Nov 16

2016 Nightforce Steel City Precision Rifle Challenge

cucklercrouse

John Cuckler and Richard Crouse

I must first say, I love Steel City Precision!!  The Match Directors, John Cuckler and Richard Crouse, have always put on really, really fun and challenging precision rifle matches in the past, so I knew this match was really going to be a great one!! Plus, they both are great all around guys. As they have done in the past 2 years, they have always given back. And by that, I mean charitable giving to the Army Sniper Association. In the past 2 years they have raised over $16,000 for the Army Sniper Association’s Fallen Sniper Fund. Here is an excerpt from the Steel City Precision website: “The team at Steel City Precision believes very strongly in serving those that serve our country, and our communities. Each team member, has made a firm commitment to this cause. This is the primary driving factor for all events we provide. For the third year in a row, this match will be a benefit match where we will donate a portion of the proceeds to the Army Sniper Association. There will be opportunities for fundraising via raffles etc.., so bring your check book!” This year was no different….well actually, it was. Steel City Precision raised well over $17,000 this year alone for the Army Sniper Association’s Fallen Sniper Fund!! Such a great cause for a wonderful organization.

SNIPER ASS SEWNI was so excited for this Precision Rifle Series (PRS) match. This was the first big match that I have ever competed in that was this close to my home. I was able to sleep in my own bed and be at the range within 35 minutes!! The match was held at the facilities of National Security Associates (NSA) in Cusseta, Georgia. I have never been to this range before and boy was everybody in for a treat! Here is a little about them, from their website: “NSA specializes in Military and Law Enforcement basic, advanced and specialized training for the tactical professional. Our 700-acre complex is complete with ranges to facilitate any dynamic entry breaching situation. Whether manual, ballistic, thermal or explosive dynamic entry we can support your training or testing needs.

The week of the match, I reloaded all my match ammo using my RCBS equipment. I use Hornady 6mmCreedmoor brass, TulAmmo Large Rifle Primers, Hodgdon 4350 powder and Berger 105gr Hybrid Bullets. I loaded up over 200 rifle rounds then used my MagnetoSpeed to chrono my new load. My competition rifle is a custom built GA Precision 6mmCreedmoor with Templar V2 action with a Bartlein 25″ barrel, Timney Trigger, American Precision Arms Little Bastard G2 brake all in a Manners Composite Stocks MCS-EHT GAP elite. I top this sweet little rifle off with my Bushnell Elite XRS 4.5-30 optic. My rifle is so badass, I fondly named her the “Blackwidow”.

The BlackWidow with my Armageddon Gear Sling and Kestrel

The BlackWidow with my Armageddon Gear Sling and Kestrel

The match started early Saturday morning with the safety brief at 7:00 a.m. Did I mention it was like 42 degrees that morning? I wore some of my XGO base layer clothing under my shooting jersey, and it kept me comfortable and warm all during the day. There was around 120 people competing in this match. There were 4 shooting areas that was designated “A, B, C, D”. We had to move together as a squad to each of these designated areas. My squad, Squad 5, started with D that morning, which included stages: PRS Skills 3, PRS Skills 4 and Oh Snap stages. The 1st was the PRS Skills Stage 3 which consisted of 2 targets at 385yrds (2MOA left side and 3MOA right side) and 2 targets at 556 yrds (2MOA left side and 3MOA right side). The shooter had to shoot the 2 left side targets near to far then do a mandatory mag change, then shoot the same left side targets far to near. Then you had to transition over to a prop (box) and engage right side targets near to far, do a mandatory mag change, then far to near. First stage of the match, cleaned it! That was definitely a great way to start!! We shot 2 other stages in that area. After finishing Area “D”, my squad loaded up our gear and hiked over to Area “A”.

