Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Silliness Is!

I am not going to rant about how I think world record keeping is harmful to the sport but will point out how silly some of our rules are.

You have to feel for KK Kid. At the Springs she shoots a world record time pole shot that was just 1 inch low.  Then at Worlds she is in a  match up 2 to 1 and puts a .356 on the target, a new world record, winning the match. The other competitors finished the round, then she was given 3 shots to "back it up".  She hits a .388, .002 short of a backup time.  Her world record is an anticipation by rule not by fact.  The match therefore continues.  She then hits a .360 to win the match.  So we now have a shooter hitting a world record and in the same match against the same opponent following it up with a shot to within .004 of the new record and the world record is ruled an "anticipation." Silliness is!

Just how silly it is, you will realize if you test the rounds used in titled match. You will realize the difference probably results from the variance in the loads of the cartridges as much as how quick a shooter is on the light. 

Last week at Mesa, Shady Mike and Thirsty, were tied 2-2, next blinking light.  The light comes on, Shady misses and Thirsty hits with a .280. The shooters were beginning to unload the match being over when the peanut gallery pipes up, world record, back it up.  Thirsty, being a good sport, takes his three shots to attempt to back it up and fails.  Anticipation.  Shady wins the match with a miss.  Silliness is!

In both of these instances, the shooter has clearly the ability to shoot a world record time, as they have done so repeatedly in practice and in all likelihood drew on the light.

We have these silly rules to protect the record.  If we really want to be effective in protecting the record we need to look to track and field for guidance.  We could up the penalty for anticipation to a loss of match instead of loss of shot.  Now there is little to cure grailfever because anticipation is almost like a miss.

I still have not recovered from my bout of grailfever this summer, but promise to myself to take the cure.


  1. Any time you have a world's record in any game, the sanctioning body gets to set the "rules" for the attempt. Probably the most noted world-record sanctioning organization, is the Guinness Book of Word Records. If you'd like to attempt to set a new world's record that goes in The Book, by all means, but you'd better read the rules first. Guinness is very particular about their record-keeping and has no sense of humor when it comes to the rules. They are what they are, and if we don't like it.... tough.

    Regarding our little game, the rules are the rules. I like KK, I've met her at matches, think she's a fine competitor. But, a miss is a miss and the rules are the rules.

    Ammo quality is a concern, and I think everyone knows that, but tries there best to give us good ammo. I've been a hand-loader for nigh on four decades, reloading everything from shotshell to high-powered match cartridges and I know how demanding it can be to reload match-quality ammo. When I'm handloading premium ammo, I get out the chronograph and test my loads, trying to get the Sd down to low single digits. I've even gone so far as to sort bullets, and hand-weigh primers to try for magically consistent loads. It's a demanding task.

    The last time I chrony'd wax ammo, the results were not very satisfying. Sppeeds of about 610 fps with Dead-Eyes and Bandit's alike, but the Sds were up in the mid 30s. While this translates into bullet flight times of 32-35mls at our 21 foot target range, I don't know if that's enough to make a difference in a match, but it's something to consider.

  2. As always a thoughtful well researched comment. I just shoot from the hip, that's why I am out in left field so often.

  3. As always a thoughtful well researched comment. I just shoot from the hip, that's why I am out in left field so often.