First Match

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First Match

Post by DonBrummer on 2/24/2015, 8:49 pm

My shooting has been limited to the bi-weekly indoor gallery courses. This Saturday I’ll be stepping out of my comfort zone.  It’s an Indoor .22 Open Conventional Pistol Sectional.  My goals are to have fun, learn, and not embarrass myself.  I've been doing a lot of dry firing and focusing on my shot process.  I know I need to execute my shot process and not allow myself to be distracted. What can I expect?  What advice can you offer?
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Re: First Match

Post by Jack H on 2/24/2015, 8:58 pm

Forget the embarrassment part. 
Relax
Put the gun down (SF) if your sight alignment and trigger control feel forced.
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Re: First Match

Post by Rob Kovach on 2/24/2015, 9:32 pm

Sounds like your goals are already in a good place for your first match!

Have the match director give you a temporary classification scorebook and record your scores in there AFTER you are done.  Don't think about score AT ALL.

Also, the course of fire for NRA Pistol Sectionals are unique:
slow x2
timed x2
rapid x2
Gallery Course

If you have a malfunction, you are allowed 1 refire for the 2 timed fire targets, 1 refire for the 2 rapid fire targets, and 1 refire for the sustained fire section of the gallery course.

We could re-hash the discussion about refires during slowfire, but I advise that you just make sure you shoot all 10 shots in 10 minutes.

I'm not sure if you score targets for other shooters in your league, so I will give you some advice about scoring:
Don't touch the holes, or remove the target of the target you are scoring!!
Use an overlay--the match officials should have an official one handy if you don't have one--you don't want to cheat the shooter you are scoring for by not using an overlay.  Usually only match directors are allowed to use a plug for scoring.  The scorer doesn't ask for the plug, you just call it like you see it, and if the shooter disagrees, the shooter can ask for a plug or a challenge.

Let the shooters to either side of you know this is your first sectional match and they will help you if they see you doing something unusual.

Have fun!
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Re: First Match

Post by rvlvrlvr on 2/25/2015, 1:00 pm

Rob Kovach wrote:Also, the course of fire for NRA Pistol Sectionals are unique:
slow x2
timed x2
rapid x2
Gallery Course

Hmm; where I attend the Sectionals, the course of fire is the usual 20 shots Slow, 30-shot Gallery Course (10 slow, 10 timed, 10 rapid), 20 shots Timed, 20 shots Rapid. And then we shoot another 30-shot Gallery Course for team matches.

Whatever the course of fire may be, DonBrummer, it will be outlined in the match flyer and the match director ought to inform shooters what stage they're firing next.
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Re: First Match

Post by mspingeld on 2/25/2015, 1:28 pm

The one I did this weekend was as Rob said; slow, timed, rapid, gallery, in that order.

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Re: First Match

Post by KenO on 2/25/2015, 6:13 pm

Just a couple thoughts on scoring.... the holes seem to heal back a little with the .22s, but not so much with the wc/swc. When I score and it looks close, I'll use the overlay, sometimes I have been surprised that it actually does break the line.


The overlay is available HERE , I tape the little envelope it comes in to the back of my clipboard so its always available when I'm scoring.

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Re: First Match

Post by LateBoomer on 2/25/2015, 6:16 pm

For what it's worth. If it's close enough to pull the overlay I give it to 'em. Life's too short.

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Re: First Match

Post by DonBrummer on 2/26/2015, 7:18 pm

Thank you all for the tips and advice!
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Re: First Match

Post by Guest on 2/26/2015, 8:31 pm

Make sure you follow your shot plan.  Mine is printed on a box I rest my pistol on. Do not think of anything except your plan and visualize yourself shooting an "X".  Remember once you fire a shot forget about it.  You cannot change it, concentrate on the next shot.  RELAX and have fun!

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Re: First Match

Post by BE Mike on 2/27/2015, 8:36 am

DonBrummer wrote:My shooting has been limited to the bi-weekly indoor gallery courses. This Saturday I’ll be stepping out of my comfort zone.  It’s an Indoor .22 Open Conventional Pistol Sectional.  My goals are to have fun, learn, and not embarrass myself.  I've been doing a lot of dry firing and focusing on my shot process.  I know I need to execute my shot process and not allow myself to be distracted. What can I expect?  What advice can you offer?
Listen closely to all range commands. Focus on the fundamentals and make sure that you display safe gun handling.
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Re: First Match

Post by TexasShooter on 2/27/2015, 10:39 am

All these folks are much more experienced than me, but I'll throw in a perspective from another newbie. I figure first match is just about figuring out where the bathrooms are. When you go back for the second match you can focus more on shooting well.

Be safe, enjoy the experience, be cheerful and helpful, meet some people...have fun!

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Re: First Match

Post by CR10X on 2/27/2015, 8:49 pm

Since it is a Sectional, there will probably be more people than you are used to.  This means the flow of the match may be a little slower than a indoor gallery type match.  Also the possibility of more refire strings, longer time for scoring, etc.  Pace yourself, have something to drink, snack and a chair.  Wear layered clothing, don't dress for the max temp, dress for the lowest and then take off layers as needed.  You will be on you feet more, meaning good shoes and conserve your energy.  Score the other guy first, then check your target.  Load your mags before going downrange and have a spare ECI in case you drop yours in front of the line.  

