Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Extreme 25 meter benchrest

Now that Dave and I are back in Pocatello, and that the scores, as well as rifles used,are up on the Extreme Benchrest site, It is time to tell about each of the events at EBR and what made each one special.

25 Meter Targets
The 25 meter benchrest is the touchstone of airgun benchrest. It is neither the shortest nor furthest distance, but it is one at which many rifles are competitive. The kind of rifle that most shooters would buy. Not that exclusively rare and phenomenally expensive Pangaea SOB (Super, Over the course Blaster), but hunting air rifles, you know, the ones with wooden stocks and traditional barrel over cylinder design.

I have held benchrest shooting at arms length considering it to be an equipment game until I shot a 25 meter match at Grants Pass Oregon where I was able to dope the wind and squeeze a little more accuracy out of my S-400 by adding my skill to my rifle’s consistency. 

25 Meter is ERB’s  linc with benchrest competition. It really helps that one of the most active airgun benchrest clubs is in Phoenix. Those folks from the Phoenix Airgun Benchrest and Silhouette Club bring a lot to the table. First they know how to shoot and how to run a match. Most interesting, they use a computer scanner to score the targets. For me scoring is harder than shooting; it is definitely more stressful. God forbid that a first time competitor winds up  scoring the winning target with the potential winner, the club hot shot, and the club statistician all looking over his shoulder.  They use the Orion Scoring System, . The targets are fed into a scanner and the software delivers a print out with every shot as well as some interesting statistics including group area and group roundness. There is a graphic showing all the hits on each 25 shot target superposed over the scoring rings as well as a graphic of the targets showing every bullseye.

It also enforces the rules.  I fired two shots into one bull, and the software identified my error gave me the lower of the two shots, and assessed me one penalty point. It even cited the rule for extra 

A Rapid Air Weapons BM-500, This one is in Venezuelan colors.

25 meters isn’t easy, but it is also accessible. If you or your club hasn't tried it you should.