PC: Rowell Guevarra

PC: Rowell Guevarra

Area “A” had 10 stages within itself. Each stage had its own level of difficulty and challenge. One of my favorite stages in Area “A” was Stage 7: Counter Sniper. On command from the designated start position, with rifle empty bolt back, slung, the shooter will climb the ladder and establish a firing position while standing on the ladder rung of their choice. The shooter will engage Team 1-Team 3 targets, with 1 impact per target. You must engage all sniper targets first, followed by the spotter target at each position. T1 targets at 946yrds, T2 targets at 950yrds and T3 at 969 yrds. If you impacted all 6 targets, there was a bonus 10″ circle target at an unknown distance for extra points. 10 rounds max and 90 seconds to complete COF. I got to the bonus target then timed out. We shot this stage toward the end of the day and the wind was kicking everyones butt! I use my Kestrel Applied Ballistics wind meter on almost every stage. I typed in wind speeds of 4mph and 8mph and my wind holds were dead on! Another cool stage in this area was Stage 10, Tripod Skills 2: On command, shooter would move into designated shooting area with 1 tripod as their primary support. The shooter will build a position using the tripod, locate and engage the 5 designated rifle targets with 2 impacts each. For this stage, I used the Reasor Game Changer bag. I place the Reasor Game Changer bag on the tripod and was able to successfully hit 4 of the 5 targets before timing out. We only had 90 seconds to complete the course of fire. Tripod shooting is one of my favorite things to do!! My squad ended the day with completing Stage A.  Barbeque was provided by Clearview BBQ out of Columbus Georgia and of course, Armageddon Gear had a cold beer waiting for everyone!

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Day 2 started at 7:30 a.m. at your next staging area, which for Squad 5, was Area “B” Stage 11: KIMS shoothouse. I’m going to be very honest here, I have never had to “clear” a room, nor have I ever had to remember items of significance while “clearing” a room. Pistol shooting while moving fast and trying to remember what was in each room proved to be a very difficult task for me. The Brief: Starting with pistol loaded and in the low ready position and on command the shooter will advance through the shoot house engaging all cardboard targets as they become visible with 2 hits anywhere. Of course, there were hostage targets, so you definitely did not want to shoot those! You had 90 seconds to complete clearing all rooms while shooting targets and remembering things of significance. At the end of the stage, you walked into a room where you were given paper and a pencil. You had 45 seconds to write down the things of significance that you remembered and you had to write a descriptive for them too. I openly admit, I am definitely not the best pistol shooter. If I have to shoot pistol in a match, I use my Glock 17 which had a face lift thanks to Ashbury Precision Ordnance Custom Shop. My Glock is outfitted with a Trijicon RMR, Zev Trigger & custom work on the slide complete with my Punisher Kitty slide cover plate.  20161116_154516On top of trying not to shoot the hostage & remembering things of significance, you had to do all this while wearing body armor and a helmet. I’ve never shot a stage like this before. Apparently, my pistol skills really suck too. And the things that looked important to me were not important nor the right answer. Like for example, there was a bed with a huge burn spot in the middle of it in Room 1, not significant though……or how about the pearly colored lamp knocked over in room 3, No, not significant either. Nor the umbrella looking thing, that really looked like a big pool umbrella holder…which, was actually an RPG.  I’ve never seen one of these before, so yes, it looked like a big pool umbrella holder (can you see it?).  rpgLets just say, this stage was worse than any stage I have ever shot and yes, I ended up with negative points which killed me in rankings. I have never played a KIMS game before. So what did I do after the stage was completed? Laughed. And I laughed really hard at myself, ugh.  My favorite stage from Area “B” was Stage 13: Break Contact. Shooter will start at the bottom of stairs with rifle empty & 2 magazines loaded with 5 rounds max each. On command, shooter will go to the top of the structure (3rd story) and engage 3 targets from the provided tripod in position #1 with 1 round at each target (targets were between 315yrds to 360 yrds). After engaging those 3 rounds, shooter had to pick up and carry the sensitive item to each shooting position (you could not forget this item or none of of your points counted). Position #2 you had to stand in a window and shoot off hand at a 100 yrd target with 2 rounds. While carrying the sensitive item, you ran downstairs and engaged the same 3 long targets from window #3 and then you made your way out to the deck area where you had to shoot the 100 yard target either off the railings or prone. Max time to complete stage was 2 minutes. Did I mention those 2 minutes felt like 3 seconds? Though I didn’t time out (got the last round off when they yelled time), I only dropped 2 targets and remembered my sensitive items all the way through…Score!!