Good Luck and have fun:

Cecil 

As I have posted before:  

 
DO NOT HANDLE YOUR GUNS UNTIL INSTRUCTED TO DO SO. 
 
NEVER (we’ll break the never say never rule here) LOAD YOUR GUN UNTIL THE COMMAND TO LOAD HAS BEEN GIVEN.
 
ALWAYS (we’re breaking the always rule too) CHECK THAT YOUR GUN AND YOUR NEIGHBOR’S GUN IS EMPTY, SLIDE BACK, MAGAZINE OUT AND CHAMBER CLEAR WHEN THE CLEAR COMMAND IS GIVEN.
 
IF YOU HAVE A QUESTION, PROBLEM, JAM, ALIBI, SQUIB, OR FAIL TO GET ALL YOUR SHOTS OFF, JUST RAISE YOUR HAND AND WAIT FOR ASSISTANCE. 
 
You can pretty much recover from any problems or mishaps except for safety related actions.  Just be patient, you don’t have to fire every shot, but make sure every shot fired is a safe one.  This will be a very long and exciting day.  Do not attempt to clear jams during your strings, even refire strings as a new shooter.  You will just get too frustrated and may mis-handle your gun.  Be patient, you are starting a new phase of your life called Bullseye Shooting.  It will hopefully continue for years and years and today is just the first of many matches.  Don’t screw up and cut it short.  
 
Listen to the range commands.  For Conventional Pistol matches these commands will tell you everything you needed to do.  (If the person running the matches follows the commands in the rule book that is.)  The caller should call you to the line for the appropriate match; .22 Aggegrate, Centerfire Aggegrate, or .45 Aggegrate. They will tell you what match you are about to shoot (Slow, Timed, or Rapid) and which string and how many rounds to load (if Timed Fire or Rapid Fire).  You can only fire a maximum of 5 rounds for any timed or rapid fire string, there are no “make-up” shots.  Remember to load your magazines after firing and before going down range to score (everybody else does).
 
Take your time as needed.  Learn how the match is run, how to score, how to plan restroom breaks (nobody ever mentions that one), work on your math skills totaling up scores and just generally get a good look around.   You will see different types of setups, scopes, boxes, and guns.  Look but don’t touch. Always be aware of the condition of the range, hot or cold.

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Re: First Match

Post by mspingeld on 2/28/2015, 6:28 am

Excellent post! My first match, the director kept me close and the gentleman next to me was a seasoned high master. They were both so helpful and welcoming, it couldn't have been better. Now that I'm a seasoned pro Wink with half a dozen matches under my belt, my goal is to be like them.

I endeavor to be the guy that makes the new shooter feel welcome and comfortable and offer a little gentle advice if I can.

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Re: First Match

Post by DonBrummer on 2/28/2015, 2:27 pm

First I want to thank everyone for their advice and encouragement.  It’s genuinely appreciated.
 
It was a great experience.  The staff was friendly, encouraging, and helpful.  I had fun, I learned something new, and didn’t embarrass myself.  All 3 of my primary goals were achieved.  My secondary goal was to shoot a 750 and I finished with a 741 – 9x.
 
I had 2 misses out of 90 shots and they both came on the first shot of each string in the first timed fired stage.  In both cases I was lined up wrong for the turn and tried to recover way too quickly and rushed both shots.  In both cases I knew it was a bad shot as soon as it broke.  I didn’t know they were misses but I knew they were bad. This was my first experience with turning targets and I didn’t have a plan.  As we walked down range to score I asked the master along side me if he had any advice for lining up for the turn.  He pointed out the construction of the frame that holds the target backer, showed me the correlation of where the vertical frame ended and its relationship with 10 ring.  He said to draw an imaginary line about 3 inches below where the vertical frame ends and you’ll be in the black.  He was 100% correct and after that I was fine with the turning targets.  He also gave me a tip on combining holding and dry fire exercise.  Basically to hold for 10+ seconds before applying pressure to the trigger.  He said it would help me with the first string shot.   
 
I was disappointed with my slow fire scores, all 3 of them were below my 84 average and too many of them were at 8 o’clock.  Clearly I was jerking the trigger.  My gun operated flawlessly and my cadence throughout the match was fine.  Other than the initial issue with the turn and the anxiety that created for the timed fire stage my composure was good and I didn’t feel as though the match pressure was messing with my head. No butterflies in the stomach and no need to tell myself to breath.  I showed discipline during slow fire and aborted a few shots.  This is something I struggle with from time to time.  
 
   
After shooting and waiting for scores the match director struck up a conversation with me.  He couldn’t find an official NRA score recording book but he had one with the clubs name & logo, which he gave to me.  He explained that he already ordered more from the NRA and promised to mail one to me.  I added my name to their mailing list, signed up for their newsletter, and a 3 gun 2700 match on March 28th.  That should be interesting because I have minimal experience with my .45.  I purchased it in Aug, started reloading in Sept and only recently worked up a load that is consistent.  In total I’ve fired it less than 500 times and most of that was to get acquainted with t and load testing.
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Re: First Match

Post by mspingeld on 2/28/2015, 3:00 pm

Sounds like an outstanding first match! Congratulations!

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Re: First Match

Post by Skid on 2/28/2015, 4:50 pm

Congratulations ! Sounds like your experience was a good one . Good job

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Re: First Match

Post by Guest on 2/28/2015, 9:15 pm

Congrats!

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Re: First Match

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