Monday, April 27, 2015

The Saga Continues or Can we go faster?

When we left this tale, CowboyAverage had just be infected with grailfever and had changed his alias to WRorBust.  Being a keen observer he notes that there are at least 30 shooters in his club in the State of Neverhappen that have a draw speed of about 200 mls and therefore are capable of setting a new world record.  He organizes a new club dedicated to setting records.  To be a member all you have to do is demonstrate by the triple 7 that you have a draw speed of about 200 milliseconds.  The club picks the name RecordBusters.  They organize daily practices at their practice facility.  They have a timer display over their targets that begins when the set command is given.  The club is divided up in 10ths with 1/10th of the club practicing to shoot at 2000 mils after the set command, 1/10th shooting 2100 mls after the set command, 1/10th shooting 2200 mls after set command, and so on.  WRorBust says we going get it or die trying, since that Knowitall or the Commish took it away from me.

The RecordBusters have weekly shoots that are no X, since only speed matters.  They toy with the idea of eliminating gunfighter against gunfighters since its no X.  Places in pot shoots are determined solely on fastest time.  They scour the internet for "nutritional" advice for what will increase reaction times.

Meanwhile, the Commish gathers his trusty advisors, those that he has determined to be capable of setting a world record, and considers what further can be done to protect the integrity of the world record.  We can't have some 4 shooter getting lucky like happened in the State of Neverhappen or let the RecordBusters do it on a weekly basis as they are now doing because of special trick practice techniques.

One of the advisors suggests disqualification for anticipation which is met with a outcry of "you can't do that."  Why not, they do it in High School Track.  Opponents reply but not in Professional Track.  We need to think like the Big Boys do.  Instant Replay!!!!  We probably also need to start random drug testing, some of those RecordBusters look might twitchee.

The Commish decides to start video replay by requiring every titled event to have the capability of videoing every draw and the start of the timer on every draw.  A decision is made to disqualify every draw that commences sooner than 125 mls after the clock starts.  Host club to provide a video replay judge.  Random drug testing will be started for all shooter shooting a round faster that .5.

Meanwhile, one old timer asks the other, back when that "kid" set the record, did he win the event.  His pardner responds "I wonder if he even won the match."

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

The World Record

This tidy tale starts with the premise that the world record is .295 held by some kid.  The story is set in the State of Neverhappen and it is a tale about CowboyAverage.  He is newcomer to the sport starting late in life after the ravages of age had already set in.  He practices a lot and get his draw speed to just a little over 200 milliseconds and his reaction time of just over 200 mls and therefore is a pretty consistent low 4 shooter.

CowboyAverage has been lobbying the powers to be for several years for a state championship to be held in the land of Neverhappen to no avail.  Finally, a small club in an outlying area musters its resources and punks down the down payment for a state championship.  CowboyAverage is elated.  He immediately begins a new training program and gets his draw time to 150 mls.  He still struggles with his reaction time but through keen observation notes that some of the fastest shooters use "the Shift."  He begins using "the Shift" and finds he can cut his reaction time by 60 mls or so but losses some accuracy.  One of CowboyAverage 's advantages is that for 40 years he was the anchor bowler for the Sandhills Rollers.  He knows how to perform under pressure and to reach down into the reservoir of adrenaline when needed.

The day arrives for the State Championship of the State of Neverhappen and the turn out is good.  Apparently most of the world record chasers have come, among them a young shooter, NeverQuit.  NeverQuit cares nothing about championships, wins or Xs, he is solely in pursuit of the world record.  He shoots right at .300 and is so close he can taste it.  

The shoot progresses normally.  CowboyAverage is so fortunate that he can use the words of William Munny, "I was lucky in the order, but then I have always been lucky when it comes to ......"
CowboyAverage has generally forsaken the "Shift" in favor of accuracy and throughout the match has been shooting in the high 3s or low 4s. He reaches the Magnificent Seven clean and is therefore seeded #1, all of the pursuers of the grail having shot each other up.

NeverQuit survives to the final match.  CowboyAverage knows he has no chance on speed and begins as planned without the "Shift."  NeverQuit, still in pursuit of the grail, promptly goes down 0-2.  He then finds the target with two rounds and the match is tied 2-2.  CowboyAverage knows it is now or never and he speculates the NeverQuit will slow for accuracy.  CowboyAverage reaches down into the reservoir for adrenaline and also decides to use the "Shift." The light turns, both draw a perfect draw, two hits .294 to .296.  Neverhappen finally has a State Champion and new World Record.

In the elation CowboyAverage turns to NeverQuit and says, "I said I didn't have much use for it (the Shift), I didn't says I didn't know how to use it."  To which NeverQuit replies, "Anticipation, Anticipation!"

