 players I have known have told me they never know how many balls they run while practicing. they don't even bother to count racks- it is all about following the right process for them - the patterns, the do's and don'ts, setting up the next key/break ball via shot selections, etc. Running 100 balls requires doing so many things the right way and Not doing so many things the wrong way - it is way harder than 9 ball, 8 ball, etc. The guy who said it is just about putting balls in pockets must have been joking- I hope!

Keep in mind, gambling. If you know your opponent max runs 50 and your and 80 ball runner, your in a very good game. I grew up playing Joey Gold and Tommy Spencer and Varner, so I understand this from a different perspective, the days of Collegiate 14.1 Championships were big time for us.
 

mikemosconi

AzB Silver Member
Silver Member
Keep in mind, gambling. If you know your opponent max runs 50 and your and 80 ball runner, your in a very good game. I grew up playing Joey Gold and Tommy Spencer and Varner, so I understand this from a different perspective, the days of Collegiate 14.1 Championships were big time for us.

I think that when gambling in 14.1 the key pieces of information are 1. what are the opponents"consistent" high runs- i.e. in a given 2 hour practice session does that person USUALLY run 20, 50, or say 80 balls. Lifetime high runs don't really mean as much. Anyone running 80 balls consistently in 2 hour practice sessions is pro caliber 14.1. anyone running 50 balls consistently in that time frame is a force to be reckoned with for any other player- especially if they have 2. A strong 14.1 safety game.

In my book a fellow running 50 balls consistently vs. someone who runs 80 balls consistently is even money if given 25 balls in a game to 125. However a fellow with only a LIFETIME 50 ball run vs. a consistent 80 ball runner should just sit out the game- no contest with any spot.
 
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