Last night was my first USPSA match at Oakdale Gun Club. I managed to make it all the way through without getting disqualified which was my primary goal. My score was absolutely atrocious to say the least (I nailed one friendly target twice on the first stage, but I’m pretty sure he said something racist which makes it OK). In fact the scores are already posted and I have no shame so you can find them here. I shot Limited 10 and my score is under Christopher B. You’ll notice on stage four I hate a rating of 0% because of that racist friendly. I didn’t too bad with scoring points (with exception of state four which was my first) it’s just when that time thing was thrown in things didn’t look so good.
I made some observation which I hope to learn from. First adrenaline is a bitch. When it hits everything seems to be moving at a snails pace. Even when I thought I was going slow I was going far too fast. This is what really killed me (and that racist friendly target), I didn’t take it slow and easy even though I thought I did. So my not-pro tip for anybody starting the sport is this, take it dead slow and if you feel like you’re going slow you’re probably still going too fast.
My next observation was when the stage ends check the gun to make sure it’s unloaded. By this I mean really check it. One guy in my squad was disqualified because when the range officer said to drop the hammer his gun fired. When you’re done shooting that’s it you’re no longer being timed. Take a good several seconds to triple check the gun. In fact stick your finger into the chamber to ensure nothing is in there. I state this because the guy had a nice run and it was all for not due to the DQ.
Observation three was simple, have magazines. I brought seven magazines which I figured was going to be overkill but it was certainly nice not having to worry if I was reloading too often. A few guys in my squad only had two magazines and it sucked because they couldn’t perform reloads when moving from stage section to stage section which is kind of your time to get free reloads (meaning you’re not shooting and thus the time is being wasted unless you’re doing something). I had no troubles reloading on the move although I was rather slow at it. It almost always had the gun back in fighting condition by the time I arrived at the next set of targets so I wasn’t too worried.
And that’s what I learned. Either way it was a ton of fun and I can’t wait for next weeks match.
2 thoughts on “My First USPSA Match”
Well done sir, with only 3 shooters in lim 10 it’s really hard to get a feeling for where you are sitting. But it looks like you fared very well for you first time, at least much better than I did my first. I guess that’s to be expected 😉
Glad you had a good time.
Good observations, Chris. You did well.
You’re right about adrenaline dump. No matter what we tell new shooters, it seems they forget when the adrenaline hits.
As to the shooter DQ’d because his pistol fired when “hammer down” was the command, that’s a good call, although I’ve only seen it once myself years ago (and I was the RO! 🙁 ). It was a low-light indoor match and we both looked into the chamber and didn’t see the cartridge base! A finger-check (and do the magazine, too) would have found the round.
That’s why we have ALL shooters point their guns toward the backstop or berm when clearing their weapons.
See you next week.
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