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Major Match without range access to walk the stages


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I've shot a couple dozen major matches over the last 7 years and I've always had a chance to look at the stages the day before and work out my plans. For a bunch of personal reasons, I'm pretty rusty these days and REALLY need the extra time to break down the stages. So, I'm shooting the Cowtown Classic this Friday and it appears we will only have the 5 minute walk through to look at the stages. I'm admittedly nervous about this........

So, how common is it to have a major match and not have the extra time to walk the stages?

FWIW, this isn't a complaint about the match or match management, I'm just curious how common this is since I pretty much have always shot the same majors..

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This would be the only USPSA match I recall hearing about that bars shooters from the range prior to the walk through. They must be weak stages that they don't want gamed too bad. :goof::sight:

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This would be the only USPSA match I recall hearing about that bars shooters from the range prior to the walk through. They must be weak stages that they don't want gamed too bad. :goof::sight:

Maybe, but I doubt it. :P This match is known for large, technical stages. It probably hasn't changed this year.

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This would be the only USPSA match I recall hearing about that bars shooters from the range prior to the walk through. They must be weak stages that they don't want gamed too bad. :goof::sight:

Maybe, but I doubt it. :P This match is known for large, technical stages. It probably hasn't changed this year.

Then, there is no excuse. I guess shenanigans are technically legal.

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The only time I have seen this in Area 2,1,5 and a couple nationals was the 2005 Area 2. Back then Area 2 had very technical stages and 2005 was the year of the "Dead Dog Saloon" and "Rudy's Big Top". Anyone who was there will surely remember those nightmares! The no walk policy was so well received it was gone in 2006 and after. But then 2006 was the year of the roller coaster and only the first shooter got a "ride-through"...

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Make sure you are not the first shooter on any stage. :ph34r:

I'm cooking lunch on Friday and will shoot where ever and whenever I can squeeze in a stage. I can usually plan a stage in a few minutes, hopefully there are some good stage planners around when I show up. Otherwise, I just spray and pray!

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Looks like you have from 6am to 8am to check the stages out. Good luck.

Yep, this is what I will have to do. I would simply prefer and to be honest, have a whole lot more fun, if I could memorize the stages the day before. This will probably end up being a low expectation practice session :goof:

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Looks like you have from 6am to 8am to check the stages out. Good luck.

Yep, this is what I will have to do. I would simply prefer and to be honest, have a whole lot more fun, if I could memorize the stages the day before. This will probably end up being a low expectation practice session :goof:
Trace, if your schedule is flexible, ask for MD approval to switch-out with a Saturday shooter.

There are ALWAYS last week/day/minute cancellations.

(If You don't ask, you don't get - what's the worst thing he can say? "No, we can't make that switch").

If not, get there at 6am on Saturday, review and plan ONLY the first few (3) stages that you're scheduled to shoot in the morning.

2 hours is a LOT of rehearsal time for 3 stages.

At lunch, rinse/repeat on the first few afternoon stages.

The weather will be beautiful this weekend.

Relax, smile, tease your squad buds.

Fun - it's why you came, right?

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Looks like you have from 6am to 8am to check the stages out. Good luck.

Yep, this is what I will have to do. I would simply prefer and to be honest, have a whole lot more fun, if I could memorize the stages the day before. This will probably end up being a low expectation practice session :goof:
The good thing about the schedule is that they start serving lunch at 12:45 AM on Saturday!
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Looks like you have from 6am to 8am to check the stages out. Good luck.

Yep, this is what I will have to do. I would simply prefer and to be honest, have a whole lot more fun, if I could memorize the stages the day before. This will probably end up being a low expectation practice session :goof:

What a coincidence. I've gone on some dates thinking the same thing. :roflol:

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Looks like you have from 6am to 8am to check the stages out. Good luck.

Yep, this is what I will have to do. I would simply prefer and to be honest, have a whole lot more fun, if I could memorize the stages the day before. This will probably end up being a low expectation practice session :goof:
Trace, if your schedule is flexible, ask for MD approval to switch-out with a Saturday shooter.

There are ALWAYS last week/day/minute cancellations.

(If You don't ask, you don't get - what's the worst thing he can say? "No, we can't make that switch").

If not, get there at 6am on Saturday, review and plan ONLY the first few (3) stages that you're scheduled to shoot in the morning.

2 hours is a LOT of rehearsal time for 3 stages.

At lunch, rinse/repeat on the first few afternoon stages.

The weather will be beautiful this weekend.

Relax, smile, tease your squad buds.

Fun - it's why you came, right?

