Written by Sierra Bullets Ballistic Technician Rich Machholz
It’s all over but the whining now but it all began with a trip down a pretty little lane on top of a wooded ridge in southern Missouri on Labor Day weekend.
When I got there on Thursday it was hot, dry and calm. While the hot and dry prevailed calm disappeared and for some of us we found invisible air currents that we didn’t need.
With afternoon temperatures hovering in the mid-90s and wood lot breezes at a minimum the human comfort level was pretty low. Even though there was about 3 acres of canopies and plenty of shade it was still very hot.
With 80 of the nations top shooters assembled there was no doubt there would be some outstanding groups turned in and we weren’t disappointed.
For a complete rundown check Robert’s website at http://midwestbenchrest.com/.
This was my first match of 2013 and I spent Thursday getting reacquainted with my bench setup and finally getting a solid zero for my old trusty 300 Win Mag. I’m shooting the 210 grain Sierra MatchKings with 66 grains of H4350 in matched W-W brass and standard WLR primers. My scope is a Burris Signature 8-32X with a 1/16th minute dot.
The match started with everyone bunched up around the “wailing wall” to get bench assignments and relays. Bench numbers and relays are written on anything handy including hands. Then it is off to the canopy to get ready by relaxing, making last minute adjustments or hauling gear to the line. A good cart is a necessity for this and there is a wide variety in use.
I only entered the Light Gun class which is a 17 pound maximum weight which I made with a weight of 16.86 pounds. Of my three targets I tied for second in score on the first target, won the second target for score and found some very unfriendly wind currents for my third target. My best group was on the second target and was just over 5 inches and was second best, my other two groups were just over 9 inches. Just to give you and idea of how good these guys are, there were many groups fired under 4 inches in light gun and many more in heavy gun.
A tip of the hat goes to Robert Ross and his great crew for handling the target changes in such an organized manner which allowed us to complete this match in two days. As usual the food was excellent but I sure missed that homemade ice cream I lobbied for so hard.
I’d also like to thank all the competitors for coming. Some shooters traveled close to a thousand mile just to compete and compete they did at an extraordinary level. It was great to see all you guys again.
See you soon! Rich Machholz