Playing Catch up 2.0 Part 3 (The Final Chapter)

IMG_9025NRA National Long-Range Championships
I arrived back at Camp Atterbury late Thursday night. Well, around 9, so not that late and when I got there, I moved my stuff into my room then went to meet a friend I had not seen in some time for dinner. After dinner, we returned to the base, and I unpacked the rest of my stuff and got ready for the next day.

NRA National Long-Range Championships Day 1
On the first day of long range you shoot two 20 shot strings at 1000 yards. This being the Remington Band of Brothers Trophy Match and the Vice Admiral Mustin Trophy Match. The Remington match is and any rifle, any sight match and the Mustin match is an any rifle, iron sight match.  In the Remington match, I fired a 193-5x and in the Mustin match, I fired a 196-8x. After I finished shooting the Mustin match, I left the range early thanks to my amazing target buddy Keith Hoverstad who went to the pits by himself so I could IMG_9024go back to my room and take the fastest shower ever, and hit the road to drive the 4-1/2 hours back to Camp Perry to go on stage, to receive my awards from the presidents 100! Everyone told me I was crazy, but I just knew I had to try to make it to awards! Thinking awards started at 8pm I gave myself what I though was plenty of time to make the drive, with time to spare. Only to get a phone call about half way through my drive, to find out that awards actually started at 6! I looked at my GPS, and my arrival time was 6:20! Luckily, I made it just in time for my awards, and stayed for others to get their awards, then got back in the car to get back to Camp Atterbury, to be ready for day 2 of long range! I pulled onto base around midnight thinking ok, this will work out good, I can get around 6 hours of sleep and I will be ok. Unfortunately, not everything works out as we plan…. After I parked my car and gathered all of my belongings, I lock my car door and walked across the parking lot to my door. I reached in my purse to get my keys and they were not there! I poured out, and searched every bag I had, and there were NO KEYS!!! I ran back to the car and shined a light through the window, praying they were not locked in my car and there they were between the center console and the driver’s seat. Broken hearted, I called my mom in tears, saying I locked my keys in my car, and I didn’t know what to do. We called road side service and I finally got to go to bed at 3 am, only to get up at 6 to be on the range for roll call at 6:30 the next morning.

NRA National Long-Range Championships Day 2
After sluggishly dragging my gear out of my car and slowly walking to the firing line, I IMG_9988quietly sat next to my cart waiting for roll call to start explaining to everyone why I was half asleep. After roll call, I headed to the pits sitting quietly in my chair, I offered to pull the first shooter if my target buddy would pull the second one. So, I pulled for the first shooter, and as soon as he was done I sat back down in my chair and fell fast asleep…. I woke up just in time for the pit change, and we headed up to the line to shoot our match. On the second day, the gun you shoot determines the match you shoot. Since I was only shooting my Palma rifle during the national matches I fired in the Edward D. Andrus Memorial Trophy Match. In the match, I fired a 198-8x which was very surprising considering how little sleep I had. I won High Jr. in that match and received the Edward D. Andrus Memorial Trophy Match High Jr. Trophy Plaque.

IMG_1399NRA National Long-Range Championships Day 3
After much more sleep than the night before, I woke up to my dad knocking on my door. He drove from the house in Louisville to the base (a 2-hour drive), to watch me shoot the last day of the 1000 yard individual matches. We drove down range, parked in the dew covered grassy field and unloaded my gear to head up to the line to shoot. I was on relay 2, so I was the second person to shoot. Looking across the sky and seeing the dark clouds rolling in I knew we were gonna get some rain. The match I was shooting in was the Herb “Doc” Aiken Memorial Trophy Match. I fired a 194-4x. After I finished shooting, I packed my gear up quickly; as I was seeing the rain drops start to fall then I walked over to my car, and put it all in the car so it did not get wet. After all my gear was in the car, I headed back to the firing line to catch the bus to the pits. As soon as we got in the pits, the skies opened up and it poured! We all grabbed the targets and ran for cover trying to stay as dry as possible! We had a 3-1/2 to 4-hour rain delay. However, we did manage to get the whole match in that day; as well as the shoot offs.

NRA National Long-Range Championships Day 4
On the 4th day of long range, you shoot an individual Palma match. Although I don’t know the scores for each yard line, and after some struggles I completed the match firing a 435-14x. Relieved to be done, I only had two more things to do, before my trip to the National Matches was complete for the summer. So, I put on my professional pit puller hat and headed to the pits to pull for a 4-man team match, and make some more money. After the team match, I went back to my room and took a shower and got dressed for the awards. At the Awards, I won High Jr. in the Sierra Trophy match, which is a combination of the 4 – 1000 yard matches, fired at the beginning of the week using only a Palma rifle. And, I would like to give huge congratulations to my friend Jonathan Howell, for winning High Jr. overall, for the national long-range championships for the second year in a row!

 

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