Yesterday was the USPSA match in which I was the Match Director. I designed all the stages and picked out the qualifier. Overall I was looking forward to it. Mainly because one of the stages was going to be the first stage I ever designed.
We got a bit of video of me shooting that stage.
I laugh because someone was glad that I was pissed for “forcing them to shoot this monstrosity” except everyone I talked to loved it and wanted to shoot it again. In hindsight I should have thought of a way to run it backwards. If you’re wondering about the outburst at the end I looked at the target and saw I broke the perf on a no shoot at the end of the course.
However I’m saddened we didn’t get video of probably the most important thing that happened on that stage. It happened while the RO was scoring my stage and I was standing right there. I’m sad I didn’t even take a picture of it.
You see that white guy in the middle. Yeah I shot the little bastard because he wasn’t smart enough to get out-of-the-way. I drilled two A’s into T2, 2 A’s in to T1, and barely nicked the perf on the No Shoot. When the RO came through he called Alpha Charlie on the target. He thought I was outside the perf. I promptly stopped him and said, “Name redacted, That should be 2 Alpha, 1 No Shoot.” He looked at the target again and said, “holy crap you’re right.” The funniest thing is, I didn’t even think twice about it, it was immediate and without thought.
Now I know some of you will think that some how that was in my favor, it was not. Here’s how the score for that breaks down, if it had been an Alpha-Charlie, I would have gotten 7 points. With a 2-Alpha, No shoot I get 0 points. The No Shoot is –10 points, each A is a 5. If I was a little less ethically inclined I could have taken a 7 point boost on my score for that stage.
It’s not worth it at all. I’m in this for fun and you know what, if I have to cheat to have fun I’m doing it all wrong. If I want to stand up on the top of the hill and say I won, by god I want to be proud of how I got there.
I was really sad when I had to call a FTE for the RO I caught as a shooter ran through. I had actually hoped he was the first guy to just skip the body and take the head shots at an earlier position. He shot the steel and forgot to hit the other target.
That particular stage is 30 Minutes or Less. It started off being just 30 shots but when I redesigned it to fit in our bays and equipment list I ended up adding a target.
Another interesting story was from the standard I created 4×3. I designed it specifically so the shooter would have a choice between which hand to use at which distance. I ended up walking up just after they finished reading the stage description and two of the main shooters shot it strong hand closest, then weak hand when further away. I promptly recheck the stage description which says the following:
String 1. Upon start signal from behind F1 engage targets T1-T4 freestyle with one shot each. Perform a mandatory reload and reengage T1-T4 one hand only.
String 2. Upon start signal from behind F2 engage targets T1-T4 freestyle with one shot each. Perform a mandatory reload and reengage T1-T4 with one shot each with the opposite hand.
I thought about it for a minute and promptly talked to the two guys who read the briefing and had shot. In the back of my head I kind of chuckled at the thought of shooting the course of fire weak hand forward, strong hand rear, but I knew it would immediately cause an uproar. So I clarified it for everyone and we re-shot those shooters at the end.
I still kind of wanted to hear the collective groan after I shot the course and then read the description for everyone. If you are into USPSA, learn this now, pick up the description yourself and read it before shooting. Others may have misinterpreted the rules.
Barron is the owner, editor, and principal author at The Minuteman, a competitive shooter, and staff member for Boomershoot. Even in his free time he’s merging his love and knowledge of computers and technology with his love of firearms.
He has a BS in electrical engineering from Washington State University. Immediately after college he went into work on embedded software and hardware for use in critical infrastructure. This included cryptographic communications equipment as well as command and control devices that were using that communications equipment. Since then he’s worked on just about everything ranging from toys, phones, other critical infrastructure, and even desktop applications. Doing everything from hardware system design, to software architecture, to actually writing software that makes your athletic band do its thing.