If I ever again suggest that we shoot four matches on three consecutive days – somebody call the head doctor and have me checked for mental stability.  Well, maybe not – by next summer I may decide to try it again.  Shooting Mid-Summer Madness on three consecutive days gives me a whole new appreciation of what it takes to shoot every day for a month at Camp Perry or Camp Atterbury.

I would call the three-day tournament a success.  There was a great response, a lot of people registered and until the hottest weather we had seen in a long time complicated things we were looking at a really big match.  Over the three days a number of shooters wisely recognized their physical limits and decided to stay out of the hot and oppressively humid conditions.  I think it was a good call – I don’t want to have to call EMS and use my first aids skills (such as they are) treating heat stroke or something worse.

Friday Afternoon – June 11  50-Round NRA National Match Course

We started out of Friday afternoon with a 50-round match.  I had two full relays (16 people) signed up and we ended up with 13 shooters coming to the line in two relays.

As generous as I might want to try to be – Friday afternoon was probably the most brutal set of conditions I have experienced at the FWRR range.  There was no wind at all, direct afternoon sun, and along with a temperature of at least 88-degrees, the humidity had to be in the 90% range as well.  After the Offhand stage, one shooter wisely called it quits and went to sit in an air conditioned truck.

But, the good news was that we had all three of our active Junior shooters on hand and all three of them soldiered through the oppressive heat and humidity.  I assured them that it wasn’t always this miserable and that things would be better most days.

The top three shooters in this match were:

Mike King        491-12X

Mark Richard  465-11X

Kris Hartwig    463-  6X

Congratulations to Kris – this was his first top-three finish up there with the heavy hitters.

Saturday, June 12 – CMP/NRA 50-80 Match

The Saturday match was sanctioned by both the CMP and NRA.  The NRA match could be shot as either a 50 or 80-round match, the CMP match was an 80-round match.

We started promptly at 8:03; it was about 70-degrees with no wind when the first two relays went to the line.  As the morning went on, it got warmer – but it never got back to the conditions of Friday afternoon.  We had 19 shooters, enough for two, two relay sessions- a very good turnout.

Colton and Marshall, two of our Junior Shooters, about halfway through the Offhand Stage

The match was routine – but we did have some unusual spectators during the first relay’s 300-yard slow fire stage.  About halfway through the stage, two speckled fawns pranced out from behind the 200-yard practice berm and frolicked around the low end of the range while we shot over their heads.  The SNAP of supersonic bullets going over their heads didn’t seem to bother them in the least and after a while they moved back behind the practice berm, none the worse for their experience.

As for weather again; we finished up at 86-degrees and about 83% humidity with a light wind (about 4 MPH) that made things almost bearable.

Two of our Junior shooters came back for this match and Colton Eads shot enough rounds over the two matches to get his initial NRA Classification as a Sharpshooter.  Congratulations Colton, good work!

The top three shooters in this match were:

Mike King                    784-27X

Mark Richard              774-21X

Mark Walters             768-24X

Sunday Morning, June 13  Mid-Range Tournament

Sunday dawned clear and cooler, 73-degrees but still with humidity in the high 80% range.  The Sunday morning session was, technically, a Tournament since it consisted of three, 60-round matches.  We shot all three matches as “any-sight” matches and all competitors, except Norbert Norden, used scoped rifles.  Again we had a good turnout, eleven shooters across two relays.  There was some shooter attrition from Saturday – enough was enough.

We shot the match as a block time match.  Each relay had three hours to complete their match; shooters were allowed to figure out for themselves what order and how many shots to take between breaks.  Some shooters shot 20-rounds at a time; others shot 40 rounds and then took a shade break.  It worked well – we finished the first relay in about two-hours and about the same for the second relay.  It helped move things right along!

The top three shooters Mid-Range shooters were:

Mike King                    598-35X

Mark Richard              594-31X

Ron Dague            594-24X

Sunday Afternoon; Mike Gingher M1A Memorial Match

By the time we came to the final match of the Mid-Summer Madness Weekend, the weather had taken its toll.  We had 10 shooters originally sign up for the match, but by shooting time we were down to four hardy souls who wanted to shoot just one more match to have a shot at the Aggregate score for the four match weekend.

This is a match we have named for Mike Gingher, a long time FWRR member and a very prominent figure in the High Power shooting sport.  He was a long time armorer for the USMC Reserve National Team and a fixture at Camp Perry National Matches as a Coach and armorer.

It was only fitting that two of the four shooters in the Mike Gingher Memorial Match were shooting Gingher Guns.  Mike King shot a National Match M1 that Mike built for Larry Beardsley about 1999 and Mark Walters shot a Gingher double-lugged M1A for the match.

Mike King with the Gingher M1 Garand
Mark Walters with the Mike Gingher double-lugged M1A

The Mike Gingher M1A Memorial Match results were:

Mark Richard              437-6X

Mark Walters             435-3X

Mike King                    432-4X

All three of these shooters were shooting “wooden guns”, a match requirement.  Gary Mabis shot an “other gun” (an AR service rifle) as an out-of-competition competitor and fired a 451-9X match.

By the time we finished the M1A Match, the weather had finally broken; the temperature was only about 82-degrees and the humidity had dropped to 47%.  A breeze had sprung up and Gary Mabis commented; “It almost feels cold right now!”

The Mid-Summer Match scores turned out as follows:

Four Match Aggregate First:              Mike King                    2305-78X

Four Match Aggregate Second:         Mark Richard              2270-69X

Four Match Aggregate Third:            Mark Walters             2251-72X

Match Fourth:                                     Kris Hartwig                1761-28X

Match Fifth:                                        Mike Habel                 1700-28X

Match Sixth:                                       Gary Mabis                 1654-29X

Match Seventh:                                  Ron Dague                  1301-35X

First Junior:                                         Colton Eads                1106-13X

Again – I must thank Mike and Glenna Grannis for their help as my Statistical Office and Finance Office.   There is absolutely NO WAY I could run a match this size without their help to keep scores and money straight.  XXX and OOO to Mike and Glenna!!!

Our next Match will be the Indiana Junior State Championship on July 10.  Keep an eye out for sign-up details.