Great advice on the three stage approach.....I will try that for sure. Friday fits better because of my Jake time. And the way I see it, whether you shoot Friday or Saturday, you only have the 6-8am time frame to walk them. The schedule shows the range closing early Friday (assuming immediately after last shot fired).

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IPSC is IPSC. Lots of low round count stages. Eric takes a half hour to make ready, so if somebody tells you that it's just like IPSC take a really long time making ready and planning every single shot. If you know the range, you can kind of sort of expect the type of stages. I shoot almost every kind of match at the last minute due to my erratic schedule and have learned to beg, borrow, steal stage plans from everybody. I've been the rabbit so many times that it has become less stressful over the years. It's just a match and you get "situational awareness" to borrow a phrase. Count the targets and ask how many rounds. The printed is so often different than the actual I pay no attention to Matchbooks, etc. Only thing I would recommend is ask are there 180 traps or "odd" things about the stage I should know. Only a few RO's are obfuscatory and they all tend to be under thirty. Have fun. Sounds like a good match. Large technical stages. Don't see that much.

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IPSC is IPSC. Lots of low round count stages. Eric takes a half hour to make ready, so if somebody tells you that it's just like IPSC take a really long time making ready and planning every single shot. If you know the range, you can kind of sort of expect the type of stages. I shoot almost every kind of match at the last minute due to my erratic schedule and have learned to beg, borrow, steal stage plans from everybody. I've been the rabbit so many times that it has become less stressful over the years. It's just a match and you get "situational awareness" to borrow a phrase. Count the targets and ask how many rounds. The printed is so often different than the actual I pay no attention to Matchbooks, etc. Only thing I would recommend is ask are there 180 traps or "odd" things about the stage I should know. Only a few RO's are obfuscatory and they all tend to be under thirty. Have fun. Sounds like a good match. Large technical stages. Don't see that much.

That is exactly right and if that wasn't the case, we could all get our plans down while sitting at our computer......

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If it were possible, I would always bar walking the stages, even at a local match. Some people get the time off and show up a day in advance, they plan out each step and they run the stages as if they were a choreographed dance, the rest get to show up day of the match and do what they can in the 5 minutes they get as their squad shows up. Not a real fair evaluation of a shooters ability.

Now that said, unless I have 100% control of the stages and the range and I have a dedicated staff that is not involved in the actual match this is virtually impossible. This is the same reason that blind stages don't work well. No one gets to walk, all you know is that there are targets, you may not even know how many or what types. then shooter 1 runs and you get to count his shoots and hear the steel, by shooter 3-5 you have a pretty darned good idea of what to expect.

So, the take away is, if your range access is limited, do the best you can, most USPSA matches are generally open for inspection with the caveat that you cannot activate any props or movers. Generally even at Nationals you can ask the CRO for permission to walk his stage between squads. Usually it is granted.

Basically it sucks, but I don't see a good way around it. I will say that if Cowtown can't give you access to walk early or a longer walk, then they should limit to the fullest extent possible all the Saturday Sunday shooters in the same manner.

All that said: Good Luck Ranger!

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Not being able to get onto stages head of time would drive me crazy. Actually, I'd just avoid the match if I knew I wouldn't have access to stages.

I was pretty frustrated last year at one large match. I was shooting on Saturday and Sunday. Took the day off Friday so I could get to the range in time to walk the stages.

I generally time my arrival to get there at the end of the day's shooting - figuring I won't be in the way, and I'll be able to take care of business quicker when the bays are empty. What I didn't realize was that they planned to close the range down 30 minutes or so after the shooting was done. Had I known that, i would have arrived several hours earlier.

I'd never run into something like that before, and I learned that it's one more thing to check on before the match.

Frankly, I don't see how you could bar prior access to stages - unless you have a way to guarantee that local shooters also are prohibited from looking over the stages ahead of time. That's just too much of a potential advantage.

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Access isn't barred at all - the range opens at 6am on both Friday and Saturday and shooting does not begin until around 8:30 - that is 2 1/2 hours (plus 5 minutes per stage after the walkthrough).

While that may sound like a lot, it will be dark till nearly 6:30, not to mention sign up, etc. It certainly won't be 2.5 hours to look at stages.

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If you are there at 6:00 - with a headlamp - you can start looking at stages right away. Once signup begins - if you are near the first in line it will take minimal amount of time. Lets say you get 2.25 hours to look at stages.

My point is you HAVE extra time - it came across that this match was 100% NOT allowing anyone to preview stages before hand. That is not the case - you have time - whether that is enough - well that is relative - but YOU have additional time.

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