Saturday, December 31, 2016

Shooting is a great sport--Great for the mind and great for the body. Exercise both and you will be successful.   
Subscribe to "The week ahead for MN Area Shooters" newsletter to 

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

From: George Minerich

Hi shooters:
There has been a lot of activity lining up the Smallbore schedule on  There are couple of important events to take notice of.  First, the Prone Metric National Championship is going to be held in Phoenix AZ on March 13 to 15, 2016.  Following (the same week) is the Western Wildcats Prone Regional Championship 6400, March 17- 20, 2016. That's a solid week of shooting with some of the best rifle shooters in the country.  It would make a dandy Spring Break Trip to escape the Midwest cold!  This is an Olympic year so the competition will be fierce

The MN Rifle and Revolver Assoc. (MRRA) has spent a bunch of time tracking down indoor smallbore matches in the area.  There are a number being held in Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin.  A few highlights are: Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin indoor Championships, Wisconsin and North Dakota Sectional Championships and a 50 yd indoor Regional Championship.  See for dates and programs

Finally, we have the Minnesota Outdoor Match schedule posted with most of the match programs.  I am also in contact with several folks in North Dakota and Wisconsin and have requested information on their upcoming smallbore matches.  We will get them posted on as they come in. 

MRRA hopes to keep Smallbore shooters in the know about tournaments throughout the year.  If you hear of any tournaments in the area please let me know. It is important that you send in tournament contact information so that the match programs can be acquired and posted.  Remember, check for tournaments to shoot in!
George Minerich
MRRA president

Click here for Metric Nationals program and info
Click here for Western WildCats program and info

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Shooters News for the Minn Area - Sept. 29th, 2015

Last chance for Long Range!

Next weekend 
  It's going to be a beautiful fall weekend with temps in the 60s, glorious sunshine, and consistently east breezes of less than 8 mph---in other words the perfect weekend to shoot the last Long Range rifle match of the year here in the Minnesota area. (click here for up to date weather forecast) 
   This will be a great 'end of season' match weekend, so ck your ammo supply, and then come up to Gopher Rifle and Revolver Club Saturday, Oct 3rd. The action begins at 0900 hrs with a good ole' Palma match.  Starting at the 800 yd line, shooters will fire a 15 shot match, including unlimited sighters with a time limit of 22 min.  This is an easy target,-- high scores prevail and you get dialed in for the longer distances to be shot next.  Shooters will then move back to the 900 yd line for another 15 shot match, but only 2 sighters and then finish up doing the same at the 1000 yd line for a total of 45 shots for record and a possible point total of 450 max points for the days aggregate score.  The way the hotshot shooters from this area have been shooting this summer, I would not be suprised to see a 450 score this weekend in either or both the Sling or the F-class division. Watch for it.
  If you are  newer highpower shooter, these Palma matches are a good way to ease into long range shooting. Because they start a the 800 yd line on the big 6' x 6' target  Anyone with solid midrange zeros on their rifle will likely get on target first shot and then have little problem getting on target at the 1000 yd line.  
    So now, there you are -  all zeroed in for the Sunday matches at the 1000yd line.  
   On Sunday, Oct 4th, all shooting will be from the 1000yd line of GRRC's excellent Long Range shooting facility.  This is a well maintained picturesque range with many trees lining the sides to ease those gentle breezes, and plenty of range flags that never lie.   
    The course of fire will be three 20 shot matches for each shooter.  Highpower shooters will fire the first match with "Iron" sights and the last two with "Any" sights. 
   Camping on site is available to those who pre-register. Mark Schoess, match director -
   Click here for match bulletin

Note: I wish to purchase an adj. butt stock for an AR-15 match rifle or a complete AR-15 lower receiver, match trigger, and adj. buttstock - contact Jim at   The Adj. buttstock is the part I want the most.

Last Weekend 
  From Capt. Bob 
click to enlarge
 Hello Jim:  
Attached 3 files with pictures of the bulletin board at Eau Claire.  The Saturday F class match  was won by Pat Scully with a dandy 800X52.  

