(Match Report by Tyler Patner)
After a week of seemingly endless rain, Northeast Ohio was granted a day of reprieve on Sunday July 18th. Thankfully, coinciding with the Northeast Ohio Airgunners July Field Target match. A rainy week meant we were relegated to shoot the field course, as the woods were soaked. As usual, the field did not disappoint as there was some truly treacherous wind, unyielding sun and a challenging course for the 25 shooters that attended.
The course was a 31.75 Troyer, with 12 targets over 40 yards and an average target distance of 36.2 yards. Now of course, that troyer rating is before wind is factored in, and let me tell you all, it was an exceptionally tricky wind day. When you hear the guys shooting 20 FPE saying they had to hold outside of the kill, that’s saying a lot. What was most confounding (as a 12 FPE shooter) was the lack of consistency the wind produced. You may have been lucky to get your first shot on a long target to go right down the center, but the second shot required you to be outside of the kill. Or on your first shot, you had to hold just outside of the edge, but the second shot appeared to have the same movement downrange, and goes dead on your crosshairs. Calling it frustrating would be putting it mildly, but nonetheless, it was a great challenge.
We had a number of shooters changing up their equipment this week. Keith Walters broke out the Thomas/March combo, Bill Rabbitt brought back the National Championship winning Marauder/Hawke setup, Ted Andro broke out a new .177 RAW and Falcon X50, Dan Putz moved from WFTF Piston to WFTF PCP, and Tyler Patner shot an Air Arms NJR 100 and March scope.
In WFTF PCP, Jeff Paddock managed the wind the best, coming in on a 45/60 with his trusty custom stocked Air Arms EV2 and Vortex Golden Eagle. Keith Walters turned in the match high score with a 54. Very nicely done Keith! And in Hunter PCP, we found ourselves with a tie at the top as Bill Rabbitt and Dennis Himes both shot 53’s. So yes, a shoot-off was had!
Both shooters agreed to take on a 55 yard, 1.5” kill zone OFFHAND! No sitting, no kneeling, straight to standing...and I’ve gotta say, much respect to both of them. Bill went first, and was unable to find the kill, then Dennis, and back and forth it went for about 5 rounds, until Dennis was finally able to lace a pellet through the kill zone and knock the target over. Well done Dennis, a well-deserved victory.
As always, thanks to everyone that came out and shot with us, we appreciate the fellowship and continued support. For those that helped set up the course in the rain, a very big THANK YOU for your dedication and assistance. We are looking forward to our August match, which will be on Sunday the 29th. In addition, we are pleased to announce that the Burning River Grand Prix match will be making its return in September! The dates are set for the 24th to the 26th. We will have a registration page up on our website shortly for those that are looking to make the trip.
As always, stay safe, and see you on the lanes!
* tie decided by shoot off