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PC: Mark Kuczka

The last Area for my squad was Area “C”. This was all paper targets and the ROs (Walt Sailers and Mark Kuczka) were fun and hilarious. The 1st stage of the area was the Accushot card at 100 yrds. Each shooter had to set up his rifle then stand behind it. When the RO blew his whistle, you had 6 seconds to drop down behind your rifle and shoot your target. The next stage was called 1MOA or better. Shooters would stage their rifle and 6 rounds at firing line, then walk to the target board (100yrds) with RO for stage brief. After briefing, shooters performed jumping jacks while ROs walked back to the firing line. When RO reached the firing line, he would blow a whistle to signal shooters to return to the firing line at a sprint/run/jog. Once reaching the firing line, you had 60 second prep time. After those 60 seconds, RO blows whistle again to signal shooter which now have 45 seconds to load rifle and engage the circle target with 1 round, then the tiny square target with 5 rounds. This was my favorite out of Area “C”. The last stage was 3 positional rifle skills.  I rely heavily on my Armageddon Gear precision rifle sling with the support loop feature. I had magazine feed issues upon starting so that slowed me up a bit plus it got me frazzled because I knew time was ticking. Upon transitioning from standing to sitting, my support loop fell down my arm, which did not allow me to utilize my sling to its fullest. I will admit that over the past year, I have loved shooting positional! The more you practice it, the more comfortable you get with it.

PC: Mark Kuczka

PC: Mark Kuczka

Congratulations to good friend and fellow shooter Ryan Castle for taking home the Win of this match. I love seeing great guys like Ryan, who really give back to this sport, taking away a Win!! Congratulations to Tyler Payne and Jason Greene for 2nd and 3rd place respectively. Out of 120 competitors, I placed 50th (that Kims stage really hurt me bad). This was a tough match with some really great shooters competing. I want to Thank all the guys on Squad 5 for making this match fun….I would love to shoot another match with all you again! My best friend Candice Horner and I teamed up after the match for lots of great laughs and beer. One of the things I absolutely love about this sport, is the camaraderie among the competitors. I have made some of the greatest friends from this sport. I know they would have my back in an instant as I would theirs.

Thanks to John Cuckler, Richard Crouse, All the RO’s who selflessly gave up their time to spend the weekend with us, to the National Security Association for the use of their range and to the Army Sniper Association for all they do. Please visit: www.armysniper.org for more information about this great organization. To learn more about this match and more, visit www.precisionrifleseries.com.  Big Thank You to my sponsors: G.A. Precision, Bushnell, Hoppe’s, Armageddon Gear, Berger Bullets, and XGO…….Your support this past season has definitely helped me become a better, more confident shooter. I thank you all from the bottom of my heart and look forward to representing you well in 2017.  20161113_081131

Permanent link to this article: http://thelifeofmissy.com/2016/11/16/2016-nightforce-steel-city-precision-rifle-challenge/

Nov 02

Bushnell GAP Grind Pro/Am at K&M Precision Rifle Training

fb_img_1477877411338The 2016 Bushnell GAP Grind Pro/Am has always been a great match for new shooters to attend. This is the 2nd year that it was held at the facilities of K&M Precision Rifle Center in Finger TN. The format of the Pro/Am is that a new shooter is paired up with a Pro shooter. The Pro shooter basically shows the Amateur the ropes of how the Precision Rifle Series matches flow, stage preparation and how to approach each stage. This is really a great match for shooters that have been hesitant or intimidated about going to their first match.

mb6This year I had the honor of having MaryBeth Olson, a 9 yr old new shooter, as my partner. MaryBeth has attended several long range matches with her Dad and has done a great job at her local matches in Colorado. George Gardner of G.A. Precision sent me a text a few months earlier letting me know who my partner was. I was really anxious and excited for this match! MaryBeth is sponsored by Prime Ammunition and is shooting a G.A. Precision custom built 6.5 Creedmoor in a Manners Composite Stock. She shoots suppressed so Armageddon Gear had to set a sister up with her very own personalized suppressor cover and gear!  I of course shot the match with the Blackwidow, my custom built G.A. Precision 6Creedmoor in a Manners Composite stock topped off with a Bushnell Elite XRS 4.5-30. I do all my own reloads with my RCBS set up that includes a ChargeMaster, the Summit and a Rockchucker. I only use Berger Bullets 105 gr Hybrid along with Hornady 6mm Creedmoor brass and Hodgdon 4350 powder.  All these components help make up my ammunition and my G.A. Precision rifle just eats it up. I love it!!  mbm5