Click to enlarge
  The Saturday sling match was won by Randy Gregory with a dandy 797X43.  And the Sunday OTC was won by J.R. Trehane with a dandy 780X28 shooting an AR15 service rifle.  One could not ask for better weather for a 2 day shootin' contest. Blue skies with about 62 deg at kick off and highs in mid 70's both days.  There was just enough wind both days to move a shot into the 9 ring if one were not paying attention. Note the only 200's shot by sling shooters were in match 2.  That's an any sight match and 3 of the 200's were fired with iron sight Palma rifles. That's the match where I had a 198X8 with an 8 at 6 O'Clock...........Huh?  Beats me..
Click to enlarge

    As usual James Mellville with son Brian and the wife ran an excellent tournament with both days finishing by about 215PM. 

This is the end of season news letter and Blog post. I have been doing this newsletter now for 6 years. At this time I am not inclined to continue next year.  I hope that it's publication has done something/anything to promote shooting sports here in the Minn area during this time.
    I want to thank those who understood the need for the promotion of our sport and have stepped up to the plate to contribute to this publication over the years--George MinerichErick Rhode for his excellent and timely match reports,  Capt. Bob Peasley for his tech. articles, general info, knowledgeable insite, and match reports,  Mark Havlik for his many contributions, and others. Thank you all for your support!  Your help made my Tuesday mornings much easier.

  Two Weeks Out  
Oct 10 - Small Bore long range match.  That's right, I said "Small Bore Long Range"!  This match will be shot from the 200 yd line of the Mpls Rifle Club with Sm Bore match rifles. I have not shot this match, but I have heard from one of the top Long Range shooters that it is lots of fun and reading the wind for Sb long range is just like shooting a Palma match from the 1000yd line.  Give it a try!
  Click here for match bulletin 

That's All Folks! 

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Shooters News for the Minn Area - Sept. 22nd, 2015

Head East to Eau Claire!

Next weekend 
The forecast for this weekend's weather is 'clear and sunny'.  What more could you want than to spend such a fine weekend pulling some triggers with your friends at a Mid Range or OTC rifle match in the beautiful outdoors near Eau Claire, Wisc.   The Eau Claire Nat. Rifle Club will be hosting their seasons last weekend of shooting events this coming Sat. and Sun., Sept 26-27.  As usual, the Saturday event will be all Mid range prone shooting for both Sling and F-class shooters. There will be four 20 shot matches with 2 sighters allowed. All matches to be shot from the 600 yd line.  Highpower sling shooters will have two matches with Iron sights and two Any sights, while F-class shooters may use scopes for all 4 matches. 
   Sunday's match is an 80 shot OTC match starting at the 200 yd line and finishing at the 600 yd line.
                 Click Here for match bulletin  

Small bore 3 and 4 position State Championships will be held at Mpls. Rifle Club  this weekend, Sept 26-27
      Click here for match bulletin

Last Weekend  
 It was a beautiful day for a rifle match.  I joined a goodly number of shooters at Northstar Rifle Club on Sat. for the Service Rifle Leg Match.  I actually love shooting the service rifle -- It's easier to shoot, and less complicated than a match rife.  There's no adjustments. You just pick it up and shoot it the way it is. 
 The day was scheduled to start with a 30 rd practice match to get everyone warmed up for the " all-important" Leg Match to follow.  There would be 10 rds Offhand and a 10 rd string of Sitting Rapid Fire from the 200 yd line and then a 10 rd string of Prone rapid fire from the 300 yd line. After that the Leg Match would start. 
   My relay was first up. So I assumed the Offhand position and even after couple years of not firing a shot offhand, I got a 10 on the first shot--Yes!  I could see the target and sights well, and finished with about a 91 score.  That was fun! I have to do this more often!
  Next up was 10 shots rapid fire in 60 sec, incl. a magazine change, and starting from the standing position. Prep. period did not go well,  I could not bend my hip enough to get my right knee splayed out to cross my ankles. I stood up, waiting for the targets to come out of the pits and when they did I about fell over backwards getting down to a sitting position that didn't pain too much. Not having a good NPA and not having practiced, my group was left - two 8s, five 9s, and three 10s, for another 91.  The 300yd prone rapid went fine, my prone shooting position is good, the group still off to the left - bunch of nines.  
   About noon the Leg Match started without me.  I could see that I just could not get into the sitting position safely from standing and then shoot a decent score over the hip pain.  I might be done shooting Sitting position matches. Getting old is a pain.

