Monday, June 6, 2011

Fredericksburg USPSA

This past weekend I shot at the monthly Fredericksburg Practical Shooters USPSA match. The match director made use of some of the stage props that had been built for the recent VA/MD Sectional Championship. Targets were slightly rearranged in each course of fire, and the moving targets taken out, giving us six stages, with a 7th classifier stage thrown in. This mix presented a variety of challenges from close up speed shots to longer shots that required careful aiming. Approximately 130 shooters came out to enjoy the day. Dark skies threatened in the morning, but the sun came out later in the day and left us wishing for some cloud cover.

As usual, the Fredericksburg match was challenging, but overall I was pleased with my performance. There were 48 shooters in Production Division, and my highest stage finish was 15th. I ended up in the top half, or right near the middle, for most of the stages. That's where I expect to be as a C-classified shooter. Still, there were inconsistencies, especially the one stage I totally bumbled and placed 46th. Despite that poor showing I still managed to finish 24th out of 48 shooters in the Division.

Watching the videos of my shooting was, shall we say, enlightening. When I first reviewed the videos, I had a few moments of "oh no" and "that didn't look good" but I started viewing more subjectively. Then I could note areas where I've made improvements, and had actually remembered to do what I had practiced. My repetitive practice on magazine changes is starting to pay off. I've also been practicing skills such as getting the gun up and ready to shoot when I approach a new position, along with getting moving sooner after shooting. Like most things, it's easier to do in practice than in a match.

The match was long, but fun. From the first shot to finishing tearing down the stages at the end was a long 6 hour day. But it was a day filled with interesting, and challenging shooting, with fun and friendly people, not to mention lots of Goldfish® crackers and granola bars. I was great to shoot with some old friends, and make a few new ones too. Next weekend I'll be participating in the Mid-Atlantic Championship Match in York, PA. Hopefully I will successfully put to use some of the lessons from the Fredericksburg match.

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