The Week Ahead
The fun has already started for Minn area competitive shooters this week. Long range specialists and those just wanting to compete at those longer distances are at Lodi this whole week firing in the Midwest Palma Championship. Tuesday through Friday the course of fire is just Palma and more Palma matches for those 4 days. Saturday June 21, and Sunday the competition will be hot and heavy at the 1000yd line in order to decide the Wisconsin State Long Range Championship. Good luck to all the local Minn shooters that are down at Lodi to compete. I'm sure we'll get a match report from Erik Rhode when he gets back. The way he has been finding the X ring this past year, he might have a good story for us.
Those of us who are better off sticking to Mid Range matches and stayed behind from Lodi will our turn to shoot a great match both Saturday and Sunday at the Elk River Sportsman's Club. Both Sling shooters and F-class specialists alike will be out there to contest the Regional Mid Range Championship. All matches will be fired from the 600 yd line of Elk River's shooting facility northwest of Mpls.
On Saturday, June 21, shooters will choose up teams and fire 3 strings of 20 rds each with coaching allowed. Sunday, June 22 will see the matches for the Individual Championship fired. Sling competitors will shoot two matches each with Iron sights and two with Any sights. This will be a good weekend to exercise my 6mm BR match rifle.
Click Here for Mid Range Champ match program and entry info.
Rain, Rain, and more rain pretty much says it all for matches near the Twin Cities this past weekend. I drove up to GRRC Saturday a little after noon to get a couple pictures of the CMP games afternoon sniper team match. Larry Weidell and Kurt Borlaug were the only two shooters there in the drizzle and were practicing "Rattle Battle" for the Camp Perry Infantry Trophy match coming up in July. They said that 16 service rifle shooters had showed up for the CMP games match but rain and more rain put a stop to that.
I hope the Sm Bore prone match at MRC had better luck on Sunday, but as it was storming rain and wind all morning at my house, I didn't get out there to find out.
However--- someone did get to shoot a match
**On the Firing Line Report - LaCrosse Mid Range matches** Part #1
Just a quick update on the Father’s Day weekend matches at La Crosse.
This was my first trip to La Crosse, and it didn’t disappoint. My plan was to use this as a warm-up for the Midwest Palma matches in Lodi that start tomorrow – apparently I am not the first guy to come up with this plan.
For Saturday’s matches, the range was close to capacity with 55 total shooters spread out on 15 targets over 4 relays. Sling shooters were definitely in the majority here, with 46 of us compared with 9 shooting F-Class. There were a few familiar faces for me, but mostly shooters I hadn’t met before – and some really good ones at that. I got to meet folks from all over the country on their annual pilgrimage to the long range shooter’s Mecca of Lodi.
Conditions on Saturday were a pleasant – a little windier than usual(according to the locals), but very manageable and some good scores were fired. At the top of the heap in the highpower class were the tremendous husband-and-wife duo of Steve and Shirley McGee, each putting up 797’s for the day. Steve’s 48 X’s just edged out Shirley’s 43, so he was Saturday’s big winner. 4 points back and tied for 3rd/4th with matching scores of 793-42x, were John Rhynard and myself.
Down on the F-Class side, MN favorite Pat “Square Head” Scully put on a clinic by winning the first 3 matches outright. He was well on his way to another victory in the 4th when an unexplained squib round fell short of the target costing him 10 points in short order. Even spotting his competition 10 points, Square Head still managed to win the day with his respectable 783-36x just squeaking by runner-up Brock Schmidt’s 783-27x. This Scully character is turning out to be one tough F-er.
Despite an ominous forecast, almost everyone returned to do it all again on Sunday morning. Rain looked like a sure thing on Saturday night, but bad weather seemed to be keeping it’s distance by match time. Wind was much stronger than yesterday, and high scores today were going to take a lot more effort. I was lucky enough to be squadded with the big dogs on relay 1, or so I thought. Not 5 minutes into our first string, the clouds unloaded on us for several minutes straight. This wasn’t a light, refreshing sprinkle either, but a bone soaking, gear soaking, pour-the-water-out-of-your-action kind of rain. No one called a cease-fire, so most of us just kept on shooting. This proved to be the only rain we got all day, but the wind never let up.
Pat Scully survived the deluge, and kept his foot on the throttle on Sunday while cruising to a 4-point victory, again over Brock Schmidt. Winning both single-day aggs, ol’ Square Head is the F-Class math winner for the weekend.
Not surprisingly, there was once again a McGee on top of the sling scoreboard for day 2. Shirley taught all of the boys what hard-holding is all about, finishing with an astonishing 798-42x. This is a score that most mortals will never shoot in any condition, let alone the nasty winds we had today. This was truly an impressive accomplishment, by one of the best prone shooters in the country. Shirley’s worse half Steve shot well again, and was still in the hunt with his 790-40x, but Team USA wind coach Rick Hunt had something to say. Rick only dropped 7 points for the day to secure the #2 spot.
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I had a bad 2nd match on Sunday, but was happy to finish just a point and an X behind David for 4th place overall, and 2nd Palma rifle. I feel like I got my money’s worth at this match, and should have no rust to shake off come tomorrow morning’s 4-man Palma team match. Work prevents me from staying more than 1 day in Lodi this year, so hopefully the extra practice in La Crosse will pay off! This week’s schedule is going to be a killer after I get back Monday night, but I will try to get you a report on the team match in the next few days…
Reporting from the Lodi, WI Quality Inn,