Change of Plans (September 2020)

Ben BerryBlog

Since the NC Section match wrapped up last week, things have slowed down a bit and I’ve had time to look ahead to what my training looks like for the rest of the year.

As an aside, it’s worth mentioning that my training this summer has been basically none, with a handful of live fire sessions and basically no dry fire since March. This was largely a consequence of things reaching a breaking point for me at my old job, which has now changed.

Also, we just found out that the 2021 Area 6 match will be two hours away, at the club that just hosted the NC Section match: Rowan County Wildlife Club. That match will be the second weekend in April, which is opportune. It’s coming up soon enough to provide motivation, while also giving enough time (with changing life circumstances taken into account) to still try to get in some serious training.

On the other hand, it’s harder to make the case for going to Nationals this year. I’ve been underwhelmed by the production quality of the match, the stage design, and the officiating each year I’ve gone since 2017. With both Steph and I starting new jobs soon, it doesn’t seem worth it taking the 5 days to drive down to Florida, shoot, and drive back for a match that will ultimately be short-staffed and underwhelming.

(As an aside, I do note that for Nationals this year they are bringing back the idea of having a staff pre-match that ROs can shoot, with hotel covered for the whole pre-match and main match, plus travel reimbursement. It’s a carbon copy of the staff package from the 2014 Handgun Nationals in St. George. I was thrilled to accept that offer to go out and work, as a B-class shooter who’d just gotten his RO certification. Although it looks like staff turnout for the Prod/CO Nationals is pretty low right now, hopefully they keep offering this package for future big matches and more competitors start to turn out to RO as well. I think it’s vital to the health of the sport that the officiating at Nationals improve, as well as the general quality of the match.)

I’ll miss the chance to see everyone and shoot with those of you I was squadded with, but I’m going to take USPSA up on its offer to get a refund for the Nationals match fee and switch my focus to training for Area 6 in April instead.

I don’t know much about how the A6 match is going to be run so I can’t promise it’ll be the same “no competitors pasting” experience as the NC Section match we just wrapped up, but hopefully it will be a good experience for anyone in driving distance. Looking forward to seeing a lot of you then.