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The perfect storm... a lot of safety rules have been put in effect since.


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The open and empty posts got me remembering...

Happened over 11-12 years back and a major match... Stage was set up like so: Narrow, long stage, with "shotgun alley"

Position one is a horse with a scabbard for Rifle and a Scabbard for Shotgun. Both scabbards angled downward approx 45 degrees. Shooter starts with reins in hand behind horse. At the beep, drop reins and pull rifle from scabbard, engage rifle targets, replace the open and empty rifle in scabbard. Take shotgun from scabbard and engage first two shotgun targets.

Go downrange and engage 2 shotgun targets on right.

Go further downrange and engage 2 more shotgun targets on left. Table shotgun and engage pistol targets.


This was one of my first matches and no, I wasn't the shooter, spotter or TO... but I learned a lot.


Spotters follow the shooter downrange of Position One to call hits and misses of shotgun and pistol targets.


(You can just see the possibilities...)


Most everything goes ok. Most shooters wait for spotters to get out of the way before picking up rifle.


1. Shooter loads one too many rounds in rifle. (mistake 1. missed by shooter and loading table officer)

2. On returning rifle to scabbard, lever closes, hammer cocked. (mistake 2. missed by shooter and T.O. and spotters)

3. After concluding stage, shooter proceeds to position one ahead of spotters... (mistake 3...)

4. Shooter retrieves rifle with spotters downrange... (oy!) (mistake 4)

5. Shooter decocks rifle by pulling trigger............... (mistake 5)

6. Round impacts within 3 ft of returning spotter!

7. Shooter told to pack up and leave.


Have never seen a stage designed like that since. No, I'm not making this up.

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We have learned some about stage design, which helps a lot.


And we saw a lot of problems with scabbards.


And maintaining the standard safety rules.


Three major safety rules were broken by the shooter:

Always assume the gun is loaded.

And a great reminder of making sure where the muzzle points at all times - not sweeping people.


And not pulling the trigger until gun pointed safely down range.

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