BJ Norris’ Blog

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Steel Nationals Recap

What a week! 3 days of neck and neck competition with a great bunch of guys. I couldn’t ask for better sportsman to compete with than Max, Dave, Jerry and the rest.

Big thanks to Derek and Mike and all the RO’s that ran the match. With the exception of the stop plates, which were thrown out early in favor of using the shot timers and adding the flight time in, everything ran extremely smoothly and way ahead of schedule. Big plans are already in the works for next years match, and I’m very much looking forward to it. If you were on the fence about shooting the match this year, don’t miss next year’s match!

So, down to my performance… Two National titles and two 2nd place finishes. The interesting the exciting thing, if you add the time that I lost by from both Rimfire Optic and Open, it totals .15 seconds. I thought it was a close finish when I lost last year’s match by .15! For comparison purposes, a blink of an eye is usually around .15-.20 seconds depending on the person. That’s two National titles that were decided in a single blink of an eye. Can’t get much more stressful competition than that! As far as my feeling of how I truly shot, I’d say overall that it was pretty good. Dave and I both broke the previous Rimfire total time record by a fairly large margin, and neither of us had what I would call a really great match, just consistent and solid.

The Limited match went very well for me, even though I still struggle at times with iron sights. I basically shot consistent and tried not to pay attention to what the other guys were doing and it worked out. Feel’s very good to win my first centerfire Steel Challenge match and I’m looking forward to getting more comfortable with iron sights so I can try and push the times down some.

Open was a nail-biter the whole way through. Max and I battled back and forth the entire day and Dave was hanging with us for a good part of the match. The big turning point in Max’s favor was Roundabout which he shot very well by shooting 4,3,1,2 stop. After that, he had about a second of time on me with only two stages left. He left the door open on Pendulum, but I couldn’t quite get through, leaving about .9 seconds of is lead intact as we went into Outer Limits. I shot before him, and turned in a good time that I knew he would have to push to beat. He had several extra shots on his first two runs, shot well on his third run. I already had the calculator out and was running the numbers while he shot. As he walked back to the box for his fourth run, I wasn’t able to stay still. He shot the plates well, but had a pick-up on the stop plate and at that point I knew I had won. However, just a few seconds after I had run the numbers, they looked at the stop plate and saw that he had edged it on his first shot and ran the timer back and it ended up with him winning by 8 hundredths of a second. Although disappointing for me, I congratulate Max on doing what he needed to hold on to the match, and winning his last match as a member of the AMU.

I’ve already started to develop a training plan for the World Championships in August, so we will battle it out again in just a few months. My main focus and goal is to win all 3 events on the way to the Steel Master award. Less than 1/4 of a second kept me from reaching that goal last weekend, and I believe it is possible in a few months. Until then, Max, Dave, ya’ll shot good matches and I always enjoy your company and competition.

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March 31, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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