The Friday before the match is the day that you can get together with your partner and go over stages, wind calls and get to know them with their rifle. MaryBeth and I spent a few hours together that Friday going over positional shooting, wind calls and seeing exactly where she was in the game. It was enjoyable to spend the afternoon with her and I knew after those few hours, just how special she is. After we spent time on the range together, MaryBeth hung out with me in the Armageddon Gear meat wagon. She helped me sell some gear and we got to share some shooting stories with each other.  mbm1

Saturday morning started early. MaryBeth and I met up and attended the safety briefing together. MaryBeths mom (Carroll) stayed with us those two days while her Dad (Zach) helped with RO duties. MaryBeths parents are so supportive of her in this shooting sport and I think that speaks volumes on their behalf. MaryBeth and I started out Saturday by hitting each stage pretty hard. For her to be the age of 9, out here shooting and understanding her rifle and scope is so remarkable. I was in awe of this little girl as the day went by. She has her shooting fundamentals down plus she stays on her rifle after she shoots and is able to spot her own impacts and make the necessary adjustments. This just goes to show you that no matter what age you are, you can definitely do anything you put your mind to.  All day Saturday, MaryBeth and I rang alot of steel! mb7

MaryBeth was definitely a little trooper throughout both days. She carried her own rifle from stage to stage and insisted that she carry it all day. At days end Saturday, she grabbed herself a Dr. Pepper and put her Armageddon Gear personalized can coozie on it…..I mean Hey, she’s gotta keep her drink cold too!!

Sunday morning started bright and really early. Shannon Kay, match director, put out the AccuShot cards and ½ the shooters were to shoot their card by 6:15 am and the other ½ had to shoot theirs by 6:45 am. The Accushot cards are playing cards with a crosshair in the center. At most matches, this is usually a cold bore shot. Shannon had these set up at 100 yards. The person closest to the center or right on the center of the card wins an Accushot gift card. It was a little chilly that morning so I got to try out my new XGO base layer clothing. Let me tell you, this is the best base layer I have ever wore!! I didn’t even need a jacket and that says a lot for me.

hoppesrangekitAnd talking about Sunday, I swear I have never attended a match where I didn’t have to pull out my Hoppe’s 9 range kit. This perfect little piece of kit has saved alot of competitors. MaryBeth was having problems getting her rounds to feed so I whipped out my cleaning kit. She had dirt in her chamber but we got it cleaned up in no time! On another stage, a piece of brass got stuck in another competitors rifle. Within seconds, I had the Hoppe’s cleaning rod and attachment together so we could knock out the piece of brass. I always carry with me this Hoppe’s range kit and small bottle of Hoppe’s Gun Medic that all fit snugly in my range bag. Perfect for any situation!

The last stage of the day on Sunday, MaryBeth ended the match with hitting a 300 yard mover several times on a positional stage.  We shot a total of 25 stages for the weekend. I was so inspired by MaryBeth. She has the tenacity, the drive and will to be a top PRS shooter here in the very near future. I wish my parents had started me out young like this!!  sikes1On my squad was my fellow teammates from G.A. Precision. Each and every one of the guys stepped up and helped me out when it was needed most. Because of MaryBeths size, it was hard for her to jump up in the back of a truck with her rifle or climb down steep steps that were about as tall as she was. Though my teammates had partners of their own, they helped hold my partner in place or helped her with moving her rifle on certain stages. Thank you so much to Jeff Badley, Bryan Sikes, Tom Fuller, Bryan Yeung and Charles Roberts.  I truly know now how a Team works together in a match and I couldn’t be more prouder to be a part of this elite team.

