08 April 2013

Commissioner's Cup, Trap Edition

The squad looks strong on paper.   Three of the five scored 2nd in Sporting Clays last week and one took 2nd in the individual results.  The SCSon's squad took 4th of 13.  Still this looked to be a"best of the best" squad.  We are optimistic.

The SCSon landed the squad leader spot.  I suspect that had more to do with a last name that falls early in alphabetical order than any measure of skill.  Still it gives him a measure of responsibility.  The match starts off with his inquiries "Squad Ready?"  "Scorer Ready?" and "May I see a bird"?  The scorer activates the system and he calls "Pull" to send the representative bird.  One squad member followed  the bird through as if he was shooting (All should be visualizing and the one that did wasn't the SCSon.  We need to talk).  There is also some responsibility after the round as the squad leader signs to accept the scorers scores. 

dead bird
Here we have yet another in the series of "almost really good shots".  Almost good because while the shooter is in focus, the dead bird is not.   I used the automatic settings.  What the shot needed was a tight f stop to keep both in focus.  I need to learn if this camera is even capable of doing that.  The funny thing is, my old "manual" camera forced me to set focus, aperture and shot duration for every shot and it was no i
big deal.  Now I have to figure out "what does it take to make the camera do what I want?"  And if it can't, this is not the right tool for the job.

This was supposed to be a panorama.  But somehow* the shots covering the last 90 deg  weren't there.
90 degree panorama

AzCC Trap is a 200 shot event.  It's an endurance race, not a sprint!  They did well in the morning session.  The SCSon scored 21, 22, 19, 20.  The afternoon session became problematic as the throwers ran dry and the shooters called "pull" 3-4-5 times to eventually see a bird.  I noticed a right handed shooter take his face off the shotgun to yell "pull" into the voice activated receiver sitting just left of the position, not a good setup to a good shot. Also by then they'd been out in the desert for several hours which alone is physically draining.  IOW, they were tired. The SCSon only scored 14 on the last station.

Eventually the scorer realized the thrower was empty.  Upon refilling, the squad leader requested to reshoot the entire round.  He denied saying "you took the shots, you accepted the birds".  Now I've never even looked at the rules though I suspect the cover this case.  Squad scores took a distinct dip on the last stage.  The SCSon scored 2/5 on the problematic 5 found set, and went 5/5 on the next once the thrower was reloaded.  Still that's a good lesson.

Though the 'rents had a camper and an RV, I've never seen a benefit of owning one.   Rather I have a lot of unpleasant memories driving cross country in the back of a camper in unbearable 120 deg desert conditions/90 % humidity, 95 deg with no airconditioning.  They had AC up front in the cab, but they also closed off the window so we didn't get any benefit.

Financially, it always seemed to me, I can put the money into the hotel bill or the gas bill.  Buying the gas also mean't a long slow trip taking the house along.  Buying the hotel room meant a faster less stressful ride and more comfortable surroundings.  Now I'm seeing a benefit where the value of comfortable surroundings *AT* the match is worth the cost of dragging it there.

Dad had an RV we could have had for the price of driving it home.  But we declined and that was still probably a good decision.  It had a funky Renault engine which made no sense.  Things like that have ongoing ownership costs (storage, licensing, maintenance, etc.)  What I need is to find someone that has one and is already paying the fixed costs that I can rent for a day/weekend basis. National chains are not the answer as they want multi-day minimums.

  * These new fangled cameras have lots of cool features but sometimes they trip up the users (meself included).  I call this ESO "Equipment Smarter than Operator".  I think it was set to a mode where it snaps continuous stills as long as the button is pressed.  Great for action stuff, but not so much for still shots.

scores are posted.  The squad took 3rd of 6 in class.  The SCSon led the squad with 155/200.  I gotta think a couple squad members were having bad days.  One squad member shot 89/100 the previous week at sporting clays, well above the SCSon.  Either said shooter had a real good day last week or a real bad day this week.  The SCSon's performance was in line with practice.  No matter, I'm sure everyone performed to their best on the day.  I'm proud of all! Good shootin' all!

No comments: