2016 Carry Optics Nationals
Moving into the first port, dropped gun down too low just before reaching the window. Also, I stood up instead of staying low to start shooting (pogo). Reload was too slow and possibly too low?
Good movement while slightly backing out of position while engaging the partial through the door. Finishing the reload was a little late, but was worried about breaking the 180. Hits were bad (7As and 7Cs).
Slow engaging the first partial, but hits were 2A; good gun speed for the transition, but slow to fire the next shot. Extra reload for no reason moving into the 2nd position. Decent footwork to navigate around the wall/corner, but I'd like to play with the other option that I saw shooters doing which was to run straight across (diagonally) to minimize the choppiness of it.
Slipped/banged into the wall moving to the 2nd port. Missed the no-shoot on the 2nd target by a ½” (called a good shot, but it took me out of the moment and I lost my awareness and focused on a shot in the past which then led to a mental error and subsequent FTE (I somehow didn’t “see” a target that was literally right in front of my face).
Overshot the foot placement on my first position; slowish splits on the partial through the port, but I wanted the As after having a bad previous stage. More pogoing into the 2nd position.
First no-shoot of the match; called the shot and immediately fired a makeup. Pogo into the final position.
Where do I start? Thinking back to the moment, I distinctly remember being focused on hitting the no-shoot on the previous stage. COMPLETE BREAKDOWN OF THE MENTAL GAME! I’m not sure what the answer to this is on a back-to-back stage like this one; possibly take more time on the Make Ready command to visualize the plan several times to bring my awareness back into the moment and not focused on the past. Missed the draw. Moving into the 2nd position, I started sighting in the wrong target. Slow reload and movement into the final position; magazine got hung up because I didn’t have the gun vertical when I hit the mag release…I ripped the magazine out, then missed the magazine well and dropped the magazine. All the fiddling got into my head and I proceeded to go full retard, I pulled off the first target and shot A/D (or possibly a close D) on the first pass, then jerked the trigger on a 10-12 yard partial earning me my 2nd no-shoot in as many stages. I called the shot, but the gun had already left the target before I could process everything and send the make-up shot. After engaging the final target, I threw 2 make-up shots just because I was so frustrated, but at least they were As.
OK, time to get my shit together and get back on track for the last few stages. I was pretty sure at this point that “High B” was out of reach, so all I could do at that point was to shoot consistently and hope that others in the hunt made enough mistakes to keep me in the game.
I was a little slow on the draw/move to the first two targets; then I wasn’t aggressive enough on the “falling lean” for the 4th target. Everything else went pretty well until the last array. I missed my foot position and my timing was off on the 2nd swinger and instead of transitioning back to the target inside the port, I waited for a second pass which cost me 2-3 seconds.
I started to reload moving after the engaging the first 2 targets-I caught myself but it slowed down my movement slightly. Watching the video, I think I could’ve moved faster down the final straight away. My index wasn’t good in this position and I had 2 make-up shots (made up a D on the left target and a close C/D on the right target). Movement and reload into the final port could’ve been more explosive and I’m not sure why I “hitched” on the pressout. I finished up with several make-up shots on the last hard-cover steel.
Last stage of the match. OK movement into the second position…I’m not sure what’s up with my left hand though! The splits and transitions could’ve been faster, but I was being cautious with the partials and only shooting when my dot was telling me to. The reload into the next position was slow, as was the engagement of the steel and paper. Reloading on the move into the final position, once again I didn’t have the gun wasn’t vertical and the magazine didn’t fall free; I had to strip out the magazine while already standing at the final spot. 2 make-up shots on the hardcover steel cost me time as well.
First stage of the match. My splits, transitions, and movement were not nearly as aggressive as they should have been. While it’s OK to take a little extra time on the first stage to verify proper sight alignment, everything else still needs to be aggressive! Stumbled a bit moving into the 3rd position (the port by the starting position), followed by a completely unnecessary magazine change which caused me to stop and engage close targets that I had planned to shoot on the move. I didn’t index to the correct spot on the 4th target after the reload (need to do a better job of visualizing the exact location of targets/gun position on wide transitions). On the last array, the targets were backlit so after I finished shooting I was looking at the targets on ULSC and only saw 1 hole in one of the targets; I had called 2 As on it, but didn’t want to have a Mike on the first stage of the match. I know that the make-up shot cost me more than a miss would have, but it was a psychological thing for me to not have a miss so early in the day. I should have been more confident in my shot calling, but I’m not quite there yet.
Make-up shot on the 2nd piece of steel in the first array led to a slidelock reload on the move; followed by an extra shot on a very tight headbox/partial target led me to a standing reload on the last target of the far left array. This isn’t the first time this has happened to me in a match; I need to do a better job anticipating extra rounds on difficult target presentations within a 10-round array. I should have planned from the beginning to do an extra reload while moving from one window to the next. When I got to the 2nd window, I missed my position and was slow to engage the partial target; it was close enough to shoot on the move but it didn’t feel right because I didn’t keep the gun high enough and ready to shoot between positions…and more pogoing at both left side positions. I forgot to reload after shooting the one target on the left before moving into the final position and wasn’t able to move as aggressively between target 1 (though a narrow slit in the wall) and target 2 (just after the wall at the end on the left). Good hits, sequence on the last 2 poppers (one was forward falling and obstructing the other) and the paper.
Throughout the week, the left drop turner seemed to be faster than the one on the right, so I made a conservative plan to shoot the targets in the order that I did; it worked out, but it was slow. I was very slow to engage the 2 targets through the port, I didn’t accept that I had a good sight picture when clearly it was there almost as soon as my gun was on target. On the right array, I knew that the drop turner was a little slower so I could be a little more aggressive and get good hits, so that’s what I planned for. In retrospect, I easily could’ve done the same engagement sequence on both sides, but I wasn’t confident in my timing…something to focus on in the coming year. The day prior, I watched Shane Coley do a side-shuffle reload out of this position and I thought it was a good way to get the reload done quickly while being able to move forward sooner and also avoid the 180. The problem with being a new shooter and trying to replicate one of the best in the world is that it turned out looking like I’m bunny hopping around the 2nd half of the stage.
Going in, I knew that this stage didn’t offer a lot of places to gain time, but that several very good shooters were too aggressive on the Max Traps and earned a no-shoot hit in the process; that was something I definitely wanted to avoid, so again, I felt that the more conservative plan was the better plan for my current level of skill. I fumbled my reload and dropped the magazine while moving to the door because my “in-the-moment” awareness shifted into a focus on the future when I started to think about about keeping the gun high enough to not get DQ’d by muzzling my hand while opening the door. This is something that I hadn’t experienced in a match before and the fear of the DQ was strong. But more importantly, I need to work on visualizing specific “weird” parts of my plan enough that I don’t have to consciously think about it while doing it. I would say that I need to practice this specific skill, but that won’t fix the fact that throughout my shooting “career” I’m going to experience strange/different/weird things at matches that I can’t possibly prepare for. All I can do is to refine my mental game to account for these things so that they don’t affect the rest of the stage.