Thanks to George Gardner and Shannon Kay for another great Pro/Am and for allowing me to be MaryBeth’s partner.  Thanks to Bushnell for being the Title Sponsor and to Sherryl Nens, Tim Tanker, Kyle Nishi and gang for making it out to the match. Thanks to all the sponsors who donated to the prize table and provided lunch both days. Thank you to the ROs who selflessly spent their time on the range that weekend. Congratulations to the guys/gals who took the top spots and to all the competitors out there!! It just takes that one time to step out on the range and learn the format of these matches. There are so many competitors who are willing to help you along the way. To learn more about this match and more, visit the Precision Rifle Series at  www.precisionrifleseries.com.  I would also like to thank my Sponsors for allowing me to be able to do what I love and for helping me run only the finest of equipment:  G.A. Precision, Bushnell Tactical, Hoppe’s 9, Armageddon Gear, Berger Bullets, XGO .  Please visit their websites by clicking on their names with links provided. fb_img_1477877424042

 

Permanent link to this article: http://thelifeofmissy.com/2016/11/02/bushnell-gap-grind-proam-at-km-precision-rifle-training/

Oct 02

Unbelievable Bushnell…..Unbelievable!

1463520072000_img_630970Yes I said it…..Unbelievable!!!  So there we were, my Husband and I, on our way to Alabama Precision PRS match in Childersburg Alabama. Just as we were getting into Sylacauga Alabama, smoke started coming out from under the bed of the truck. My Husband thought it might have been oil burning. We were at a red light and the car next to us informed us that something was very wrong with our truck. We both turned to look and black smoke was rolling out heavily from under the bed of the truck. Jim pulled over to access what was going on and started screaming “Get out! The truck is on fire!!”  Jim was tossing all his gear and guns in low lying bushes nearby and I was grabbing my gear and putting it in a pile away from the truck. During all this madness, unknowing to us, a pair of my Bushnell Legend binoculars fell out of my husbands bag into the bushes. These were the Bushnell Legend Ultra HD 8×36 camoflauge binoculars. The fire was put out with no damage to the truck (spare tire caught fire). 20160610_170335

Fast forward two months, countless rain storms and high temperatures, once again we were on a drive to a one day match back in Birmingham Alabama, I pulled in to Sylacauga to the area that my husband tossed all his stuff. You see, he lost 3 boxes of 6.5 Creedmoor loaded ammunition that fateful day. Jim jumps out and started looking through the bushes and found two boxes of ammo. I thought it was funny so I did I post about it on my Facebook page. That evening, one of the firemen (Tim E.) from the Sylacauga fire department saw my post. That same evening when Tim got off work, he went to the location of the truck fire and found the other box of ammo along with my Bushnell Legends. Now, you are probably wondering why I wasn’t looking for these earlier. I upgraded to the Bushnell Legend L Series. Jim was using my older ones, which is why those fell out of his bag.

Tim E. got in touch with me that evening to let me know he found the other box of ammo along with the Bushnell Legends. On our way home, we stopped by the Sylacauga Fire station to retrieve our lost belongings. Tim was telling us that he and few others were surprised that even though the binoculars had been out in the weather for so long, there was no moisture on the inside of the tubes, they still focused and the eyepieces adjusted properly. Essentially, they were surprised that they were still in working order!

When I tell people that I stand behind Bushnell and their products, I’m not just saying it, I really mean it. The Bushnell Legend binoculars are lightweight yet rugged with fully multicoated ED glass lenses, RainGuard Water repellent coating, waterproof, and fogproof. 13907002_1128474593913404_6476841407920688508_n

The Bushnell Legend family binoculars are some of the best binoculars on the market. I use them consistently during my shooting competitions to spot targets, etc. Here are some features of the Bushnell Legend L series (I am in love with mine):

*Magnesium Chassis

*Rainguard HD

*Fully Multicoated Optics

*Phase 3 Prism Coating

*ED Prime Glass

*Locking Diopter Adjustment

*Waterproof and fogproof

So if you are looking for a great pair of binoculars, look for the Bushnell Legend Series family. I promise you, you cannot go wrong with them.  www.bushnell.com   11224098_902278533199679_3184806457525356599_n

 

Permanent link to this article: http://thelifeofmissy.com/2016/10/02/unbelievable-bushnell-unbelievable/

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