Leg Matches at NorthStar
 From: Capt. Bob
Sorry you had a sore back (hip joint) and could not shoot this weekend.  I had to start getting up about half way thru the prep period for rapid fire due to the same problem. Beautiful weather both days with 18 shooters Saturday & 23 on Sunday.  EXCEL sheets attached ( see below) for both days so your readers can see for them selves the results.  Between the 2 days we had about 7 first time shooters at North Star and 3 or 4 first time ever leg shooters. For other clubs thinking about 2 days of back to back leg shooting I can say this one was really well received. We even discussed about 2 in one day with one starting at 0830 and a 2nd at 1230. But in mid summer with good light on on the low end late it could be a long hot miserable day.  With the cooler weather of Sept the targets on the little end are in full shade by 330.  However a club not in a valley like North Star might have better light. The shooters also really liked the idea of the 30 shot practice Sat morning before the leg. (Yes we did!)  We further considered something like a 4 man Rattle Battle team just shooting the 600 yard stage for a fun closer after the leg. Then of course there is always the cold beer option after the match is over.

Click to enlarge
   I'll close with an interesting story. When I was in the pit pulling for 200 RF I borrowed an electric stop watch.  I punched it when the last target went "CLANG" on the stops. I looked to confirm it was running, which it was, then looked at the target to count bullet holes. When my shooter fired # 6 or 7 I looked at the watch and noted it showed 55 seconds gone. It seemed like I was still hearing shots but when it hit 60 seconds I called for targets down.  At that point I heard several "late" rounds come in as the targets were moving.  I had no idea why EVERYBODY was shooting so slow. Meantime a guy a couple targets down was also timing and said he showed 47 seconds gone when I called targets down. We ran a pit alibi using his watch.  During change over to the next relay we compared watches starting at the same time. He stopped his watch at 20 seconds and the borrowed watch I was using showed 27 seconds gone! NO WONDER they were shooting slow.  I don't know how this could be with an electric watch but it's just another example of the weird stuff that happens at shootin' contests.  Maybe he had a 12 volt battery in his watch!
   Tks, Capt. Bob for running a good match.  Yup, It was a beautiful weekend - reminded me of all the many great matches I've shot at Northstar over the years.

 From: Mark Havlik     
   Hi Jim, Here’s a report on last weekend’s EIC Spectacular at North Star Rifle Club.
Click to enlarge
    Saturday Sept. 19th found myself with some of the area’s other top Service Rifle shooters at North Star Rifle Club for the first of 2 EIC “Leg” matches. Our day started out with a 30 shot practice match with 10 shots fired from the standing, sitting and rapid prone positions. 
   The EIC Match started around 11:30 and we had 18 shooters with 16 being non-distinguished. That meant we had a total of 2 Legs up for grabs. 
    When the smoke cleared, Wisconsin’s Brian Melville took the top spot with the match win and the Silver Leg, giving him his first leg points. South Dakota’s George Cwach took Second, and your’s truly took 3rd and the Bronze Leg. Tom (camera shy) Torborg was First Leather. 
    Sunday’s match started at 9:00 and promised to be another beautiful day for shooting. Although we lost a couple shooters who couldn’t return for the second day, we picked up a few more for a total of 21, with 18 being non-distinguished. As the day went on the wind picked up and reminded us how North Star earned it’s reputation for rapidly changing winds. 
     At the end of the day it was Tim Thole with the match win and Silver Leg. Dave Holtegaard was Second. Brian Melville took 3rd along with the Bronze Leg, and Mark Shoess taking First Leather. 
    On a personal note, Saturday’s finish gives me my fifth Bronze Leg and a total of 30 points. Unfortunately for me, CMP changed the rules several years ago requiring one to win a “heavy Leg” (Silver or Gold) in order to win your Distinguished Rifleman’s badge, so my hunt continues. See attached picts and results bulletin. Mark
   Thanks Mark for the match report.  Congratulations to all those who added some leg points to their quest for the Distinguished Rifleman's Badge 

Two Weeks Out   
Oct 3 - Palma at GRRC - Click here for match bulletin
Oct 4 - 1000 yd Long Range at GRRC -
Click here for match bulletin

That's All Folks!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Shooters News for the Minn Area - Sept. 15th, 2015

Service Rifle qualification this weekend!

