DSS-1 once again another 1st Place finishby Shawn Claussen on 03/23/13
I competed at the West Liberty March Steel Match. I shot my duty rifle with a .22lr conversion kit installed and took 1st Place in my division and 2nd Overall. How would you as a competitor, interpret these results? How do you analyze your performance and put it into perspective in regards to what it means for you?
I'll offer an analysis based solely on my performance so hopefully you can see the value of competition and what it offers you, the shooter.
I shot my duty rifle. As soon as I got home I cleaned it, replaced the bolt carrier group and put it back into service that night when I went to work. Shooting duty gear in competition shows you what works and what doesn't when running it on someone else's clock and at speed with the stress of everyone watching. In the middle of a deadly force engagement is not the time to find out that your super wazoo, zombie death killer laser sight system failed to live up to the demands of the real real world. I experienced several malfunctions with the .22lr conversion kit. This forced me to complete my malfunction clearance drills at speed and against the clock. I figured that the malfunctions added about 19 to 20 seconds to my overall time and the margin between 1st and 2nd Overall was 15 seconds. Even though my malfunctioning equipment cost me the Overall title, I never gave up and continued fighting through the mechanical problems and won two of the stages outright.
The temp was about 20 degrees with a stiff wind blowing making the felt temp a little colder. Anybody can be a fair weather shooter. To come out and step-up your game when the conditions suck says alot about an individual's mindset.
Everyone has an excuse as to why they can't make it to a match. You know what they say about excuses. I strongly recommend that if you take your training seriously, then make it to a match and see what actually sticks to the wall when thrown against it.
Anything other than that is just "shooting guns." Any fool can do that.