* Stand on your hind legs and shoot like a man!
Ok, you've been practicing all summer and now the time has come. It's time for the State Offhand championship! This weekend's highpower matches at Mpls. Rifle Club will determine who is the best shooter in Minnesota. That's right -- 'the best shooter'. I have always considered that shooting from the standing position is the toughest way to compete. Only the most dedicated shooting competitor will ever put in enough effort to aquire the skill of being a good offhand shooter. We all have heard the bar stories from somebody that says they shot that deer at 200+ yds while walking through the woods. Yeah sure they did - from the prone position or maybe with a rifle rest - but from the standing position? I'd love to see those braggarts at a standing match -- go up there on the 200 yd line, take up the standing position, lift that rifle up and take their best shot with iron sights at the 6 inch ten ring on the target - then do it over and over for 20 shots and take your score like a man. I suspect few could hit the 13 inch black bullseye, let alone the 6 inch 10 ring. Well this weekend the folks that can do that will be competing for the State Offhand Championship -- or as I call it the Best shooter Championship.
The action starts at 0900 am Saturday, Aug 29 with a 1000 pt. OTC match that includes 2 prone strings of fire from the 300yd line. Click here for Match Bulletin. Then after the match the fun starts with another one of those great BBQs put on by the MRC guys. Don't miss this.
Sunday, Aug 30, it's all Offhand shooting for the Championship and the bragging rights that go with it. Competitors will fire five 20 shot matches from the standing position at 200 yds. The 'best shooter' will take home the hardware. Click here for match bulletin
For those who prefer the ease and comfort of prone shooting matches, the LaCrosse Rifle Club has a match for you (Aug 29,30). Make the short drive down beautiful highway 61 and cross the river to LaCrosse and you can fire the Wisc. 600 yd Midrange State Championship. Again there will be two days of tough Highpower and F-class competition. Each day the course of fire is the same -- four 20 shot prone matches with 2 sighters allowed in each match. Click Here for match bulletin
*If it isn't a Leg Match, It's just practice
-- the reason why*
If you were in the military, you wear your medals and badges on your uniform with a certain pride of 'achievment'. Those who are the best shooters get to wear an Expert marksmanship badge. The very best may have a chance to get on military rifle team and have the opportunity to earn the "Gold" badge of "Distinguished Rifleman".
Carlos Hathcock, Marine Sniper, earned that Gold Badge....................
From: "Marine Sniper" by Charles Henderson
Carlos tells this story to his spotter 'Burke', while he has an entire platoon of NVA soldiers pinned down behind a rice paddy dike by his rifle fire for a whole day. Carlos says:
"Did I ever tell you about winning the Wimbledon Cup?"
'No' Burke replied, still staring down the sniper scope. "I've heard other guys tell about it, but I never heard you. I'd sure like the hear your side of it. We got lots of time. Those guys out there ain't going any where"
Carlos says: "yeah, I know. I won the Wimbledon at Camp Perry, Ohio, on August 26, 1965---the day I went Distinguished."
(also coincidently the same day yours truely was boarding the USS Paul Revere with the 1st Marine Division for a month long voyage to Viet Nam with a 12 mph convoy and through one big whopping Typhoon off the coast of Japan -- but that's another story)
.....Burke asked with tone of hesitancy in his voice, "Don't think I'm stupid or anything, but I've heard you and Captain (Jim) Land and Gunny Wilson all talk about 'Distinguished' for six months, and to be honest with you, I never really understood what what it is. I figure that it is a high honor for a shooter but nobody ever told me how you become 'distinguished'."
"Well, you become distinguished by placing in so many shooting matches. Every time you win a gold, silver or bronze medal in matches, you get points toward becoming distinguished. A Distinguished Marksman in the Marine Corp is the top dog among shooters.
He wears a Gold shooting badge and is a member of an elite few marksmen. There are some great Marines among them, for example, Major General Merit A. Edson is distinguished, he died a while back, but he won the Medal of Honor on Guadalcanal leading the 1st Marine Raider Battalion ( Battle of Edson's Ridge). He went on to become executive director of the NRA.
"I went Distinguished in 1965. When we got to Camp Perry that year, I was hard as woodpecker lips. I just missed the National Match Championship by a couple of marks, but the silver medal gave me the last few points that I needed to make thirty and go Distinguished. That and winning the Wimbledon Cup was special. It was the biggest day of my life, as far as shooting goes.
Burke turned from the scope and smiled. "Captain Land talked about Camp Perry and you winning the Wimbledon Cup. I think he was as proud about it as you are. He said that when the smoke cleared, there was one Marine Corp meatball down on the line, and that was you.