Next weekend
   Those of you who have served in the military (where many of us shooters got our first marksmanship training) will remember having to qualify each year with your service rifle.  Since 1903 civilians have been able to do the same thing through the civilian marksmanship program. If you want to qualify with your service rifle this year, your last chance will be this coming weekend at NorthStar Rifle Club
    If you are looking to earn some points toward a Distinguished Rifleman's badge or just want to get a qualification score this year, then head down Hwy 61 to NorthStar, just north of Red Wing, and you'll have a chance to do so both Sat. and Sunday, Sept. 19-20.  Each day will feature a complete 50 shot National Match course "Leg Match".  If you have a M1 Garand, an M1A, or an AR-15 rifle, you are 'good to go'.  Competitors will be firing 10 shots Offhand, then a 10 rd string of 'rapid' fire from the Sitting, and the Prone position, and finishing off the match with 20 rds Prone slow fire. There is no 'minimum' qual. score and the top 10 %  will receive points toward a 'Distinguished' award.   Give it a try. Don't be a "non-qual".  
Click here for Match bulletin - Weather forecast for this match - click here
       "MRRA has free loaner AR15 rifles if you need one to try a leg match. Contact MRRA  rifle keeper Tom Torborg for further information"   
    If you are not sure why Leg Matches are important-- click here and read under "Last Weekend". 

Last Weekend  
  From: Capt. Bob 
Here are the scores for Labor Day weekend at Eau Claire if you want them for next weeks blog. 
 Click here for Mid range results,  Click here  for OTC results, Click here for M1 Garand results
 I only shot Sat. so can't report on the others except to say at least 1 relay got rained on at 600 yds Sun.
    Saturday saw bluebird conditions all day. I had my Palma rifle shooting 12" high at 100 yds with scope which should be in the black at least at 600 yds.  First scope match I though my score keeper said it went left between the targets and elevation looked good. So I came 6 minutes right and he said it went further right.  Say what??  I thought he said left on the first shot. NOPE says the scorekeeper, it went right. So being a pretty smart guy I determined I now needed to go 12 minutes left and hope for at least a 9 for the first record shot.  Nope.  I barely caught the right edge of the target for a miss.  I called a time out and huddled with myself to try and figure out my next move and why the impact was only moving half as much as I thought it should.  Well let's see what could cause that moving only half as much. Right off the top of my head the only thing that came to mind was clicks on the scope. Oh yeah, I'm shooting my new 24X Weaver with 1/8 min clicks.  That could be the problem! DUH!!  So left we go another 5 minutes and record shot 2 is a solid 9 on the right.  From there on it went kind of OK with a 199X5 in the 2nd scope match.. 
     Changing to irons after the pit change I fiddled with the front and rear iris about every shot and kept shooting an 8 ring group.  Finally after 17 shots I closed the rear iris down another 2 points and finished with a 10 and 2 X's.  The last iron sight match I had a 198X10 with properly adjusted iris. Meantime the really good HIGH MASTERS are all shooting 199's and 200's.  So it seems like after 42 years of shooting high power I still need to get my head out of my butt!   

Mid Range prone Championship at NWGC  
  From:  Erik Rhode9/15/15
NorthwesternGun Club on the shores of Hunter Lake near Duluth MN played host to the annual Mid Range Prone Regional Championship this past weekend. As usual, Jim Fernandez and his crew had the range in beautiful shape and were ready to give shooters their money’s worth. 
     The NWGC guys had an interesting pit rotation in place that had each relay pulling 4 strings in a row before rotating.  This worked out great, and saved a ton of time.  Using this system meant that after getting started at 9 am sharp, there were only 2 more pit changes the rest of the day!   With Dale “Weatherman” Wickstrom barking out orders on the firing line, and Bob Woods cracking skulls in the pits, this rotation moved 3 relays through 4 strings by 2:30 pm both days. Now that’s a good pace, and I’d like to see this rotation used more often!  
      The air was a little crisp on Saturday morning when I reported to the 200-yard shack for squadding, and a thick fog was hanging over the range.  This was a good day to be squadded on relay 3!  The 3rd relay assignment meant that I was first in the pits for 4 strings, while relays 1 & 2 shot their first 2 matches from the 300-yard line.  The 300-yard matches usually see some big scores, and this year was no exception.  14 clean 200’s were shot on Saturday, along with a whole lot of 199’s and 198’s thrown in for good measure.  I was happy to shoot 3 of the 200’s myself, but some misfortune in match #3 effectively put me out of the running.  I was squadded with Elliot Zunich all day, and was lucky enough to be pulling his target when the Surly Serbian put up the top score of the weekend with his 200-15x in Match #2.  This old goat can still shoot!  Too bad his other gig as an Eastern European pop idol was going to keep him from coming back on Sunday, or who knows how things might have turned out.  

