We had 28 Rifleman on the line for the first annual BPTRA Creedmoor Nationals. Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, Oklahoma, Minnesota and British Columbia were all represented.
A good time was had by all and as usual at Colorado Rifle Club in Byers, the conditions played an important and prominent role in the match. We can always get windy days there but this weekend was exceptional. The sustained winds all weekend made it tough on shooters to get dialed in at distances of 800, 900 and 1000 yards. We had a good time, good fellowship and some good food on Saturday night.
We probably started with winds at 10-15mph and they just increased throughout the day. I’m sure we had gusts close to 40mph while shooting. Most of it was a strong and switching tailwind that played hell on shooters elevations on target. Despite the conditions we had some great spotting and shooting at certain distances but it was very hard for a shooter to put together 3 strings in a row at the different yard lines. One shooter/spotter pair did though and that was Lucinda Bryan and Jimbo Terry. Shooting a Shiloh Sharps Tollofson, 45-100 rifle that ruled the day finishing 15 points ahead of the next competitor with a 240-1x. Followed by Randy Ellingrod with a 228-2x and myself with a 225-2x. Scores that didn’t feel great on the line until you looked at how vicious the conditions were on the other competitors on the scoreboard
More of the same. Our first relays at 800 were relatively mild but then the conditions came in again. Not as strong as the day before but they were tricky as could be. Judging the let-offS was the name of the game as well as holding elevation. We had anywhere from 15 minutes left to 2 minutes right on the same relay. Other competitors experienced much of the same. Just when we thought it couldn’t get worse one of our relays experienced two incredibly strong devils tails that managed to pick up spotters mats and throw them 10’s of feet down our 1000yd line. I think that’s one of the first times I’ve seen a StayPut shooting mat picked up off the ground and fly like that. Steve Baldwin finished with a 228-2x shooting with Ray Hanson on the spotting scope. Tied, shooter Chris Lippmann with spotter Hugh Wilson also shot a 228-2x with the 1000yd score being the tie breaker. Chris and Steve were only separated by 4 points with their score and that put Baldwin on top for Day 2 winner. Steve Fogler showed up super strong on Day 2 with a 222-3x. Kelly McNitt helped him stay on top of conditions as his spotter. The biggest highlight for me and I think at least one other person was seeing new Creedmoor shooter, Steve Anderson take home a high distance award with his amazing 93-3x at 800 yards.His spotter was Ed Himelhoch. I know Steve is already working this game over in his head on solutions to loads and rifles to see how we can improve at the further distances. Watch out when he does!
That evening we gave out more daily awards and had a catered BBQ dinner.
Shiloh Bingo and Sponsors
I did a little something different to spice up the prize give away of the very generously donated Shiloh Rifle by the Bryan Family. I built a bingo board of sorts that we mounted to a 1000yd target. Competitors weren’t sure why they were putting their names in squares until Lucinda Bryan laid down on the line with her rifle after the match was over. I have to admit I was a bit nervous about how this would play out until she put her first shot right on target through a competitor category in a square. Names almost filled the squares and the 5 left over were filled with special category awards that were yet to be determined. First Master, Expert, Marksman/Sharpshooter, High Spotter and low score were also 5 squares on the board. Her bullet went right through the First Expert square and at the end of Day 2 that person was Chris Lippmann. He was very excited to be the recipient of such a fine prize. Considering his distance driven and love of Shiloh Rifles this seemed to be a pretty good fit.
We had a great response from other sponsors as well for donations that were all given away to appreciative competitors Saturday night. Steve Baldwin, Bryan Youngberg, Steve Anderson, Jimbo Terry, MVA, Decot shooting glasses, Creedmoor Sports, Tom Rowe, SPG, Starline, Swiss Powder, Treebone Carving, Dan Zimmerman and Sulphur Gulch Gunsmithing. We thank you very much for your support.
Our last day was all 1000yd shooting. All relays shot twice under lesser but still very tricky conditions. The morning air was cold and the ground was still wet from big thunderstorms the night before. We were going to see a 40 degree rise in temps that day. Even though the wind was less, up and downs were worse than ever as the thermals brought in hot air quickly to take shooters high and low all over the target. In one relay I missed the target low, shot a 10 and went over the target in 3 consecutive shots with barely a change on the elevation knob. By the end of the day we were back to 12-14 minutes of right on the sight to hit the target. We even were back at 0 for a couple of shots.
