Thursday, May 19, 2016

Being a Better Gunfighter!

Dirty Dan mentioned on facebook that I slip cocked during the Southern Territorial Magnificent 7 and others have mentioned a 1.47 shot.  I have no memory of it but do not deny it cause I am a stickwithit type of guy. I was raised on a farm by a bunch of uncles, cousins and brothers, and when things went wrong you were expected to "stickwithit," you were not allowed to just give up. Not to take a recovery shot is considered by me to be a character defect.  It either shows a lack of "stickwithitness" or a prideful sense of false sportsmanship.  Recently I won an event where my opponent intentionally missed a recovery shot, and I took it as a sign of disrespect to me. To this day,  I always shoot better against him.

You know in SASS you are applauded for your recoveries.  When you start out, you are always told about the lady world champion whose gun broke during a stage and she whips out her Redwing knife, fixes the gun, finishes the stage clean, and goes on to win the event.  Guess there are more real cowboys in SASS than in our sport.

Last year at the Nebraska State Championship there was a shooter who had decided to shoot a slow deliberate aiming style of draw. He would draw after his opponent shot. I drew him in my last match. I was not mentally tough and got flustered. I was happy for him to win even though the loss probably cost me a top ten finish in the top gun standings.  He needed the win more than I. Hope he is still shooting.  I needed that loss.  I am a better gunfighter for it. Because of rule changes, I am 20 mls slower this year than last but I think I am mentally tougher.

Every shooter is entitled to choose his own style of draw and shooting philosophy on the line.  We need to welcome, enjoy and applaud all shooters.  I know that many laugh at my style but I don't care.  I have been trying to join the Red Hat Society but they won't let me in saying I have too many parts. If I can just get Obama aware this injustice I think he would issue an executive order making them take me. Well, tea is overrated anyway.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Quickness, Accuracy, and Mental Toughness

I write this post in support of our current target size, target distance and lack of a time limit.  I think our events are well balanced and give all shooters the opportunity to compete.  The current format does an excellent job sorting out who the best gunslinger is on a given day.

By far the most dominant characteristic of a competitive gunfighter is mental toughness. The second most dominant characteristic is accuracy. Quickness comes in a distance third in importance.  That is why in most titled events about half the Magnificent field will be mentally tough accurate shooters regardless of quickness.

We have a good balance now, why make more silly rules or change target size or distance. I think WOW is right when he tells the whiners and poor sports to shut up and go practice.  Those complaining have spent time practicing speed when they should have been honing their mental toughness and accuracy.  If you can't win on the line, no rule is going help when you face that mentally tough accurate gunslinger. You might as well stop complaining and practice more.

The Oklahoma State Championship was a great example of how well the current format works. For the men the seeding rounds did an excellent job of sorting out the top 7 gunslingers.  You can tell that by the fact that the final standings were identical to the seeding standings.  That is not always the case and was not for the women. In the men not all were the quickest but all were mentally tough accurate shooters. Shane reach the Magnificent 7 via a CFDA resurrection shoot off.  I did not shoot against any of the bottom 3 but I know by observation they were tough gunfighters.

Of top four gunfighters, two had 2 x s, and two had 3 x s. All of the top four had received most of their main match x s from the other top 4 shooters.  It was clearly definitive that the order on quickness was Whiplash, Delta Whiskey, Quickstrike, and Everett. Almost as definitive the order on accuracy was Everett, Whiplash, Delta Whiskey and Quickstrike.  Needless to say it was a brawl. Quickstrike losing to Everett and Delta Whiskey for fourth; Delta Whiskey losing to Quickstrike and Everett for third;  Everett losing to Whiplash twice for second; and Whiplash losing only once to Everett for the Championship.

On competitive balance, it is interesting to note that the Magnificent 7 included based only on quickness the 1st, 2nd, 7th, 8th,16th, 24th and 26th  quickest guns out of 42 shooters. Our current format is working!

For the women the sorting process did not work nearly as well.  Corkey won the event from the seventh seed.  This seems to be characteristic of the ladies. Slow Poke won the Four Corners Territorial after being eliminated in the seventh place.  I think this results from the top gunslingers (toughness, accuracy, quickness) among the ladies not being as well defined. The entire field of shooters among the ladies is more uniform as to the three dominate gunfighter characteristics. Also among the ladies, quickness is much much much less important. This should be important to match directors and hosts.  There may be a thought to reduce the magnificent shoot off to five for the ladies because of the smaller numbers of competitors when in fact it should be expanded for the ladies because of the uniqueness of the field.  Had the shoot off been a Magnificent 8, the results may have been different, the current top gun lady sitting in the eight slot.

For the men at Oklahoma expanding the magnificent field would not have made any difference.  However, I may be tripping on my spurs here,  at the Four Corners, had the field been seven, the results would have been different. At the Southern had the field been five, the 2nd place shooter would not have made the shoot off.

Generally, the larger the magnificent field the more likely that the top gunfighter will win. We do shoot larger magnificent shoot offs than 7. Oklahoma was in effect for the men a Magnificent 8.

In summary, the current format is working, let's not screw it up.

"Quickness does not matter much in a gunfight." Little Bill, Unforgiven

Monday, May 16, 2016

What a blast!

Having just finished my second Magnificent Seven of the year all I can say is "what a blast."  Great competitors, great outcome, more fun than one person should be allowed to have!  Looking forward to meeting Quickstrike, Delta Whiskey, Whiplash on the line again.who knows maybe with a black badge in the balance, them boys need to practice missing more, not fast enough yet.

Had a chance to lobby some for my pet project, a championship with a true resurrection, to the uniform outcry of "you can't do that."  By the way, by CFDA rule, 7th place was resurrected in the men's match.  I think it is the "word" so I decided to quit using it.


What would be wrong with a three day championship where:

- Every shooter would get 6 x s in main match;
- Every shooter would be alive through day two;
- Half of the field would get to shoot in a Magnificent shoot-off:
- Half of the field would be alive until their last shot on day three;
- Preliminary sorting after day one, half of the field would be shooting for their lives in a 2 x  match; half the field would continue in main match and be shooting in  2 x category championships;
- There would be 18 champions on Championship Sunday:
- Eighteen Championship Buckles; balance in gold coin, no frills or goodie bags;
- All matches on Sunday would be set by Saturday night;
- No computer needed on third day;
- If less 120 shooters, shot on two 6 lane ranges;
- All matches on Sunday set at a specific time, you would know the schedule and opponents Saturday night;
- All  included in one entry fee;

What do you think? And if you say "you can't do that" think about it some more.

Last man standing favors me, would have won in that format, those speedy guys would have knock each out, but a Magnificent shoot-off is a blast.

Oklahoma was a great event, great venue, great folks. Looking forward to the Southern Territorial there next year. Next year, loverboy will come so you better be practicing missing to get faster. Bring me the next shooter cause I ain't missing!