   At the end of the day, it was a tight race with only a few points and X’s separating the top few spots.  Ginormous Jay Johnson dropped only 1 point all day, and his 799-39x secured the top spot in the Saturday agg.  Perennial favorite Steve “Classic” Knutson was hot on his heels only back by 1, but with a big advantage on X-count.  His 798-50x kept him well within striking distance.  1 more point back was Craig “The Menace” Bennis with a rock-solid 797-45x. The pack was crowded at the top, so keeping composure at 500 on Sunday was going to prove to be key to securing a medal this weekend.  

    On Sunday morning, it was a little warmer, and a LOT windier than the previous day.  Not big winds mind you, but the kind of twitchy stuff that can cause fits for the less wind-wary on the range.  Only 2 200’s would be fired all day, and both would come from seasoned vets named Larry in the day’s 2nd match. Larry's Milbow and Miller duked it out, trading 10’s and X’s to the bitter end in that match, with Milbow’s 13 X’s just sneaking past Miller’s 11. 

    The rest of the day was filled with 198’s and 199’s from the top shooters on the board, and the finish for the Sunday Agg was even closer than the day before.  Jay Johnson had some misfortune similar to mine in the second match on Sunday, and lost ground in the grand agg.  Only X’s separated the top 3 shooters for the day 2 agg, and my 794 with 47 of them was just barely enough to get past hard-charging Larry Milbow with his 35.  Classic Steve Knutson was 3rd with his own 794, but with only 34 tie-breaking X’s.  
Mid Range prone results - Click to enlarge

    Steve’s 2 days of hard-holding put him squarely in the lead for the grand agg with a score of 1592-84x, which would earn him another Regional gold medal for his collection.  Brian “Short Pants” Mrnak didn’t win a single match all weekend, but shot consistent, solid scores all the way through to earn his first non-gold medal - a silver.  New OTC phenom Brad “Yipsy” Yliniemi rose up from the Master Class to steal the bronze away from all of the High Masters.  I’m sure it won’t be too long before we need to watch out for him in prone matches too.   

    As always, a good time was had by all, and shooters couldn’t have asked for a better match, or a better weekend.  Since I haven’t been shooting any OTC in the last year, this was my first time up here since last September.  Hopefully next year I’ll be able to get up a little more often, but it was good to see all of my old Duluth buddies again.  Well, almost all of them.  Lil’ Dickie Van Valkenburg was once again nowhere to be found.  Rumor has it that he’s been living in an abandoned bat cave in the middle of the great north woods, prepping for the impending apocalypse.  They say that he only rides his mule into town once a week to pick up his check from the carpet shop.  I heard that his beard is over a foot long now, and he has been making his own clothes out of the carcasses of the animals he’s killed.  If you’re out there little buddy and read this message, GET TO A MATCH, THE BATS CAN WAIT! 
   Thanks to Jim and the gang for another great match, can’t wait to do it again next year!  
Best regards,
Erik Rhode 
 Thanks Erik for that match report.  I have got to get to that match next year - no excuses ! 

Two Weeks Out
From:  James Melville - Eau Claire Nat. Rifle Club
 Hello Everyone,
Our last match of the year is fast approaching. As always we are having our Mid-Range on Saturday the 26th and OTC on Sunday the 27th.   I have attached the match bulletin, so let me know if you are coming so I can squad you ahead of time. Thanks,          Click here for match bulletin 
James   ECNRC High Power Match Director  

That's All folks!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Shooters News for the Minn Area - Sept. 8th, 2015

*Head to NWGC for fall colors and a great match!