After firing was complete, competitors helped me take the range down and gather up gear. We had a nice final awards and goodbye. In the end, one shooter/spotter team we awarded the Creedmoor Cup Team Trophy, those Rifleman were Steve Baldwin and his spotter Ray Hanson. They stayed consistent enough throughout the competition to take home the gold medals, plaques and team trophy.
Steve finished with a 617-6x. Chris Lippmann and his spotter Hugh Wilson finished 2nd with a 597-7x and Bryan Youngberg finished 3rd with his spotter Robert Garibay for a total of 578-5x.
You can download all the scores in the forms and downloads section of the website.
Thanks to all the sponsors and competitors who helped me pull this together. Thank you to the Wyoming Crew of Bryan, Jimbo and Kenny who have been big supporters of this effort and helped me tremendously at the match as well. Thank you to Lucinda and Kirk Bryan. All the work and effort put toward this event was well worth it experiencing the kindness and appreciation that everyone showed me during and after the match. Black Powder Target Rifle Competition is alive, well and thriving in the BPTRA!
You think you have wind at your range! This is a pic from the area taken during the time of the midrange match on August 11th, 2019. Some serious lightning, but don't let it distract you from the Tornado on the ground in the background!
From left to right, Scott Stephenson, Lee Kleidon, Gary Baylis, Bryan Youngberg, Hugh Wilson, Jack Odor and Robert Garibay
Match Report for the 2019 BPTRA Midrange Championships, August 3rd and 4th
Colorado Rifle Club
This weekend we held the first annual BPTRA Midrange Championships. We had 9 shooters signed up but unfortunately two of them couldn’t make it. One of our favorite shooters Klaus Schattleitner had to be taken to the ER the night before the competition. Klaus’s good friend and spotter Jason Porter was able to look after Klaus and get him home the next day. Klaus is ok, just in some pain but he will recover.
We had a pretty lax practice day. Only a couple of shooters got some settings and did some offhand practice. We got some work done on the range and in the pits. Thanks to Bryan and Scott for their help.
People rolled in and said hi and prepped for Saturday.
Day 1, Midrange Position Match or MR-POS
We had our shooters meeting under the cover and proceeded out to the 200yd line which was already blazing hot, as forecasted. Conditions were pretty mild during the morning but did speed up a little bit in the afternoon. If you weren’t on top of fouling control you weren’t going to have a good day. Barrels were too hot to touch and patches were coming out steaming!
At 200 yards Bryan and Hugh put on an offhand shooting clinic. Bryan shot a 90-1x and Hugh shot an 88.
We then went to the 300yd sitting position and Jack and Hugh, who shot together, ended up on top with the high scores. After 300 the heat really started getting tough on the shooters and their equipment. I personally didn’t stay on top of fouling control and suffered for it. I know it affected some other shooters as well. Conditions picked up a bit at 600 and made for some tricky shooting. Again, Bryan and Hugh ended the day like they started, on top! Bryan with a 90-1x and Hugh with an 85-1x. They managed their fouling control well and had some good spotting to boot. Both Bryan and Hugh handily walked away from the other competitors with the first two ever BPTRA Master Scores in Position.
Day 2, Midrange Prone with the 500yd target or MR-500
Finally, we got to shoot like real men…laying down!
After the shooters meeting on Sunday we started out with a breeze right out of the gate. The wind was welcome to help cool us off but played hell on a few of our scores. Some shot well at 300 and for others it was the start of a bad day. The story was starting out good on Sunday for one of our new shooters Gary Baylis. Gary laid down in his 3rd ever BPTR match, and crushed it with a 99-1x. Gary doesn’t smile a ton but he looked like a Cheshire cat at the end of that relay. He has been learning about loading for BP and casting and has found a load that his ’74 Shiloh really likes. I was just behind Gary with a 97-4x and Bryan followed up with a 96-2x.
Then we moved back to 500. Conditions really started to move us either side of 0. Judging the let offs and lack of, was the name of the game along with fouling control. I managed to come out on top by one X over Bryan with an 89-2x. Hugh was close behind with his 85-2x. Gary would have been right there with us but he took a miss accidentally setting his front trigger. The 500yd target is very punishing with its small scoring rings if you don’t stay in the center. On to 600 and we really had some wind moving now. I managed to stay on top again with an 88-2x and Bryan with an 84-1x. I think I had the better spotter in that deal. Scott, Lee and Gary also turned in some very respectable scores at 600 in the conditions, shooting in the mid and high 70’s.