"He said that everybody who was anybody, including the Commandant of the Marine Corp was there. The whole National Rifle Association was there, and you beat them all"
In the evening of that day in the rice paddies, Carlos and Burke destroyed the entire enemy platoon with an M-14 and a Rem bolt gun.
You don't have to be in the military to earn Distinguished Rifleman. Since 1903 the US Department of Defense (and now the CMP) have been awarding this prestigous badge to both military and civilians alike, and for civilians this badge is to be worn with other civilian/military medals at formal events on your Tux.
So, now you see that this is a 'real' big deal. The Leg Match is a 'real' big deal, and so as I said "If it isn't a Leg Match, It's just Practice"
This past weekend at GRRC, it was a real big deal for Minnesota's Dave Hotegaard. After some years of effort, Dave joined the few elite riflemen who have earned the Distinguished Riflemans Badge. Congratulations Dave, we know what an honor this is for you.
From: Mark Havlik
Here’s an after action report from the Leg Match at Harris Sunday:
Overcast skies and blustery winds kept the scores down for Sunday’s leg Match At Gopher Rifle and Revolver Club. I don’t recall the exact number of participants, but there were enough for two legs to be awarded. The winner of the Match and Silver Leg was Dave Cornelder of Iowa. The Bronze leg was won by Dave Holtegaard of Rochester, which gives him his last 6 points needed for his Distinguished Rifleman’s Badge. Aaron Guliuzza from Aberdeen South Dakota won First Leather.
Small Bore St. Prone Championship
The wind may have been whipping around in eight directions at the same time, but the better shooters did not let that bother them this past weekend at the St. Small Bore Prone Championship.
Both last Sat and Sunday saw a good number of prone shooters fighting it out at the Mpls Rifle Club for the rights to be the top prone Sm bore shooter in Minn for 2015.
Emily Quiner was not only queen of the range this weekend, but also the top scoring shooter, two day winner, and new Minnesota Sm Bore Prone Champion. Emily, who shoots only iron sights - even in the Any Sight matches, won most of the matches each day on the way to her title. Close behind, and Top Junior shooter in the championship was Eric Hazelton, who also had a couple match wins. Norman Lilyerd held hard on day one of the competition, and earned the Top Intermediate Junior championship. Young protege, Vincent Hirsch scored high enough to be the High Sub Junior State Champion.
I got to shoot only Sunday, so I ended up a few points behind in the two day aggregate. It was windy all day, with constants gusts in the 20 mph range and the wind flags never once pointed all in the same direction. I was a little sloppy in 50 yd match and ended up 6 down after the first 40 shots. Emily and Eric both fired all 10s and Xs in this match. Things went good for me in the Dewar match. I only dropped one pt on the 50 yd target and one on the 100yd target for a third place in that match. Eric and Emily each dropped only one pt in their 40 shots for a first and 2nd place. In that match I had got the timing of the wind right, but in the next match, the two targets of the 100 yd match, I got every wind call wrong on most every shot and fell off the leader board like like the value of my stocks this week. While in my shooting position, I couldn't see a single one of the 40 wind flags George had put out there so so nice and neat and I had to keep taking my head off the gun to ck the wind and then miss the change while trying to break the shot. Oh Well, It was fun to shoot the match, talk to some of the Juniors, talk with Elmer Miler from So. Dak, whom I might have talked into coming down to Phoenix for the WildCat matches next March.
The next Sm Bore prone match is Oct 10 and will be shot from the 200 yd line -- that's right 200yds with a rimfire rifle. Erik Rhode (long range shooter) assures me that this match is great fun and shooting rimfire that far is just like shooting Palma at 1000 yds. I'm sure that it's not any easier. F-class or Sling class -- give it a try.
Click here for match bulletin
Two Weeks Out
From: Jim Melville - Eau Claire National rifle club
Our Big Three Day Match is coming up soon. Saturday September 5th will be having our 4 gun 600 yard match, Sunday September 6th will be OTC and Monday the M1 and M1A match. I have attached all the match bulletins.(see below)
It will be a great weekend of competitive shooting and I hope to see everyone there.
Check us out on FaceBook@ Eau Claire National Rifle Club.
Thanks, James ECNRC Match Director
Sept 5 - 600 yd Mid Range prone and F-class at Eau claire - Click here for Match bulletin
Sept 6 - 80 shot OTC Highpower match at Eau Claire - click here for match bulletin
Sept 7 - M1 garand and M1 A matches at Eau Claire - Click here for match bulletin
That's All Folks!