Next weekend 
Mid range at NWGC
That's right, it's time to head to the north woods this next weekend. A short drive to Northwestern Gun Club  on Hunter Lake near Duluth will get you a nice drive with fall colors and then the chance to shoot a great match on a very nice range.  The NWGC will be hosting the Minn State Mid Range Regional for sling shooters.  Two days of prone shooting are on on the schedule, starting Saturday Sept 12
 Saturday's matches are all at the 300 yd line, with two matches on tap for Any sight shooters and two with Iron sights.    Each of the 4 daily matches are 20 shots with sighters. On Sunday, Sept 13th, the action moves back to the 500 yd line for all 4 matches, while the course of fire remains the same.  
Click here for match bulletin 

300 m International
From Brian Shiffman:
   The September 2015 Minneapolis Rifle Club 300 meter match will be held Sunday, September 13, 2015.  There will be two relays scheduled; the first starts at 10 AM and the second at noon.   Shooters for the MRC monthly matches do not have to be members of MRC; the matches are open to all who adhere to the rules.  Registration is now open.  
    Register yourself at  Read the instructions.  Pay attention as you fill in the boxes and make selections from the drop down lists.  There is room for only 14 shooters per relay so advance registration is important.  The box at the top of the list shows the number of shooters for each relay...........

Last Weekend  
Results of last weekends matches at Eau Claire not available

Two Weeks Out  
Sept 19, 20 - Two day EIC Leg match at NorthStar - Click here for match Bulletin

That's All Folks!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Shooters News for the Minn Area - Sept. 1st, 2015

*Cooler weather and fall matches coming!

Next weekend   
     Labor day weekend is traditionally scheduled for matches at the Eau Claire Rifle Club and this year is no exception.  A full weekend of rifle competition is on the schedule again this year.  This 3 day shooting extravaganza starts off on Saturday Sept 5th with a 600 yd belly shooting match for both sling shooters and for the F-class guys.  Competitors will go to the line 4 times to fire a 20 shot match with 2 sighters allowed.  In the first two matches optical sights are allowed, but in the last two matches Highpower shooters will use only Iron sights to test their marksmanship skills. 
     Sunday Sept 6th, the competition switches over to Position shooting and competitors will fire an 80 shot regional match course of fire. You know what that means ---  20 shots offhand, 2 ten shot strings of rapid fire from the sitting position, then 2 more ten shot strings of rapid from the prone position, and finally a little belly shooting in a 20 shot slow fire match from the 600 yd line.   
                Click here for Sat, Sun match bulletin
    On Monday Sept 7th, it's nastalgia time. It's a chance to shoot your M1 Garand during the morning in a 50 shot OTC match, and then in the afternoon you can dust off that wonderful M1A from your gun safe and shoot another 50 shot OTC match with that rifle.  Sounds like a great day to me! 
                Click here for match bulletin 

Last Weekend  
Brad Yliniemi
 The Offhand State Championship was held at the Mpls Rifle Club last weekend.  Shooters fired 5 standing matches from the 200 yd line and when the final scores were posted, Brad Yliniemi was crowned the State Championship Offhand shooter.  In 3 of the 5 matches, Brad shot Offhand scores of 195 or higher. That's some fancy shootin!!!!!!!!  

Sunday, May 29, a good number of shooters turned out for the OTC match at MRC.  In the first match, Brad Yliniemi continued to demonstrate the off hand shooting skills that earned him the state title the day before by winning this match and putting the competition by 4 or more points.  Dave Hotegaard, and Kevin Bangen were close but not close enough.  In the Sitting Rapid match it was G. McCarty took top honors with a nice 198 score and about half Xs.  It was all Kevin Bangen in the 300 yd prone Rapid fire match.  Kevin dropped only one point in 20 shots for a 199-6x.  Mark Rohmann shot a 197 just out X-ing Craig Bennis for 2nd. In the two Prone Slow Fire matches, Brad and Kevin traded wins, but Kevin missed only  two points in those 40 shots for record and went on to win the match with an impressive 980-39x.

*On the firing line Report* 
 Wisc. State Mid Range Championship
From: Erik Rhode 
Hey Jim,