Into the fray comes Knowitall who immediately calls  a meeting of the arbitration committee, consisting of Knowitall, Idontknow, and Idontcare, each of whom pulls out their copy of the rule book, each having a different version.  After serious consultation but without listening to anyone, Knowitall, pronounces that indeed the fat lady has not yet sung, and declares a provisional anticipation.  CowboyAverage will have to back it up.

The shooters again take the line, both knowing what is about to happen.  Both draw on that reservoir and both make a perfect draw except CowboyAverage's bullet just grazes the top of his holster.  NeverQuit hits the target at .294. World Record!.  NeverQuit can not contain himself and proceeds to dance a 360 jig forgetting to holster his gun.  The Range Master, Nononsence, calls a safety violation and disqualifies NeverQuit.  CowboyAverage's hand judge correctly calls a boot shot.

Again Knowitall is called upon make an announcement.  He proceeds to say CowboyAverage is the State Champion due to the disqualification of NeverQuit. The World Record of .294  by NeverQuit stands even as he was disqualified, because he had back it up all day long.

The Comish gets wind of the goings on at the State Championship of the State of Neverhappen and promptly disenfranchises the shoot for a lack of institutional control.  The Comish demands the return of the state championship buckle from CowboyAverage who responds, "You can have it back, I just been using it for target practice for my deer rifle. By the way I no longer exist!"  CowboyAverage having been infected with grail pursuit himself has change his alias to WRorBust.

Meanwhile somewhere on the plains a group of old timers are sitting round the fire lamenting the good old days when it was safety first, fun second,  and competition third.

Bloggers Comments:
1.  Some of you will comment that "Neverhappen" is an apt name for the state since this will never happen.  The name comes from the prophecy that the blogger doubts he will ever see a state championship in his lifetime.  The rest of the scenario may be historical.  CowboyAverage may exist in Neverhappen or "maybe it means"  that bronc stomper from north of the river who bought the 160 acres of hard land and got the name also, now wearing the black badge.  It may also mean the Comish hitting a .275 at nationals and declaring it an anticipation when eight grade math tells you that he has a draw quicker than a 200 mls and therefore the Comish actually started his draw 75 mls after the light came on.  We are now calling anticipation by arbitrary rule rather than eye witness hand judges.

2. Some of you may comment that the blogger does not know the rules, to which the blogger would response "Don't assume I don't know the rules."  An author is granted "certain literary license" to which Little Bill says, "Quick don't count for much in a gunfight."

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Learning from winning and from misses

I have been somewhat dishearten for the last 45 days because I have been shooting so poorly.  I have been trying to learn the "Shift" and my accuracy has suffered for it.  Saturday it all came together at Rio.

There were 30 shooter there, 4 of which were substantially quicker than I, 2 were as quick as I, and the rest were substantially slower.  I won every match in a 3x 3 out of 5 shoot.  My draw was the same from the first shot to the 77th shot.  I didn't  think about it, did not tinker with it or worry about it.  I got in the zone.  My bucket work seems to have paid off.

My training partner accused me of slowing down for the slow shooters.  I did not!  What I did do was not to use the Thirsty Shift for four shooters, two faster and two slower, than me.  When I use the Thirsty Shift I am 30-40 mls faster, but may be less accurate.  It make no sense to use it against someone who is 100 mls faster or 600 mls slower.

What the shift is is that you shift your balance from forward to back after the set command.  In effect you are starting your draw before the light comes on by the shift in balance.  The negative is a loss of accuracy.  If the light is quick, you may shoot low, if the light is long, you may shoot high.  But with practice on timing you should be able to hit 80% with quick lights hitting low on the target and long lights hitting high on the target. On facebook it was noted that Parttime was falling backwards on his .309 shot.  That is the "Shift."  (I only know what I see, have not been told this, but if you watch you will see it)

Now what the bucket does for you is help you with this timing function.  I shoot at cardboard at 5 feet with two lines, one at 40 inches and one at 45 inches (my target height is 42.5). I want my hits between those lines.  Right or left makes no difference since that is a pre-set command alignment issue.  By shooting on cardboard I can see exactly how high or low I am shooting and to get a feel for where my balance needs to be.  I get used to adjusting my balance to adjust my shot height.  Your 50 shot string should move into the hit zone as you practice.

Back to Saturday's shoot, for four shooters, one being a nine year girl, I intentionally abandoned the shift.  I tried to get my balance in the center of the target and then proceeded with my normal  draw.  If I don't need that extra 30-40 mls why abandon the accuracy.  When I was shooting against a shooter as quick as me and I needed every millisecond I found that generally my first shot was 12 o'clock high just over the target,  I had to tell myself at the set command to balance forward, but once the set command was given I was on auto-pilot, no thinking after the set command.

Anyway my thoughts for now! Got to go shoot on the mtn.