Thanks to all the shooters who helped chip in, it made for a smooth match. We had some nice plaques, medals and distance awards for winners at the end of Sunday. I’m overwhelmed by the support and appreciation the BPTRA has received so far. People seem pretty happy to be a part of it and it is much appreciated.
Check out https://bptra.org/for more updates and upcoming matches. I’ll also have a more detailed report and equipment surveys in the next issue of the BPC News.
Saturday Position Scores
1st Bryan Youngberg- 272-2x
2nd Hugh Wilson- 267-2x
3rd Jack Odor-249-4x
4th Robert Garibay-245-2x, High Spotter
5th Scott Stephenson- 233
6th Gary Baylis- 225
7th Lee Kleidon- 164
Sunday Prone Scores
1st Robert Garibay-274-8x
2nd Bryan Youngberg- 269-4x, High Spotter
3rd Gary Baylis- 247-3x
4th Hugh Wilson-239-3x
5th Scott Stephenson-229
6th Jack Odor- 210-3x
7th Lee Kleidon- 208
1st Bryan Youngberg- 541-6x
2nd Robert Garibay- 519-10x, High Spotter
3rd Hugh Wilson- 506-5x
4th Gary Baylis- 472
5th Scott Stephenson-462
6th Jack Odor-459-8x
7th Lee Kleidon- 372
I’ll just refer to this Sunday’s match as a “work out the kinks” match for most of us. Seemed everyone was either trying something new, trying it for the first time or trying to figure out what went wrong. The morning started out fairly nice as far as the conditions go at Byers. I don’t think anyone should have had much more than 3-4 minutes on either side of 0 in our all 1000yd match. By the afternoon conditions picked up and were a little all over the place. Left to right, right to left, tailwinds and full on let-offs back to 0. Ten shooters had RSVP’d but life get in the way for 3 of us so we shot with 7 shooters total. 3 shooters were shooting BP loads for the first time at distance. 2 competitors had their front sights come loose, one to the point of mostly coming off. Never a good thing for longrange accuracy. I was busy getting up after most shots using my Wyoming Sight Drifter trying to rezero my rifle. Those tools work really well IF you remember which way you should be moving your front sight. I was not one of those people. For the record, an easy rule to remember is follow the impact of your miss. So if you’re hitting too far left then drift your front sight towards the errant impact. Miss to the left, drift sight to the left. Hopefully I won’t forget next time. With 7 shooters in attendance we ran 4 man relays in one squad and 3 in the other out of necessity. I put myself in the BPTRA Rifleman class shooting by myself without a spotter. Something I enjoy doing but not necessarily with a rifle I’m trying to rezero in conditions. Just about when we finished shooting for the day I think everyone realized what they needed to work on for the next match. Thanks to Gary Baylis for coming out again and shooting his 45-70 with BP for the first time. I think Gary will be a quick study. I noticed he finished a relay with a 10 on his last shot. Always a good way to finish! Also thanks to Steve Fogler for being up and ready early and helping me get the range ready. Steve had all the flags up for the range in no time as I was getting the pits and supplies ready. Steve is very enthusiastic when it comes to shooting these type of matches, we appreciate the support. We also had a Father/Son team come out, which is always a neat thing. Scott Stephenson brought his son Richard out, is was nice to see them shooting together. Our next match at Byers will be August 3rd and 4th. It will be our first BPTRA Midrange Championships. A Position match on Day 1 and a Prone match on Day 2. There has been some improvements to the firing lines at Byers, particularly the 500 and 600 yard line so everything will be nice, level and reshaped for your shooting pleasure. See you on the line! Results: 1st-Robert Garibay 2nd-Kenny Wasserburger 3rd-Scott “Grizz” Stephenson 4th-Steve Fogler 5th-Gary Baylis 6th-Richard Stephenson 7th-Lee Kleidon (DNF) Robert Garibay BPTRA
Bryan Youngberg won the Any Match with a 272-5x and to his right Michael Rix won the Position Match with a 230-1x, and a very nice H.M. Pope book donated by Tom Rowe. All shooters went home with some donated Swiss powder. Vern Fauss was 2nd in the Any match with a 226-3x and Jeff Dierksen 3rd with a 206.
Thanks to everyone that showed up for our all 600 yard match. We had a great day and some good shooting and spotting in some pretty windy conditions.
May 5th, 2019 marked the first ever BPTRA match at Colorado Rifle Club in Byers, CO. Thanks to all that attended and the people who have supported the BPTRA even though they could not make the first match. We had great weather and some great shooting in some tricky conditions.
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