I just got back from the 2015 WI State Mid Range Prone and F-Class state championship match.  The match was held at the Lacrosse Rifle Club, and Sandy Pagel & crew did an excellent job as usual keeping things moving smoothly. The range was full to capacity once again with 60 shooters, so moving smoothly is sometimes easier said than done.  Each of those 60 shooters fired a total of 8 20-shot matches from the 600 yard line to see who the top dogs were.  This was the WI state championship for both sling and F-Class, and the numbers broke down to around 35 sling shooters, and 25 F.  
   The weather was beautiful both days with temps in the upper 70’s, overcast skies and light winds.  Just the kind of forecast that can produce the kinds of big scores that LRC is known for.  While the winds were light, you still needed to pay attention.  Even in ideal conditions, 200’s are tough to shoot and there was enough to take you out of the 10-ring if you weren’t on top of it.  
  In F-TR, Dan Lentz’s 1590-99x left the rest of the field in the dust, and secured the top TR medal.  No one was surprised to see Bob Sebold’s 1596-108x at top of the F-Open standings, but it wasn’t as easy for Bob as he might have expected.  Iowa’s Ryan Pierce hung right with him until the bitter end, falling short by only 4 x’s for the weekend.  It was crowded at the top, as 3 more shooters were within 8 points of Bob and Ryan.  
   For the sling shooters reading this, your 2015 WI State Mid Range Prone champion is once again young Waylon Burbach.  Waylon’s excellent 1593-98x was good enough to successfully defend his rock-solid performance last year to repeat as state champion.  He might have to put an asterisk on the trophy this time though, as there were a couple of guys from across the river in Minnesota that had something to say about it!  
   I managed to put up solid 199’s and 200’s all weekend and finished the match with a 1595-97x.  Nothing to be ashamed of, and most years that score would’ve won the match.  Most years, but not this year.  This year, a guy named Matthew “Ice” Griffin rolled into Lacrosse planning to win, and was not going to take “no” for an answer.  On Saturday, Matt joined Jay Johnson in the 2015 “800 Club” by shooting a perfect 800 with 55 X’s(Jay’s 800 was fired on June 20, also at Lacrosse).  That put him 2 points ahead of me going into day 2.  On Sunday, Matt was darned near perfect again, dropping only 2 points and giving up no ground.  I lost 3, and everyone else lost that or more, so there was just no catching the Ice man.  Matt’s 1598 with 105 x’s was head and shoulders above the rest of the competition, and sent him home with the 2015 match winner medal.  I had to settle for 2nd place and High Palma rifle, as I was certainly no match for Matt this weekend.  The Ice Man was on fire.  
  I have to admit that it was somewhat gratifying to make the WI state champion settle for a 3rd place finish.  Does that make me a bad person?  Maybe if MN folks keep winning matches in WI, some of their shooters will start coming to MN matches to even the score.  Now that would be fun!  
   The full results were not yet posted when I had to leave, but I did manage to get the top 5 for all 3 categories below.  Congrats to Matt and all of the winners.  
   See you all in 2 weeks for the MRP Regional Championship in Duluth on 9/12 and 9/13!  
Best,   Erik Rhode 
Mid Range Champion Matt Griffin and Sandy Pagel

F-open final
Bob Sebold 1596-108
Ryan Pierce 1596-104
Jim Bauer 1595-104
Jeff Dick 1593-91
Earl Liebetrau 1588-93

F-TR final
Dan Lentz 1590-99
Brian Mudd 1557-47
Ian Klemm 1541-34
Ken Klemm 1540-37
Russ Stahl 1536-59

Sling final
Matt Griffin 1598-105
Erik Rhode 1595-97
Waylon Burbach 1593-98
Steve “Classic” Knutson 1592-90
Kyle Doney 1588-80

In last week's match report about the State Sm Bore Prone championship, I forgot to add in the last thing that I was going to say  ----  "Thanks George (Minerich) for putting on a good match!"   George spends a lot of time prepping the MRC sm bore range for these matches. The range is always in tip top shape when I go over there to shoot.  George deserves a lot of credit for all the improvements he (and others) have made to this range along the way. It takes a lot of effort to maintain all the targets, target frames, backers, wind flags, shooting house, supplies, and do the mowing, weed trimming, and cleaning up.  The guys that do all this work at all the ranges deserve our thanks.  Without their effort, we couldn't shoot!  Thanks folks!    

Two Weeks Out  
 Sept 12, 13 - High Power Mid Range Prone Regional at Northwestern Gun Gun Club, Duluth  - Click Here for Match bulletin     
 Sept 19, 20 - Two Day  EIC "Leg" Match at NorthStar - click here for match bulletin

That's All folks!

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Shooters News for the Minn Area - Aug 25, 2015

* Stand on your hind legs and shoot like a man!

Next weekend     
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

Prone Shooting 
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

Last Weekend 
*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
Hello Everyone,
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!